My Own Private January…

Thoughts from the "Tinman"

“The vast sage desert undulates with almost imperceptible tides like the oceans.”

This time of year, I am devoid, I lack and I do so purposely, not in some self torture sense or for some insatiable need to suffer; but really more for those moments of time I seemed to have left somewhere, to catch up with me, find me, maybe acknowledge me from across some snow covered arroyo. That would seem to be enough for me to enjoy the exhale of the long full bellied breath I’ve been holding for months…Maybe it is all in anticipation of what grows, hidden beneath my feet and what will fly above me in the white stacked cloud filed skies of summer. My boots already longing to feel the small rocked desert earth crunching beneath them. Yet today, 18 degrees hovers hard…

I think it is my hibernation, my place to be weary and slumber those long nights…make the time important splitting fire wood, loading the stove, sitting in front of the cracks and pops, watch the sunset flames dance before me…read a bit slower…wonder more…question less and settle into the things that I have no answers for…spend this time, as this time only…

I hope where ever you find yourself these days, each day ends with a better you, a greater sense of awe,  greater adventures and something that makes you smile and laugh a little more than you have….

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Sale at my store 35% off  use coupon 35off HERE

“Idealism increases in direct proportion to one’s distance from the problem.”

The, “Well Worn Path”

Thoughts from the "Tinman"

“The mind moves in the direction of our currently dominant thoughts.”

This past summer, I visited a place called, “Tsankawi“, relatively untouched, pretty unbridled and full of trails well worn into the hill sides. These trails for the most part were made by ancestral Pueblo people, we as visitors are just walking the same ones they did to see what they saw and somehow make a connection. The ground is littered with pottery shards and tempting as it is to pocket a few of the real beauties, the power of the visual beauty far outweighs the idea of placing one of these on a shelf in my house.

We’ve all been told various stories about,”Paths“,and somehow having one, finding one, walking one, being one, creating one, seems not so much about the path as it does about the, “Pathwalker”; so then, what’s the point of the path other than to wear a well worn trail  from where you’ve been to where you are. Maybe the emphasis is two-fold, no doubt the journey is paramount, but what of the effect of that journey on you the Pathwalker. You’re not somehow going to get belched out another side of life, with all of the answers, fulfilled and ready to never light another great fire in a wood stove or smell a cup of Ethiopian coffee seconds before it seduces your palate. Not to mention you’ve left a trails of bread crumbs or granola, or broken hearts, or empty bottles, you won’t be that hard to find. Perhaps the, “Well Worn Path” will hopefully lead us all to a point of disappearance, a no path, one without clues, or directions, almost that same place you were when you started the original path, that motion before the very first step, whatever that was.

I’ll admit, I do have  a favorite pottery shard I picked up many years ago in a place by Deming New Mexico. We had a conversation that morning, as I recall it was the first step of a long journey….

 

 

 

A new Studio Update in my store, please take a look….

 

“A black cat crossing your path signifies that the animal is going somewhere.”

March 4, 2018…What’s in a Fortune Anyway…

From the MInd of the Manic, Thoughts from the "Tinman"

 

“My Favorite Bunnies” ©2018

“You are only as strong as the alcohol you drink, the tables you dance on, and the friends that hold you together” 

I had lunch with a friend of mine some months ago in Calistoga California at the only Chinese restaurant in town. In typical, commercial, Chinese restaurant fashion, two cellophane wrapped fortune cookies appeared along with the check.

I will admit, when the fortune cookies arrive, something comes over me, (some of you do this too, just differently, and it is OK). I become over the top superstitious, count to 6, three times…tap my left foot a few times, blink twice, wave my hand over each cookie, hoping to feel the magic and juju I so associate with fortune cookies. I mean for God’s sake, they are, “FORTUNE”, cookies…I make major decisions based on what’s wrapped up in that tiny stale, sometimes spongy treasure chest…part of my superstition is being the last to take the remaining little pillow of fate…at least that way I know destiny has clearly chosen me by the process of elimination and what awaits, I follow like the Boy Scout motto…

I do have an out though if the fortune really sucks, I don’t eat any of the cookie, that way the fortune is null and void…whew!! The most memorable fortune I’ve ever had in my life created this null and void ritual… here goes:

“You will have a very unusual operation”

So with great anticipation, my friend made his choice, cracked it open and read his fortune…it was something about straight lines and life, had no relevance what so ever, so he said…I’ve yet to check with him though…I quivered with anticipation as I cracked open the vault of whatever fortune cookies are made of, and there on a slender piece of paper my fate awaited me…

In all seriousness, it was the most profound fortunes I’ve received, I look at it every day, and see how it works for me…not to mention, I’ve memorized the Chinese word on the back of the fortune, “Busy”,  Mang or Fan, depending of course….

