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Andrea Adams: It’s my turn

Self portrait

It’s my turn, I guess.

Heh, maybe that’s what I should call this blog.

As an empath, it’s difficult to find my own voice sometimes, and having co-workers who have displayed such polar opposite tones in blogs this week, I’m left reeling in how to go about this. Anne’s first post was so full of genuineness of heart and simplicity, which is spot on how she curates all things in her life. And Zach, well, he’s a professional writer, and there’s no comparing to his super well-thought-out, methodical, intentional musings. I work with brilliant people and it’s hard to live up to sometimes.

So. I will try my best to find and share my own voice here. If you’ve met me, you might have picked up that vulnerability is my bag; my preferred brand of disarming everyone I meet, and a great way to neglect things that are truly bothersome and hidden in my psyche, yadda, yadda, ya…

I’m rambling now, probably another defense mechanism, and certainly a way to procrastinate writing something with substance.

I’ve been thinking about creativity for, you know, obvious reasons that relate to working for the Arts Council, but also because we are all home and the impulse to create comes more often when we have fewer distractions.

People often assume that I make art, but I don’t. I mean, I DO, but not in a fine art way. For me, art is the banana with peanut butter, honey, and cinnamon I’ve been making nearly every day since lockdown. And of course, the little drawings I do at night before bed, or the 3D metal models I work on to ease my anxiety. But I also think it’s the way I have decided to arrange the living room furniture and wall art, or my handwriting when I’m in a good mood. Or the songs I make up about grating cheese (to the tune of Holding Out for a Hero by Bonnie Tyler, “I need to gra-ate! I need to grate cheese for this salad I ma-ade! It’s gonna be good and it’s gonna be right and I’m gonna eat this salad toda-ay”).

With the assumption that I’m an artist, I’m usually asked what media I use to create. Can I say bananas, thin sheet metal, end tables, and cheese graters? Maybe I can just say mixed media; that always fits better on a tag.

There’s a sense of ownership when we create, even if it’s small and we are the only ones who know it exists. Not just ownership of the art created, but in the sacredness and ritual of creation. The process itself is an act of art. My weird self-portraits are always in the same type of notebook, all timestamped in the same format, and kept neatly in a special place (mainly so no one will see them and judge me for how weird they are). Every part of it is important to the whole. Because, trust me, these drawings aren’t the greatest.

Our creations are pieces of ourselves we have allowed out. Even if we keep them in notebooks under our bed, they still managed to sneak beyond the confines of our souls, perhaps in hope that one day, someone might recognize them as bits they hide in their own shadows. They don’t need to be profound, but maybe interesting enough to get an old 80s song stuck in someone else’s head all day. With enough practice of letting the world see us in small ways, perhaps we can relate and connect deeper when we find out it’s not so scary to share our own voices.

Published April 4, 2020

Anne McKim: First post and a poem

Zach Evans, the Arts Council of Southwestern Indiana’s Director of Marketing and Community Projects, suggested that each staff member write a weekly blog post during this time of virtual programming and virtual connection. Great idea, and easy enough: This is a chance to share with Arts Council friends who we are, the art that excites us, or why we’re so committed to this organization. 

My posts will be published on Tuesday mornings. At 10:30 p.m. on Monday night, and after several rewrites, here’s what I have so far:

Anne Blog.
Angle Nob.
Non Bagel.
Long Bean.
Bon Angel.

As it turns out, writing blogs doesn’t come easily to me. (This is not good. No one wants to disappoint Zach.)

It’s been a long time — a very long time — since I last wrote for pleasure, which is, really, part of this project. Zach, Andrea Adams (our Gallery Director) and I aren’t just sharing our thoughts through these posts, we’re intentionally encouraging each other to flex our own dormant creative muscles — the muscles that we spend our professional (and often personal) time, energy, and resources celebrating in others. And, as I type it, that is why I love the Arts Council.

It’s incredibly hard to create, to communicate, to make something from nothing. It’s incredibly humbling to be as vulnerable as one is when sending a message out to the world. Every single day, the Arts Council displays work or provides a venue for performances by the people doing just that, Every. Single. Day.

