Friday, July 9, 2010


I am drinking iced coffee with rice milk, because that is what I do now.

Caffeine is my only vice, if you can call two cups a coffee per day a vice. I don't. It is survival for someone who hasn't slept for more than three hours straight in three months. The rice milk mocks me. Sure, it swirls around the ice like decadence, but the taste is reminiscent of dirt. Funnily, I drink my coffee black and unsweetened anyway, but every so often, when I am sleepless and down, I add some half and half. It tastes like Indulgence. I should drink it black, but I keep insisting on adding the rice milk in some desperate attempt to feel satisfied. I think this is technically called wallowing in my misery. This coffee now tastes like Angst.

There is a wicked heatwave in the Northeast. It is the lead story on all the news outlets. Women with perfect hair across America are stating the bleedingly obvious. "It is HOT! Stay in AIR CONDITIONING, if you have it."

It feels like the warning on my egg carton.


I fear the world we live in where people need to be told that eggs contains eggs. Or that there is a heat wave when they are sitting in one hundred degree weather.

I have been on this diet for three years, I imagine, but no, in reality, it has been a week. One measly week. I have the cellular memory of eating like this from last summer, so I am already pissed off. I have lost a few pounds, a few IQ points and my good nature. I am in a perpetual state of hunger, hate and snarkiness. Or as my ex-boyfriend used to say--the Angie Terror Alert is on red: Absolute Stroppiness. 

We have a houseguest. My Good Angie persona is trying to talk Cranky Angie down. Cranky Angie is stronger and more determined. I admit that I am sleep-deprived and crazed enough to find this all very interesting. How will it end? Let us wait and see.

My visitor told me this morning that someone was at her house and saw an illustration I did of Beezus with a radish. Her visitor, she related to me over my first cup of coffee, is an artist herself. Quite a good one who has even sold a painting. This artist who sold a painting asked if my illustration was painted by a three-year old. If so, she said, it was quite good for a three-year old. The story ended there. My houseguest just stared at me after relating the story, then took another sip of coffee.

I suppose it would be incredibly flattering to hear this if I were say, two years old, but as a thirty-six year old woman, I wanted to turn away from the breakfast table, put my hand up to my face as I cried, "I am a monster." Then torch my art studio. I have largely ignored the inner demon of self-criticism since Lucy's death. I felt free to explore art and creativity willy nilly. But this morning, I just felt fucking stupid.

The emperor has no clothes. The illustrator has no talent.

I shuffled off eventually. Not too soon after her story to show anyone that it hurt me, but not long enough to hear anymore. My open art journal with a Lucy grief painting greeted me in my studio. I slammed it shut, not sure what to make of my pathetic life. Sometimes I feel pandered because of Lucy's death, like others are simply encouraging me because I am grief-stricken and desperate and art pacifies me.

Wow. That is beautiful. What is it, honey?
It is me. Very cranky and hungry.


  1. I'm sure as your guest was telling you this story (s)he was thinking "SHUTUPSHUTUPSHUTUP!" and willing the words back into their mouth.

    Or. Um. Yeah.

    For what it's worth, I think your paintings and artwork is rockingly amazing. But then again, I paint like a one year old.

    Life without vices is rough. And it is really, really hot--so there's that. Grrrrrrrr!

  2. You have a house guest. You have a very rude house guest.

    Sorry about that.

  3. That's ridiculous. You are an excellent artist. You have a distinct style and it fits who you are.

    That person has no idea what they are talking about. And may I remind you, monkeys and elephants have sold paintings.

  4. So I just reread my comment, and I hope the sarcasm is apparent.

    Clarification: I think your artwork is awesome.

  5. well. that's a crappy thing to say to anyone under any circumstances. but i'd like to think that if she knew what your artwork meant and how your self-expression is so profoundly connected to lucy, that she really would have kept her big trap shut! your work is beautiful and has touched so many people. shake her dust from your heels. xo

  6. I have been teaching my eight year old daughter and her equally socially immature(appropriate for their age)friends, that we don't repeat what another says about our friend when we know it will hurt our friends feelings. I have been teaching them that it is mean, that it is similar to tattling and it is not how we behave when we care about our friend. I have been teaching them that instead, when someone says something mean, or insulting about our friend, we tell that someone, "That is my friend you are talking about and what you are saying is hurting me because it is about my friend." I have also taught them, I hope, that to repeat what was said to our friend, makes the person doing the repeating even worse than the person who did the original speaking.
    I'd love a chance to speak to your houseguest, who I have no doubt is quite old enough to have already learned this lesson.
    Shame on her.

