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Archive for May, 2011

Anyone who has spent more than two hours with me knows how obsessed I am with Emmaüs. In fact, there is already at least one post about my love for all things cheap and charity.

In any case, today I took a trip to Emmaüs (Charenton-le-Pont just of the line 8 metro toward Créteil -métro Liberté) and spent a ridiculously long time looking in the game/toy section . If we weren’t moving in a few months, I would have probably bought the coolest badge maker ever (hyperbole) and a gallon tin full of army men and tanks. Instead I settled on a EUR 1 vintage game called le Jeu de la Vérité (the Game of Truth) (please note that I also bought a bed sheet and 3 classical music CDs bringing my total to EUR 4 – I was also given a tank top that says “Think Pink”).

The object of le Jeu de la Vérité is to find out if your perception of yourself and your friends’ perception of you correspond for each personality card. There are 18 cards in all with personalities ranging from Pacifistic to Violent, Lazy to Motivated, Shy to Extravert. The card are numbered 1-10 and you simply rate by choosing a number – 1 weak, 10 strong. Simple as that!  It’s less of a game and more like one of those quizzes you take in a women’s magazine while you’re waiting at the dentist’s office for your yearly check-up.

The game’s illustrations are the real reason that I bought the game. A true classic. I challenge you to show me a game made today with illustrations as clever and quirky, and that haven’t been digitally designed.

Bah!!! Friends, promise me an intervention if I start hoarding old, used things that are mostly broken and smell funny.

*to thine own self be true

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do you see red?

A few weeks ago I met with my master’s advisor/director in Strasbourg. (Yes, for those of you who don’t know…my time is Paris will be coming to an end. Boo!) I will be studying European history and my mémoire or master’s thesis will deal with the French socialists take on the US socialists movements towards the end of the 19th century.  It reeks of excitement! So now I am trying to become familiar with my subject, which means reading an important number of the books listed on the bibliography given to me by my director.
(The book pictured here on the right is the first volume of a two volume biography of Paul Lafargue, the son-in-law of Karl Marx and a political activist. He is most famous for his essay The Right To Be Lazy (1893).)

I have been doing just that. This afternoon I parked myself at La Fourmi café on Boulevard de Clichy for nearly 2.5 hours reading and writing and drinking coffee. It was too beautiful outside and too hot in the apartment to stay inside working.

The book here on the left is by Pierre-Joseph Prudhon, Qu’est-ce que la propriété? or What is property?

Prudhon answers his question: La propriété, c’est le vol! or Property is theft! 

I’m going to talk to my Catholic Charities worker friend about this one…

If you are feeling unpatriotic after all of that, watch this.

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my 4th floor garden

Green.

It’s such a lovely color.

A few weeks ago, a friend took over the Montmartre pad while we were enjoying spring break in the Pyrenees mountains. Upon my return, there was a new planter box out one of my windows (a wonderful gift)…which immediately doubled the size of my meager garden (one planter box to two)! Then a week after that I was gifted tomato plants, bell pepper plants and some other flowering plants. That increased the size of my garden again.

All my plants are doing well thus far. I water them everyday and even talk to them encouraging them to grow big and strong (especially to the tomato and pepper plants) with delicious produce!

I wonder if there will be enough tomatoes and basil for a delicious red sauce by the end of growing season…

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pointe sèche

I am just now formally learning the art of printmaking/etching/engraving at an atelier just outside of Paris in a town called Sarcelles. The prof is a full-bodied Indian woman named Lakshmi. She’s a sassy pants (she frequently tells students “Dégages !” or “Get out of my face!”…something you might yell at an annoying dog. I think this is a coping mechanism for having to deal with les demoiselles, the 4 old women in the studio who either 1) don’t hear or 2) don’t listen. She’s never actually yelled at me. I even get the kiss-kiss when I arrive – something she probably saves for only her favorites.

Here is my first attempt at the technique of pointe sèche or drypoint. It’s like etching on metal plates, but instead of a copper or steel plate it’s on cheaper material like plexiglas and doesn’t require chemical baths. This image is of a plexi design only 1/2 complete. Tomorrow I will print it! (If you can’t tell what it is – it’s a sketch of Strasbourg cathedral. Some of you might also notice that I’ve done my etching in normal view and not reversed…oops! With printmaking you always make a reverse image…and I didn’t realize until I was 10 minutes in…I’ve got some more plates that I will experiment with, but I just had to complete something for printing at the studio tomorrow.)

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changes, changes, changes.

Moving. Marriage. Master’s.

I would appreciate some advice…Anyone?

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