i pulled my old bike out of the garage for the first time in two years, i think. it was a bike that belonged to my uncle back in the seventies. after he'd retired it, it sat in my grandmother's backyard gathering dust, rust and spider eggs. i don't remember exactly how it ended up in our backyard, but five years ago, i dug it out of its resting place and fixed it up the best i could.
i've taken it to the burning man festival in nevada a couple summers since, and pulling it out today i had to wash playa dust from its crevices. the summer of 2005, i camped next to two very nice lesbian ladies who fed me quesadillas one evening and told me my bike looked "gay." maybe it was the seventies skull sticker that adorned the front of it that refuses to wash off after thirty years. maybe it was the exuding masculinity left over from my uncle. maybe that old dirt bike is just to kick-ass for a girl like me. but for whatever reason, i pouted a little while chowing down on my meal and pretended my bike and i weren't offended just slightly.
i still ride it, now with a tentative shyness. people stare and i'm sure it's because they're jealous.
riding that thing this evening all over creation, discovering places of my hometown i didn't know existed reminded me of my childhood. i had wheels for legs in those days. the bikeseat wearing my adult buttcheeks sore, i tried to grasp at a childhood that didn't seem as far away as it actually has become. another work day wasn't looming before me then, and i still had an entire summer before me.
there are amenities that have come with age since my relationship with those bike rides of the eighties. i carry bottled water to stay hydrated, of course, and my ipod tags along. ironically, i choose to listen mostly to eighties music and marvel at how my life has come to this place.. thinking about the pals who used to ride alongside me and wondering where they went, what became of them, and how easily friendships ended in the days of slow-moving communication. (back when my best friend moved to wyoming, i didn't even know how to send a letter to her.)
after a few miles on foot and some photos taken, i found a gas station with an air pump and filled up my tires for fifty cents and bought another bottle of water. the bike seemed to have been resurrected, and with it, my second wind arrived. we rode on for another hour.
my new polaroid spectra was tested and performed admirably. i also took the nikon my grandfather gave to me back when i was a prisoner on the banks of north carolina. that camera has been the best gift i've ever received, though waiting for film to be processed is always a bit of a nail-biting, time-consuming experience. i loved hearing the mechanics and the whirrs of the polaroid creating instantaneous satisfaction this evening. but is it really just the novelty and simplicity that draws me to this new camera? if i had to choose a sidekick to follow me throughout my days, it'll always be my nikon.
on my way home, and with my very last polaroid photo, i caught a rather hidden shed with the words "something special" marked above its doors. it felt like a small gift left there for me to discover.
so i'm sharing that gift by way of instant photomaking.
Friday, July 13, 2007
inevitably the oppressive summer heat has struck- has been streaking- these parts for a many few weeks now and i find the scents of this summer seem to be that of sweat and chlorine from the pool. i can count the area lucky so far, that this is one of few summers where idaho isn't on fire. leave it up to those nevadans to throw a fiery fiesty party that leaves all others somewhat lackluster.
i went on a day trip a few weeks ago with a pal. we drove out to lime, oregon to an abandoned cement plant. i find the relics of industry so mystifying. adolescents armed with paintballs had shot up the place and left them littering the area. i found them irresistible and could not restrain myself from popping them open, minor mishap included. my pal and i weren't there long before we discovered some shady, long tunnel in which we happily explored. no sooner were we inside than we heard footsteps approaching in the gravel. once outside the tunnel and after a small panic about some hillbilly with a shotgun ran through my mind, we heard those same curious footsteps above us in one of the giant silos. it sounded as though someone was timidly searching for us.
we surfaced from below and discovered to our surprise that we were alone. it was so quiet you could hear the occasional breeze knock around old tin doors back and forth. we waited, hoping to encounter our pursuer on pleasant terms, but alas. no one ever showed.
it nagged at me for some time after the event; i tried many different routes of scientific explanation, but none were convincing.
i did some research later and discovered, though no proof can be offered, that others report that old cement plant as haunted. unearthly growls have been heard there- lame- but the one thing that caught my attention were the reports that apparitions have wandered the grounds following people.
i can't say i'm thoroughly convinced of either side, but it certainly piqued my interest.
below is a photo of my "number one" at the place of haunted cement.
all photos in this post were taken with a holga 120s. it was a hand-me-down camera from my friend john back when i lived in savannah, but only recently have i begun to explore the possibilities and shoot with it more often.
Monday, July 9, 2007
i like ease of use. i like three minute ramen & four minute easy mac, rechargeable batteries and the like. but when ease of use impedes on mother nature and the future of the world and landfills, let's face it: disposable handiwipes and razors aren't necessarily easy. that's another story, and i'm opening this blog in hopes of finding a way to make posting illustrative news and such a bit faster. ease of use.
i find that near an entire year between posts to my current website is a bit ridiculous. i tend to get too busy and focus on the actual creating art part and forget that my website is how i inform a lot of folks about comings-up and goings-on surrounding my art. it's not a professional way of going about this i admit, and i've lost a few cards and email addresses scrawled on pieces of papers. i hate to admit that i have scatterbrained tendencies because i don't. hermit, yes: guilty. preferring written word to actual conversation, again: guilty. scatterbrained? lies!
so. this better be easier. updating images to the website and building such on my own will continue to be something i have to deal with, but the news should always be updated in a more efficient manner than i've been capable of thus far.
i'm in a show right now at the basement gallery in downtown boise, alongside local artists jeremy lanningham, tarmo watia and scott brown. if you're not familiar with the basement gallery, it's pretty much in the basement of the old idanha building. the show will run through both july and august. (the above image is a piece in the show.)