Thursday, January 30, 2014


The Aborigine of Australia believe in a dreamtime. Material objects fall out of this dreamtime and take physical form, but the Aborigines understand that this material form is only transitional and will eventually away. There is a spirit presence in places that is felt rather than named or described in a rational way.

This, I think, is how the really serious artist makes his or her way. In the West, they must go through an analytical period, unless they are among the few truly gifted and committed who can skip phase. But then art becomes an intuitive experience as the Aborigines understand it. For this artist, the artwork is not the end, not the commodity, not the piece sold and hung. Art is the intuitive journey in dreamtime, mapped by material markers which track the transitional insights along the way.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Living in the universe

The universe is a law-abiding citizen. Even when it seems to misbehave, it's behaving itself. Life, too, behaved for a long time until the human brain arrived on the scene. It tried to masquerade as as rational as the rest of the universe, but it got called out again and again. It called the universe magical and mysterious and populated it with gods, aliens and a cosmic barnyard of fantastical beings. Only to discover that it was the one who put all the magic and mystery there in the first place.

But not to worry. These inventions of imagination were, and still are, the engines of curiosity and discovery. The heroes that propel us forward and out of our complacency never follow the rules. This is why the universe must be our hero.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Ode to a Penis

Glory to the short and long of it
Tool and tube,
The pendulum swinging between
Turbidity and flaccidity.
Sower of seed,
Planter in the Garden of Earthly Delights.
Holder of bounteous nicknames,
Pal, confidant, friend in times of need.
Dreamer of enhancements,
Yet willing to answer duty’s call.
Love’s arrow.
Nature’s billion year experiment.
Lingum, rod, spear, bone,
Man’s second brain.
Source of endless pleasure.
(Well, 2 or 3 minutes anyway.)

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The pursuit of happiness

Is the pursuit of happiness a goal for most of us? Let's take a look.

Religion has lost focus of its goals. Church attendance is down. There are scandals around money, power and sex. Most wars are sectarian based. Few church leaders can articulate the role of religion and few have the courage to speak out against violence or speak frankly with other church leaders.

Government should support the common good, but it doesn't know what that is. It is too involved in serving the politicians, bolstering ideologies, turning a blind eye to corruption. It is broken.

Education is so loaded down with social and political overtones and bureaucracy that it is drowning in it. Should it be training for careers, helping create productive individuals, develop decent human beings of just get through the day?

The family? What is a family? Whatever it is, it can't be counted on to prepare students for an education or get them safely through adolescence. It has no communal goals for happiness or success as human beings for its members.

But here's where capitalism reigns. It, unlike these other institutions, has a very clear goal. Make money by turning every citizen into an avid consumer. It does this consummately. We can never be happy because we never have enough. We must work enough to get enough no matter the cost in human terms. Even our leisure time is spent consuming--entertainment, shopping, sports. We don't see leisure time productive time, as time to expand ourselves as thinking beings.

In fact, capitalism is so successful, it has in effect bought religion, government, education and family.

Yellow teeth

I like yellow teeth. And to be up front and honest, I have yellow teeth. Sparkling white teeth suggest the lack of a moral anchor. They require muscles, cleavage, blond hair, expensive clothing, plastic surgery and all kinds of bodily adornments that yellow teeth usually don't.

White teeth on TV have convinced us that they signify intelligence, courage, manliness, womanliness, competence and beauty. At the same time we accept white teeth in TV and movie homeless people, prostitutes, drug dealers and low class characters from period dramas. (If only every prostitute looked kike Julia Roberts.)

That's why I like British actors. Most of the best of them have yellow teeth, and even crooked teeth. They spend their time not in the gym or the dentist office or at the plastic surgeon's, but learning to act.

Yep, I like yellow teeth.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

New bestseller titles

These new titles are flying off the shelves:

Chicken Soup for the Fifty Shades of Gray

Did God Design My Penis and Other Puzzles of Creationsim

Forever at the Edge of Puberty: The Autobiography of Justin Bieber

Congressional Briefs: Interviews with Washington's Top 100 Mistresses

Orgasmia:  Celebrities Discuss Their  Favorite Orgasms

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Orgasms and eternity

Humans are condemned to live in time. The "fall" was a fall from paradise and its eternalness.  But humans were granted a chance poke their heads into eternity, escaping time for the briefest moment. This is the experience of orgasm. Reached properly, all of time and space disappear, everything is compressed into the all. The physical orgasm is the closet humans can get to eternity, the potential to make the human species last forever. Ecstasy is the spiritual orgasm, the human spirit reaching into God's own domain to touch God's eternal realm. For the artist--in the most basic meaning of the word--the spark of creative insight is the orgasmic experience that gives an idea its chance to live forever.

Friday, January 3, 2014

New Year's resolutions

You may have already made yours and perhaps even broken one or two. Here's mine, no particular order.

--Nap whenever the hell I want.

--Inflict as much wisdom on the unsuspecting as I can.

--Coerce each student I can into having a profound thought  before s/he graduates college.

--Do more nude tap dancing.

--Think of my art more as a gift...since it has obviously failed as a commodity.

--Act the fool more often.

--Help my grandchildren grow up to be decent human beings.

--Love the people who love me and some of the ones who don't.

--Work harder to root against the Bengals.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Taking risks

We usually associate taking risks with fast cars, extreme sports, reckless behavior and the like. These are often exhibited in adolescents and young people whose brains, as the experts tell us, are not fully developed to make good decisions. In effect, the risky behavior comes as a result of poor choices and the ill-considered consequences of those choices. Still we admire them.

To me, the real risk takers are those who take risks fully knowing the consequences because they are committed to something they believe in or integrity is at stake or the greater good is threatened. Those are the people I admire.

That's why we celebrate a Nelson Mandela or a Pope Francis, and why we can get by without an Evil Kneivel or Mylie Cyrus.