Sunday, September 30, 2007


I am now fifty-four.

I spent much of the weekend attending the Virginia/Pitt game in Charlottesville, flanked by one of my favorite daughters, her friend Katie, and BFF Earl from Denver. Virginia scored touchdowns on its first three possessions and went on to win 44-14. We sang the good old song quite a bit. The weather was lovely. Life was pretty good. Marred, in fact, only by the absence, due to scheduling, of my other favorite daughter.

I am, however, troubled by the insistence of some members of the Virginia student body to add the words "not gay" to the line that ends "...where all is bright and gay." This has been the case for several years, and it used to be, if taken with a grain of salt, moderately amusing.

Now, coming from these smirking, super-homogenized Dukie wannabes that have somehow replaced normal people as the flower of Virginia, I find it offensive.

I should have gone to the University of Maryland. Earl and I shared common cause with about 40 sorority sisters at a bar in College Park prior to us going to eat and them going to the Orioles game, and let me tell you: youth is wasted on the young.

It might have been my best birthday ever. Top fifteen, easy.

All was not fun and games, however. Much reflection on the next painting occurred.
"And?" you ask?

Well, I came up with is this for a title:
"Close, But No Cigar"
Which, as if you couldn't guess, will be a reinterpretation of Chuck Close's famous painting "Big Self Portrait" utilizing the obscured box technique.

The original is, of course, this:

I envision it as a bookend to "Close, But Not Quite," an earlier (for me) interpretation of another Close self-portrait.

The earlier painting used a grid in a somewhat different manner than I currently employ. It will be fun to see an obscured box painting next to this one.

The mind reels.


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