    Your artwork is stunning. I bet the 'artist' who spoke, sold their painting to a relative. Don't listen to it Angie, they know not of which they speak.


    P.S. E me for some great help with the new bastard diet.

  7. your artwork and what you have achieved through your artwork ie reaching, touching and allowing expression of raw emotion that can be crippling for so many women who are suffering greatly, cannot be knocked down by one flippant comment. art always has context, otherwise it would just be wallpaper. the comment the artist made shows that they just make pretty pictures , and i'm not sure what your friend was trying to achieve by telling you this xxx anne

  8. wow. no tact. angie your work is awesome, poignant and fearless- don't stop working- don't ever stop creating, painting, writing - you constantly inspire me.

    I am with Mrs. Spit. I am also sending you cool vibes from Texas- I know this is very backwards.
    much love-
    ps I have not forgotten the ginger lemon soap :)

  9. I love your work; there is truth and sincerity in it. What is wrong with people?!? Don't they think before they speak?

  10. You've gotten tons of affirmation in the comments already, so I'll just throw my fist in the air and encourage you to continue being the kick-ass artist you are.
    Wish I had a magic potion for making diets more appealing.

  11. I feel like I should mention that my houseguest is in her 70s and related intimately to my DH. And while I am trying not to take it personally, I do use this space to vent and chuckle at myself and self-deprecate a bit. If it didn't hurt, it would kind of funny, no?

  12. It always used to puzzle me when people in the northeast started dying when it got hot. Here it gets up to a heat index of 110 as late as 11 o'clock at night. Then I moved somewhere cool and with no humidity and completely lost my ability to deal with this heat. I feel for you. I remember that damn diet, it sucks. Feel free to be as cranky as you please.

    I love your art - that woman is thoughtless - just ignore her.

  13. This blog is funny and full of great recipes that are dairy, gluten and egg free, I hope it gives you some ideas to stop you going hungry

    As for your houseguest, urmm yeah, rude! I'm sorry for that.
    You have done amazing things with your art and dedication to art and grief.

    And everyone knows Picasso spent his whole life trying to draw like a child. x

  14. First I felt outraged at your visitor and then I realized. I have to confess: it happened to me, too. One day I asked my friend how old her son was when he did the crayon-pic at the fridge. She looked at me puzzled and said: 33, stupid - that's my work!

    *stick head in sand*
    Forgive her... it happens to the best of us.

    Warmest greeting from a fellow heatwaver! xoxo

  15. I think that one of things that maybe wears out with age is one's tact gland unfortunately. I am sorry Angie - I'm no art critic or indeed anything else that could conceivably have the word "art" in any way appended to it, but I LOVE your stuff.

    I get cranky in the heat and I get cranky on diets. The two together would make me unbearable so much love for that.

  16. I think the "artist" who asked that question is totally stupid. Has she/he ever seen a three year old painting? I love your drawings and paintings. I wish I could paint like you. I also find peace in my grief drawing, but nothing even worthy showing.

  17. Yeah, if it weren't hurtful it would be kind of funny, although, probably one of those stories she shouldn't have repeated. But as someone who sometimes sticks her foot fully in her mouth, I can sort of forgive her clumsiness and it sort of sounds like you have too. Besides, your art and writing rocks and you my friend, just generally kick ass. So there.

  18. Ouch! Mean story. Was she trying to be funny, or coy? Either way, Ang, you don't paint like a three year old, you paint like Angie. Art is from the soul and I've sold like twenty-some-odd paintings so forget that woman's and listen to mine ;) Your soul is beautiful. Your art is beautiful. The only reason your art isn't hanging somewhere in my house is because I'm BROKE.
    Sorry you're down, hope I at least made you smile. xo

  19. I have one of your paintings (I won it back in December) and receive frequent compliments on it. Your house guest, bless her heart, can kiss my butt.

  20. Who is this house guest? You could hardly call her a friend given the story she relayed to you. Therefore I am going to assume she is a guest of your husband and he better make this up to you!

    And maybe you should give her a book on manners as a leaving gift.

  21. I find myself hoping that your house guest is lactose intolerant and wasn't enjoying cream in her coffee when she said that. Even if she was wishing she'd bitten her tongue as soon as she started telling that story, she doesn't deserve dairy.

  22. Angie, I have one of your paintings that I cherish, and it's not just because the feelings you bring to life. The painting itself is beautiful. Art is one of those areas where people just disagree about what's good, but there's no way your work belongs in the Museum of Bad Art (yes, it's real, check it out:

    Old or not, your houseguest deserves a kick in the shins for that comment!


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