Saturday, July 18, 2009


Am I a perfectionist? No. But the pictures for my post -- "Tea at Em's," and also "Gallery" -- they took hours for me to take, and they're still bugging me.

I want my house, my paintings to look good, to look the way they really look!

JC says they look fine. (He's the perfectionist in our family --the way he learns and drills his lines, and keeps drilling them throughout the run of the show is inspiring.)

Dammit, my Orange Cityscape picture isn't sharp enough -- you can't see all the details -- and the brown living room looks cluttered. I want to get the camera and shoot them again!

Try, try again is a dancer thing -- perfecting plies, tendus, frappes, extensions, mastering "attitude, arabesque, pirouettes, jet├ęs" -- it's probably just a bunch of words to you, but to me each word represents a major challenge -- to do it right, to do better than okay, to master, conquer and be able to perform the step, the position easily, fluently, effortlessly.

Took a coffee break, while writing this, and turned on the TV. Caught a glimpse of an arena like a skier's slope, but shorter, with high hills and deep valleys.

Suddenly -- vrroom -- a motorcycle's flying through the air above the arena.

This guy in a blue helmet was high up in the air -- turning, whirling around mid-air on a motorcycle. Hands on the handlebars! Hands off the handlebars! Feet on the foot pedals! Off the pedals! Leaning, defying gravity, tilting the motorcycle and himself ...

The announcer's voice blared -- "Unbelievable torque -- four "360's! Fifth 360! Here's the sixth 360 !"

The guy in the blue helmet does another -- it's scary to watch -- it's dangerous -- how did he learn to do what he's doing? Must have taken hours, hundreds of doings for him to learn what to do -- head to toe -- with each part of his body.

"Wow," the announcer yelled, "Dave's doing a triple! No one's ever done a triple. Incredible, a triple after he fell on his face in the prelims, I was sure he'd be out of the lineup for today!"

Cheers, whistles, as Dave waves to the crowd, and drives off the testing arena into an area with other cyclists on motorcycles. With his helmet off, his heavily tattooed arms look as if they are covered with green moss. He's boyish, young. He tells the interviewer, "Yesterday, in the prelims the hill was slick. It psyched me out ... or maybe it psyched me up after my fall!" He's articulate, educated as he explains that he came to the arena at 1 a.m. last night and practiced for a couple of hours.

I'm on my way back downstairs to my office with my coffee, as the Announcer hoots, "He won -- he's today's winner -- Dave Mirra's number one!"

Take a look -- Dave Mirra, doing 360's -- seven of them -- without hands ...

I don't know why it hasn't occurred to me sooner -- "Try, try try again is the song, the motto, the commitment of anyone, not just artists and athletes, but everyone who loves his work.

Hooray for Dave Mirra.

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