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Sept. 30

Then later....at the Janette Williams Gallery ...notice the Janis Joplin portrait...Ruth got it.

..and Ruth even though she promised not to buy more art, naturally bought more art, but she is more than generous and it made Shelly and Lori's  opening at least a little successful...

...and on down the street...

 Afterwards we went to The Compound and had a very expensive but delicious meal with our Madrid hangout buddies...

Ruth and Church being chummy.

...earlier in the morning...

Just back from seeing a VA counselor. Ruth thought it was a positive visit. I thought it was a visit, and the counselor was an okay guy, so I guess that means something....but to learn I have a drinking problem is what I want printed on a T shirt reading:

I WISH I HAD A BEER EVERY TIME SOMEONE TOLD ME I HAVE A DRINKING PROBLEM...

My young friend Hank had that printed on his T shirt. He died a year ago from  cirrhosis of the liver.

Nobody is perfect.

Sept. 28.

Ruth is home and all is good again...

Now to get on with my task of resurrecting Ross Ward...

It is all glued down . Now to get on with recreating lost parts...

 

Sept. 26

Hoorah! Ruth returns from New York tonight. I really am not worth the proverbial hill of beans without her.

Working on another mural, and in the interim my old friend from Scotland sent me a picture of a mural I did in Edinburgh in 1973...and it reminded me of how much life changes and yet some things just keep being the same...I spent over 4 months painting a scene in Princess Street Garden, and got to know all of the people in this painting by asking them to pose for me. Many of the people in the scene are still good friends.

...and this is where I am at the moment, resurrecting one of Ross Wards old one-day master pieces...and the irony is I am theoretically getting paid quite good (that is if the Mineshaft doesn't go  bankrupt  or such) while probably Ross was paid peanuts or worse...anyway the canvass is so old, dry and thin it is like gluing broken egg shells back together....thank God I got most of it attached to the backing board yesterday. As you can see, there are a lot of missing sections.

Sept. 23

This monster was growing out in our yard. It is completely enclosed, meaning there are no umbrella flutings on the underside and it weighs over a pound. What the hell is it? 

...and here is a little mushroom a bit more beautiful....

Sept. 20

It is my birthday. I am 67 and this is what my daughter Rowan sent:

Name Numerology Meanings 
For Name Number 67

Ruled By 6 & 7

You get a very thorough analysis of No. 67 in Numerology Meanings. 6 and 7 add to 13 that adds to No. 4.
As such No. 4 controls you from the start. No. 4 is ruled by Planet Rahu and it decides your day to day life.
As per name numerology, both No. 6 and 7 influence you. Planet Venus rules over No.6 and Ketu over No. 7.

Venus & Ketu

As per numerology meanings Venus is the deity for arts. With a name in 67 you do well to cultivate interest in this field. It fosters your talents and makes you famous. As 6 stands for riches, you will also be rich.
As per Name Numerology Ketu is an embodiment of knowledge. You have the thirst for knowledge. However, Ketu does not foster family ties, marital relations, or material riches. As such you are a product of Venus and Ketu.

Great Artists

Numerology meanings for 67 reveal that you have the potential to become a great artist. You are a tireless worker. You work hard and achieve great fame. You get the support of highly placed persons and VIPs.
As per name numerology, you can excel in any field of arts. Dance, Music, Acting, Mimicry, and Film making will come to you easily. Often you find persons with name in 67 talented in many branches of these fine arts.

Fair Sex Connection

As per Numerology meanings for 67, your fame puts you into contact with many women. You are likely to fall for them. Or you may become infatuated. This applies breaks to your progress and ruins your career.

Spiritual Feats

As per Name Numerology, if you are cautious and if you concentrate on your mission, you will attain respect. When 7 is not afflicted, it guides you into noble tasks and enables you to obtain the Grace of God.
As per Numerology Meanings, No. 6 in 67 entices you to encash your knowledge by showing off. You write books in the spiritual lines and make money. You make tours, give lectures on these subjects, and earn a lot.

Being Selfish

As per Name Numerology for 67, if you are selfish, you meet with failures. You lose your popularity and glory. You will end up with failures. The 7 in 67 and 4 in the name number are best suited for the unselfish.
As per numerology meanings, Name Number 67 will not benefit if you have no interest in fine arts. On the other hand, You become frustrated. The name pulls you in one direction and your interests pull you in the other.

When Afflicted

As per name numerology, 67 is afflicted if you have 3 , 9, or 8 in your numerology numbers. 3 is inimical to 6. 9 is inimical to 7. And 8 is inimical to 7. These numbers and Planets work for your downfall with 67.
As per Numerology meanings, your name is also afflicted if it has name components in these numbers. If you want to have 67 in your name, you must not have anti vibration from these numbers. That is bad phonology.

Sept. 19

Getting on with the Ross Ward mural restoration and this is what it looks like now...notice the missing sections and they are just the big parts you can see with this photo...the thing is damaged from one end to the other.

