Sunday, December 05, 2004

December 5, 2004
More rain! Hard to believe we're in a drought. Started sprinkling yesterday at about ten, soggy and misty all day and night. Still quite wet and overcast out this morning. Got a nice fire going in the studio stove. Buddy Boze Hatkiller is asleep in his chair. I'm ruining a painting on my right. It's OK, I'm not okay. As in it's an O.K. Corral painting and it's not working.

Kathy and I went into Scottsdale at two yesterday. Visited Deena in her new condo. She needs some artwork framed so I took one of her fave posters by Leighton

Met the Tumalos for a movie at four. Went to Camelview Five to see Sideways (about two guys on a roadtrip through Napa Valley before a wedding). Even though we were there twenty minutes early the movie was sold out (Ed Mell raved about it and it's getting really strong word of mouth). The group decided to see Kinsey. Didn't really want to see it because I knew some of the plot (It's about sex in the fifties! And Liam Neeson Frenches another guy!).

Deena and I stood in line for popcorn. A young girl, maybe eighteen, waited on us. We got a large popcorn to share, no butter, a bottle of water and a coke. She said, “That's $11.” I pulled out a ten and Deena said, “Do you need a dollar?” And a light went off in my head. I pulled out some ones, gave our server the one, then gave her another one and said, "This is for you for the excellent service." She just about dropped her ju ju beans. "Oh, thankyou, sir!" she said incredulously, totally unlike the bartender at Java who looked at the dollar I left him like it was a smelly, dog turd. Amazing. Virtually the same price, only at the theatre, the girl did twice the work and we don't usually tip them. Isn’t that odd?

Movie was actually pretty good. Cringed at the homo activity (I know, I know, deep down I'm probably gay, just like Kinsey).

Afterwards we tried to go to the Roaring Fork, but they didn't have a table until past our bedtime (9 P.M.!), so we went over to Earl's on Highland but they are out of business. There's not a sadder sight than a closed restaurant and when you see the empty parking lot, but run up to look through the locked doors anyway, just to make sure, and you see all of that fancy decor gone to waste, a virtual mini-ghost town in the shadows, with a piece of broken foamboard on the floor just beyond the door, a stack of menus still on the hostess desk waiting for customers who are gone and never coming back. The rain and the fog created noir shadows along the bar and gave it all a depressing sheen, like a Raymond Chandler story without the cheesy sex. Or, maybe it did have the sex because ultimately I didn’t feel too sorry for them because Earl came to town and strong-armed his way into the market (the Radinas have Earl's in Sun City and the Canadian Earl had a high-priced lawyer help him straight-arm his way past the legal issues). I don't think his Frank Lloyd Wright Earl’s is doing much better. Oh, well. It could be worse. He could be in the magazine business.

We ended up at Nick's up at Pinnacle Peak and Pima. Great little Italian Restaurante. Had the veal piccante and a glass of Ravenswood Merlot ($9 a glass, or $8.50 a bottle at Costco). Meal was very good ($164, split it down the middle, Sue biz card).

Well, back to artwork. I do complain, but it's a thrill to be doing something I love to do. And when I get down I always think of this: "Work is only work if you’d rather be someplace else."

Or, how about this one from the 12th Century:

"Great effort is required to arrest decay and restore vigor. One must exercise proper deliberation, plan carefully before making a move, and be alert in guarding against relapse following a renaissance."
—I Chingi

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