I went into the local hardware corporate chain warehouse labyrinth to get some lag bolts and washers for my new workbench. Maybe some wood screws. You know how it is, you go in for one thing, suddenly you have 10 other random items at the checkout. Hopefully you succeeded in obtaining the original item you’d gone in for…
So the first thing I see on walking in is a display of animatronic lawn display critters for Halloween (my favorite holiday). I was amused and cheered. If I have to endure incursions in August every year from the Season of Obligatory Cheer™️, then at least I should get a little balm for my own soul in the form of kitschy skeletons dancing and clattering their teeth. Also, pumpkins and bats. I love bats. That’s another topic for another day though.
So I went in for lag bolts, and as I’m trying to find where they’ve stowed them, I have to wander the aisles. Along the way, about every minute or so, wolfmanjack there lets out a mournful howl.
It’s making everyone giggle though, and in each aisle, there’s at least one person chiming in with a quiet, friendly, off-key “aaawwwwooooooooo?” Followed inevitably by laughter.
I’m glad some of us can still laugh at ourselves.
…and no, I’m not entirely sure if that’s a crematorium on the left there, perhaps I should go back and enquire…
Yes, foraging for materials.
It’s a strange process, that starts with some material or other catching my eye, bothering my mind, but also bouncing around in my head demanding to be given a new purpose.
It could be merely because I noticed a preponderance of something, like wire coat hangers being thrown away in bags and tangled clumps. It could be the individual shape of an item (bottle caps cried out to be dapped into pretty little half-domes, bosses on something wearable – and readable, as it turned out), or it could be its material properties, like the plastic strapping that gets fastened once, then cut off a package, and discarded without so much as a second glance. An item at once necessary and protective, but then abruptly it becomes a hindrance and nuisance (plus, they don’t seem to be commonly recyclable).
I don’t always have to scrounge too hard to obtain what I need. Once I explain what I’m doing, everyone I ask seems enthusiastic to offload the scrap material that often accumulates, unwanted. Often, they also express enthusiasm for getting to, in some way, contributing to a piece of art, or at least giving scrap material new value and use.
Not that this doesn’t remind me, also, of the old George Carlin talk about how leftovers are wonderful because they give you such a good feeling, twice! First, when you put them neatly in the refrigerator you feel virtuous, “I’m saving food!” …and again three weeks later when you find them at the back of the fridge, becoming a biohazard, and you throw them away: “I’m saving someone’s life!”
Have been reading a few titles from the library about people’s thoughts on the nature of public art and interactions with the public, the role of engagement etc.
I’ll very likely be uploading posts directly from my phone…which means I’ll have to get the wordpress app to successfully log in and play nice with my website…this is all a re-learning curve, so bear with me while I make some laughable mis-steps.