Subject: How DARE you ask, Mutherfucker!

Date: Sat, 13 Jul 1996 22:00:16 GMT

From: bmyers@ionet.net (TarlaStar)

Organization: Little Sisters of the Perpetually Juicy

Newsgroups: alt.slack

 

Today my friend Katherine and I were going to work. We were headed

toward Katherine's secret swap meet location. A place known only to

her and several hundred trailer park refugees. We're artists. Swap

meets are part of the job. The donuts, however, are a bonus.

 

Unfortunately we got a late start and all the donuts were gone. So we

had to settle for the ever-popular fried egg, bacon, and cheese

sandwich, with a big ole glass of whole milk. I almost choked

realizing how many fat grams I was shoveling down my gullet, but

Katherine assured me that we'd walk it all off. Uh huh.

 

Kat was feelin' cranky. She said, "You know, I'm just now getting

pissed off at something this guy said yesterday."

 

I urged her on.

 

"When I told him that I was an artist he asked, 'Do you make a living

at that?'" she fumed. "I can't begin to tell you how many levels that

offends me at. And don't give me shit about ending a sentence with a

preposition," she glared.

 

I recoiled in jest. "I bet you can," I started.

 

"Bet I can, what?"

 

"Bet you can tell me how many levels at which you were offended," I

finished.

 

She laughed, "Nice convolution there, kiddo." We walked among the

stands picking up potential treasures, playing the game. "Well FIRST,

just what makes this guy feel that he can ask me such a personal

question just because of my profession? I mean, when someone tells me

they're a dentist, I don't say, Really, how much money do you make at

that? Enough to get by?"

 

I stopped her story while I haggled over an old plate. "That's

Doulton, y'know?" said the crone with a nasty cigarette stain on the

side of her mouth. I replied "M'am, it could have been Queen

Elizabeth's chamberpot and it wouldn't be worth THIS price! I don't

care who made it; I'm just doing to break it anyway."

 

Her wrinkled eyelids opened to their widest slit, "Break it...why?"

I grinned at her. I'm a sculptor, that's what I do. I break stuff and

put it back together in a better way. So I don't care how old it is,

or who made it, I just want a pretty pattern and I can find those

anywhere." I waved my arm at all the booths and smiled at her in my

friendliest manner.

 

"Well, that has a little chip on it, don't it?"

I looked a little surprised to give her some face room. "Why yes it

does, I didn't notice that before." I had, of course and I'd have used

it as my next ploy to get the plate down if she hadn't used it first.

 

"Well Honey, I'll take a dollar for it, okay?"

 

I pull out a buck and we make the exchange.

 

Katherine had been scoping out other tables and making deals of her

own. She took up where she'd left off, " Secondly, it automatically

assumes that you have no talent. They haven't even seen your work, and

they automatically ask if you make a living at it!"

 

I nodded in sympathy. "Yeah, but we both know that the stereotype is

true. It's hard to do this, the straight ahead way."

 

She rummaged through a tangled pile of beads, " We're supposed to feel

guilty if we make money at this, like we're selling out or something."

I laughed, " I thought selling was the POINT...isn't it? I'm looking

for the thing that *I* do that ends up being the thing that makes me a

big pile of cash. I WANT to find that nerve."

 

We ranted for a while in agreement as to the general stupidity of

mankind. Artists are hung by a Catch 22. If you make a living, people

assume you're a sellout. If you don't make a living, people assume you

have no talent. Kat pointed out an interesting fact.

 

She said, "Look at the three areas where people have absolute freedom

to make personal choices based on taste; their home, their clothes,

and their car, right? What do they do? They decorate their homes so

that they look exactly like everyone else's, they buy the same car as

their friends, and they dress like everyone at their income level. No

individuality whatsoever."

 

It's true, you know, everyone has a couch and a chair and a tv and a

lamp and it's all made out of ticktacky and it all looks just the

same. They pick "matching suites" because they haven't developed the

taste, and the bravado to back it, to create a "look" that expresses

what THEY find beautiful. They buy prints because they know that other

people have that exact same painting on their walls too, so it's safe,

it's tasteful if others have one...isn't it?

 

The world is filled with tasteless cowards and then they have the

fucking NERVE to ask if an artist can make a living in THIS world?

Well, yeah, WE CAN, but you stupid mutherfuckers make it DAMNED TOUGH!

You make us grovel for your approval, you begrudge us every dollar,

and hell, if I thought YOU were doing a decent job, I'd understand how

tough it is to give up that buck. But I know, I know you'd feel SAFER

not trusting your heart, not buying a unique thing that moves you. So

you turn right around and buy a piece of manufactured SHIT for half

the price and tell yourself that you got a deal.

 

I'll tell you the deal you made. You made a deal to sell yourself

short. You had beauty in your hands and you were afraid to trust it.

So every day you live with an empty piece of paper wrapped in aluminum

that takes up space on a wall and nothing more, when you could have

had something that took up space inside your head and never let go.

You could have given yourself joy and not cared what others think, but

you cared to much about them, and not enough about you.

 

You could dress like a gypsy, or a clown or a dream from the future,

but you're safer in Bugle Boys or baggy pants and shirts that hide

your body, and let you hide within the crowd. You dress in

monochromes, cause you aren't really sure which colors go together

and/or you actually think that matters.

 

When you dream of a car, you dream of the one they want you to dream

of, the one that says "I'm different."

 

Katherine and I decided that from now on, when someone asks us if we

make a living as artists, we're going to turn our heads slightly,

cover our mouths conspiratorily and whisper, "You wouldn't BELIEVE how

much money I make at this!" and leave it at that.

 

Need Extra Cash To Pay Debts? This is not one of those "Get Rich

Quick Schemes" or "mail-order Schemes". But enough to

pay off your death and who knows, you could be test driving

that new Mercedes in the next three months. If you're too eager to

read what this is about then go right to the Instruction section

bottom of this article. READ ON.

 

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Create a work of fine art. Somewhere on the piece put a note which

reads :"Please add my name to your list". This creates a service out

of this money making system and thus making it completely legal.

You are not just randomly sending fine art to someone; you are

coughing up a potential masterpiece for a legitimate exchange service.

Make sure you include your name and address. I assure you that,

again, this is completely legal!

 

2. Now take this work and crate it up and send it to the artist whose

name appears at the top of the list.

 

3. Now listen carefully, here's where you get MONEY COMING

INTO YOUR MAILBOX. Look at the list of five people; remove the

first name from position one and move everyone on the list up

slot one on the list. Position 2 name will now move to the

position 1 slot , position 3 will now become position 2, 4 will

be be 3, 5 will be 4. Now put your name, address, zipcode AND

COUNTRY in position 5, the bottom position on the list.

 

4. Keep watching your mailbox. Within weeks, you will receive up to

50,000 works of art. If just ONE of them is worth a million dollars;

YOU WILL BE A MILLIONAIRE!!!

 

Tarla Star

(who actually sold two pieces this week and is feeling good 'cause

SOMEONE has some taste out there!)

 

****

Dammit Jeb, I'm as Amish as the next guy, but if we don't take

out that sub, there won't be a Pennsylvania to go home TO!

--my son, Eric.

***

Rev. Mutha Tarla Star ://www.ionet.net/~bmyers/homepage.html