Art Attack Central

Fixing stuff, myself included…

Christmas Ghosts

Does everyone have a tale about their worst Christmas, or their best Christmas? Do the tales revolve around gifts given and received, or around emotional events and people linked forever with a season? I used to have a cat named Jane who kept track of all the lovers who had passed/past through my life. When Jane died she was twenty two years old; that was a few years back, and now I’ve lost track of who went with what, and which was which, and what happened when. The living of a life sometimes occurs without conscious participation. You rummage through a drawer looking for one thing and find another instead. Memories flicker, flame and extinguish; years compressed into one smiling moment or one brief sigh are much easier than living in the moment.

Why is it hard to live in the moment?

It’s a paradox, because living in the moment in one sense requires being unaware of the moment (totally present in whatever) and in another sense being totally aware of the moment. As always the key lies in awareness. Perhaps it’s the scope of ones awareness that is paramount. Must rush off to “real world” concerns …finish looking through the drawer later today.

Well, as I come back later and read over this, I think I’ll just say, “happy solstice” (when the sun reaches it’s northern most point on the celestial sphere: Dec. 21 or 22). FYI = all was perfectly aligned with the direction to the center of the Galaxy at the turn of the Millennium (2000), and yet we have the topsyturvy world of today. On September 11th living in the moment was a given for many of us in the western hemisphere. Is celestial alignment of little consequence, or did we failed to see the significance in the gathering darkness?

Gathering Darkness?

Girl you better put that black crayon away!


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”

Another Road Trip

The trip was not without car incidents, although the lack of a viable radio (see yesterday’s post) made no difference whatsoever. While parked in the lot in front of a Kmart in Cambridge MD, my car was sideswiped by an old guy with alzheimers. He had been left in a car alone and was driving from the passenger seat at 40 miles an hr. He crashed into at least 8 cars; mine was the one with the least damage thank god. She’s an old car, but much relied on and needed. If she’d been totaled I couldn’t replace her based on the Blue Book value (see how much your’s is worth). Who knows what will happen, when? Fifteen sec. before he hit my car I was getting out the driver side door; the door he hit.


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”

Coffee in the AM

In my reply to an email this morning, I found myself writing about how little things can make us happy/satisfied especially when the big things aren’t going right. One of those little things is my 3 cups of coffee in the morning. It’s not even real coffee; it’s instant, but I happen to be the queen of instant coffee, or so I’ve been told. Well it turns out by the time I finished listing how my coffee has to be:

  • in a particular cup

  • with a particular kind of creamer

  • exactly the right amount of creamer

  • just the right temperature

I think maybe it’s not such a small thing after all. Check out spiders on caffeine and the weaving of webs.

What happened to the window?

Luckily the window did not blow out yesterday; I didn’t have to deal with it. I’m reminded of what a friend once said to me about car problems, “if the car starts to sound funny, just turn up the radio”. Apparently you’re only really in trouble if the radio stops working. Suddenly I’m nervous about the road trip I’m making today, because the radio hasn’t worked for about 6 months. Mostly I miss listening to the Diane Rehm Show on NPR. Today I will miss the little known radio ability to drown out car trouble. Since the window is still relatively in place, it joins the growing ranks of things that must be dealt with “someday”. “If it ain’t broke don’t fix it, and if it’s broke don’t mess with it”.

Got anymore radio stories?

Yes, there is another little known radio secret, and that is the old “radio rationale” story. When I was a teenager I was upstairs in my room with my 2 sisters. We were getting stoned and listening to the radio. My dad came to the bottom of the stairway and called up, “what’s going on up there?” and one of my sisters replied, “oh just the radio dad.”


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”


Wind is gusty this morning; hoping the damn window doesn’t blow out. On the third floor of my house one of the panes is in pieces and held together with masking tape. It’s been that way for maybe 4 years; I guess I’ll have to deal with it. There are always so many other things I’d rather do. Got to either go back to old way of naming archives, or figure out how to tweak the script so it works in Netscape 4.7. Maybe switch to SSI or PHP for archives. Any minute that damn window is going down or flying in. If you’re feeling really “nutzy koo koo” you can go here to Psycho Studio and edit your own shower scene! aaaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”

Tongue in Shoe

That’s somewhere between tongue in cheek and foot in mouth. Then there’s hoof and mouth disease; maybe that’s where putting your foot in your mouth came from. Now we’ve got mad cow disease so goodbye beef tartar and hello well done.

tongue in shoeHow did we get from tongue in shoe to well done?

