“If you try to teach a fish to climb a tree it will spend the rest of it’s life thinking it is stupid.” – Tony Clennel

I didn’t make any pots this week. After a straight 5 at the office, there was just a chunk of Saturday morning sitting there open, hemmed in by yard work, chores and family day. And tiredness. And being fully stopped and not emotionally ready to start fighting inertia. Not quite yet.

Instead, I did something I almost never do; I’m kind of proud of this, because it comes from a different awareness and an angle of self-restraint and discipline that I so often lack. (If I’m not diving into wet clay, my reflexive impulse is to just avoid the studio completely. It can be too painful to be in there and Not Doing The Thing.) I went into the studio as if I was going to start the next throwing cycle, but instead I just lingered, and tidied, and prepped, and thought. Did some all-too-rare paper journaling, which now seems like unshared blog posts instead of the other way ‘round. Trying to remember where I left off and think ahead to where I need and/or want to go next. A check of my bearings, to see if I’m still heading in a reasonable direction. Kind of a review of the upcoming terrain, too — forgotten obligations, needs of sizes and shapes to fit the next few loads, tasks remaindered to the big chalkboard and gathering negative momentum.

I’ve now so long-neglected that wrap up or summary post about my sabbatical week with Witt — and, really, so much random crap has happened since then — that I feel completely disconnected from that experience. Like it happened to another person, or that it’s a movie I watched instead of something I did. Damn, that sucks! The pots we made were still hanging about in weird spots, dispersed in ways that best suited their slow drying while I was away on fakation. So, trying not too think too much about it, I gathered them up, checked them out with sidelong glances only, started setting them in rows on the center table as if I might get around to loading a bisk soon. Assembled and rationalized like that, they make a pretty imposing group. Impressive, even. A link back to that time and a reminder of its longer term benefits. I am looking forward to finishing them off.

In a similar vein, I half-decided it was time to put away that second wheel; let go of the fairy tale and reclaim the precious square footage. Sad. As much as I’d be a miserable bastard of a permanent studio mate, I can’t deny the occasional allure of sharing a work space with someone else. It’s too bad these things are so binary; hard to have it both ways at once. Maybe that’s what Penland is for, if I was rich enough to afford it.

And then… you know how it is. Mowing, shovelling, sorting. Keeping the ever expanding pile of stuff from overwhelming daily paths. Dad business. Oh — a big round of nerd games; that was fun. Sunday; swimming; back to school.