Listening to NPR this morning I heard a couple interviews about theMaker Faire that just happened in NYC this weekend. It wasn’t exactly an “aha moment” but it dawned on me that every time I have a conversation with friends and family about what I’m going to do with my life (like because now I’m a freaking grown up and should “do” something…. the last 42 years I’ve been sitting on my ass btw) the conversation always turns to the question “What do you like to do the most?”. Well let’s see um, make dinner, make some cupcakes, make a new garden bed, make a cup, make a room, make a dress, make a plate, make a drawing. I only feel happy when I’ve produced something, it doesn’t necessarily have to be anything high brow like a painting but I have to do something everyday to be happy, there has to be an action that results in something being made or created, that is where my talents are and that is where my happiness resides. I still haven’t figured out how this translates to an actual business plan or how to make this ideal me profitable, but I’m working on it.
So maybe I’ll start answering the question “What do you do?” with
“I’m a maker.”
“I have an BFA with a concentration in Ceramic Sculpture but when I graduated and opened a studio I found out no one wants sculpture so I switched to functional work but that got frustrating so I started working on my house and found I liked to decorate and design interiors and then I had kids so I cut back and started sewing and baking and waiting tables and then my husband bought me a sand blaster so I started working with glass but I can’t really stand production work so now I’m back to Interior Design.”
Maybe it’ll be easier.
Everyone has those defining moments in life when things shift and they are either called into action or finally take the leap themselves. Yesterday was that defining moment for me and the collision of two separate events led me into a frothing raging fury so great that I could no longer hold my tongue, keep my head down and keep trudging through my daily grind. It began with my love for Top Chef. In this weeks episode the challenge was to have the contestants cater a traveling dinner party for 3 neighbors in Dallas and it was, in my mind, the most disgusting display of fucking over the top wealth and consumption. A truly nauseating slice of trophy wife, McMansion living and utter lack of reality that I couldn’t help by mutter “are you fucking kidding me?” at the TV several times. I hope that the eye roll I think I caught from Tom Colicchio was it’s only saving grace… and he should have rolled his eyes, the one upsmanship on how many people attended the party goers weddings was really just insane… a thousand people at a wedding, what fucknuts!
Which brings me to scene 2. After doing the usual morning routine, get the kids up and out the door (well one kid because the other was sick on the couch), drop off at school, drop off the husband at work, walk the dog, and then comes my favorite time… listen to NPR uninterrupted on the way home. NPR had an interview with Martha Stewart about her new Entertaining book, which upon entering the library to get sick kid a book, I found right by the check out desk so I checked it out. Note here that I would never ever buy this book but hell, it’s free so why not check it out right… I mean Martha is usually good for skimming an idea or two. I brought it home and every page I turned started to unravel me, every descriptor, suggestion and personal little ditty made me what to throttle someone. Well of course it’s easy to have a lovely “Blueberry Brunch” when your full time staff of 3 can prep your home and help you unload the cases of wine, cheese for New York, pastries from France, and handmade sausages from Vienna. Yes you can set a beautiful table with glorious bouquet when you happen to have 240 varieties of peonies, Tiffany flatware and fine china but how about making a table look great with the fucking flowers in my 1/8 of acre city lot, my Salvation Army plates and god knows what mismatched flatware I can dig up. Really, how can anyone compete with Martha? How can people get back to having a life they can be proud of, a life they feel like sharing with their friends and neighbors if the bar is set so high?
So that’s where I’m coming from, I’m here to take back this realm from the wealthy and bring it back down into the realm of reality. I hope to give some good recipes, a tip or two on decorating on the cheap, and maybe just a little dose of living honestly. Life is not always pretty (I just spent 10 minutes crying to a teenagers post on youtube) but we can try to dress it up, clean it up, cook it up and then share with our community.
Tiffany flatware…. jesus!