Woeful, grieved, frustrated, hopeful, exhausted... I can't find the word, can't identify the emotion I feel. I'm stuck here with the kitchen sink. The sink will be deck ridden for a week, no way around it. Redoing the kitchen counter, I came up short one-stinking-gallon of epoxy. I've got to wait for delivery. (No, I'm not paying for expedited – fool.) I'm remodeling the kitchen myself with raw stubbornness and I'm doing it on the cheap. The new white epoxy counters look fantastic - I do say so – but they need the dread legendary third coat to achieve excellence. I'm motivated toward excellence. I've been living the pizza and hot dogs life for too many weeks – blurred. I have had enough of the living in chaos experience and was hoping I'd be done. Seen the finish line moved too many times. I was sure to be done yesterday – wrong. When I realized a third coat was dictated by the situation, it was the feeling of “OH man, five minutes before spring break and the teacher just slapped homework down..” That experience has a word, a specific emotional word like irritated, exasperated, exhausted . I know the word, it's the TREATMENT! Bring the treatment, this kitchen is going to be excellent. I'm committed... and the sink makes a good foot stool while noshing on za & wings.
Remarks by George Furman
Here are all the answers. It will read like an Advanced Emotional Calculus book when you're only in Emotional Algebra 1. Still the problem needs to be solved. It will take you four years to solve the problem. You must take Emotional Algebra 1 & 2, Your Life Is A Wreck Trig and then Epiphany Calculus. At the end of 4 years, there will be an Epiphany Calculus test – a comprehensive of all your emotional math classes. The test is a bitch. You will solve the final problem or you won't. The emotional math test will be given if you take the classes or if you don't take the classes. The classes are work. Failing the course is painful. Passing the course is not painful, some people say it is nice to pass the test. It is nice to win.
The rocks of Tennessee are where I took my Your Life Is A Wreck Trig and Epiphany Calculus beating. I'm not doing well, trying to take both classes at once. I need to see some tutors before I see the teacher himself. I'm going on a quest for the wisest people I can find. It's going to be a hard two years, but a 1,000 miles journey begins with a first step... and a pocket full of good snacks. That's the Tao of it.
We swam at night. The evenings I discovered I could swim underwater without fresh air for 50 meters, then 60, then 63, 64, 65... meters, was a life landmark for me. I was not a strong swimmer. I made myself a strong swimmer by committing to a swim team. I earned my college sweatshirt elbows ups, tip drills and once a week a flip turns bloody smashed feet on the wall. The sweatshirt was the first I ever cared about. I stored it in a box to give to my kid. She got it tonight. She owns it. I told her to respect the discipline that earned it.
On route to the best burger in New York, I rode my razor push scooter. I wanted to ride wild in the dark down sidewalks. It was the bald man's feeling of wind blowing in the hair – kind of an amputee's ghost limb experience. I wiped out. Skinned a knee and embedded gravel in my palms. Felt like the13-year-old George bleeding from the knee and too young and dumb to care. Scooting to the subwaystation, It occurred to me I had Brooklyn sidewalk dirt in my cut – wino urine for sure. The smart move went to a pharmacy and got Hydrogen peroxide. It isn't supposed to sting - It did. Fall off the horse, get back on. I scooted to the best cheeseburger in New York - $16. It came with an American flag stuck deep I the bun.
House painting has ended. I've been under the influence of extra white paint and concrete resin more days than I might should have. Tonight, as I clean, purge, and place space between things, I discovered a painting I made in 1999. An enormous energy is in this painting – it's manic. Life was about to get bad – life does that, goes way up, then way down. I left myself a message in a language only the open-hearted can understand. I was covered in leaches and tormented by demons - in spiritual and human form in those days. I hate demons, I call them sociopaths or fuckers or demons – mind, body, spirit. The sociopaths torment the mind, the fuckers the body, and the demons feed upon the soul. All three the same creature doing a different job. When they come, I hide what is valuable, hide it in my art, so they can never get at it. When demons look at art all they can see is themselves. Demons, sociopaths, and fuckers hate art and try to twist it into their image. Demons go mad with rage when they don't see the reflection in the world they demand – them and only them – some of these creatures kill to insure they see them and only them. Killing isn't winning, it's loosing, because demons get a brief look at themselves and that image is self revulsion. Demons see themselves, then that image - which is a lie because demons can do nothing else to others and themselves - is replaced. An artist always comes along, with a new beautiful image, that is not a view the demons wants to see. The Demons is reminded that it's malicious self love it revolting – they feel it, if they don't know it. They can never win, because the art won't stop coming, the world will never be what the demon wants. A world all about them, will never be, because the world is all about the us, not the me. When the Demons pull the painting from the wall, it just creates a fresh new space for a new more powerful painting. Tonight, I'm hanging this emotional painting. Tonight I am also starting a new art to replace it. I'm thinking maybe a French Flag out of bottle caps... and on it I will right Je Sui Charlie! There, I aired my mind along with the paint fumes in my house. Need to take a walk, look for some red, white and blue Fench bottle caps.
I made a Teddy Roosevelt hat. He's a hero. My main cause for admiration is that Roosevelt was his own man. I'd like to be like that, my own man. Not president – way too much work, but that wouldn't be a problem today. We'd never elect a man like him in 2016, too much personality. Making a Roosevelt felt slouch hat was one of my side projects. I keep things going for months, tinkering in downtime. Since the bits and pieces were laying around a long time the hat seemed to just appear to my kid. I put the hat on while making breakfast. Moran gave me a look of you are not going to wear that in public are you? Her look, to me, was a double dog dare. I drove her to school wearing the hat. Sitting in the car, she said, “Dad”. That's all, just “Dad.” I choked back a laugh, which must have been what Teddy Roosevelt was going all the time with that crazy grin of his. The drive to school became a bonus history lesson. I'm a storyteller, and it started with “George Furman and Teddy Roosevelt go way back...” At school, I took the hat off, but when she got out of the car I grinned and said “3 o'clock pick up” and before the door slammed I yelled, “Bully!” Wish I could hear Morgan explain her Dad to friends
I'm a winter away from summer, my darkest hour and thinking. When I'm living my life properly – freely- the feeling is like body surfing. In the beginning, there is a dull calm as I watch the swells roll in. I pick a swell, I trust will become a wave, usually the third swell. It comes and I swim for it. I pull and draw with head down and nose rolling clean for air. I'm swimming for speed to match the wave. It's work. I forget – almost – I'm pulling for a wave. Then the world rises beneath like the hand of Poseidon and pushes me forward. It moves too fast, I'm worried it will roll by me and kick me out the back. I sprint kicking white foam, pulling deep and hard. The wave has me, I'm satisfied a moment, then the wave hurls me forward and it's easy and calm – effortless speed. Too much speed suddenly as the wave draws to shallow water and becomes tall and sharp. Fear, a knowing of what comes next, the beach arrives. I'm spiked to the sand and sucked into a chaos of water, a bubble of rocks, sand and salt water. I'm worked in Poseidon's laundromat. It hurts. The sand knicks and cuts. I rise from the spent wave, knees bleeding a little. I'm stunned a moment, standing there a fool with the crotch of my suit filled with a lump of sand that makes me look like a soiled child in diapers. Then, I feel unblocked joy. That hurt! Do it again!