All posts by claireaperez

blogger and communications specialist I promote gardeners and historians...timeless professions.

THE PIZZA

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You wake up and you are retired.  That is how life is.  And you are thinking pizza, the kind you would make if you had the recipe for the perfect crust.

Only a few people on the planet have that recipe, the one for the perfect crust. You had it once in New York City but you can’t remember where or in what decade.

You know though that the pizza shop you discovered on the way to your wife’s job has the crust recipe. You also think, on this particular day, that you really want pizza.  Not too much cheese (the cholesterol, the gallbladder), a little sausage, a little pepperoni, some veggies … you can see the perfect pie and so you leave early for your destination to order it.

A bright young man takes your order…he pays attention, he gets it, as they say.  You have an uplifting talk and proceed to pick your wife up.  The pizza tantalizes you with its smell, you only glimpsed it as it slid from the wood tray to the box, but you saw its crispy edges.

You reach for your cell phone, call your wife (Still in her office), and share the good news: “Hurry up, I’ve got the pizza.”

Home, you open the box…what a picture…a mandala Mona Lisa.  Grateful, you think of the young man, the art, and how great it is to get that one perfect pizza pie.

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©claireaperez@gmail.com

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#communication applied: one image & semiotic theory

I am always struck by the power of an image…it needs little explanation.  On my blog, I align one image with each post.  Due to time constraints, some images are more relevant than others.

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Who is muted today in our society? world?

In Communications, we want people to do something or think something.  What a task?  So many pre-existing filters exist and it is hard to get through them.  Images can sometimes strike our audience in ways that verbiage can not.  The popularity of Instagram is a testimony to this opinion.

The  image in this post could be interpreted a number of ways: the question is:  who is muted in our society? This is an instance where the Semiotic theory in Communications is useful.

The Semiotics definition from the Oxford English Dictionary states:

“The science of communication studied through the interpretation of signs and symbols as they operate in various fields, esp. language (see semiotic n.  for parallel form). Cf. semiology n.

The above is not an icononic symbol, but rather it signifies that a large entity, perhaps alien, as alien as outerspace or as one human paradigm to another, is forcing, through their power, another entity, to stay quiet.This…despite that entities willfulness.

These are some recent headlines on the web that make the sketch a good metaphor for  its the use of power over rather than power with :

New York Times: Threats and Vandalism Leave American Jews on Edge in Trump Era
By ALAN BLINDER, SERGE F. KOVALESKI and ADAM GOLDMAN

Politico:  NRCC chairman: ‘Bullying’ protesters won’t hurt us in 2018 By Rachael Bade

Fox News:  Trump administration pushes back signing new travel ban, official says

In each case, the report indicates a threat.  One group trying to assert power over another.  The responses of the less powerful are not documented in the headlines, but while they may not currently be muted, it is  obvious to this news observer that we are heading in a direction of silencing them.

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What Dreams May Come…inspired by my husband w/love

What Dreams May Come
What Dreams May Come

bloom where you are planted

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what lies beneath … art blogging/journaling

“Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth.” 
― Pablo Picasso
what lies beneath
what lies beneath

There is a company, Stampington Press, which produces many magazines about art and blogging and journaling.

This is the process I use and I find it a great escape, but check out the many magazines they offer online and in many stores, and see what process you want to design for yourself.

First, I pick some materials.  In this case a photograph from 2008 of a Magnolia tree in bloom.

(If you are doing a hand piece, grab some paper, and a  few tools: magic markers, pens, colored pencils, stickers, bling, and/or whatever you like, but don’t feel you must have the whole art supply cabinet with you.  Once you have a few items, sit with them and see what emerges.)

Second, I pick some tools.  In this case, Photoshop.

Third, I start playing.  I work with this e-media in my day job, so to make it fun, I just try different filters and things I know how to do.  In this case I duplicated and cropped the picture 4xs to make the frame, which also has lighting adjustments made to it.

Then I played with the Magnolia photo itself, enlarging it and filtering it.

