Monday, February 06, 2006

February 4, 2006
I had another book signing on Thursday evening from six to eight at the Arizona Museum of Radio and Television in downtown Scottsdale. Maniac Number 19, Lauren, was there. Sold about ten books. Mary Morrison is the force behind the museum. Cool photos of all the oldtimers like Bill Heywood, Lew King, Wallace & Ladmo. Enjoyed it.

On Saturday morning I drove out to Cesar Chavez High School in Laveen, for an all-day teacher art class. I instructed 16 high school art teachers on doing portraits and scratchboard. Before we started I asked them to name their biggest challenges on reaching and teaching kids today, and one teacher said many of her students want to simply download images and call it art (they’d rather click a mouse than move a pen on paper), and another talked about lack of motivation (which unfortunately, all of my teachers would have used to describe me), but the funniest one was an art teacher who, when I asked what the biggest challenge was, replied, “To get them to clean up.” Ha.

Afterwards I drove east on Baseline and took a gander at all the new homes (one of the teachers said they are getting 250 new students a month in the area). Then turned north on Central and landed at the Phoenix Art Museum for the Impressionist Show ($65 for a year’s membership, house account). Show was somewhat underwhelming, but I still had fun.

At five I drove out to Scottsdale to meet Kathy at Deena’s abode. While the girls did hair care, I drove up to Oldtown, walked over to Mei Lei’s and got Thai takeout. Went into the bar and got a glass of cabernet wine while I waited. The bartender, Steven, is a big fan of Rembrandt and Dutch art, so we hit it off, and he regaled me with how great Holland is, and how much more art friendly the Dutch are than the French.

Went back to Deena’s, ate, got into a fight with Kathy about a dog we had 25 years ago. We lived in downtown Phoenix, and, Apache, an Australian Border Collie, got hit by a car on New Year’s Eve (1979-1980) because all the shooting freaked her out and she got out of the yard, ran out into the intersection of Indian School and Seventh Avenue. Her paws were bloody, etc., and I let her recuperate in a chair in the living room. Unfortunately, while I was at work, she relieved herself on the rug, daily, for a week or so, before we spotted it (get it?). There’s more, but the short version is I didn’t take care of it (the rug) and this has evidently festered for a couple decades. The next day I asked Deena how excruciating it was to see us fight in front of her and on a scale of one to ten, with ten being insufferable, Deena said, “Eleven.”

We have decided to stay married for the sake of the children. That would be me. Ha.

More Author Questions From The Typical Book Signing
• “Where's the bathroom?”

• “Did you write this?”

• “What makes you think you know enough to write a book?”

• “Is this in paperback?”
—Alan Huffines

Favorite Onion Headline de Jour
Jogging Fat Man Watched From Apartment Window

“The more I give myself permission to live in the moment and enjoy it without feeling guilty or judgmental about any other time, the better I feel about the quality of my work.”
—Wayne Dyer

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