Above: Page spread from the Japanese Lined Notebooks I've been working in lately. This is an experiment from the end of May and the end of 2 months of being house bound! I was playing with Montana Markers (pink, and later some white) and the fine tipped pigmented black in Pentel Brush Pen, and the fugitive dye-based Pentel Color Brush in Sepia (which is another of my addictions). You can see how I adjusted my width of the forehead as I worked with the brush pens. Usually I have what I call "wideology" but I've been working so hard to combat this that I've flopped in the other direction. I really like the ear on this sketch and I'm sorry I didn't make a detail of it for you. Click on the image to view an enlargement, and read some more.
NOTE: Today's image has nothing to do with today's post. Sorry. But I wanted to show you more from the Japanese Lined Notebooks I've been working in for the past 2 months; and I still haven't done the video flip through that I was hoping to do. So while I get back to catching up, here's an example of what I'm doing in those books, with a detail image later on in this post; and a short post about bad news.
Last Wednesday I walked into the kitchen to put my shoes on for our evening walk.
Dick stood at the end of the kitchen island unfolding his Wall Street Journal and reading the day’s headlines. Suddenly he quietly but firmly put his hands down on the paper, covering it
An odd gesture.
I looked at his face. It had started to go white around the eyes, which is a good trick even for someone of Irish, Finnish, and German extraction because he’s already so pale.
I looked down at his hands. He tried to unobtrusively cover more of the paper.
I looked at his face.
My heart sank. There’s only one reason he would act like this.
“Sean Connery, he’s dead?” I asked while holding my breath.
He shook his head but didn’t move his hands.
I forced myself to breathe.
“Michael Caine?” I asked, barely able to choke out the name. (I am very attached to my favorite movie stars.)
Again he shook his head and pushed his hands hard against the paper, continuing to hide it from my view.
“OK, just tell me. I’m really worried here. Just tell me.” I had a sense that perhaps I should sit down.
Dick removed his hands and held up the July 9 paper.
Emerging Markets' Chocolate Lovers Boost Cocoa Prices
Appetite for Chocolate in Developing Countries Has Sparked Rally in Cocoa, Near Three-Year Highs
I was both relieved and devastated at the same time. Relieved that no one I adored was dead and that there were no new horrors of blood shed, but devastated that my recent promises to myself to economize are going to be challenged so completely, so immediately.
“Ach,” I said, “I have to stop eating chocolate anyway; it had to happen sooner or later. I feel guilty about the labor practices…”
It’s hard to behave ethically when you’re an addict. People addicted to tomatoes (I don’t personally know anyone addicted to tomatoes, but I’m sure there are some people who are—so just for example let’s say) can always grow a plant in their backyard, or a planter, and cut out the middle man and any unfair labor practices. And once you have a couple tomatoes you can easily make sauce for your pasta, or make salsa, or chop it for your salad. But if you crave chocolate you can’t really…
Left: Detail of the image that opened today's post. Here you can see some of the overlapping of markers and brush pens. This paper really stands up to work and reworking if you just watch your water use a bit—and shouldn't we do that all the time anyway? Click on the image to view an enlargement (really, this one blows up really large, you'll enjoy it).
Dick started making assurances about how more area could be devoted to growing chocolate. “Where?” I asked with a tone somewhat between defiant and sarcastic, knowing full well that chocolate can't be grown everywhere and land use is a political issue all over the globe, especially as land for "real" food crops disappears to desertification, flooding, etc.).
As he started to explain I lost interest and focused on putting on my shoes. (They are new, bought on sale but part of the reason for my thoughts of economy— Salomon XR Mission, with quick-laces that shouldn’t take any time at all—but my hands were shaking. The last time I gave up chocolate both the girls were still alive.)
I stood up and we went for out walk. We were at River Road before Dick said anything. He knew I needed some time to adjust.
I’m still adjusting.
Note: I mentioned my shoes because they are the most comfortable shoes I’ve ever had. They fit my foot EXACTLY. Shoes have come a long way since I had to buy Adidas Men’s size 5 shoes to run in! Everyone comments on how RED they are. And you know what, they are RED. But then I just turn to the person and say what my wise friend Diane told me the day after I bought them: Red is the new neutral.
Hey, it’s not like my paint splattered world has a color-coordinating theme threading through it. Shoes need to be comfy (especially if I'm grumpy from giving up chocolate). And I need to be able to run if I’m chased by spies. If a shoe does all that I’m happy.