Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Do you have to have an opinion?

Seems like everybody has an opinion about everything. Except me. There are lots of things I don't have a clear opinion on. Why? If I don't know enough about something, I don't have an opinion about it. I dread telephone surveys about the "local issues" or the "local politician" who is up for election. I cringe, because I usually really don't know enough about the issues. I know. this is my failure. That is, in part. It's difficult to get the truth sometimes in a PR world.

Sometimes, on the other hand, I have clear opinions that are later proven to be spurious. They are arrogant. Here's what I mean. I'm an artist, I paint a certain way. I paint that way because I like the style of certain artists. Now, when I was young (I'm old as the hills now), I used to reject most art that didn't conform to my style.

But art is a communication. It can be of many kinds. It can be of many qualities and at various proficiency levels. I am charmed, often, by the paintings produced by my students — efforts which they reject as not coming up to their standards for proficiency. They reject because of an opinion.

Well, it's an opinion. Opinions are free. Here, have some!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Remember when it was fun to drive a car?

In the early 1970's, my mother sold me her Mercury Cougar. It was a long sleek car, V8 engine, dark green, and boy could it go. And it had a dial that showed RPMs which fascinated me. It was a great car to drive.

After a while, it got a bit too much for me. It had carburetor problems and I didn't have much money for fixing. So, when it wouldn't start, I'd get out, lift the hood, take off the distributor cap, hold it open with a screw driver and mist some sort of fluid some male acquaintance told me about into the distributor. Worked like a dream . . . until the next time.

Eventually, several old car fanatics saw it in the parking lot and began bidding against each other and I sold it for more than I paid (but certainly less than it was worth as a classic.) I bought a new VW Rabbit which didn't have a carburator. I loved the Rabbit too, but for a different reason. With the Cougar, you could go up an on ramp to the highway with minimal merge space and spring forward, sure of adequate acceleration.

But here's the thing: yes, the Cougar was exceptional. But there was something more. I had an attitude. I was young and life was fine and interesting. Yesterday, driving my Toyota minivan, which is now 7 years old but still performs well, I remembered that Cougar. And that memory was a fine wine. Oh, that Cougar! What fun it is to drive a fast car.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Simple and natural solution to the oil spill in the Gulf

You should all check out this proposal. If anyone viewing this has connections and could get this looked at by politicos, please pass it on!
A Cool Solution to the Oil Spill