Amusement for your Monday

paste

I got a kick out of this. The post office stuck that sticker on my copy of Paste magazine — in a wonderful place!

Paste, by the way, is an interesting magazine, if you’re into popular music and culture. It displays more depth than Rolling Stone. (That’s not hard to do.) They’ve been having financal troubles of late, so I know they would appreciate your support.

(And I am thankful to my brother, who gave me the subscription!)

One advantage they have over other music magazines is a link to a CD’s worth of new music with each issue.

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What are you investing in?

door-locks

As I was photo-safari-ing two small west Texas towns, I saw this door. The owners installed several locks to keep their possessions safe. The last time anything valuable was stored on the other side of that door was more than 30 years ago.

Lots of time and energy were spent building that store. Its usefulness is fully over. The land is not worth the price of demolition. Chillicothe will never see a population growth again.

True — the builders of that establishment probably got good return on their investment during its lifespan. But what better way might they have spent their time? If they had invested the same amount of energy in a building that is still being used, how much better would that have been?

Takeaway: What are you investing in that will last? What ways should you change what you are doing to make those efforts last longer?

p.s. I’m taking a break. We’re heading for the hills as a family for about the next week. (No internet where we’ll be. And the break is much needed.) I hope to have a new post for you on Monday July 20th.

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Small towns can be beautiful too

back-alleyway

My friend Becky is a (if not the) champion of small towns. You need to visit her site.

We drive from Denver to Dallas (via Amarillo) at least once a year. I have always zoomed through Memphis* and thought I should stop and explore a little. Finally, this time I could… I was driving solo, and the kids would not complain!

* Yes, there is a Memphis in Texas. But then, Texas is big enough that every town name is represented there.

The business in this photo is why I wanted to visit. Unfortunately it was closed when I stopped, due to our national independence holiday. I had seen “Faux Pants” from the highway and thought someone must take pride in this town. They do. Memphis is a sleepy little town. All I did was take a few photos. But you can see that at one time, it was a thriving community. They even cared enough that the alleys were paved with bricks!

The one mistake I made that Becky would have advised against is that I didn’t take time to meet anyone. People are what make small towns special.

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Chaos

chaos

Yes, I admit that this week feels like chaos. I was gone all last week dealing with the aftermath of my mom’s death. Next week is our family camping vacation. So this week, I’m trying to get as much work done as I can.

A completely unrealted story about “chaos”… When I was in maybe 6th grade, I took a vocabulary test. One of the words was “chaos”. In my head, I pronounced it “chay-ohse”. One of the choices was “a Mexican blanket”. That’s what I picked — because it sounded like that to me.

And so, these many many years later, that memory sticks with me.

May your memory be filled with successes rather than failures. And if a failure comes back to you, hopefully you can laugh about it.

By the way, I took this photo in Chillicothe, Texas — on my way back to Denver from Dallas. I love that drive through west Texas.

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A little history

me-history

I’ve spent most of my adult working life doing graphic design. I’ve done a lot of print, some web and a little interactive.

So as I was going through photos from my mom’s apartment, I came across this one. My dad took it sometime when I was in either high school or college. I was working on an art project. You’ll note the headphones. (Music has often been significant fuel for my art.)

When I went off to college, I majored in art because I was always the best artist in my small class. Soon I learned that I was a small fish in a big pond.

I chose graphic design because it was a tangible way to make a living with art. I minored in illustration because I could draw. I switched to package design after I realized that every time I created an illustration, it was like having a baby. I’m not a woman, so having babies is quite difficult.

I have done both illustration and package design during my career. These days, my life has very little of either.

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Mom & me

paul-mother

Actually, this was a rare moment in our relationship.

One of my sisters came across this photo while we were dissasembling her apartment. (I love the pic!)

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