The Dark Side of Artists

Around the MoonLast week, I saw the Jean Michel Basquiat movie. Andy Warhol was in it and in it, he died (from a botched surgical procedure). It never showed Basquiat’s tragic end but there was a blurb at the end that let viewers know how he transitioned. Though, you pretty much got to see how he’d end up by watching his extracurricular activities.

Always a heavy drinker, Jackson Pollock was in a car accident with his mistress and that’s how he transitioned. Mark Rothko led a life in deep depression and shortly after reuniting with his estranged wife, he slashed his wrists after drugging himself, or vice versa. Of course, you all know Vincent Van Gogh cut off his ear. Around 2007, there was an article, and I can’t remember where I came upon it, but it was said to be likely that Van Gogh had autism. I don’t believe that. I simply believe he was depressed from being a struggling artist.

Anyway, I did a few paintings along the style of Frank Stella, like the one above. As I placed each one on my kitchen table, the thought came to me that I should do my place mats in this style. None of the four pieces I did are the same and I rather like that since variety is one of my favorite flavors. I’ll show them to you when I’m all done. It’s a little sad that lay folk give little or no thought to artistic contributions.

I hope you folks have enriched your homes with original works that are meaningful to you. Probably the lives of these men folk and art mean more to me than you but I wanted to share anyway since it’s my blog and all.

In the meantime, I think I can use this computer to commence with Sincerely, Beatrice. We’ll see.


We’re All Controlled by Devices


Being that I’m without my main source of accessing the internet, I thought I’d let you know that I’m feeling rather reflective, and I reckon, a tad resentful. While I’m at it, just throw some haterade in the mix too. Maybe the Amish are on to something by living in an analog world after all.

You see folks, we’ve become the robots that used to get built in science labs. I know you were fearful clones would come and snatch your job, man, date your daughter or whatever else you hold so dear to your heart but I, folks, think you should be fearful of your dependency on devices. Just think. You’re now a part of the largest segment of the world’s population who’s controlled by a piece of equipment that cost anywhere from 29.95 to 999.00. You’re also teaching your children to be dependent and undermining the value of social skills necessary to interact with a real human.

In the palm of your hands, you hold a device that accesses you entry to any place in the world. And if you’re that bored mid-lifer, you may be prone to forget your spouse and kids to meet that hot thing at your local coffee shop after a few picture exchanges . Or wherever. You’re grown, so you know where I’m going with this.

You experience anxiety, hot flashes and all manner of side effects if you’re not attached to a device. Your day is just different. Kinda surreal, to be accurate. When the tech department can’t fix that disposable device after it’s gone haywire from overuse, it sends you into a rage and you’re emotionally drained after you’ve frightened the unlucky agent who happened to clock in at your critical hour to do his job.

You’re the android you never thought possible. You’re the true machines (built by Steve Jobs) and overnight campers who don’t brush your teeth come morning time when the newest iPhone hits the market.

Man, I miss my Toshiba.

The Art of Randomness

All the Way Home2I had some technical issues making this image, so I had to make extreme modifications. I hope you can appreciate that but if you don’t, there’s not a whole lot I can do about it.

You see, I worked on this visual a few days ago and my frustration with it prompted me to clean my room. It’s so immaculate, you can eat off the dresser and you’d probably enjoy ’cause it’s rather pretty. Speaking of rooms, if you recall, and you probably don’t if you don’t think about me that way, which is fine, but I said I was decorating this year. If I tell you all I bought was a valance to hang in the kitchen window for all my grand notions of decorating, I’d be ashamed…Folks, I’m ashamed. I have multiple excuses to offer but I won’t give any. To be real honest, I don’t even feel like talking about it but I felt obligated on some level since going with this visual.

Being as such, I owe you an apology for talking about nothing strongly related to world affairs, the health crisis or how hard Sherry Shephard’s trying to sell her wig line on The View. If you’re like me, I do like some level of consistency and I’m rightly bothered that Friday brings day 4 of a wig change-up on her head this week. I don’t know about you but there are times when I do sweat the small stuff, even if it has absolutely nothing to do with me. I know I’m not alone in my grievances ’cause if I was, we wouldn’t have as many talk shows as we do.

