Monday, December 31, 2012

Thanks 2012

Dear 2012, 

You taught me lots of stuff. Mostly how to play, put away the past and see the importance of my place in the present. 

I really do have everything I need.

Now, one last tourist push and then a much needed break from the holidays. 

Come on 2013! Happy New Year

Saturday, December 22, 2012

End of the World. Day Two.

Is it just me or does everything seem brighter today?

Put your hands on the wheel. 
Let the Golden Age begin....

Led Zeppelin and Brain Scan

Reason #1001 to love this town.

Got off work and heard there was a good Led Zeppelin band playing at the Parrot. 

they. were. AWESOME.

Zoso is their name and it was a flashback to the 70's complete with double headed guitars and big hair. People were loving it.

Then I saw this guy outside setting up so I ran out.

"Can you scan me?!" I asked.

I've seen him scan people's auras but this time he was doing brain scans. He handed me a helmet and then an x-ray print out of my skull. 

I immediately got Fernando to try it and told the scan dude Fern was a Scientologist. A real Thetan. As he handed Fern the picture we both started laughing cause it was an alien head.

So awesome. Love my random Friday night after work. 

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Almost there

Spanish Goat coming along nicely. Really love the weirdness coming out of it. 

Speaking of weird, been a strange week for sure. I imagine its just the start of this holiday season.

God bless paint and pictures.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Oy vey

How do you tell your friend that you burned a portrait he did of you? After a couple of martini's, wine and it goes a little like this:

Me: "Eric. Eric, I have to tell you something about that painting you gave me."

Eric: "You burned it."

Me: "Yes! How did you know?"

Eric: "Wait, what? You burned it???"

I had been wanting to tell him for over a year but how exactly do you begin that conversation? Drinks.

It was a snapshot he took of me before I was going in to work at a restaurant on Duval that I loathed working at. I was miserable counting down the minutes before having to go in. He captured it perfectly and did a portrait which he eventually gave to me. The title was "Friday"

At first, I loved it and thought it was an awesome gesture but then... Something about it just held this person I was no longer and it had a lot of pain in it. So I got the notion of releasing it, me, and that meant burning it. But who burns a friends painting? Me.

Surprisingly, Eric took it very well and as a compliment. He told me he was going to run with that and tell everyone. 

As we told a few people at the bar what I did, they looked at me in disgust. I told him I didn't care about what anyone thought cause it needed to be done but I did care about him getting upset. Something told me he'd be ok with it and he was. He loved it in fact.

I swear I can't believe he can understand or put up with me. Must be why he was the first person I met in Key West, it was fate. You find those kind of friends exactly when you need them.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Try Again

Been talking with an interesting glass sculptor the last few days and actually got to see him in action via video. It was crazy. Huge oven, blowtorch, team of people helping, and heavy duty fire gear. 

Its fast, furious and can give you third degree burns. 

He told me after all that work and passion, just when you think you've finished, it can shatter into a million pieces right in front of you. But then you try again. 

Reminds me of everyday life.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Beaver Eclipse

Well, I think its official. All my dating relationships get started at Don's and Jill usually has a front row seat. I hope I tipped her well last night.

Met a traveling artist in town for a show at the Parrot after work. And after turning down a shot, he asked for my phone number with the offer to get a drink sometime in the next 5 days. Hell, why not? 

Gave him my phone number and headed over to Don's for one more with my friends when he suddenly showed up.

He told me he dragged his birthday friend over there cause he couldn't remember the name he put in his phone. I laughed, and told him it was ok cause I probably couldn't remember his name. Its true, until I have a decent conversation with someone I generally can't.

So after guessing, I got it right on the second try.

Talked to him and had a surprisingly good meaningful conversation till 4am when I finally insisted I go home. 

I told him it was a full moon and he told me it was a beaver eclipse. Nothing dirty, he's from Washington State and it's a moon when the beavers go out, make dams, play in the river or something like that.

How many times do you catch yourself wedged between Wingmasters and Don's Place getting picked up and turned upside down in the street asking patrons leaving if they knew it was a beaver eclipse?

Every once in a full moon.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012


A lot of times working in the restaurant people come to you with a familiar sentence:

"Let me ask you something."

It is one of my favorite phrases asked cause I always love to see how people will respond to the answer. So on this particular night, this nice couple who was taking their time enjoying their meal uttered this phrase.

"The guy. You know, the guy with the lighted bike with the sound system on the back? What is that?"

A familiar reply for me "Oh that's Mr. Chapman. He's a  really nice guy and lives right down the block. Have you seen his furry chicken?" I said.

