fine art prints, supplies, in the storage closet

Main shelf in the storage closet. Prints. Supplies. Yep.

I went shopping for groceries yesterday, and found a plastic crate and a file organizer, which inspired me to tidy up the art studio.  The supply-slash-storage closet anyhow.

The file holder works fabulously for my finished prints, and I’m storing the remainder of my acrylic stretched canvases inside the crate… along with a couple blank canvases unearthed while cleaning! Yay!

stretched canvas acrylic paintings, art paper

My canvas paintings and packs of art paper.

They are being stored inside acid-free cellophane bags, which – in addition to the varnish – will hopefully protect them from dust or stray moisture… you know,  just in case my closet is actually a portal to some alternate fantasy world covered in snow.  With pipe-playing fawns and talking badgers.

greeting cards, paper, canvas, art supplies

Greeting cards, yarn, glue gun... oh yeah.

This may not look tidy to most neat-freaks, but it’s the best it can possibly be… without help from a professional. 😉
One of my Resolutions for 2010 was to “thoroughly organize my studio”, so I’ve managed to complete 1/10th of my goals by March! lol Not too shabby for someone who generally scoffs at this New Year tradition.

It was a huge undertaking for me, however, as I’m an accomplished pack-rat and extremely disorganized… my brain thinks in messy terms, where clutter is the native language.  It remains to be seen whether I can function now in this space.

my art table, acrylic paints, palette, black cat tail

I cleared everyone's junk off MY art table! Dominic can stay.

While I still have a few ounces of this cleanliness-inducing chemical (figuratively) coursing through my veins, I should take the opportunity to update my shopping venues (Etsy, Artfire, 1000 Markets)… because once the mood passes, it might take months.
  Yes, I’m taking a break from the aggravating website overhaul – which needs to be completed no later than next Friday.
And, yes, I have at least 3 art projects – Ballet Cats, The Swing (working title), and my 16×20 Venus acrylic – that are patiently waiting  for me to finish them.  None of these are commissioned, by the way.  If a customer places an order, I upgrade them to top priority… which is another extension of my procrastinating, scatter-brained nature.  Deadlines need to be clearly fixed.
 Don’t ever say, “There’s no rush… take your time”, unless you aren’t expecting to receive it for six months, because I’ll take you literally. 😉

 To understand the way my mind works, one need only read through these posts… it’s haphazard, easily distracted, follows every tangent, and gets lost in thought, until finally winding its way back to the original point.  Similar to a cat’s famed short-term memory.
…Leading me on yet another tangent, I Googled “cat’s memory” and (barring all the references to Lloyd Webber, haha) came across this interesting article in Wikipedia relating to cat brains: the physical similarities to human brains, and studies in cat intelligence.  Ever curious to learn oddball bits of information, I’m constantly Googling and reading articles online… the internet is very distracting for me in a professional capacity.

My fellow artist, Jessica Doyle, justifiably prides herself on a well-kept blog… its success, she claims, is partially due to being organized in her writing and keeping to certain topics.   As inspiring as that goal is, I realize it will never happen for me.  If I waited until my thoughts coalesced into a “suitable” blog topic, my writing would be even more sparse than last year’s contributions!  I write whenever I feel moved to write, paint when I’m inspired to paint, and drudge through CSS coding the rest of the time because it needs to be done also, hehe. 
  My blog will always be an extension of whatever thoughts and ideas have captured my attention, although I can attempt to mold them into a particular theme… the theme will ultimately be “Who is TaraFly?”
  Perhaps writing these blog posts is just another form of procrastination… to avoid undertaking the dreaded profile summary.

Now what was it exactly that I planned to do next?

1950's House Wife Cat painting

Who is this woman, capable of "doing it all"?

I logged into my MSN Hotmail account, to check my messages for the umpteenth time, and came across this entertaining blurb in the sidebar:

“10 Things Women Do That Drive Guys Crazy” posted in the Lifestyle section by Glamour magazine.  Being curious, I deviated from the boring task of checking spam and reading Facebook updates, and clicked on the link to discover how men “really feel” about the women in their lives.  I always find these articles amusing because I tend to agree with the men on most issues, and have since realized that I must not be a typical female… if jealousy, clinginess, and obsession with commitment are truly “female” traits.  I’ve met some guys who would test that assumption.

This article, however, made me laugh for an entirely different reason. With each declaration, I felt myself dying to point out the similarities between the Pot and the Kettle. (Psst, they are both black)   

So here are my thoughts on your Top 10 Pet peeves, guys:

1. “Hair. In. The. Tub.” – Andrew, 31

Okay, so what about men’s shaving facial hair in the sink?! There is nothing grosser than walking into the bathroom to brush your teeth, and finding a layer of beard stubble clinging to the sides of the sink. Or how about men who cut their own hair using those electric razors, and then leaving the clumps on the bathroom floor, for us to sweep up.