Far as I’m concerned, there was no better talk show that aired than Phil Donahue. Maybe there’s something about me and Phils. I do like Dr. Oz too and used to watch him faithfully but he started giving me anxiety. You see, I get excited calmly, if that makes any sense, and I couldn’t take all his hyperactivity. I know he’s passionate and all but damn. I don’t wear anxiety well at all but I don’t wanna talk about that either ’cause it may excite me and I don’t feel much like being that either.

A Question from Genesis

burger with watermarkHave you noticed, and perhaps you have ’cause I’m no genius, that blogs are like Burger King? You can have it your way or not at all, if you’re vegetarian. Personally, I like that concept but some kinda way, I’ve not been lucky enough to have it ALL my way.  I’m gonna ask you this since it’s on my mind but first, I want you to also ponder Genesis. You know, Adam and Eve.

They had everything going for them and we, of course, can see that in hindsight. Wasn’t like we were there to stop’em but you get what I’m saying. Anyhow, I was sitting in my car today and told Little Totsy, “I sho’ nuff wish I could sing.” Just as quickly as I thought that, I was jolted with the thought that I should be thankful I’m even still around and to appreciate what I can do. You see, Adam and Eve weren’t thankful either. I mean, I know that Eden was designed for them to do exactly as they did since they were made in the likeness of God and whatnot. But let’s erase that, okay?

In essence, my desire to sing, which will never happen in this life if you could hear me, is a form of complaining. I probably can’t sing ’cause I’d be arrogant or a whining diva or have some kinda addictive behavior. So, I came to the conclusion that I am who I am ’cause I am. It’s that simple.

Like Adam and Eve, I became ashamed on account of how I was thinking. But thankfully, ’cause I was outside and driving my vehicle, sitting at a red light, I already had clothes on. The question I wanna ask is have you ever wondered how Adam got his get-up from Eve after she stitched up the clothes. I figure, being southern and all, she did the sewing. Or am I the only one? And if my imagining is right, how did she wind up getting his fig leaves to him since they were ashamed?…Hmmm.

The Truth and Nothing But


So, I’m somewhat hooked on creating these animated gifs  and I thought, what a cool way to display my paintings. The saying goes that you learn something new everyday. I don’t know if that’s true for me every day. I mean, it could be true but I couldn’t go before a court and testify to it. Nor could I give a testimony before a congregation either. I could be bought, however.

Anyhow,nothing too interesting is happening in these parts. Or maybe I’ve just been too aloof to notice. On the other hand, when I really think about it, I suppose I turn off the care button sometimes. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a very sensitive person but sometimes I have to turn it off and self-absorb what’s going on with me. If  I’m not careful, it becomes about everybody else except me. Know what I’m saying? But these days, I got stuff on my mind.

Like, how’s the grass gonna get cut next door now that my neighbor’s moved out. And why am I even worried about the grass over there when my own backyard needs cutting. You know how folks are. Always dipping in other folk stuff when theirs’ not together. Don’t try to act like I’m the only one. And I’m not even gonna say I’m a work-in-progress. That’s so overused. Some days, I’m just work, okay? If I’m nothing else, I’m honest and when I’m not, I’m lying, so how’s that truth for you.









The Gift of Time

"Didn't Call or Show Up, Girl" Acrylic on paper. Copyright 2013 Totsymae

“Didn’t Call or Show Up, Girl” Acrylic on paper. Copyright 2013 Totsymae

The countdown is on, folks. Christmas, if that’s relevant to you, is 4 days away and you know what? I haven’t bought one present. You know what else? I’m okay with that ’cause this year I’m making presents. Only what I make this year will be for next year ’cause I just woke up and decided that’s the plan from here on out.

Since I’m getting such a late start, I’m scraping up some things around the house I can give away real quick ’cause as the saying goes ‘Somebody else’s trash is another person’s treasure.’ I truly hope folk that I’m gifting my trash to appreciate the time it’s gonna take for me to find a specific piece of trash for them. Whether you realize it or not, time is the most precious and expensive thing you can give to somebody.