So, in honor of all of the vulnerable and persistent and audacious artists that we work with, I’m doing something that I’ve never done before: sharing a piece of writing that I put myself into, that I care about. *takes deep breath* Here it goes:

Rory Poem:

My boy does not want your ladder.

No hard feelings- He doesn’t want mine.  

Safely secured, 
Belayer in place, 
My son freezes, hangs limp against the rock.

A wall, though, or a tree.  
The garden shed.  
Counter tops and bed frames and roofs of cars,

Vines and stop signs.

Perhaps a ladder – but only one left unattended.  

This child manipulates gravity 
to control bedtime and pizza toppings 
and every moment 
of standing and falling
in line 
every day
every day
every day.

Sinewy-young-boy-muscles propel him upward, ever upward,  

We’re left to follow him  
with eyes from below.  

_________

And now I’m off to begin the first of 12 to 15 rewrites of next week’s blog post.  Fortunately I have plenty of time on my hands these days… 🙂

Posted: Tuesday, March 31, 2020.

A Trip to Middle East

Mavik Banner: physician; scientist. Searching for a way to tap into the hidden strengths that all humans have… then an accidental overdose of gamma radiation alters his body chemistry. And now when David Banner grows angry or outraged, a startling metamorphosis occurs. The creature is driven by rage and pursued by an investigative reporter. The creature is wanted for a murder he didn’t commit. David Banner is believed to be dead, and he must let the world think that he is dead, until he can find a way to control the raging spirit that dwells within him.

What would we do baby, without us?

I bet we been together for a million years, And I bet we’ll be together for a million more. Oh, It’s like I started breathing on the night we kissed, and I can’t remember what I ever did before. What would we do baby, without us? What would we do baby, without us? And there ain’t no nothing we can’t love each other through. What would we do baby, without us? Sha la la la.

Here’s the story of a lovely lady

Here’s the story of a lovely lady, who was bringing up three very lovely girls. All of them had hair of gold, like their mother, the youngest one in curls. Here’s the store, of a man named Brady, who was busy with three boys of his own. They were four men, living all together, yet they were all alone. ‘Til the one day when the lady met this fellow. And they knew it was much more than a hunch, that this group would somehow form a family. That’s the way we all became the Brady Bunch, the Brady Bunch. That’s the way we all became the Brady Bunch. The Brady Bunch!

Who can turn the world on with her smile? Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile? Well it’s you girl, and you should know it. With each glance and every little movement you show it. Love is all around, no need to waste it. You can have a town, why don’t you take it. You’re gonna make it after all. You’re gonna make it after all.

In time of ancient gods, warlords and kings, a land in turmoil cried out for a hero. She was Xena, a mighty princess forged in the heat of battle. The power. The passion. The danger. Her courage will change the world.

Being evil has a price. I hear a lot of little secrets. Tell me yours, and I’ll keep it. You oughta know my name by now, better think twice. Being evil has a price. I’ve got a nasty reputation. Not a bit of hesitation, you better think twice. ‘Cause being evil has a price.

The time to play the music, it’s time to light the lights. It’s time to meet the Muppets on the Muppet Show tonight! It’s time to put on makeup, it’s time to dress up right. It’s time to raise the curtain on the Muppet Show tonight. Why do we always come here? I guess we’ll never know. It’s like a kind of torture to have to watch the show! And now let’s get things started – why don’t you get things started? It’s time to get things started on the most sensational inspirational celebrational Muppetational… This is what we call the Muppet Show!

Chosen from among all others by the Immortal Elders – Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, Mercury – Billy Batson and his mentor travel the highways and byways of the land on a never-ending mission: to right wrongs, to develop understanding, and to seek justice for all! In time of dire need, young Billy has been granted the power by the Immortals to summon awesome forces at the utterance of a single word – SHAZAM – a word which transforms him in a flash into the mightiest of mortal beings, Captain Marvel!

An Old Man Telling Me about Wars

Mavik Banner: physician; scientist. Searching for a way to tap into the hidden strengths that all humans have… then an accidental overdose of gamma radiation alters his body chemistry. And now when David Banner grows angry or outraged, a startling metamorphosis occurs. The creature is driven by rage and pursued by an investigative reporter. The creature is wanted for a murder he didn’t commit. David Banner is believed to be dead, and he must let the world think that he is dead, until he can find a way to control the raging spirit that dwells within him.

