It was pretty hot last Wednesday. And the heat + pre-art show opening jitters = The apparent need to listen to Patti Lupone singing “Gypsy” 576 times in a row. I’m sure I was annoying my neighbors. But hey, I had no choice but to stand in the middle of my living room belting out “I had a dream, a wonderful dream papa!” to calm my nerves. Because I did have some legitimate nerve calming to do, since only “L” the Hippie Chick and JS had RSVP’d on my invitation to my art opening…the other 15-20 people? Nothing.
I also had the intense guilt of not inviting my favorite very religious Aunt. I was afraid she’d be nervous around artists who might possibly blurt out the word “penis” or have a drawing of one on their shirt. But then unbeknownst to me, my mom had invited her, so then I felt doubly guilty, if that is even mathematically possible (do numbers go that high?) that she would in fact, be coming.
Also I was dealing with the little known mental health condition called….clothingium anxieticitis. The weekend before, I had gone out and bought the first piece of new clothing I’d had in almost 8 years, you know, so I wouldn’t look like I had just stumbled in from some random Bingo game for Homeless People. It had been due to a revelation I had had about a month earlier. One day when I was feeling particularly depressed and hopeless, I had decided to go down to the local retail outlet and try on some clothes. Now these weren’t clothes I would normally try on. Oh no. They were all bright and frilly and pretty and feminine. Anyways, I had told “A” about this little excursion into girly-land. And about how different and almost confident I had felt as I was looking at myself in the mirror, seeing someone almost pretty. But then being a guy he didn’t quite GET it and didn’t quite know how to finesse it back into positive feedback. Its not his fault. He’s not Oprah after all.
So I had finally gone back this week and bought a new shirt. A shirt I would never ever dream of buying. It had a bold black and white graphic print and was clingy and you could actually tell I had boobs. Can you imagine? When I put it on right before my art show, I suddenly got all angsty again and I almost fell into one of those treacherous “I look fatter than a pregnant rhinocerus” girl thingies.
But fortunately it was time to leave for the show and I did want to get there a little early to fight the massive crowd of well-wishers to put some prices on my artwork. The week before I had just been too tired to do that. I had told my mother the show was at 4 p.m. She said she wanted to come a little early to get a good parking space. Now this is in one of the busiest parts of our city. There is no “coming early to get a good space” time. Truth is there was a Gay Elvis show to go to after my show and she wanted to be able to leave early enough to get there. So I got there at about 3:20 p.m. and who pulls up at about 3:21 1/2 p.m.? A car full of old ladies…my mom, my aunt and my mom’s elderly neighbor who’s 84. Of course they had already been beat by one of the guys from the mental health meeting the week before. Fortunately it wasn’t the creepy Jack Nicholson “Shining” guy, but another Random Guy who I didn’t know. So I told him, we weren’t going to be opening for at least another 40 minutes or so and he wandered off down the street and I kept seeing him walking by the window about every 7 minutes. I felt kinda guilty.
Anyways, so the old lady brigade came in and ohh’d and ahh’d my paintings. Ok, only my Aunt said anything. I had given my mother strict instructions not to blurt out her usual blunt brutally honest “I don’t like this painting. Its not one of your best” type thing she usually does. I told her I might possibly have a potential buyer and she denied ever having said anything negative about me in her entire life.
LONG PAUSE….(riotious laughter)….ok, back to reality.
And then came the waiting. The people at the bakery had a nice spread of baked goods and punch and soda and a very pleasant girl behind the counter waiting to serve the thronging masses. The three ladies chatted while I anxiously leaned against the glass door waiting for people to come. I finally went out to search for the Random Guy and found him sitting on a bench about a half a block away. Fortunately he was well behaved once I brought him in. I gave him a personal tour of the witty Louve museum, seeing I wasn’t exactly in great demand. He had a cookie and then left.
Then more waiting. Suddenly I spotted my neighbor walking by. She works downtown at a law firm. So I waved her in since she walked right past the place. She was very pleasant. And you’ll never guess what. Ok, guess! Holy shit. She actually bought one of my paintings. I mean what is up with that? It was so unexpected I didn’t know what to do. I was actually shaking. Damn woman, you’ve sold paintings before. I guess it was just because it was in a show that’s due to run for 2 months and I didn’t know whether I was taking it down off the wall and handing it to her or just taking the money or taking the money later. What? We finally decided on handing me a check and her getting a receipt and she’ll be getting the painting at a later date. (And no Anna, it wasn’t MONA).
I later found out from the restaurant manager that if I want to give it to her now, I can replace it with another piece of art , so I think I vote for that since I just fixed my car yesterday for almost $300 and I am flat broke. I have another $150 to fix on my car and the guy naturally had to say it was something “dangerous”, like I could die or something if it isn’t fixed by next Thursday. Great.
Anyways, it wasn’t until almost 5 when several of my art class people finally started showing up. Hillary Clinton had been appearing downtown and things were snarled. My mom almost immediately started torturing my art friend JS with a photo album from her recent birthday party, which she now carries around like a copy of the Holy Grail. It include pictures of Gay Elvis straddling her leg in white polyester, doing unsavory things in the name of “entertainment”. And to think I was nervous about some penis artwork.
Fortunately JS was FINALLY able to pull himself away from my mom long enough to take a few pictures of me with my artwork. You know, since it was MY art show. So here is a shot of me, at my wildly successful, well (cough) attended art show. Hope you can see me for the thick crowds….
P.S. Today is ALSO the fifth anniversary of Awittykitty. Its hard to believe I’ve been writing this blog for 5 years now. I didn’t even know what a blog was when I started.
Its been hard at times (like when people find your blog and virtually hold you hostage or act all pouty if you say something about them), but its mostly been a joy. I’ve met so many great people. The wonderous and splendiferous Hissandtell… the hilariously sarcastic BlueMeany (she’s really a sweetie in person though. So there!)….the funny queen of foofies Scotvalkrie….the sharp and witty and looks fab in pink Stepfordtart….the only person as sarcastic as me, YeahImadork, Andria….my fellow artist Artgnome and Poolagirl who can find something funny in just about anything. I’m just too dumb to do links, so clink them over on the side if you want. There are many more, so please don’t feel left out. Thanks for all your support. You’ve made a huge difference in my life.
GROUP HUG EVERYONE!!!!