Friday, September 15, 2017

Loud Shoes

Early one sunny August morning light conditions were just right to highlight the neon green plastic sandals worn by a neighbor walking past me on my way to the bus. Ordinarily I do not emphasize the foot when getting dressed, but pedestrian safety makes it easy to rationalize putting on a pair of play shoes for daytime.

I have grown to appreciate the white edges on the soles of skate shoes and may actively shop for lighted footgear for the dark and rainy days ahead -30-
More after the jump.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Fashion Note

A senior gentleman boarded the bus wearing a definitively original Pacific Northwest garment. It was a worn but skillfully cut blazer fashioned from the red and black buffalo check wool plaid that is the hallmark of the woods. The fabric is interesting. As I understand it, the weave is the oldest known to humankind. 

The first "Whole Earth Catalogue" included how tos for fashioning a traditional mountain, uh, person's long jacket out of a worn blanket. That cut can be spectacular when it is tailored by someone who knows what they're doing. The close fit brings to mind the tweed suit George Mallory wore on his unsuccessful attempt to summit Mt. Everest. Climbers copied the outfit and were surprised at how efficient it was to wear in extreme conditions. They said fitting is the key to conserving body heat.

The catalogue describes garments cut from the broad-striped beaver pelt trade blankets produced in England. Local Indians still make jackets and vests out of worn Oregon Round-up blankets -30-

More after the jump.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A Gift To The Hand

Pottery and other crafts are a gift to the hand. Well-designed ware is the product of skilled artisans whose trained gestures are re-created by the user just as a device that plays music re-creates the movement of the players. It's an advantage to be able to handle first-rate work.

An antique collector once showed me a plate that was a product of the highest level of privilege in its culture. He casually picked it up, nearly waved it in the air as he discussed its qualities, and handed it to me as easily as one would pass a latte' in a paper cup. I gasped and sat down to take a closer look. The form and decoration of the plate were as straightforward and ingenuous as the watercolor paintings of Seattle's Jim Peck, who taught at Cornish.

It is my pleasure to rent a miniature plastic house from my kid. It's part of an encyclopedic line of parlor toys. I have a small collection of fine furnishings that are in scale with the structure and are used (at first) under careful supervision. I believe a child benefits from informal acquaintance with the best that humanity knows how to produce, easy tutorials undistorted by the pressures of formal education.

Privilege takes many forms. A leaf is as beautiful and sophisticated as any work of art and less stressful to store. Any pebble reflects the same powerful forces that produce a lively pot. Often, the "found art" of street litter is as beautifully formed as sculpture -30- 
More after the jump.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Pit Bulls Like Snowberry

At least one mixed-breed pit bull does, that is. A neighbor was walking her doggie and shared his reaction to a recent garden thrash on the front bank. She said as the process of uprooting too-vigorous snowberry proceeded, the dog reacted to the days' long project with consistent Scoobie-style worried vocalizations. 

I appreciate the feedback. I asked what else the dog likes, and he mouthed a long strand of grass while his mistress translated -30-
More after the jump.

Monday, September 11, 2017


A photographer friend used the plain fluorescent white base of a line of paint to cover the walls of a room. He explained that lighting, particularly warm or cool LEDs, can change the feeling of a space instantly. He added that you can't cool down a room that's too warm, although apparently the opposite is possible.

To those comments I add that if one is in a tearing hurry at the paint store, all one has to wait for is the shake -30-
More after the jump.