Friday, November 14, 2008

Off to Europe! (11-14-08)

I'm leaving for Paris tomorrow, then off to Belgium next Saturday and will be back on November 26 (Julia's birthday).

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Wordstock: Lynda Barry (11-09-08)

Alas...Wordstock is over.
I managed to escape from my obligations today and go to the Convention Center this afternoon. I had a great time walking down row after row of booths and tables hosted by small presses and other vendors who deal with the printed word.
My main reason to go was to see Lynda Barry, and she was worth the trip. She was shorter than I expected, wore cat's eye glasses and a big red and white polka dot headband wrapped around her head and tied into a knot on top. She laughed a lot, sang funny songs, and was natural in an I-don't-take-myself-seriously way that was both humbling and very real at the same time. (I'm afraid I don't make much sense here. What I'm trying to say is that her unguarded manner endeared her to the audience.)
I had purchased her new book (full of drawings!) and had been given a big ad poster for the book. As I approached the signing table, with my sketchbook, the poster and the new book in hand, wouldn't you know it? The Powell's guy-in-charge made some grumbling sounds to the effect that people should one get only one thing signed...event though he hadn’t said a word for the people before me.
Once at the table, if I was going to get only one signature, I wanted it in my sketchbook. She drew a monkey on the page across from the drawing I had done of her, and then offered to sign the new book and poster also. She was really cool and friendly. I showed her some of the Maxine comics from my "Maxine on the run" blog and gave her a card with the address for the website.
Lynda Barry: A+++

PSU Class: Michael J. (11-08-08)

A quick sketch of Michael J. of Cascade Geographic Society who organized the PSU class visit to the McLoughlin House in Oregon City.

PSU Class: Oregon History Interpretive Center (11-08-08)

A trip to the Mc Loughlin House in Oregon City, to visit "The Birthplace of Oregon" as part of a PSU class.

There hardly was anything in Oregon before the 1860s, in contrast with Europe.
By then my great-great-grand-father had already bought the stone house in Polleur (Belgium) and had set up a blacksmith shop. Years later, when my grand-parents were still alive, various old-fashioned tools still hung on the walls in the shop area.

It never ceases to amaze me to get inside old wooden pioneer houses in Oregon, so tiny and reminiscent of "The Little House on the Prairie." To think that this area is still so new... The sad thing, is how quickly things get demolished in this country, just because it is "old" (that is, over 40 years old). (Or worse yet, to see a charming "restored" farmhouse for sale, and to walk in what obligatorily ought to be a period-style kitchen, and to see stainless steel and mottled granite counter tops...)