"Yeah, but what is that? I mean that bike is great but why is he doing it, I don't see him collecting any money or anything." looking confused as they snickered a little bit.

"No he doesn't collect any money, he just likes to make people happy. That's all." I said

They still didn't seem to get it totally. I mean why would this guy with a souped up bike dripping with lights and booming sound system just ride his bike around Key West for no reason other than to make people smile. 

It got me thinking. How sad is it that people can't grasp the concept of doing something to make another person happy with nothing in return for themselves?

Have we become a totally transaction based society? Perhaps. I do think you need to base value on things. More for the cherishing and respecting aspect. But happiness? How do you put a price on that?

Which brings me to my next thought - Powerball. 

The last few days everyone's been talking about it. Getting tickets and waiting for their payday. I normally don't get into Lotto. I'd much rather use that two dollars for a small cafe con leche from Sandy's but it got me thinking of going to buy a ticket. So I bought one. 

Yes, one. Cause if its meant to be, its meant to be.

Which subsequently got me thinking of: "Oh crap. What would happen if I won?" 

Want to know the honest to God truth... I got a little sad that I'd have to leave my jobs. Something which is probably the opposite of what people think about winning lotto.

Yeah, I didn't want to have to give up my jobs cause I like going to them and the random experiences I get out of them. Plus all my friends are there too. 

So what WOULD I do with all that money??

Well, I'd probably buy myself a few things. A house. Nothing crazy cause I've always liked small spaces. A cottage style house with room to paint, have friends stay over, oh and I'd like a salt water pool. 

I'd maybe get a car so I could take road trips.

I'd pay off all my family's debt and get them whatever they wanted or needed. 

I'd donate it to Arts programs for children and adults. Yes, adults. Cause its a good thing when everyone creates and learns to play. You need that even more when you're an adult.

I'd donate to libraries cause I want to see books stick around. Plus I just really like libraries.

And of course, travel. I imagine a big chunk would be devoted to that. Experiences up the wazoo. 

But the biggest thing I got out of playing lotto was the realization that I wouldn't really want to change my life too much. 

And for that, I feel extremely lucky.

Thursday, November 22, 2012



Everyone, has that 30 days of thankfulness crap right now. I hate to say it but if you can't be thankful for a little something everyday, you kinda suck. That may be some drinks talkin'

If I had to say what I'm thankful for...I'd say I'm thankful for my life.

That may be too general. Maybe too broad but it is what it is. And that's what it is.

I love this holiday the most of the most. Mostly cause its getting together with people you love and sharing food, drink and laughs. Its the least stressful of holidays. 

I wanted to go home for this one and didn't know what I was going to do besides that. I had planned to just let it ride out and see where I went.

In the end, I started to get really excited of a day of me cooking and painting at home. Funny how just as you get comfortable with being on your own, everyone shows up.

So I got to see some good friends I hadn't spent time with in a while. Laughs, hearty conversations and a bonfire ensued. Met up with some more peeps to have lovely wines and more laughs. I couldn't have asked for anything more.

So here's how Thanksgiving stands for me:

I'm happy I've got some really great friends.

I'm happy I've got some really good family.

I'm happy I got some really good food.

I'm happy I got excited watching shadows run across a wall.

This is still my favorite holiday and always will be.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Little Woods

Fun with faces continues...

Got a whole stack of wood cut by a nice gentleman at the Home Depot. I cut a few too - hand sawing ain't no joke. Probably time to invest in a saw cause I'm loving the little woods.

Gives me a chance to just get some things I'm thinking of drawn out quick and then painting is just fillin' in the lines. 

Top one I'm pretty sure came from seeing Samsara last night. Started as a Buddha head and then just morphed into the red guy. Don't know but I'm liking where its all going.

Now to figure out how to hang them simply.

And of course, still having fun with the iPhone and Instagram. I love how turkey vultures always show up in November.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Simple pleasures

Today was a good day.

Got a bacon egg and cheese from Five Brothers.

Found my friend's art book in the new book section at the Key West library.

Was asked at the Salvation army: "Did you find a treasure?" immediately after I picked up a fifty dollar hardback Picasso retrospective book from the Modern Museum of Art in New York.

"Yes, I did."

Also picked up two Japanese china plates worth $20 each but got the whole lot for just a mere 7 dollars.

Bought some plants for my ever growing herb garden.

Watched the turkey vultures circle amongst billowy clouds while I thought of new paintings.

Ran out the door when I saw Samsara was playing at the Tropic to catch the next showing. 

Felt like I got a full length meditation afterwards as I listened to wind chimes jingling in the night air on the ride home with great peace.

