Tag Archives: art

More Art Than Science

by Richard

What with all the work that got done on the Jones compound over the summer, we’re just now getting finished, which means we’re just now getting to the point where we start hanging stuff back up on the walls.

Artwork, dudes, now that’s the part of a marriage that can really put stress and strain on a couple. No, seriously.

For the most part, my tastes run pretty sympatico with those of my wife, known to me as She Who Must Get Her Way, which means we like — mostly — things that are fairly subdued. With one exception. On the cruise from heck where I almost bled out with a gastrointestinal bleed, before I got sick, I managed to purchase this great painting by a dude named Romero Britto. The painting is called Sexy.

That dude knows how to use a paintbrush. And a glitter glue stick, yeah?

Anyway, this was one of the rare times that we actually agreed on what to hang on the wall. Mostly I just go along with what she wants and only object when something really rubs me the wrong way. In that, we’re pretty lucky I guess.

Our problem comes in when we start to hang stuff. She is a bit of a perfectionist. She insists that we hang each picture with two hangers, no matter that each one is rated for more pounds than the picture weighs. And we’ve got to have everything centered or placed down to the 1/8 th inch.

It gets more than a little annoying. Which means I start getting snippy. Then she gets snippy (er) and so on. And so on. Once that vicious cycle starts, it’s hard to break it off and find a compromise.

Okay, I think it’s time to come clean. Mostly I did this post so I could have a chance to show off the picture. It’s pretty cool, yeah?

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Collected Edition

by Richard

It was the perfect storm of stuff: I’ve been trying to clean out my kitchen and I also happened across a great post on dudette Kristina’s Good Egg Organizing blog also having to do with collecting.

Sometimes people just like to bring home souvenirs from places they’ve been: spoons, shot glasses, refrigerator magnets, etc.  Other people take their collections more seriously and usually have a lot more of these types of things: antiques, record albums, books, toys and similar items.

Many people collect clothes, shoes, handbags, etc., and even though they don’t consider themselves to be collectors, they are, in the sense that they are constantly adding, but never get rid of anything that they don’t need anymore, thereby making themselves collectors.

I know I already have this particular problem, dudes. I have an entire built-in bookcase in along all the walls in the bonus room and comic boxes stashed one on top of the other in the front closet that stand as mute testimony to my inability to throw away anything that has been printed.

Heck, I’ve even got copies of school newsletters I made for various elementary schools over the years. How’s that for pitiful?

Collectors like me and, you know, probably like you dudes really have a hard time letting go. It’s not so much that we collect or keep stuff, even a small bit at a time. That we could probably handle. It’s that we never actually give away, sell or just throw away anything we’ve collected. And that makes for some impressive piles of stuff over the years.

Of course, there’s also people who collect things they actually use a lot of the time like, for instance, my wife, known to me as She Who Must Have The Most Pampered Feet In Existence. She has so many shoes and items of clothing in our closet that I’m pretty sure the driving force behind our current home renovation is her need for more closet space. In her case, though, it’s not keeping stuff, it’s that she keeps buying stuff. A lot of it. But that’s another story.

Here’s where we have to get down to it. If we’re going to destuffify our lives, we’re going to have to be ruthless. Get rid of stuff that you don’t actually use or have never used. Get rid of multiple copies of things you already own. Get rid of stuff you’re keeping around just because you’ve always kept it around.

This is going to be an interesting project. I’ll let you know how it goes.

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Freaky Friday: Space Porn

by Richard

Once again, I marvel at the world of the future we seem to have started living in. No, seriously. Think about it. We have pictures beamed home from other worlds. We’re going to be landing a craft on an asteroid, taking a sample and then returning to Earth with it.

We’ve got moon rocks on display in our nation’s capitol. We can talk to people across the world and across the street with the same ease. I’ve got a watch that, with the push of a button, will show photos of my family or play music.

How is this not the future? How can we not be amazed by this sort of stuff?

And, especially, how can we just be flat-out slobberknocking, jaw-droppingly astonished by the sort of stuff I’m getting ready to talk about.

On Oct. 15, 1997, NASA launched the Cassini spacecraft from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. After liftoff, it took seven years to travel the millions of miles through the solar system before finally arriving in orbit around Saturn on July 1, 2004. With only a scheduled four-year mission, Cassini had already surpassed expectations when it beamed back great pictures and scans of Venus and Jupiter on its way to Saturn. Because it’s performed so very well and is showing no signs of breaking down, Cassini’s mission has been extended through — at least — 2017. Now that’s some well-designed stuff by dudes who know what they’re doing.

Some of them also know the value of something just looking cool. Some of the dudes and dudettes with NASA’s Cassini Imaging Science System put together a brilliant little video created from video taken by Cassini on flybys through the Saturn system, orbiting various moons, discovering new ones, and finding out about the atmosphere and vulcanism on several others.

It’s a whole new world out there. And a very cool one.

So scroll down and take a look. And realize this isn’t special effects. This is straight-up real. And it. . . is. . . AWESOME!


CASSINI MISSION from Chris Abbas on Vimeo.

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