“I think I should (or at least want to) eat but I feel fat so I’m gonna try not to do that. I’d eat with Adderall but don’t wanna stay up too late. Got treatment tomorrow. I’d work out but don’t want to. I should get some work done or make some art (which I sort of am) but really I think I’ll just beat off. It’s a good distraction. I wanna say I wanna use heroin at times like this but I don’t. I never will. I’m not a good addict.”
Yeesh. [or something]. Right? I wrote that on a discarded USPS box with no intention of it actually becoming a piece. I was just losing my mind. There’s a lot going on here but that’s how it started (bottom center, red pencil).I’m proud to say that – like the other piece in which I express an interest in masturbating – I wound up getting pulled into art instead. (If you wanna know the truth though – on other occasions, I actually have masturbated! Don’t tell anyone though – it’s a big secret).
I already covered the “feeling fat” sentiment with “Insecure and Overwhelmed” so I won’t repeat myself here.
On the edges we have two allusions to the piece I finished earlier this same night (“Titrating”). On the right it says, “If THAT wasn’t titration-related, maybe THIS isn’t either.” On the left it says, “On a scale of one to ten, are you warm and safe? Do you find colors soothing? Is there any leftover pizza? On a scale of one to ten… Leftover pizza?” (That’s me poking fun at myself for being so concerned with pizza back on February 26th). Regarding “colors,” that’s about the neon green paint splattered across the pink duct tape that coats the far right side of my “canvas.” I like colors.
I was “making a living” at this point in my life by selling weird antique dolls on eBay. Every morning (or afternoon) I’d wake up and go out to the garage (in my ex-girlfriend’s family’s house) and list the dolls for sale. The details don’t matter, but they were basically inherited and I was enlisted to sell them in exchange for 50% of whatever they brought in. The dolls were all stored in giant plastic tubs. Some of them didn’t have clothes on, but there were a bunch of clothes floating around at the bottoms of the tubs. In order to make as much money as possible, I had to research the dolls based on their attributes and the markings carved into their backs and necks. For many of them, what clothes they were wearing was “important” (by which I mean, it affected how much I’d get for them). So here I was, sitting in a dark garage, putting different outfits on these toys and photographing them. Context aside, I was twenty-seven years old and playing dress-up with dollies. When that thought occurred to me, it struck me as being so absurd that I had to snap a ridiculous picture and post it on Facebook. The caption read, “Don’t even try to pretend I’m not the funniest motherfucker on the planet.”
Because I totally am!
When this piece was just one step away from the way it ended up, I fucking hated it. Aside from the fact that it mentions embarrassing stuff (body image issues and masturbating) I just didn’t like the way that it looked. I can’t really explain my next move. Maybe it just popped into my head and seemed characteristic of mental illness and (since that’s how I felt in this moment) I embraced it. I took the piece and I peed on it.
And – call me crazy but… that’s what did it. The slight change in color tone brought about by my urine soaking into the cardboard… really brought the whole thing together. (My phrasing is intentionally silly here, but the sentiment is 100% dead on). Suddenly, I loved this piece. I deemed it “finished” and immediately started my next piece – “Everything Works Out Exactly As It Should.”
The next day (as I always did) I brought all of my new artwork with me to Tranquil Shores to share. I wrote the name of this piece on the back of it and came up with a really funny game. I’d hand it to someone, let them look at it, and then tell them to flip it over and read the title. At which point they’d look up at me like, “seriously?” And I’d give them a big dumb grin and nod.
Urine is sterile! The piece was dry by this point! Who cares?!
I am a child, but I have fun.