You ever spent time with folk you really didn’t wanna be around? All ’cause you wanna do the right thing, you put time into folk you care very little about. This tends to happen sporadically around holidays and family gatherings. I say sporadically ’cause every now and again you’re gonna wind up, even if it’s only two or three minutes, being among somebody you absolutely can’t stand. That’s time you can’t get back and then you wind up spending more time thinking about those few minutes you had to look at the person. And ooh, they looked a hot mess and oh goodness, so and so is getting real thick around the midriff and blahsay this and blahsay that.

Then, ’cause you can’t stand them, you get on the phone and talk about them to two or three folks when you could’ve been doing something quite useful, like feeding the hungry or cleaning your toilet or something necessary whatnot you’ve been putting off. It’s really a damn shame but you had to get that off your chest.

You know how folk do.

A Tale of Id, Ego and Super-Ego

Photo by Totsymae 2013

Photo by Totsymae 2013

I don’t wanna be a bore and while I haven’t been blogging, the honest to true truth of the matter is I haven’t had anything significant to talk about. There’s been a definite pause in trash-talking and it’s starting to bother me to a great degree. Why it’s become such a botheration is ’cause folk who don’t trash-talk are generally about to drop off the cliff and land in the abyss of being a bore.

Me, Myself and I haven’t gotten together to talk about it yet ’cause we’ve been too concerned about the shutdown and now that the shut is up, we’ve kinda gone our in our own direction. We haven’t divorced each other but you may as well say we’ve separated. Me is waiting on the return of The Real Housewives of Atlanta to air with the new season next month. Myself’s been tapping I on the shoulder ’cause she’s in stuck mode. I guess being between Me and I ain’t the most pleasant place to be right now.

And I is writing. I’s had no time for Me or Myself, which is how she gets when she’s wrapped up in anything. I is all about herself and while she’s still pleasant, her mind’s not on anything outside herself. When folk are on the phone with her, she’s not paying much attention to them. I ain’t all that interested ’cause I gets bored very easily with repetitive conversations and would rather talk about herself, even if there’s not much to talk about. Heck, she’ll make something up ’cause she’s rather inventive that way.

In the meantime, Me is getting hungry and wants to backhand Myself for tapping her on the shoulder now about having a get-together. I, of course, ain’t thinking about either one of them and is propped in bed with her laptop, talking about absolutely nothing on her blog. I is trippin’.

Listening is a Skill

"Blond Chick"  / Digital Art / Copyright 2013 Totsymae

“Blond Chick” / Digital Art / Copyright 2013 Totsymae

I’m a good listener to the things I wanna hear. If you wanna talk about cell phones, cars, computers and hair dos, you’ll more than likely lose me. You will also lose me if you whip out your photo album. While I’m a visual person, I also have to have personal interest in the folk I’m seeing. I really can’t see how looking at a photo album of folk I don’t know is any different from watching passerbys at the train station.

These days, however, I don’t wanna hear too mucha anything. I’m too busy trying to listen to myself. One time, I asked myself, “Where’s that smell coming from?” I started thinking, Now Totsy, I just know somebody didn’t peel a fresh onion and put it under your arms. So, I kept right on about my little business. The day wore on and so did my underarms, folks. I got to thinking, You took yourself a shower. What in the world happened? I then remembered ’cause I was wearing a sleeveless top, I’d wiped a good deal of my deodorant off. Naturally, I asked myself why I got carried away with wiping ’cause you gotta make it through the day and it’s way too early in the day for this mess! I mean, really!

After that experience, I’m listening. Like now, Self is telling me to get off this blog. I’m saying back, “Okay, let me finish this here sentence.” Self is also saying, “Take yourself to bed ’cause you’re tired,” but…ahem…I don’t think I heard right ’cause R&B Divas Reunion comes on tonight and I gots to be in the fronta that TV to see the verbal throwdown.

Maybe Self got the days mixed up and talking about tomorrow.

Family: You Can’t Choose Them

"Family" Mixed Media on Paper / Copyright 2013 Totsymae

“Self-Portait” Mixed Media on Paper / Copyright 2013 Totsymae

Do you ever wish some folk weren’t in your family? Would you not go to a dog fight with some of them? That’s unfortunate to say but just like I’m saying it about them, they probably feel the same about me. I’m not sure why, other than the fact that I don’t attend dog fights. I mean, I’m so cool and low maintenance and whatnot. I simply don’t function well or thrive among toxic folk. I eat my vegetables and drink at least 6 glasses of water a day. Therefore, I’m not prone to such whatnots.

