But Wait, It’s Still Hockey Season!

HOCKEYFirst of all, I hope you laughed at my April Fools post last week. I hate birds (except for raptors) and always will. I would never waste my time or yours discussing winged rats like pigeons.

Now that we’re all back to reality, I saw bits and pieces on TV last night of a show that was apparently sports. Baseball or something? Yes, it was Opening Night 2015! The indomitable St. Louis Cardinals were featured on national television facing off in the Windy City against the hapless Chicago Cubs, to a not very surprising result, a 3-0 shutout victory for Adam Wainright and the Cards.

If you know me, I’m not ready to fully dive into caring about baseball yet because, say it with me, “IT’S STILL HOCKEY SEASON!” The Blues were also in Chicago last night and also won their game versus their division rival Blackhawks. You can read all about what I think of the Blues at thehockeywriters.com

I’m glad the Birds on the Bat were able to make it a clean sweep for the day. It was fun to see the trash talking by Chicago teams prior to the action. Tweets like this:

While St. Louis was, naturally, quite pleased:

Waino was Waino, with six scoreless innings and the bullpen looked rock-solid, with a nice cameo by 5th starter Carlos Martinez who, because of days-off this week, isn’t slated to pitch until Saturday. The Cardinals also harkened back to the days of WhiteyBall with FOUR stolen bases, more than they had in all of the NLCS last season. The only downside to a rousing beat down of the Cubs and their shiny new (overpaid) Ace, lefty Jon Lester, was that Matt Adams continued his struggle facing left-handed pitching. Big City went 0-4 with 2 Ks and left 5 men on base. Not the start he was hoping for, surely, and nothing to inspire ANY confidence that he improved himself against lefties during the Spring. But as I said, it’s still hockey season and the Blues still have 3 regular season games this week. The playoffs start April 15, and until the Blues bow out I’m not likely to mention the Cardinals again.

I’ll leave with this plug: my company, Office Essentials, is an Official Corporate Sponsor of the team this year, which is great for us. You’ll see our logo in Busch Stadium and we’ll be a part of the official Opening Day pep-rally in downtown St. Louis before the home opener.  Thanks for reading, and Happy “It’s Still Hockey Season But Everyone Is Glad Baseball Has Begun!” season :)

Spring Into Change!

PIGEONARTThank you so much to all the followers and readers who take time to visit my humble blog. I know I’ve not been active much lately, but I wanted to take an opportunity to let you all know that I’m going to be changing the format of my page.

PIGEONSFrom this point forward, I’m going to only be blogging about Pigeons. Those who know me well may find this new direction strange, given my irrational hatred of birds in general, but I think it’s time to expand my horizons and take on a topic that has long baffled me.

Where did pigeons come from? What are they doing here? Why do they tend to poop all over defenseless statues in the town square? These are just some of the questions I plan to answer in the future of my blog, and I hope you will stick around and discover them with me.

Did you know pigeons like art? Neither did I!

This Just Stinks

Standing now, shaking flecks of plaster and brick from his hair, Max walked tentatively toward the gaping hole where once the elevator doors stood, mindful of the rubble strewn across the hallway. There was no sign of Ralphie, or the cop, or the dark, hooded figures…

Did he remember that correctly? Had there truly been dark, hooded figures in the hallway? The last day or so melted in his memory like so much rainwater streaming down the windowpanes of his friend’s apartment building. A ringing persisted in his left ear, bothersome that.

A crowd of startled faces appeared from Ralphie’s open doorway behind Max. Various neighbors on the floor began filing out, a quiet rumble of questions and exclamations emanating from them as they gathered, transfixed by the aftermath of what seemingly was some kind of explosion. Was it terrorists? A gas leak?

Though Max hadn’t invited him, the elderly gentleman from 9A was suddenly at his elbow, peering down the ruined shaft. The scent of oil and burning electrical wires assaulted their senses. The old man muttered, “how positively noisome.”

