a little surreal

Today I felt the earth quake.
The epicenter was near LA.
5.4 on the rector scale.

It was unmistakable and a little surreal.

It had been a long time since I had felt an earthquake.


ingenious cabinets

I am building our IKEA bathroom cabinets. Our bathroom is very small. 4 cabinets are all we need.

It is amazing.

How did someone figure out to have all these parts that would make a cabinet?

It’s ingenious.

I wonder if the kitchen cabinets are this easy.

I hope it's easy to install them on the wall and put the doors on.
Lucky for me I’ll just be the helper on that phase.

Okay, back to it!


1st person singular

Last night I saw “First Person Singular: I.M. Pei.

I had only been familiar with the pyramid at the Louvre (which I have not been to), and the East Wing of the National Gallery (which I have been to).

As the film went through the East Wing of the National Gallery, I remembered how special and amazing it was being within that space. It had been such a joy to eat in the cafeteria, with all that natural light and the water cascading down. Usually a cafeteria is not the most pleasant experience, but here it was.

It was nice to relive that building because it was there I had seen the exhibit “Cy Twombly the Sculpture” in 2001. That exhibit touched me in such a way as to start the most sustained prolific practice in my art career since graduate school, and it has not stopped.

In the film Pei stands near the extreme pointed corner and tells how the stone masons did not want the stone in such a drastic angle. How they wanted to flatten the angle because they were afraid the stone would break. He told them he wanted to do it, so they did, but it would be his responsibility not theirs if it did not hold up. As he stands there talking he is touching the corner, and he says he always comes over to see if the stone has broken, and you can see how many have touch that corner, and he likes that people touch the corner.

I remember touching that corner.

I had not realized process could be important to an architect. I had never put it together. I know had important it is to my art practice, but I had thought architecture would have been too rigid to allow for a practice which involved a process of learning while developing. But through the film I have learned that Pei’s architectural practice is much like my art practice.

Pei also spoke about how important it is to see, get out of the studio, experience. Not to miss the opportunities to learn by experiencing life outside the studio.

I had not realized architecture could be so similar to art, in thought, in process, in experience.


no longer strong and long

From the Yahoo! Health site:
Nail-biting (onychophagia) is a common stress-relieving habit. You may bite your nails in times of stress or excitement, or in times of boredom or inactivity. It can also be a learned behavior from family members. Nail-biting is the most common of the typical "nervous habits". You may bite your nails without realizing you are doing it.

The nail on my right thumb for almost a year was strong and long, until last night. I caught myself too late. The damage was done. I went too far.

I had thought the ability to keep this nail strong and long would inspire me to stop biting the others. I really liked this strong long nail. It had come in handy as a tool many times.

Now I had destroyed it, and it hurts.

I really need to stop this habit. I will try. I can stop biting my nails. I must stop biting my nails.

I will be aware of what I am doing. I will notice and stop immediately.

I can stop biting my nails.


calm relaxed Firewalker

Just a minute ago there was too much to do.
Too much I was doing.
I could feel a headache coming on.
My jaw, neck and shoulders tightening.

I looked over.



And that pink peeking out from the white fluff.



career and money

Last night on the hike, I was asked “what do you do?” meaning for work. This always leads me to saying I have jobs and a career. After briefly explaining some of the jobs I said my career was as an artist. There was a comment that I was doing art as a hobby, and the implication that a career should produce money.

I calmly stated that my art practice was much more than a hobby and that is was definitely my career. This led me to question if career was defined as making money. Then I said if making money was a criterion for a career, I was changing the definition of career.

I know for many a career does involve making money, and that is fine for them. But, just so we're all clear, f
rom the Wikitionary website:
Singular career; Plural careers
One's calling in life; a person's occupation
An individual’s work and life roles over their lifespan.


Because of this dialogue I looked up the definition of career. And after all these years of dedicating myself to an art practice career, I was not wrong. Making money does not have to play any part of ones career.

Nice, how a little clarification can make one feel just fabulous. And if my art practice makes money or not, it's still my career.


whacked and tweaked

Some how I managed to get me out of whack. I first noticed it 8 days ago, at tweak in my back, just above the right hip.

Then came the ankle roll, which usually isn’t anything usual, I do it all the time at the end of long hikes. The long strenuous hike 5 days ago, tweaked right ankle.

Yesterday I noticed something new, suffice to say, right side.

Today I watered the garden, did yoga, meditation, kissed the cat repeatedly, now writing, and I will do 20 min on the stationary bike, practice some art, and hike tonight. This should be a good start to tweaking back into sync my mind/body.

I will really need to focus on tweaking back into sync. It will take a while, longer than I’d like, but I will do it.

I can reverse the downward cycle, and I will. I think I caught it a little late; I must have been using one side of my brain more than the other.

Balance, balance, balance.

Thank goodness for railing at times of need.


Pepe the luxury

I cannot believe we have a new car. It is such freedom, it is hard to believe.

I cannot abuse this luxury. It really is a luxury. It makes life so much easier.

The new car is a subcompact hatchback, Suzuki SX4.

A two Suzuki family, now that’s scary. The new one has been given a name, we must be able to distinguish which car we are talking about.

Pepe, that’s the new car’s name, and even with Pepe, we will car pool, bike ride, and walk.

Pepe is a luxury, and we are extremely fortunate to have such a luxury, but Pepe isn’t that much fun to give up carpooling, bike riding, and walking.


experiential life

The short research paper required in class was a little scary at first. As I started my research paper on RM Schindler I found I had to Google ‘research paper’. It was not clear in my mind what exactly this meant. Then I noticed the paper had to be in a research paper folder, “what was this”? I went to the bookstore and they lady there graciously walked me over and showed me what the instructor wanted.

Finally, away I went. Reading, web browsing, and today I went to the only Schindler building in San Diego, Pueblo Ribera Courts, in La Jolla.

As we drove down the street looking at address, bang, no mistaking, there they where on the right.

The small apartment complex he designed in 1923. I hopped out of the car, camera in hand, and glasses on head. As I took picture after picture,

working my way down the street

I notice 3 men working on part of the concrete exterior.

I talked to them and found out one of the units was totally gutted and being worked on. I asked if I could go in and they said no. They might get in trouble from other people living there. I was a little disappointed, but that passed as I took more pictures of what I could.

And I thought:

How wonderful, restoration was happening.

How wonderful that I am learning, and that I have that opportunity.

How wonderful that I am learning about design, and that design is experiential.

How I love to learn, and experience, and how wonderful my life is.