November Notes

Morass– a complicated or confused situation. an area of muddy or boggy ground. an overwhelming mass of confusion; a confusing situation that impedes or entangles something, making it difficult to be free of or resolve a troublesome matter. A whirling mass of fluid or air. from medieval Latin mariscus

Discipline” ~ from the Latin word meaning “to teach.” the practice of training people to obey rules or a code of behavior, using punishment to correct disobedience. a branch of knowledge, typically one studied in higher education. train oneself to do something in a controlled and habitual way.

Read a poem every day. Keep a compendium, such as A Poem for Every Day of the Year, by your bed.

Isomorphic ~ a similarity of the processes or structure of one organization to those of another, be it the result of imitation or independent development under similar constraints. a structure-preserving mapping between two structures of the same type that can be reversed by an inverse mapping. isomorphism is derived from the Ancient Greek: ἴσος isos“equal”, and μορφή morphe “form” or “shape”.

Anocracy or semi-democracy ~ a form of government that is loosely defined as part democracy and part dictatorship, or as a “regime that mixes democratic with autocratic features.” Another definition classifies anocracy as “a regime that permits some means of participation through opposition group behavior but that has incomplete development of mechanisms to redress grievances.” The term “semi-democratic” is reserved for stable regimes that combine democratic and authoritarian elements. Scholars have also distinguished anocracies from autocracies and democracies in their capability to maintain authority, political dynamics, and policy agendas. Similarly, the regimes have democratic institutions that allow for nominal amounts of competition.

identity politics ~political parties no longer organise around ideology or specific policies but along racial, ethnic or religious lines.

Precision Agriculture ~ a concept that utilizes computers, data gathering, and satellite imagery to build a strategy for maximizing the output of a farm using equipment like soil sensors, specialized drones, and self-driving tractors to produce more crops with less effort and less environmental impact.

“Hell is empty and all the devils are here” a the line, spoken by Ariel in The Tempest, by Shakespeare referring to sailors jumping off a burning ship.

‘If it were done when ’tis done, then ’twere well it were done quickly.’ The line opens Macbeth’s soliloquy toward the end of Act I, as he contemplates murdering King Duncan. The soliloquy showcases not just Macbeth’s malevolence, but his awareness that he may be setting off a series of events that he will not be able to control: “we but teach bloody instructions which, being taught, return to plague the inventor.” It is from this speech that we get the phrase “poisoned chalice,” from which the instigator of bad events will himself one day be forced to drink.

Geegaw ~ or Gewgaw or Googaw a showy thing, especially one that is useless or worthless. cheap showy jewelry or ornament on clothing. gimcrack, trifle, bauble, knickknack, novelty, toy, trinket, whatnot, thing, bangle, gaud early 13c., giuegaue, contemptuous reduplication, of uncertain origin, possibly connected with Old French gogue “rejoicing, jubilation; joke, prank, mockery, game;” or jou-jou “toy,” baby-talk word, from jouer “to play,” from Latin jocare

Plessy v. Ferguson ~ 1896 Supreme Court ruling that solidified whites-only spaces in public accommodations such as transportation, hotels and schools for decades.

vademecum or vade mecum ~ a handbook or guide that is kept constantly at hand for consultation. From Latin vāde mēcum (literally “Go with me!”).

Multilevel Marketing (MLM) a strategy used by some direct sales companies to sell products and services by encouraging existing members to promote and sell their offerings to other individuals and bring on new recruits into the business.

“The groups that tend to start civil wars are the groups that were once dominant politically but are in decline. They’ve either lost political power or they’re losing political power and they truly believe that the country is theirs by right and they are justified in using force to regain control because the system no longer works for them.”

~Barbara Walter

https://nationalhomeless.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/Street_Paper_Guide.pdf

Biphasic sleep ~ schedule is any sleep schedule that involves two sleep periods per day.

First/Second Sleep Schedule ~ First sleep starts between 9 pm and 10 pm. Wake up around 12 am and 1 am. Awake for a couple of hours and get stuff done. Sleep again. This next step was considered a “morning” sleep and might last until dawn, or later. When you finally wake up for good depends on what time you went to bed.