What would we do baby, without us?

I bet we been together for a million years, And I bet we’ll be together for a million more. Oh, It’s like I started breathing on the night we kissed, and I can’t remember what I ever did before. What would we do baby, without us? What would we do baby, without us? And there ain’t no nothing we can’t love each other through. What would we do baby, without us? Sha la la la.

Here’s the story of a lovely lady

Here’s the story of a lovely lady, who was bringing up three very lovely girls. All of them had hair of gold, like their mother, the youngest one in curls. Here’s the store, of a man named Brady, who was busy with three boys of his own. They were four men, living all together, yet they were all alone. ‘Til the one day when the lady met this fellow. And they knew it was much more than a hunch, that this group would somehow form a family. That’s the way we all became the Brady Bunch, the Brady Bunch. That’s the way we all became the Brady Bunch. The Brady Bunch!

Who can turn the world on with her smile? Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile? Well it’s you girl, and you should know it. With each glance and every little movement you show it. Love is all around, no need to waste it. You can have a town, why don’t you take it. You’re gonna make it after all. You’re gonna make it after all.

In time of ancient gods, warlords and kings, a land in turmoil cried out for a hero. She was Xena, a mighty princess forged in the heat of battle. The power. The passion. The danger. Her courage will change the world.

Being evil has a price. I hear a lot of little secrets. Tell me yours, and I’ll keep it. You oughta know my name by now, better think twice. Being evil has a price. I’ve got a nasty reputation. Not a bit of hesitation, you better think twice. ‘Cause being evil has a price.

The time to play the music, it’s time to light the lights. It’s time to meet the Muppets on the Muppet Show tonight! It’s time to put on makeup, it’s time to dress up right. It’s time to raise the curtain on the Muppet Show tonight. Why do we always come here? I guess we’ll never know. It’s like a kind of torture to have to watch the show! And now let’s get things started – why don’t you get things started? It’s time to get things started on the most sensational inspirational celebrational Muppetational… This is what we call the Muppet Show!

Chosen from among all others by the Immortal Elders – Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, Mercury – Billy Batson and his mentor travel the highways and byways of the land on a never-ending mission: to right wrongs, to develop understanding, and to seek justice for all! In time of dire need, young Billy has been granted the power by the Immortals to summon awesome forces at the utterance of a single word – SHAZAM – a word which transforms him in a flash into the mightiest of mortal beings, Captain Marvel!

I’m a high school graduate

Mavik Banner: physician; scientist. Searching for a way to tap into the hidden strengths that all humans have… then an accidental overdose of gamma radiation alters his body chemistry. And now when David Banner grows angry or outraged, a startling metamorphosis occurs. The creature is driven by rage and pursued by an investigative reporter. The creature is wanted for a murder he didn’t commit. David Banner is believed to be dead, and he must let the world think that he is dead, until he can find a way to control the raging spirit that dwells within him.

What would we do baby, without us?

I bet we been together for a million years, And I bet we’ll be together for a million more. Oh, It’s like I started breathing on the night we kissed, and I can’t remember what I ever did before. What would we do baby, without us? What would we do baby, without us? And there ain’t no nothing we can’t love each other through. What would we do baby, without us? Sha la la la.

Here’s the story of a lovely lady

Here’s the story of a lovely lady, who was bringing up three very lovely girls. All of them had hair of gold, like their mother, the youngest one in curls. Here’s the store, of a man named Brady, who was busy with three boys of his own. They were four men, living all together, yet they were all alone. ‘Til the one day when the lady met this fellow. And they knew it was much more than a hunch, that this group would somehow form a family. That’s the way we all became the Brady Bunch, the Brady Bunch. That’s the way we all became the Brady Bunch. The Brady Bunch!

Who can turn the world on with her smile? Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile? Well it’s you girl, and you should know it. With each glance and every little movement you show it. Love is all around, no need to waste it. You can have a town, why don’t you take it. You’re gonna make it after all. You’re gonna make it after all.

In time of ancient gods, warlords and kings, a land in turmoil cried out for a hero. She was Xena, a mighty princess forged in the heat of battle. The power. The passion. The danger. Her courage will change the world.

