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Three Things: The Rooster Edition

2013 December 2
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After last week, I think we’ve all had our fill of turkeys (some of us quite literally). This week I’m interested in spending some time with another colorful fowl: the rooster. I’m also just looking for an excuse to share a delightful illustration that I came across recently (see Le Traité de Paix avec Rome below).

So there you have it. Surely there’s room for a cocky character in your piece this week, no?



Anonymous, Le Traité de Paix avec Rome (The Peace Treaty with Rome), ca. 1789. Hand-colored etching. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York.



Randolph Caldecott, illustration from “This Is the House that Jack Built” in The Complete Collection of Pictures & Songs, 1878. Engraved and printed by Edmund Evans. 



Mark E. Mehaffey, The King of Key West, 2008. Watercolor.


Three Things: Bad Day Edition

2011 November 7
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Ever have one of those days? You wake up to discover your alarm decided to stay silent, there’s no hot water for the three-second shower you don’t have time for, you stub your toe on the kitchen table as you run past it to the (empty) coffee can, and that’s all before you even leave the house (to find a flat tire patiently waiting). Even the most cheerful and optimistic of us (at least, this is what I tell myself) has had one of those days: days when life is just plain out to get you. Yes, a no good, very bad day.

But hey, bad days usually at least result in a good story, right? Not yours? Well, these three will. This week, I have for you three moments in three very bad days: a rogue flock of owls (happens to me all the time) to start, then a missed bus and subsequent chase, and a particularly pesky rain cloud to finish.

See? Your day wasn’t so bad after all now, was it?


Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes, The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters (El sueño de la razón produce monstruos), from Los Caprichos series, c. 1797. Etching.


Alex Colville, Berlin Bus, 1978. Acrylic on masonite. Private collection.


Living movie still made by If We Don’t, Remember Me. Scene from The Truman Show. Dir. Peter Weir. Paramount Pictures, 1998.


P.S. Open Mic is this week! Submit your stuff before Wednesday to participate!


Three Things: Into the Woods Edition

2011 September 19
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As you might guess from some earlier posts, I like the woods. I like to disappear into them for hours. It’s best to not have an agenda: maybe hike around until you stumble across an interesting plant or insect, or
find a good hillside perch looking over a valley. Then you either move on or sit and listen to the trees creaking, the squirrels and chipmunks and wind rustling the leaves, the birds calling back and forth.

For those of us who can’t simply walk out the door and into the forest, here are three wooded spots to disappear into. Although I’d also recommend the real thing, next chance you get.


Rodolphe Bresdin, The Brook in the Woods, 1880. Etching. National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC.


Laura Bell, Blackford Forest, 2009. Photograph.


Gustav Klimt, Buchenwald I, 1902. Oil on canvas. Galerie Neue Meister, Dresden, Germany.