Midday Nap Sleep Schedule: Take 20- or 30-minute nap during the day. At night, sleep six or seven hours per night.

Siesta Sleep Schedule: Take a 60- to 90-minute siesta during the day. This nap usually occurs in the afternoon, Sleep for five to six hours per night.

Choose a Biphasic Sleep Schedule
  • Pick a biphasic sleep schedule.
  • Set a morning wakeup time,
  • Schedule your nap.
  • Schedule your bedtimes.
  • Allow for at least seven to eight total hours of sleep.
  • Follow schedule for at least 14 days.
  • Maintain consistent bed and wake times.
  • Reduce exposure to artificial light starting 60 to 90 minutes before sleep time. Artificial light includes the light from phones, televisions, computers, and tablets. Wear blue light blocking glasses, use dim light bulbs with reddish or yellowish hues, and turn on your phone’s night mode setting.
  • Keep your bedroom dark, quiet, and cool.
  • Avoid using your bed for anything other than sleep and sex.

“rush lights” – a kind of candle for ordinary households, made from the waxed stems of rushes

Intermediate Art Project 4 Drawing Re-Do

As part of my personal growth in 2022, I am taking an intermediate drawing class at the Rivers School in Weston, Massachusetts. The class is taught by Jeff Nesbit. After spending a couple of weeks drawing parts of a face, project four was to copy two statutes from a National Geographic magazine.

Bronze Ooni head, 12th-15th century, National Museum of Ife, Nigeria.
This is my first attempt at copying the Bronze Ooni head with charcoal in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.

What went well? I like my shading and the contrast of the deep black, grey and white lines in the hair.

What would I do differently? The shape of the face is off. I would draw and shade the figure with vine before adding the cross-contour lines with a sharp charcoal pencil and white chalk for the highlights. I would spend a lot more than 20 minutes.

This is my second attempt at copying the Bronze Ooni head with charcoal in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.

What went well? I shaded the face before I put the contour lines on. I used a sharp pointed soft charcoal pencil and a white charcoal stick to do the white contour lines. I like the super black background.

What would I do differently? The face shape and proportions are still off. I’d spend more time drawing. I would use something even whiter for the white contour lines.

Intermediate Art Project 5

As part of my personal growth in 2022, I am taking an intermediate drawing class at the Rivers School in Weston, Massachusetts. The class is taught by Jeff Nesbit.

To prepare for the final project on identity, I completed ten 6 inch by 6 inch self portraits using soft pastels.

Graphite and soft pastel in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.
Soft pastel in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.
Charcoal and soft pastel in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.
Charcoal and soft pastel in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.
Charcoal and soft pastel in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.

Road Trip!

The wife and I drove to Vassar yesterday to watch our youngest child play basketball for Swarthmore College in a season opener showcase.

These are the only basketball photos that I took. My kid (in the center of the bench) gets a breather after starting and playing most of the first quarter against Hamilton College on November 11, 2022 at Vassar College during the Hochberg Family Tip-off tournament.
My kid, Swarthmore College # 14 T Sallie, warms up before playing against Nazareth on November 12, 2022 at Vassar College during the Hochberg Family Tip-off tournament.
My kid, Swarthmore College # 14 T Sallie, warms up before playing against Nazareth on November 12, 2022 at Vassar College during the Hochberg Family Tip-off tournament.

This morning we explored the Vassar’s beautiful 1000-acre campus. I almost wished I had packed a “real” camera. However, I did enjoy snapping away with my old, tired IPhone SE 2020.

Hands and Heads

As part of my personal growth in 2022, I am auditing art classes at the Rivers School in Weston, Massachusetts, taught by Jeff Nesbit.

I layered water soluble graphite, purple watercolor paint and gesso to make a ground. A ground, short for background, is a base used to prepare a support for drawing or a painting.

I drew over the ground with waterproof ink and added shadows and highlights with oil pastels. For the final layer I sprayed on several coats of workable fix.

Mixed media in in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.
Mixed media in in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.
Mixed media in in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.
Mixed media in in a Carson XL 9 by 12 mixed media sketchbook.