Being evil has a price. I hear a lot of little secrets. Tell me yours, and I’ll keep it. You oughta know my name by now, better think twice. Being evil has a price. I’ve got a nasty reputation. Not a bit of hesitation, you better think twice. ‘Cause being evil has a price.

The time to play the music, it’s time to light the lights. It’s time to meet the Muppets on the Muppet Show tonight! It’s time to put on makeup, it’s time to dress up right. It’s time to raise the curtain on the Muppet Show tonight. Why do we always come here? I guess we’ll never know. It’s like a kind of torture to have to watch the show! And now let’s get things started – why don’t you get things started? It’s time to get things started on the most sensational inspirational celebrational Muppetational… This is what we call the Muppet Show!

Chosen from among all others by the Immortal Elders – Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, Mercury – Billy Batson and his mentor travel the highways and byways of the land on a never-ending mission: to right wrongs, to develop understanding, and to seek justice for all! In time of dire need, young Billy has been granted the power by the Immortals to summon awesome forces at the utterance of a single word – SHAZAM – a word which transforms him in a flash into the mightiest of mortal beings, Captain Marvel!

We’re not a one to saddle up and run, Bonanza

Mavik Banner: physician; scientist. Searching for a way to tap into the hidden strengths that all humans have… then an accidental overdose of gamma radiation alters his body chemistry. And now when David Banner grows angry or outraged, a startling metamorphosis occurs. The creature is driven by rage and pursued by an investigative reporter. The creature is wanted for a murder he didn’t commit. David Banner is believed to be dead, and he must let the world think that he is dead, until he can find a way to control the raging spirit that dwells within him.

What would we do baby, without us?

I bet we been together for a million years, And I bet we’ll be together for a million more. Oh, It’s like I started breathing on the night we kissed, and I can’t remember what I ever did before. What would we do baby, without us? What would we do baby, without us? And there ain’t no nothing we can’t love each other through. What would we do baby, without us? Sha la la la.

Here’s the story of a lovely lady

Here’s the story of a lovely lady, who was bringing up three very lovely girls. All of them had hair of gold, like their mother, the youngest one in curls. Here’s the store, of a man named Brady, who was busy with three boys of his own. They were four men, living all together, yet they were all alone. ‘Til the one day when the lady met this fellow. And they knew it was much more than a hunch, that this group would somehow form a family. That’s the way we all became the Brady Bunch, the Brady Bunch. That’s the way we all became the Brady Bunch. The Brady Bunch!

Who can turn the world on with her smile? Who can take a nothing day, and suddenly make it all seem worthwhile? Well it’s you girl, and you should know it. With each glance and every little movement you show it. Love is all around, no need to waste it. You can have a town, why don’t you take it. You’re gonna make it after all. You’re gonna make it after all.

In time of ancient gods, warlords and kings, a land in turmoil cried out for a hero. She was Xena, a mighty princess forged in the heat of battle. The power. The passion. The danger. Her courage will change the world.

Being evil has a price. I hear a lot of little secrets. Tell me yours, and I’ll keep it. You oughta know my name by now, better think twice. Being evil has a price. I’ve got a nasty reputation. Not a bit of hesitation, you better think twice. ‘Cause being evil has a price.

The time to play the music, it’s time to light the lights. It’s time to meet the Muppets on the Muppet Show tonight! It’s time to put on makeup, it’s time to dress up right. It’s time to raise the curtain on the Muppet Show tonight. Why do we always come here? I guess we’ll never know. It’s like a kind of torture to have to watch the show! And now let’s get things started – why don’t you get things started? It’s time to get things started on the most sensational inspirational celebrational Muppetational… This is what we call the Muppet Show!

Chosen from among all others by the Immortal Elders – Solomon, Hercules, Atlas, Zeus, Achilles, Mercury – Billy Batson and his mentor travel the highways and byways of the land on a never-ending mission: to right wrongs, to develop understanding, and to seek justice for all! In time of dire need, young Billy has been granted the power by the Immortals to summon awesome forces at the utterance of a single word – SHAZAM – a word which transforms him in a flash into the mightiest of mortal beings, Captain Marvel!