Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Goodbye Marvin.

I'm sad to share the news that a Louisville treasure passed away yesterday at the age of 89.
His name was Marvin Finn and he has long been an inspiration to me, as well as a friend.

Marvin was lively, complicated, humble, endearing, soulful, and highly regarded by the art world.

He had a great imagination that was always whizzing right along at top speed and bringing us joy.
Long after many other men had put such thoughts to bed,
Marvin was dreaming up 5 headed purple peacocks, cutting them out with his scroll saw and bring them to life in his little kitchen.

He would sit at the table, in that little kitchen, and paint for hours while looking out the window at a perfect little tree that had decided to spread it's branches there.

The birds in that particular little tree spawned many little other-worldly wooden babies,
quite unbeknownst to them,
as they went about their birdly business and Mr. Finn went about his.

Marvin was a funny man and he had a great laugh. He had smiley eyes and was always well dressed for visitors,
of which he had many.
Whenever one would go to visit Marvin there was a recommended protocol to be followed.
First and most importantly, show up with donuts or a cake.
Many a business deal were negotiated by way of flour, sugar and eggs.

Secondly, plan to be there a while.
This was not going to be a quick transaction.
This was more about an old-fashioned social call than it was about buying folk art from an internationally admired artist.
In fact, if he didn't like the way you were behaved the last time, my guess is that he wouldn't think twice about hanging up on you should you call again.

One of my favorite stories he would tell us one day, not long ago, was about
"Some gallery in California wantin' me to give them some chickens..."
We were all quite excited for him and this new business opportunity.
"How'd it go? Are you going to send them some work?", we eagerly inquired.
"Aw, I couldn't understand a word they was sayin' so I just hung up on 'em."

Yep, Marvin was awesome.
No time for bullshit and apparently even less time for fast-talking, slick galleries in California.
I would love to have seen the art buyer as she lowered the phone from her bewildered-yet-botoxed face, expensive handcrafted bangles clinking together as she realized what had just gone down.

I will fondly and forever remember him sitting in his small and very tidy Clarksdale apartment
(which was always toasty warm).
Sitting in his chair and talking about the good old days on a farm in Alabama.
He would talk about how life was simple then, "Not like it is today-- with people runnin' around doing drugs and killing each other." He'd shake his head, both disgusted and sorrowful.
He'd mention his wife and how much he missed her.
"She was a good woman." He would quietly say.

Then, almost as if we were playing scripted parts in some unwritten play,
he'd hand me a box full of photos from the shelf.
They were old.
They're were many.
Most were in black and white.

After we'd had some small talk and a trip through the memories that resided in his old cigar box
we would then, and only then,
talk about the new artwork I was there to buy from him.

"Look at that roadrunner! Isn't he somethin'? And the lighthearted Marvin most knew him to be,
would come back to the here and now.

I think Marvin spent a great deal of time in that sort of emotional limbo.
Between longing for the old but living in the new.

Lucky for me, he always had a grin, a funny story and a silly bird to brighten my day.
I will miss knowing he's out there stirring things up.

I will miss Marvin.
He truly was a treasure.

Here's what the Courier-Journal had in the paper today: Nice article about Marvin Finn

Monday, January 29, 2007

WIndshield Fairy Strikes Again!

Someone left Purple Unicorn Power bubble gum on my windshield sometime this weekend...
How fun!
This sticker says, "World of Swirl"....aha! A clue!
That means it's from Lynn's Paradise Cafe....
I am such a lucky girl. First the bumper sticker and now candy?
What if it actually is a unicorn leaving me such treats...
maybe that's why I can't catch him/her/ them?
'Cause of the super powers, you know.

What mystery!
What fun!

I love it!

Thursday, January 18, 2007

12 Week Fitness Challenge

I'm kind of an idiot.

Just exactly what possessed me to volunteer for THIS might be beyond explanation.

I do remember my pants feeling a wee bit tight as I ripped the entry form from the newspaper while stuffing my face full of lunch-time bagel goodness at my friend Nancy's Bagel Grounds coffee shop.

And out of the 40 or so photos the wonderfully talented photographer shot of me,
why they chose this one (where I resemble a smart ass lizard) is quite puzzing, as well.

Oh well. At least my after photo will be an improvement!
I hope it will be, anyway.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

It is a good day.

OH! This is sooooooo AWESOME!

Thanks to my sister, Carrick, for the link.

Unicorns ROCK.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

I brake for unicorns?

Well, yes... As a matter of practice, I do.
But just who is the unknown person that put this on my windshield last week?
Was it you????

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Young @ Heart Chorus

This is the most profoundly beautiful and moving performance I have seen in my life.

And now, the original version, just for comparison's sake:

I had a dream last year that was very similar to this...
Was it a sign?

The lyrics take on such a different meaning...
I was brought to tears.

Fix You

When you try your best but you don't succeed
When you get what you want but not what you need
When you feel so tired but you can't sleep
Stuck in reverse.

And the tears come streaming down your face
When you loose something you can't replace
When you love someone but it goes to waste
Could it be worse?

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

And high up above or down below
When you're too in love to let it go
But if you never try you'll never know
Just what you're worth

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you

Tears stream, down your face
When you lose something you cannot replace
Tears stream down your face
And I..

Tears stream, down your face
I promise you I will learn from the mistakes
Tears stream down your face
And I..

Lights will guide you home
And ignite your bones
And I will try to fix you.


Amazing, isn't it?

Check out more performances here:
Young@Heart Chorus
and here...and an NPR story: here.

A million thanks, Lori Lyn for sharing this with me.
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