...and as for our  recent excitement of seeing  Carlos Santana and a guy I have never heard of...Michael Franti?

For me, it was worth seeing a legend, because...hey, that's Santana, the one and only...

Michael is the guy in the white hat...

 

Sept . 16

Just a few of the folks who were at our spontaneous Virgo Party  Last night.

...and I will start the restoration of the historic Ross Ward Mineshaft Tavern Mural today...

Sept. 15

Well...there was kind of a good thing that came along with this photo but it got lost in the wave...cyber wave...anyway, here is another photo of me being a lunatic with friends who also are delightful lunatics...

Sept. 12

Now that all of the people have vacated our house Ruth and I can get back to the life we have with each other, which by the way is becoming more precious and rare every year. I guess we are just becoming more selfish about keeping our world to ourselves and when we want company we go out there amongst the cannibals and aardvarks of this world.

 So...now that my space is MY space again, (aside from grudgingly getting out of Ruth's warpath from time to time) I have gone back to pecking out a few words at a time towards concluding the trilogy I started in the summer of 1986...hmmm, at this rate I might finish it within the next ten years.

The third book is titled THE CRYSTAL TIGHT ROPE  http://www.blogwolve.com/CRYSTAL2011.HTM  and the format I am following is a series of observations and short stories detailed by several different characters including God Almighty Itself that are accounts of the protagonist  Santiago McBoil. Of course Mr. McBoil also shares his side of the story.

One interesting comment my old buddy Fred Baue made during his recent visit was what he discerned of the tales I told concerning my Harlequin Moon Trilogy.  He thought the point and moral was about ABSOLUTION....and I had to agree with him completely, because in fact GUILT is probably the biggest obstacle to climb over in the course of a long life---for who among us has not fucked up royally with somebody somewhere and never ever again was given the chance to make good?

This is especially true for my Santiago, for he believes he assassinated 6 innocent villagers in My Lai, Vietnam and yet he has survived alcoholism, cancer and even AIDES, but is still alive baring the guilt of a murderer...but what plagues him worse than the death of those people is the total screw-ups he has had in 6 separate love affairs spread over 40 years. So he is colossally crazy and suicidal in more ways than you can shake the proverbial stick.

All I have to do in the next 50,000 or so words to conclude this epic, is come to one resolution that fits all shoes. In other words I have no idea how it is going to end or if any one of these three books works with the other two...oh well I wondered what I could putter with for the next few years.

Sept. 11

All day we relive 9/11 and it is a time all Americans will remember as the point of change...

As for my own thought, at the time the attack happened, I could not help but think of the parallel between the Tower of Babble and the World Trade Center. A tragedy of biblical scale. Humility of the colossus...the giant eternally wounded by a rabid flea...things thought but rarely said.


When Darkness Swallows the Sun

From Barry Graham

 

A year ago.

I am asleep when the killing begins, and when news of it reaches the desert city where I live. The airports close, the offices empty and the city soon has the feel of a Sunday morning.

When she leaves her office, she comes home and finds me asleep. She shakes me awake and tells me what has happened. I don’t take it in at first — the World Trade Center reduced to rubble by the impact of two hijacked airplanes, another plane flown into the Pentagon, another down in Pennsylvania, thousands of people killed — it sounds like a Japanese sci-fi movie.

But she is serious, and when she has told me the news she leaves me alone to wake to its reality. She sits on the couch in the living room and stares at the TV. I lie in bed and try to imagine it not as a special effect on a movie screen, but as actually happening in New York City and Washington, D.C. — places I have walked around in, gotten drunk with friends in the bars and clubs, eaten in the restaurants, used bathrooms, slept, had sex.

She comes back into the bedroom. She doesn’t say anything at first, just lies down beside me and snuggles close, holding me tight. I know what she’s thinking — that I travel frequently, and I recently flew to D.C. and then went to New York.

"I’m glad you’re here with me," she says.

I get up, eat something, sit with her and our two cats in the living room.

Our phone, which usually rings all day, sits in sullen silence. On the TV screen, two planes that no longer exist fly, again and again, into two towers that no longer exist. We hear accounts of people calling those they shared their lives with to say that they loved them. The people who made the calls no longer exist.

A day later, more than two hundred firefighters have joined the dead they were trying to save. For reasons I don’t understand, it is when I hear this news that I start to cry.

Throughout the day, and the day after that, I notice her looking at me. She doesn’t say anything about these looks; she just looks at me. But I understand, because I know that I am looking at her in the same way.

In the evening, I chop parsley and onions in the kitchen as a piece of an animal slowly roasts in the oven. The knife I am using was given to me by a close friend who lives in D.C. She has e-mailed me to say that she is all right. Other friends have e-mailed with similar assurances. But there is one friend in New York who is unaccounted for, and as I chop herbs and vegetables and think about her, I am grateful for the Merlot in the glass on the counter beside me. I just hope there will be enough of it.