I call this....Saturday.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Arizona! - Sedona

Well, onto the whole reason I looked at going to Arizona in the first place - Sedona. 

I had thought a lot about where to travel this year and couldn't seem to zero in on anything at first. Usually a place lights up for me immediately and this year it just didn't which was very strange. 

I thought about what I enjoyed most about last year's trip to Peru and the places I've really gotten a lot out of. My mind suddenly went to Moray. The energy there just felt so good and I had the most incredible day there.

So I googled a few things mostly similar to Moray and found Sedona. What does Sedona have that is similar to Moray??? 

Energy Vortexes.

First off some brief history. Sedona as a whole is considered a very sacred site by Native Americans a.k.a. Indians. A lot of Hopi and Navajo resided in this region and still do. The tribes considered the area so sacred they didn't live there. It was just a place that they visited to do sacred rituals.

Now continue onto a psychic in the late 1970's who pinpointed areas in Sedona called vortexes. The ones she listed were Cathedral Rock, Bell Rock, Airport Vortex and Boynton Canyon.

The bottom layer of Sedona is said to built over quartz which is a healing rock as it is known to amplify energy and open up spiritual doors.

The gorgeous red rocks have their coloring from iron which once exposed to the elements, turns red. Here's the interesting thing, iron is at the core of the Earth and creates an electromagnetic field around us. It is said that anything that flows is affected by a magnetic current and iron intensifies that current.

So with regards to energy vortexes, I believe its similar to a chakra cleansing, imagine doing a shitload of yoga and the feeling you'd have afterwards. 

We all have energy within us and being around these vortexes, helps the flow move faster. Clears stuck energy and allows new to flow through. There's such a sense of calm to this place and everyone seems so happy its hard not to want to stay in it forever. I had thoughts of it...

When we first went to Bell Rock, it was amazing to see people of all ages climb all over the rocks like ants. Up really high were 60 year olds acting like children. When you got to a spot that had stacked rocks or juniper trees that had twisted branches you knew you were in a vortex area.  

I kept seeing faces in the rock formations. The only other places I've seen that is Peru and Hawaii and they were very special, just like this.

A fun theory is that there's a giant spaceship under Bell Rock and in the 80's people paid $75 a person on a certain solstice day where they thought the rock was going to open up and reveal that spaceship. Looking for a ride to the great beyond Must have been an entertaining night with aliens laughing. 

I visited Bell Rock, Cathedral Rock, Airport Vortex and Boynton Canyon. All had different qualities to them but one thing was for sure, the energy at all places was beautiful. 

I got all that I was looking for and more with Sedona.

Sunday, November 4, 2012


I forgot how much fun it is to paint faces.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Arizona! - Painted Desert and Petrified Forest

Now besides Sedona, the other thing that caught my eye while researching this area was the Petrified Forest. 

Pieces of wood preserved from the dinosaur era. Doesn't sound exciting but when I saw pictures from this place I immediately wanted to go.

It looks like Mars. Or some out of this world planet. 

When we started the day, I could tell Toni was a bit grumpy. We've been friends a long time and so when I asked what was wrong she confided in me that she was feeling a tad constipated and hence the grumpiness. 

I quickly responded with "Oh great, you're constipated and I'm taking you to see petrified logs. You gonna be ok?" 

I was serious, but the minute it came out of my mouth we both busted up laughing and continued on our journey. That's why I love me some Toni, we can always laugh about stupid shit.

It was such a cool place to visit and HUGE. We drove through the park and stopped at different spots along the way. I never quite understood why people loved the desert until this trip. Its beautiful in so many ways. Open skies, expansive views, wispy clouds to name a few.

Definitely recommend this park and one of the things I love most about Arizona is the ability to drive a mere 1 1/2 hours and end up in an entirely different landscape.

Arizona! - Grand Canyon

Ok, so where were we? Ah yes, the Grand Canyon. That glorious hole. 

So crazy the whole time we hiked down it, it didn't look real. Imagine 350 million years ago it was actually underwater. Amazing.

I had noticed on the map that there was a snack bar at the other end of the Grand Canyon. After hiking all we could think of was Mmmmmmm snack bar. 

The tram drive was lengthy but we got a great view of different sides of this hole. Its crazy how big it is. Did I mention that this part is just the South Rim?

Got to the snack bar to find there were no hot dogs. I thought Toni was gonna cry. So we ran back to catch the tram that dropped us off and we.... a burrito instead

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Fantasy Fest

Got a little sidetracked with a little bit of this

And a little bit of that. More Arizona stories coming. Tutu-ed out!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Arizona! - Grand Canyon

Before hike.

And after...