Finally, I saved it and then started layering the layers.  Then, all of a sudden:  this photo was done.

I named it what lies beneath because it reminds me of a time when I bought a picture only to find others underneath it.  A common experience for flea market investigators.  I thought it would be fun to find a quote to go with it so I googled art quotes and Goodreads showed the quote by Picasso at the top.  Serendipity, I guess.

@claireaperez@gmail.com

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Being held at the Lansing Community Libary…click for details.

 

 

How they met

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It was after the war
Ohio State had set up GI housing
There was a dance
The lights were low
The music live
They were dancing with their partners
A pause in the music, a silence in the room
They heard each other laugh
In the space of eternity
Dropped their partners
Began dancing with each other
And kept on dancing into their 90s

#Tuesday Motivation … Hope

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Flowers, that is all

“God Bless America,” land that I love

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Kate Smith…former house in the Adirondack…song: click here

In the Adirondacks, on Lake Placid,  a boat tour guide will tell you as you as he slows the engine and pauses in front of the house that was Kate Smith’s, that she would sing from the balcony.

In the stillness last summer, I heard her famous voice belting out God Bless America.  As if reverberating  through the decades to wrap me, and US, in soothing protection.

In the quiet with no cell phones buzzing, in my mind’s eye, I saw Kate Smith on her balcony. My mother’s mother, I am told, loved Smith’s famous “God Bless America,” she had three sons in World War II.  Perhaps that fact about my Grandmother made Kate Smith’s voice and spirit boom even louder for me that day.

They say your offspring will care about what you care about, and this, my grandmother’s love for Kate Smith and God Bless America is about the only thing I know about what rested in my grandmother’s soul. 

Today feels heavy, but I pray we keep Hope and our values alive…just as Kate Smith did during World War II.  

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President Obama believes in us…he proved his campaign slogan and he is not dying.  Obama has  led us, WE THE PEOPLE, to an inevitable tipping point.  That veiled line between justice and injustice, …   It is up to us now to keep dusting ourselves off  and hear his voice to participate, help each other out, and believe that YES WE CAN! 

Do you know how many…

that is how many a statistical revelation spues forth from my husband’s mouth.  We will be talking about some random topic and then, as the conversation ensues, Radames will hit me with it:  the statistic, the one to give me pause, think twice before I ever carry the laundry basket to the basement with my Birkenstocks on again.  Here is an example,
“Do you know how many people fall down the steps carrying laundry with Birkenstocks on?” I pause.  “Wow, I hadn’t thought about that, I better be careful.”

The nation’s number one worrier relieved as I proceed to replace my sandals with my sneakers, before proceeding to the basement.

About a year ago,  I realized data did not follow the inquiry. So I decided to start following up on all these random statistical innuendos that populate my dear husband’s head.

First, how was it that he knew so many statistics?  It is true that he could win: Who wants to be a millionaire without a lifeline BUT, did he really know that millions of people slip on banana peels that fall from the kitchen counter every year?

I began inquiries with every startling statistic reference as they rolled off his tongue with unquestionable authority.  I looked a lot of them up.  He is right about many of his statistical declarations but now, I am holding him a bit more, shall we say, accountable.

Saturday nights statistic was a doozy: mid way through a discussion of beavers, my dear Radames spewed out his best statistic ever.

At the end of a dinner party, he asked the guests:

” Do you know how many beavers are killed every year by the trees they cut down?

Just like me, the dinner guests paused and took note. I imagined them thinking, cause I used to do it, wow…hmm… this guys pretty smart, must be a large number. A kind of Colombo moment  settled over the dinner guests at that  moment.

But, aha, I piped in…”Now, really, are you sure this isn’t a Ramism…one of those stats you pull from the sky.” We all laughed.
Curious I looked it up tonight and a quick Goggle search revealed that one poor beaver did succumb to his own handiwork in 2015. One on record…leaving the billions and billions of other crushed beavers out there in never, never land…at the end of the question…do you know how many
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After dinner