Monday, February 07, 2011

baby, it's dark inside

I've been back in the studio after taking the month of January off. Friends keep asking me what I did in January and I'm like, "That's a good question. I have no idea." Aside from some pretty papercut projects and a clean studio, there is little evidence that I did anything. I went sailing, which is what this image on the left is. And should I have done anything beside just enjoying life? When one lives in a culture where time is considered money, laying around for a month could be considered an act of subversion, unless of course you are actively engaged in a vacation. That's okay. It's actually amazing how a whole day can be taken up with going to the gym in the morning, then having lunch with a friend in the afternoon. Poof, day is gone. The fact that I can use up a whole day with two activities like that is what tells me that I was actually born for a life of leisure.

Speaking of leisure, one thing that did happen is I bought a king-sized bed. My husband and I have been sleeping on a full for almost 15 years, and every time we stay at a hotel, I realize exactly how much space I'm missing out on at night. After much hemming and hawing, research, and procrastinating-- king size beds are expensive-- the bed was installed on our craigslist king frame. The only bed I've ever bought before in my life was a futon, about 22 years ago, which was cheap. Very cheap. In Oakland, and I'm sure in every city across the country, there are always futons up for grabs on the sidewalks. And in other places where you don't expect to find futons, like the park, floating in the lake, and by the side of the freeway, where I can only imagine they sailed from the back of some schmo's truck. Not that I would ever put claim on a street futon, I'm just saying that you can. They are everywhere.

The bed is ridiculously large, and to clothe it, I had to literally buy acres of sheets. The bed is so huge and takes up so much of our room that it is a little silly, and there is part of me that's asking why anyone needs a bed so large that a family of four could live on it. Comfortably. But when I get into it at night I stop asking those questions. I had a hard time sleeping on it at first because I'm used being right up against another body all night, and now it's like I'm adrift on a sea of bed, and I would wake up not knowing where the hell I was. Or where Andrew was. But like a lady of leisure who gets used to doing nothing all day, I'm now sleeping just fine.

Except for the other night, when I woke up at 3 am with the thought that I had totally forgotten an order, a special order in a special color that was to be a V-Day gift for someone. With that thought comes a surge of adrenaline, not a good thing at 3 am. The adrenaline gave me enough energy to start thinking about every other little thing I might be forgetting, and how screwed up it is that I'm forgetting orders at all. Which led me into thoughts about the way things should be instead of the way they are, and how the way things are is whittling me down to a business-minded craftsperson instead of an artist. Oh yeah, it got dark. By 4 am I was tossing and turning on my luxurious bed, convinced that any life was better than the one I had. By the time I fell asleep again around 5, I had dreams that I was running my studio out of my grandmother's bedroom... man, I don't even want to get into it, but I was a complete wreck by the time I woke up. I jumped up to check on that order, and as it turned out, not only had I already made that piece, I shipped it out back in December. You may think that would make me feel better, but I just questioned my sanity even more, and wondered exactly how much longer I would need to work before I can take another month off.

12 comments:

  1. What type of bed did you decide on, a good nights rest on a good bed is important for back health (so don't feel guilty) and we are looking for a new one ourselves,

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  2. Keetsa. I really love their beds!

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  3. I also have slept in a full for 20 years with someone and when we go to a hotel in a king- still sleep up next to each other! Breaks are good for the soul- and bet your February will be very productive!!

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  4. Boy, are we all part of the collective unconscious!
    Your scenario is right out of my life... except that we haven't gotten that king size bed.
    ~ I have dreamt about it though.

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  5. Thanks Whitney, those Keetsa look super and I had never heard of them, will be checking them out.

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  6. A good bed will help to keep your back well so don't beat yourself up about that. I borrowed a book from the library recently called "Tired but Wired" by Dr Nerina Ramlakhan. I read the first paragraph and then was sleeping so well I had no time to read the rest for a month and had to renew. It does have some good tips but sometimes the subconscious will just kick in and you are wide awake!! Must try to finish the book... PS: great photo

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  7. What you said about doing nothing for a month was interesting-- you are right, a day can be taken up by gym and lunch with a friend. And it's a happy day. I often wonder if that's how life is supposed to be rather than this frantic pace we all keep up.

    I have never taken off a whole month, but occasionally I give myself a week. Maybe someday I will take a whole month... it's actually a little scary, the idea of having nothing to "show" for a month. Anyway, thanks for the post, you always give me something to mull over.

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  8. I guess thats the problem with being 'always on' hopefully your new bed has helped with it though!

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  9. I used to think a day of doing nothing meant just one train ride on the el to get some thai food in Wrigleyville but now that I live in the Bluegrass I realize it involves sipping tea (or bourbon) and watching the horses. Doing nothing is an art form. Good for you!

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  10. wow, i was born for a life of leisure too. as it happens, i've been sick for almost 3 weeks during jan. and feb. and i think i'd prefer just hanging out well and letting the days drift away to the sickness. i got the same amount of work done. i cannot believe how expensive beds are and i know friends with back problems that have to try one, sell it on craigslist, buy another and so on til they find one that doesn't make their back hurt. i'd never be able to do it. we have a king and i still get pushed over to the 18" slice along the edge.

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  11. blame it on the moon!!!I can't think of any other reason there are those bizarre moments when you feel you're loosing it :)) I can relate..

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  12. I really like your cake stands! I was an actual potter once but the 'art' thing took over big time. Nice to see a proper potter!

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