Matter of fact, when family drama occurs, I’m pretty much on the bench. I don’t have to be a player. There was one time, however, that I had to write a very direct letter after a family function went south. Trust me, it was best to send this message via email on account that nobody was listening.

Now, I like folk in general but have you ever thought about some family members and just knew that if they weren’t in your bloodline, you’d have nothing to do with them? It’s sad to say but the truth will set you free. Though, for these particular folk, it’s quite okay to love them from a distance. From another country, or planet, once you get your rocket ship and space gear, that is. I reckon only the wealthiest of folk will have this kinda luxury. They won’t even have to be bothered with getting a cell phone call while they’re in space. Can you imagine the phone bill?

On the other hand, you may have a perfectly functional family who has regular sleepovers and call a loved one every time you think of them to say you were thinking of them ’cause you don’t take for granted they’ll be there for you to make that call tomorrow.

Talking Body Parts

"Untitled" Digital Art / Copyright 2013 Totsymae

“Untitled” Digital Art / Copyright 2013 Totsymae

I know you don’t care to know this, so you can stop reading if you want. I simply have a need to express myself. Plus, this is what a blog’s for, so you may wanna go ahead and finish this ride with me. After all, that’s why you clicked the title in your in box. But you’re getting me side-tracked, which is real easy to do ’cause I’m trying to get my mind off my aching feet.

You see, I worked at home for nearly a year and sat down all day long. Working solo, I got on my nerves so bad and became real tired of having conversations with myself at the water cooler. I’d get to talking about myself to myself and then go back and say something else. You know, being a backstabber. It got real heated for a minute but it couldn’t get physical or anything like that. I mean, I’d be blogging from the room of a padded wall if that was the case.

Anyhow, I had to get out among folk and being that I was unaccustomed to being on my feet, these dogs of mine are wondering what the heck is going on and asking why I didn’t consult. Even had the audacity to slap me with the extra weight it had to hold up on account of me eating so much, with the refrigerator being so accessible and all. I was like, “You just gonna have to get used to it! If you’d’ve kept me walking around the neighborhood, you wouldn’t be hurting so bad. And why you wearing sandals anyhow? Out here trying to look cute, huh…You need a pedicure.”

After this back and forth action, Feet reminded me to sit my tail down ’cause no weight was coming off with us standing there arguing with each other. Well, I sat on down and I figure with my hands moving across this keyboard and me thinking so hard about what to say on this blog was probably the most exercise I’d get today. After all, I can’t have Feet complaining and throbbing and whatnot.

Dear folks, what body parts are talking to you lately?

Self-Obsessed aka Facebook

Image Manipulation in Photoshop by Totsymae

“Anthony Weiner” Image Manipulation in Photoshop by Totsymae

7:30 am – I cut the grass. And yes, you do care. Like this status and win a ticket to your house.

9:00 am – Took a shower and sat on the sofa in a daze from cutting all that grass.

10:00 am – I’ve decided I really don’t like Facebook. Why do folk plan their days around it anyway?

11:00 am – Juiced a buncha carrots and some other vegetables. Boy, was it nasty…Why is it not okay to grab some leaves off a tree and snack on them with Picante Sauce?

12:30 pm - The summer art project with the homeschoolers is almost a wrap.

3:00 pm – Every time I turn around, I’m hungry. This is really getting on my nerves.

3:30 pm – I could really go for that vanilla ice cream and graham crackers in the kitchen. Been thinking about it for three whole days. Ridiculous…

4:30 pm – My inner chunky girl wants the carbs, not me. I’m like, so above that…Aren’t I?

8:30 pm – I wonder who could clean my studio on the cheap…I’m retiring Facebook, btw.

10:00 pm – I just love that broccoli soup from Publix…Okay, no more talk about food.

11:30 pm – Okay, I’m hungry again and I don’t think tree leaves and Picante Sauce are gonna cut it…If I was sleep, I wouldn’t even know I was hungry.

12:00 am – I have a cure for everything but how to shut up.

No, these were not real statuses on Facebook or anywhere. Dear Readers, do you obsess with social media? Can you go one week without it?