My life took a big turn in 2013, and during the years that followed. My marriage ended in divorce. I moved to another zip code. I changed jobs. I went back to school. I moved to yet another zip code. I changed jobs again. There were deaths, and loss, and the sad ending of relationships. In other words, a lot of life happened.
I started drinking in 2013, after ~20 years of not drinking. I strongly suspect that, because I started drinking again, I have not written any year end posts.
My previous “year in review” posts contained notes of gratitude for that year’s many blessings. I have so much for which to be grateful. I will not attempt to enumerate the many wonderful things that have happened since 2013, or even from 2019, in this year end blog post. I will name just one blessing, which I intend to carry into our collective future.
I went, in part, to San Francisco to learn about the history of Underground Comix, and the role the city played in its development. I wrote about that elsewhere.
As I walked through the city, however, I encountered many examples of comic narrative at the street level. I’m sharing a little of that below.
You are great (in the Haight).
Not sure if this is social justice, but it was huge, surprising and cool.
The next two drawings were in a window, mostly likely drawn by a child. I wonder if they knew it would been seen by someone from the other side of the county, and posted on the Internet?
The next photos were taken in an alley in the Mission district. They were stunning, powerful and inspiring.
All these drawings and scenes were viewed by a visitor, documented and shared. And I saw a lot more, too. This tells me it’s worth making things like this and sharing them. You never know who will see it.
In an attempt to offset disappointment caused by the feeble San Francisco Cartoon Museum, the city of San Francisco offered up other delights, which provided several days of amusement, surprise and wonder.
As I mentioned elsewhere, my lady friend and I took a short, much needed vacation to attend a reunion. We returned home feeling rested and reenergized.
We stayed with friends who have raccoons that frequently visit the inside of their kitchen at night. Imagine their delight at having real, living raccoons in their home! So good!!!
Pearl Jam: Live in Two Dimensions
If I’m being honest with you, and, honestly, I’m always honest with you, then I’d tell you we were looking for a restroom when we walked into the Haight Street Arts Center.
To our surprise, there was a reception and a show of Pearl Jam tour posters.
I’ve never paid much attention to Pearl Jam, but look at all the neon goodness!
No trip to San Francisco should be considered a complete success without at least one trip to City Lights.
As we walked through many neighborhoods and districts, we stopped in every bookshop we encountered. I miss good bookstores, and realized how much I have missed by relying so heavily on Amazon’s recommendations. I discovered a lot of hidden treasure in these shops.
A Case for Making
We stopped in a small shop call Case for Making, where they were making water color paint. I’ve never seen water color paint being made, nor was I aware that there are fluorescent shades!
There were many other highlights, some of which are featured in their very own blog posts. A few will not get their own post, like the amazing burritos we had, or the naked man we saw standing on Castro street. Perhaps he wasn’t fully naked – he had a “Make America Great Again” hat on, with some flip flops. But, still. You don’t see that often in Baltimore, and it makes me love San Fransisco even more.
This show feels a lot like the School33 show. Certain themes reveal themselves to me as I worked on this. There is the usual thread of macabre fun, but also some commentary on artists themselves, science fiction and a magnificent story around scissors. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed working on this material, and as always, I must thank those closest to me for their patience, understanding, and encouragement. I hope you can make it. I will post exhibit photos below, as they become available.
In the meantime, I needed a sign for the front window, and this is what I came up with…