When did I get old.
Her clothes look like they’re painted on her body. When I was that age my father would have put me in the closet and said you stay there until you put on a dress. Fashions for young people are made to exaggerate a woman’s beautiful body along with the not so delightful with blubber hanging over the waist band of skin tight pants. All kinds of people join the parade on Central Ave. Are they looking for friends, or going somewhere? I’m fascinated by the majority of women nicely put together and the men dressed like street urchins.
I sip a latte, while my friend enjoys an espresso as we sit in front of the Grassroots coffee shop watching the parade. I remember as a kid going to the carnival to see the tattooed lady. Today, she’s right in front of me wherever I go. I wonder what the symbolism means to the lady that is wearing it. Another has vines and flowers tattooed running down from her back to her calves. Its’ like the choices of shapes I make when I am painting. I may use an orange palette with blue compliments, the choice is mine. Using paper or canvas I can create a design of hues and textures. If there is something about it I don’t like I can quickly make them disappear or change them with a few strokes of a brush. I repeat the process until Im satisfied. The tattoo is a whole different story. One girl explained her image to me. She tattooed her arm, Jim Forever engraved in a heart. Jim left her for another woman and she met Bob. He looked at the heart and said who the hell is Jim. She can’t erase it from her arm so she runs to nearest shop, has a flower to cover the name and has Bob written below the flower, by the time the bleeding stops, Bob took off with Jane. I prefer paint and paper. No pain I’ve got gesso to cover the error.
We sat at a table with a delightful, talkative young man. He meets with his Bula group to drink Kava together. There’s eight of them, several are named Michael. Someone will always answer if you say Hi Michael. The sign inside the coffee shop reads Bula/Boola/verb “Fijian greeting meaning “To Long Life & Good Health. Michael’s right arm is covered with tattoos each one meaning I like Bula. he proudly wears colorful flowers, bugs and birds. He unabashedly said his investment in his adornment is well over five thousand dollars.
Another young man sat at an adjoining table. The side of his head was shaved revealing his green skull. The hair covering about a third of the top of his skull is black dyed purple. The handsome young man with green hair wore a nice white shirt with words written on it and his full length red print cotton skirt.
How are they going to feel about the disfigurement of their body. I can hear the identification of the witness affirming, “She’s the one I recognize the tattoo of Bob next to a rose flower. I keep looking at theses young beauties covered in blue ink, sometimes red or yellow, and wonder what they’ll look like in 20 or 30 years when their skin starts sagging and wrinkles set in. Will they be like my friend who is going for painful laser treatment to remove the dislocation. Maybe I can develop a gesso bath for human dipping.
I realize that outward beauty is left to the young or is it. I look at my friend with grey hair and wrinkles the impressions of wisdom. No markings on his body to identify him only his kindness, his hope and dreams.
My young friends dressed in all kinds of garb help me to see a different kind of reality. Boys dressing up like girls, and visa versa. I saw a beautiful young man wearing high heel shoes, a skimpy short skirt and t shirt in a size to small and a necktie. His sashayed in front of us, his vibes feminine. Short skirts, long skirts, tight t-shirts or none, the parade continues. My right brain is stimulated.
People ask me where do my ideas come from. Life