Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Complete indulgence

Left blue: before lessons. Right blue: what I learned today. Knot of cords: what I spun today. Homework: that, times 20 ... no, probably more.

I considered doing a photo shoot of me trapped under all the paper I made last month while commuting to my first jiseung lesson today. Well, no need, since I now have NO TIME for such antics. I have a week to cut down, spin, and unwind twenty huge sheets of hanji so that I can start a real piece. The paper is 72 cm x 144 cm, so it's a LOT of work. The good thing is that my teacher fine tuned my technique (heel to ball or ankle to thigh, rather than heel to heel) so maybe my sciatic will be less tortured. Maybe.

[Terttu asked about the size of the screen I used to make hanji and I said, "oh, about 63 x 93 cm," and she said, "wait, you're talking centimeters now??" The thing is that I still function very much in the English system, and haven't come close to making a metric conversion. NONE of those measurements or numbers mean anything to me: inches, Fahrenheit, pounds, it's all virtually meaningless to me. I don't function in a numbers world. Just the other day, I checked the outdoor temperature online and wondered, "if it's 42 degrees outside, why am I still so cold with my thermostat at 30 degrees inside??" I finally realized that I was mixing scales.]

I arrived early today so I decided to kill time at the Techno Mart, looking for electronics. After being quoted ridiculously high prices, I went downstairs, where I immediately spotted a Lush store and promptly spent all the money I would have on overpriced camera accessories on hair products instead. I also got yellow freesias for my teacher; my first cut flower purchase! Now that I'm living alone, I'm finally forced to do things that I usually am able to 1. avoid 2. have someone else do for me or 3. get detailed instructions on beforehand. Near home, the taco stand people recognized me b/c I had a roll of hanji under my arm. I love being hanji lady in the hood. On the scenic route home, I made more dates, and am now worried about how I will balance being a highly social creature who has to catch up with friends after a month away with being a devout student who has to sit on a floor cross-legged for hours on end with strips of paper.

But this is the most important thing, and it's not about me: Ching-In will be at AWP this week in Chicago! I canNOT believe that her book is already out! Time flies - I met her when she was doing massive edits on it in Vermont in January 2007 before it was picked up, and now it's a real live book! I am mad proud and sorry that I can't get my hands on it sooner. Here is her schedule in Chicago, so you can give her the huge hug that I can't from here.

Or, you can just tag along while Jami is still on HER book tour. I adore my writer friends. If I wasn't such a paper geek, I'd totally be a groupie.

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