By jumping from one slightly off connection to another. Connections/associations are the quintessential wiring of our lives. It is the connections or the lack of connections that determine the flow of ideas, the path of a dream, and the values I assign to them if I am connected in ways that allow me to notice those particular connections. However, assigning a value to a variable doesn’t preclude assigning that same variable a different value at a different place in time or for that matter removing the variable from the equation.

disappointedIf variables can always take on a different value, how can I be sure of anything?

The “answer” is you can’t! If you can live your life without any expectations, you will never be disappointed. This morning I am feeling disappointed.


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”

Bumpy Start

Things not running smoothly; only managing to publish through blogger by ftp using my program, deleting existing blogger.html and archive.html and then publishing all again. Can’t figure any other way yet to get around permission to overwrite denied, but what a pain in the wazoola that is!


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”


Can’t seem to get things right. Settings = blogger (no .html) and archive.html now, at one time it worked when I had setting on blogger without the html added. I look at my directory on with my FTP program and things are there. but keep getting no permission to overwrite when I look at the blogger FTP log? If I ever do get it “write” will have to change all my target links, but I would love it if that were my problem instead of what I’m dealing with now!

Have posted a “redalert” to discussion forum so will just concentrate on what I want to say this morning and hope for help from someone. Like Blanch in “A Streetcar Named Desire”, “I’ve always relied on the kindness of strangers.” FYI: she said that as she was being taken off to the “loony bin”.

“What’s going on your ‘real life’?”

I woke up at 4 o’clock am and had a good cry. One of those choked up feelings kind that finally break through, and it wasn’t about my blog problems/headaches. The crying was about being out of touch, out of touch with myself, out of touch with my lover. “Out of touch” is really an odd metaphor, but so apt in my situation.

Deleted ?

Yes, Jan. 27, 2002 I discover that when you type jf cates into google, there’s my blog big as life. Well, this particular post was just too over the top for all to see, thus it’s been deleted by the internal affairs blog police. I will say this, when you’re feeling like things aren’t on track, or aren’t what you want them to be act on that instinct, and don’t look back.

“Feeling a bit cynical are we?”

Actually I’m feeling rather like one of those stereograms that’s quite hidden and unreadable, but only if you are incapable of letting your eyes change focus.


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”

Moving Again?

I know, I know, I just moved from Angelfire to Geocities! However, I didn’t know about Barry’s World (PHP, SSI, 20MB for free and NO popup) when I made the move; soooooo… I will at least move my blog there if not my entire site.

But, why move now after everything working?

Actually everything NOT working (ie comments removed because of problems for Netscape 4.7 users), and with PHP and SSI which are not available on Geocities I can try other comment codes. Also will be rid of annoying popups. Probably won’t make the switch until later today or tomorrow as I have pressing real world concerns today, like making faux marble columns look like real marble, and wouldn’t you know the columns are fluted! aaaaaaaaaaaaahhhh…


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”

Love Affair != Over

If the title is puzzling, see prior post. I’m content to wait and see what developes next, or perhaps I should say, “how the loop executes” in programing “jargonese”. My lover arrived at my door last night in a flurry of looking good, and while no explanation of time elasped since our last encounter was forthcoming, I nevertheless was delighted. Prior to the exquisitly pleasurable arrival, I was casually licking my wounds and readying my soul for outward bound, or some other such, “pulling yourself up by your bootstraps” technique. Today I’m ready for a new beginning, or the beginning of the end whichever the case may be; I am not inclined to tamper with the Fates.


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”


When I was an adolescent, I dreamt that I was doing a handstand on 2 napkins just at the edge of a cliff. Two small children were there threatening to pull the napkins out from under me (like tiny magicians whisking the table cloth from the table and leaving the dishes intact). At the time I thought the children were more interested in seeing me topple over the edge than in performing magic. The drama took place behind Zep’s Gas Station; a one pump gas station that faded from existence years ago. Zep’s was on Rt. 2 when Rt. 2 was a 2 lane country road winding through Anne Arundel County, across South River and into Annapolis. In reality (waking life) there was no cliff behind the station, only gentle fields rolling up to forests.

So, what does it mean?

Living on the edge is not an easy feat (feet). It’s easier to stand on one’s feet than on one’s hands, as in “stand on your own 2 feet”.


“Designated driver, on the information highway.”