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"Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind."
"Every calling is great when greatly pursued."

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

"Do nothing, say nothing and be nothing and you will never be criticized."
(Paraphrase)

- Elbert Hubbard


"Got to kick at the darkness 'til it bleeds daylight."
- Bruce Cockburn


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May 11, 2017

You may have noticed the "Memento Mori" graphic and text above. Before you think I am
depressed, know that the reason I like that is because it is a reminder of mortality. The
saying "Memento Mori" is Latin and is translated to "Remember thy death". Skulls also
represent mortality. A skull with wings represents the fleeting nature of existence,
reminding us to make the most of each day, because we don't know how much time we
have on this Earth. I am drawn to the macabre: skulls, devils, cemeteries, dracula, coffins,
etc. My favorite colors are red and black. I also have a pretty extensive collection of
macabre art from one of my favorite artists, Justin Aerini. I love rainy and overcast
weather. The fact that I like these things - that I nuture my "dark side", if you will - does
not mean that I am unhappy. Far from it. I just like these things. I am by nature eccentric.
If you looked at my rooms in the house (I refer to them collectively as my "lair") you would
not miss this fact. But that's ok. I've never been a person who follows the traditional lines
of normalcy. There is nothing "normal" about me and there never has been; I may as well
embrace this fact.

The shoot at the airplane graveyard was great. It wasn't what I expected; I had expected
open fields of in-tact planes and it turned out to be more of a salvage yard with pieces of
planes. But it was still fun, and we both got some good shots. We enjoy our road trips.

Next week I will be volunteering for the second year in a row at a suicide prevention golf
tournament. Obviously it's a cause I believe in. Knowing my efforts might save someone
from a tragic fate (and prevent the immense pain felt by loved ones left behind) makes me
feel good. We have fun, but it's a sobering experience.

May 5, 2017

I am really psyched today. One, because it is raining. And I love rainy, overcast days. I
know, yet another thing about me that is different from most of the population. Give me a
rainy Saturday, Bohren & der Club of Gore playing, and a good book or good company and
coffee, and I'm in a blissful state. Anyway, today a friend and I are going back to an art
exhibition that we went to last Friday. It's called Artomatic, and is in Crystal City. SIX
FLOORS of art!! And each floor has a lot of rooms! All kinds of art, all mediums. A lot of
the art is just brilliant - amazing use of materials and mediums. Very inspiring. The friend
I am going with is planning to do a painting for her sister (with my help) and we are
getting ideas and thinking about what kinds of things we want to incorporate.

On Saturday we are going to binge watch Twin Peaks (the series - Jennie hasn't seen it all)
and prepare for our shoot on Sunday at an airplane graveyard in New Jersey. A wonderful
weekend!

April 27, 2017

A friend in the program wrote a book about her journey with alcoholism and recovery, and
last night she did a fantastic talk. During her talk, she mentioned a quote:

“If you own th
e story you get to write the ending.” ― Brené Brown

That really resonated with me. We all have choices in life. Every day when I awake, I make
the choice to stay sober and do the best I can for that day. I cannot regret the past,
because everything that has happened in my life has made me the person I am today. I
have made a lot of bad choices in my life, but I own them, and I strive not to repeat the
same mistakes today. Today is all we have. We may not have tomorrow. Life is
unpredictable, and with life, inevitably there will be pain. It is unavoidable. But what we
do with that pain and how we choose to respond to it are the things that build character.
When I am confronted with a problem, I ask myself: "What can I do about it today?" and
that charts my course of action (or inaction). I stay present - "where my feet are" - and I
take one step at a time.

Check out the author's blog at
www.sobrietease.wordpress.org.

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I needed a sign for my studio door. I had
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