Joie de Vivre


I married my person!

We had a tiny, lovely ceremony at the Hamilton Gallery here in Baltimore.

I don’t usually post about mushy stuff like this here, but I think it’s a beautiful story. I am very grateful to have found such a wonderful partner.

I met Beverly on OKCupid. All in all, I only spent a handful of weeks using that app. I had a few false starts, and I certainly learned a few things from them.

I spent time filling out the exhaustive questionnaire, which I recommend. Apparently, Beverly had done the same, and OKCupid presented me to her as a 96% match. Beverly messaged me and said “Maybe we should talk?” I agreed.

We never stopped talking.

I had a great experience using OKCupid. Due to the nature of our interests, it’s not very likely Beverly and I would have ever crossed paths in real life, and so, we would not have met. For example, she is a scientist and I am a sorcerer. And yet, we have so much in common. During the ceremony, I mentioned that it was hard to quantify all the things in that 96%. There are so many things I love about her. And, even more stunning to me, is that our stars seemed to have aligned at the right time, and we found each other.

Our ceremony was small, and quick. My colleague and dear friend Jenny O’Grady agreed to marry us. Bridget Sullivan and the board at the Hamilton Gallery agreed to let us use the space. We asked that everyone wear blue. Marie Jane Machin took our photos (I recommend her, she was delightful, and somehow unobtrusive).

Beverly designed and made her own dress, and my shirt (from the same fabric). My lovely daughter Chloë made our rings. We both wore matching Duckfeet boots.

Jim and Beverly exchange vows
Jm and Beverly Doran embrace
Jim and Beverly Doran
Jim, Jenny O'Grady, and Beverly Doran
Lily, Jim and Chloë Doran
The greatest city in America

We had a small reception at our favorite, Grano Pasta Bar, in Hampden.

Nancy gives a speech
puttanesca, my favorite

It was a perfect, happy day.

We then left for our honeymoon in Puerto Rico.

Joie de Vivre


Beverly and I went to San Juan Puerto Rico for vacation, and I asked her to marry me on our first day there. She said “YES!”

Engagement Ring

My talented daughter Chloë designed and made the ring. The stone is blue topaz, Beverly’s birth stone, and it’s set in a daisy. It was wonderful to have Chloë’s help. I’m honored and touched by her artistry, attention to detail and willingness to help me.

We are very happy! I am a lucky fella!

I love you, Beverly!


I have loved…

closed altoids tin

I have Loved to the point of Madness

“I have loved to the point of madness; that which is called madness, that which to me, is the only sensible way to love.” ~Françoise Sagan

Paper Doll, Silver Pants



For this week’s Illustration Friday prompt, subterranean. Acrylic on illustration board, hastily made.

Or, depending on your point of view:

Joie de Vivre

The Other Side of Halloween

All Saints’ Day. Day of the Dead. Dia de los Muertos.

I love Halloween and this time of year. Frankly, it goes downhill after daylight savings time until Spring rolls around again, what with the cold and lack of undead peeps about.

The people who we love that pass on never really leave us. I talk to them daily. And today, we remembered those who aren’t physically among us anymore.
Tim Cookson

From Tim

Tim Cookson

LaLa and Pop in Panama


  • Where the Wild Things Are (the Dorans).
  • Mix tape made for me by Tim Cookson, who died in the service of our country.
  • Photos of Tim – one shows him playing drums while recording one of the two songs we wrote together as “the Infected. “
  • My favorite photo of my grandfather and father together in Panama.


I love you and miss you.

Joie de Vivre

My Dad’s Drawings

In an act of sublime procrastination, I spent a recent Saturday afternoon building shelves and moving all the CDs from the basement to the studio. See, I could have been writing my final case study for my Quantitative Decision Making class, grading home work, writing lectures, etc.  Instead, I strapped on my trusty fish-heads, now in their 8th season, and spent a glorious day sawing wood in the heat.

Well Worn Jack Purcells

I have a lot of CDs because I was a wholesale music buyer. That, and meeting the occasional semi-famous person were the perks of the job. The only perks.

The girls helped me unpack them. They are COMPLETELY out of order, and about 200 CDs are missing jewel boxes.  We had a great time  – I really don’t know how I managed to get by without my Lubricated Goat album.


At the bottom of one of the boxes,  I found an envelope from my father. He addressed it to my great aunt in 1984 and never sent it –  as we can see, he didn’t have her zip code.  I don’t remember putting this envelop in the box – I don’t even remember seeing it (maybe Onespot does – he helped me pack all this up).


It contains drawings, each signed by him and containing a brief explanation of the drawing on the reverse side. I couldn’t believe my eyes – and what’s better, there was a drawing in there that I didn’t remember him doing.



Train Station

bridget goyvaerts house in maryland

Eastern shore farm house

Light House

I don’t believe that the people who pass on ever really leave us. And, in a very real way, my father has been popping up a lot lately. I ran across that Picasso quote that I wrote about, and then several of his old friends from his childhood have found me on the web and sent their regards.  And now, these drawings.

So, I want to share these drawings with you. Thanks, Pop!