What we are seeing on the news is more than scenes from an atrocity, though it is certainly that. It is atrocious, but it is not distant or anomalous. It is a concentration of real life as we live it every day, even without violence against us. This is why it is so terrifying to us — we are seeing that people who got up and went to work as usual never came home. Their lives were complex and certain, like yours and mine. They had chores to get through, things to look forward to, people they loved and who loved them. They did not know that, for no reason, no reason at all, they would not see the sun go down.

This is what scares us — that our existence seems secure, the sun is shining, our hair is growing, our bodies digesting food, and then darkness swallows the sun. Darkness comes as an illness, an accident, or as some madman who sacrifices us on the altar of his own ignorance and hate.

People cease to exist, and those of us with some time left look at each other, move closer to each other.

My missing friend gets in touch six days later:

hi barry,
i'm ok. totally shaken. shocked. devastated. i cannot believe that happened. i cannot believe they took down the world trade center. billowing clouds of smoke/dust/ash/whatever still hovers over downtown. but what it looks like to me is thousands of souls in shock, not knowing where to go, and lingering over their death site. the 1st night the wind was trying to carry them out to sea, the second night the cloud was moving uptown. it seemed to me those souls did not know where to go. then it poured rain all night and into the day and that settled a lot of it, but it is still there. it was amazing how quickly manhattan got closed off. i got stuck in brooklyn for 3 days. the smell is strong. and the views are tragic. people in brooklyn are finding papers and stuff in their neighborhoods and on rooftops.

last night i was driving through midtown and there was a whole army of military vehicles driving along side of me. military aircrafts circle manhattan, and there are even warships on the hudson. very very strange.

thanks for your concern. good friends travel through the wtc everyday, and one works there. thankfully they are all ok. i am so grateful. i can't believe there is no twin towers. i really just can't believe they did that. i didn't have any email access from wed. until today. i have 65 email messages to get through. i hope to talk to you soon.

love,
f

A week passes, months, then it is a year. We have tried to find something to do about it. Some people bravely searched through ruins, at first for survivors, then for the remains of the dead. Other people — me among them — nervously searched through other kinds of ruins for something useful to say about it. Both kinds of searchers found little that was alive.

But, on this anniversary, we have to say something, because the alternative is nothing, the same nothing that thousands of people were turned into a year ago, the same nothing that a man in the city where I lived, a Sikh, was turned into a few days later by a bullet fired into his head by a madman who mistook him for a Muslim, the same nothing that unknown numbers of Afghan civilians were turned into by our nation’s militaristic scapegoating.

To say nothing is not an option, and to say too much is to show too little respect for the awfulness of what happened. So let it just be said that on a Tuesday morning thousands of people, and tens of thousands of lives, were destroyed for no reason. And so were any illusions we had about our own permanence.

Detroit Metro Times, 2002

 

 

Sept. 8

hmmm...It seem s my brain is slipping being I put the photo below in an earlier post and simply forgot about it...anyway old buddy Fred is still here and will be until Saturday. So he is keeping himself busy playing music, writing a famous novel and smoking his pipe and spouting philosophy on regular intervals.

He is writing a baseball novel, which in my sense of what is leaves me completely baffled. I have never watched any sport other than the Winter Olympics so writing about baseball for me is out there...

...on the other hand I am in the last third of my Harlequin Moon Trilogy...and it of course is fascinating and naturally a literary marvel that should knock the critics on their kiesters so to speak...hmmm...possibly my theme of following a complete nutcase through a thousand pages will be almost as compelling to read as a baseball novel.

  

Sept. 7...well, here we are, two old farts at the Mineshaft  and it is pretty funny because we both look like we are having an advanced case of  STAGEFRIGHT. I know for sure I was....I have not been playing music with anyone for years let alone singing two part harmony as we used to do...so we did and several people came up to me and said, "Geez  Ken, I didn't know you could sing."...even though I have been making noise up there every Friday night for the last two or three years...

Sept. 5

A man was sitting on a blanket at the beach. He had no arms and no legs. Three women, from England, Wales , and Scotland , were walking past and felt sorry for the poor man.
 
The English woman said, 'Have you ever had a hug?' The man said, 'No,' so she gave him a hug and walked on.    
 
The Welsh woman said, 'Have you ever had a kiss?' The man said, 'No,' so she gave him a kiss and walked on.  
 
The Scottish woman came to him and said, 'ave ya ever been fooked laddie?' The man broke into a big smile and said, no.
 
She said, 'Aye - Ya will be when the tide comes in.

Sept. 4 Sunday

 

My old buddy Fred arrived and hopefully will be here for a few days..and we actually had a little spot on the OPEN MIC night at the MINESHAFT in Madrid...

This photo is pretty funny if not unflattering but it looks like we are having an advanced case of STAGEFRIGHT!