2. “Examining multiple cans of soup” – Dave, 37

Yeah, this one gets me too. Everyone is so obsessed with reading the soup labels, looking for that evil MSG, sodium, and trans-fat, perhaps they should start making their soups from scratch and forget preserved canned food altogether. But I personally like how men can blow $100 on groceries and come home with nothing except snacks. 😉

3. “My girlfriend makes fun of me for laughing at my own jokes” – Chris, 37

Hmmm, I’ve had men make fun at me while I put on my make-up or fix my hair, because I guess they found my primping routine silly. And yet – surprisingly, they suddenly decide I’m more attractive once I’m “all dolled up”.  Go figure.
Do you want the steamy girlfriend/wife, or the girl in sweatpants and a ponytail?  If you answered ,”Steamy, baby!”, then close the bathroom door and live in ignorance while I apply this foundation and cover my dark circles.

4. “Disorganized loading of the dishwasher” – Chad, 27

Actually, that was MY pet-peeve towards certain male counterparts… nothing was getting washed thoroughly. Fortunately, I do all the dishes by hand now. 😉

5. She washes the bathtub before dinner guests arrive – Dennis, 31

Give her props! She wants a nice, clean bathroom that will not gross people out when they use the toilet.  If you don’t have a shower curtain to disguise the mess, they might walk past the tub and go, “Eeew, gross! Look at all your wife’s hair in the drain!” 😉

I personally wouldn’t scrub the tub for guests; it’s one of those chores I loathe to tackle, because it reminds me of that stint working part-time as a housekeeper at a Bed-and-Breakfast. Nasty stuff!

I guess my male equivalent to this mixed blessing would be not picking up after oneself. Men tend to shed their jackets, clothes, shoes and whatnot everywhere, and we walk behind them and toss everything into the laundry hamper.  Except the shoes.  And, hours later, they’re wandering aimlessly, asking
“Where are my jeans? I thought I left them over here.”
“Oh, you mean those dirty ones you’ve worn for 3 days? They’re being washed…. Sorry.”

6. “Women call and have nothing to talk about” – Chuck, 22

Oh, Chuck! Fortunately you have never met my ex-boyfriend! He was King of Calling for Absolutely No Reason… except to tell me that he loved me for the millionth time, because THAT was supposedly reason enough to interrupt the blessed few hours of peace I had.  He would also get very upset if I didn’t want to stay on the phone and talk about how much I loved him in return… indefinitely… or until his train arrived.

But seriously… that calling and chatting about nothing WILL end once you’re in a committed relationship (i.e. you’re living together). Pretty soon, she’ll get sick of seeing your face, and hearing all about your boring day at the office, and will welcome that bit of free time to herself.  She might not even answer the phone when you call. hehehe

7. Taking too long choosing from the menu – Ricardo, 39

My smart-ass side wants to reply, “Take her to a restaurant with a reputation for nasty food, so she’ll be forced to choose the only edible thing on the menu” …Or more rationally, “Stop taking her to NEW restaurants.” 
I’m sure she has an established “Gimme the Usual” repertoire of dishes at your favorite date places.

I liken this to the Great Mystery of Life – “DirectTV VS Dish Network”… raise your hand if you know a man who has obsessed for DAYS over that decision.

8. Talking while driving; being distracted – Glenn, 39

Hah! So we miss available left-hand turns… men, however, like to cut in front of people and flick the finger at the annoyed drivers beeping their horns behind us.
They also enjoy lane-jumping, to pass every creature on the highway in manuevers that should be reserved for a NASCAR track.. in some primeval urge to be the leader of the pack.  Not to mention the dangerous joys of spontaneous drag-race competitions with the fellow in the neighboring lane.  Pull over in front of this Taco Bell, and let me out! I’ll walk home.
9. Thermostat Wars – Charlie, 32

Yes! Finally, a point that I’m guilty of engaging in! I like my house warm and toasty, and most of my partners have preferred a slightly chilled room.
There is no right or wrong here… you can’t argue with personal comfort.  We averaged our desired temperatures together and found a median that serves us well.
Although I admit to playing upon his guilty conscience occasionally, by wearing an extra layer or two, like a sweater and coat. 😉

10. “The endless ‘Honey-can-you-do-this?’ list” – Shane, 30

Tired of the never-ending pile of chores? Awwww, poor baby. Hah! Welcome to adulthood!
Okay fine, switch roles for one week:
She can pay the bills, caulk around the tub, and repaint the deck… if you do all the cooking, cleaning, and baby-sitting. But don’t expect her to come running when junior takes off his diaper and smears himself and the walls with its contents. Remember, you’re the Mommy now! And that doesn’t mean letting the toddler run the vacuum while you play video games. 😉

Let’s face it, we humans have our flaws… and choosing a partner means taking their unique quirks into consideration.  Men: Is her disorganization something you can live with, considering how fantastic she is otherwise?  If the answer is yes, than don’t gripe about it! You have plenty of imperfections that she wisely chose to pardon.

I laugh at dating commercials, with their abstract ideals of “true compatibility”, because most long-term relationships are either bolstered or destroyed by mundane acts like this.  Many of my friends are divorced, and none of them confessed, “I’m a walk-along-the-beach-at-sunset type of person, and he wanted to spend his evenings at the bowling alley.”

So, in addition to asking how often a person feels satisfied in their career, and whether they consider themselves religious or spiritual.. they should include
such important issues as “How long on average does it take you to merge onto the freeway?” … and ….“How would you rate the amount of hair you leave in the tub?”

On a sliding scale: from (1) I rarely shed, to (5) I’m cultivating a rainforest.