Max looked at him, blinking.

(This excerpt was prompted by Studio30 Plus. Click through and join us!)

Studio30 Plus

Home Improvements

Because the holidays aren’t stressful enough, we’ve been completing a few home improvement projects over the last couple weekends to boot. Are we crazy? Probably, but the projects have turned out really well and look great. Kellie is an artist, a designer, and always has a fantastic vision for our home.

We live in 2-family in South City, second floor. The walls are all an eggshell (my term) white and we’re starting to inject some color. She has plans for all the walls, but for now we’ve added chalkboard paint in the kitchen:

Floating shelves are planned, and chalk art of course :) That huge, blank space just made the room feel ugly. Much better now and more to come!

Speaking of shelves, we put some up just the other day in another room, but first we turned the color up to eleven in our “office” area:

You can see this wall from the living room and it really brightens the place up. We added the shelves to finally start fleshing out her studio space and give a home to many of the tools of her trade. The biggest one went up first:

And then we added a few more, as she was able to see the complete picture unfold and the result is outstanding:

We’re very happy and think it’s a great start on the space. Next will be some kind of long, flat, raised works-pace along that wall. A section of laminate counter top maybe? She’s seen a number of examples online where folks have used thick MDF. We’re big on using reclaimed materials when possible so the hunt continues!

We found Vivian Maier

Last night we had the pleasure of watching Finding Vivian Maier, a fascinating look into the discovery and life of, and the mystery of, photographer Vivian Maier. If you’re at all interested in photography, or American social history, documentaries or Art, you should check out this movie.

An unknown in the art world (until after her death in 2009) Maier was a prolific photographer, among other things, but the uncertainty about why she lived her life the way she did is what made her story so interesting to me.

I picked this up from the library completely randomly. I’d never heard of her, or the guy who made the film, but I’m very interested in photography and was hooked by the intro on the back. Words that were going through my head as we watched were: staggering, incredible, creepy, enthralling, distressing, sad, and amazing.

I really can’t recommend it enough, look for it and check it out.

Cardinals

The traveler trod a tree-lined trail, macadam cracked and worn much like the boots on his feet. A menacing hedgerow loomed on his left, branches and brambles waving in the wind, willowy and weeping witches’ heads creaking and crackling in the bitter wind. What he believed to be trees to his right instead were a forest of gnarled, twisted hag hands, reaching pitifully for the cold, gray sky.

Beast and bird scuffled through the undergrowth unseen, but for a few feathered fiends, glinting like jet among thorns and thistle. The traveler trekked on, heedless of how his path proceeded. A step at a time, bracing himself against angry aerial avian gusts, gangs of obsidian obscuring the way.

Above in filigree fingers a shrieking, screeching scornful sound followed our fellow, frightening and frustrating him as he fought free, bleeding from the bedeviling battering of wings, a choking cloud of drowning darkness. The horrible howl of a Jay, jeweled in sapphire, diving dangerously down upon the poor retch’s hatless head.

Painfully pursued, plodding perilously as twilight descended, the wonderer wondered wearily whether weather would win, wearing him out til too tired to traverse the remaining distance. When suddenly a cheerful chirping chimed through the wood.

He hearkened, halted hopefully as the hateful Jay circled once again. Seeing the source of such satisfying song, a smile broke across the man’s mug. The Jay cried once more in defeat, dashing away into darkness as a pair of garnet-breasted Cardinals settled onto our hero’s heaving shoulders.

Barbed Wire

Your plastic exterior never fit

and neither yarn nor filament will leave the impression of a fossil

in the baked mud.

Flexible, the current flinches

while hydraulic power plants pump fluid

through seals of oil & bolts.

Ornamental pain worn like a spray of jealousy from a hose,

painting a halo over the bust of Michelangelo.

Reel it in, it takes too long to run,

dragged by an anchor low through iron railings.

The guards skin figures by the gate.