Here’s what I’m listening to as I write this, I hope you enjoy it….

Hope your fortune comes true…

“The truth knocks on the door and you say, ‘Go away, I’m looking for the truth’, and so it goes away”

Star Gazing

Thoughts from the "Tinman", West Texas ramblings

Limited Time, 2017

“I’m not interested in preserving the status quo; I want to overthrow it.”

I used to camp on a picnic table at Bean Hollow Beach, long after they would lock the gates, check the bathrooms and say goodnight to whatever needed saying goodnight to….I’d walk around the heavy yellow pipe barricade, with my sleeping bag, a flashlight, a small styrofoam cooler and my journal…I always had plans…didn’t always initiate the plans but had them nevertheless…Often I’d start a small fire under the concrete picnic table that was my bed to warm it up…I’d lie there, drink some beers and watch the star filled sky…watch for anomalies and satellites…strange events, anything that wanted to come forward…it was an experience I often think of today and how it was, simple and easy….a pleasure to be a part of a few times each month….I owned the beach, and everything on it…it was mine for about 8 hours…sometimes I’d count the stars like the minutes…because I could…

Star gazing music:

“We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.”

Who Needs Better…

Thoughts from the "Tinman"

“Truth is everybody is going to hurt you: you just gotta find the ones worth suffering for.”

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I can’t say…and really neither can you…what exactly the, “right”, way might be…some call it Jesus…others, Makers Mark…porn…a spoonful of heroin…all you can eat buffets… adrenalin…a box of Little Debbie snack cakes…sleeping…and it doesn’t really matter because there is absolutely no difference…from one to the another…it all still fills some hole that we think needs filling…just like we need to find what’s right…right??…seems all of the above mentioned might border on the questionable way…given moderation is not an element in the process…

I mean, just watch Jesus Camp, drink a quart of Makers Mark, shoot a spoonful of herion after a trip to an all you can eat buffet, before a base jumping lesson, and to add to the adenine rush eat as many Little Debbie snack cakes before you deploy the chute, then go home and take a 23 hour nap…get back with me on this, would you..let me know how the dy went…

The most important thing is “Way”…which fucking direction are you heading…and even if it is not the right direction what is revealed along the way will be right for a while…or forever…who knows….

I sat the other day in the best spot possible at a farmers market…and inside my ever ticking brain, I asked myself…”How can I make the best space possible, even better?”…and you know, if I’d have had a third hand…I’d have slapped the shit out of myself  repeatedly…or at least pinched me a couple of times…you know…sometimes….

“Good enough is just good enough”

And it’s really easy to always want to make something better…even if it is really, really good enough and would be hard to make better…and you know that’s a very messed up way of thinking, I think…oh, and believe me I think like this far more than I’d like to admit…So, why in the world do we do this…do we want more, better, greater something from a better situation, all the stuff we can possibly carry…to add to all of the other stuff we have carried around for a few years, decades….does a better situation make everything else better…how’s a 500k a year job sound?…what about 3 and one half hour commute twice a day that goes with that great paying job…..still better???….is it like a fantastic marmalade on a basically bland piece of toast?…I mean you can only eat so many spoonfuls of marmalade directly from the jar before a piece of toast, even toasted wonder bread, starts looking pretty good!

So I’m starting to write in my sketchbook every morning, the things that are are really good just as they are….without any thought of the blah…blah…blah that somehow floats there in the ether and says…”On the other hand”, in those quiet whispers….

I sharpened a very dull thrift store knife I purchased yesterday….and not only was the sharpening process really, really good and truly could not have been any better…but cutting the paper to see how sharp the knife was a religious experience….now could it be sharper…who cares….I don’t…..

So my entire rant today isn’t really about what you have, don’t have, the holes we fill with shit that is just another addiction to something equally as addictive to what we’ve tried to shed, it’s about satisfaction…and if you don’t own it already, you should probably make that the quest until it’s at least in view, and you know what it looks like, until it is  in hand, encompassing and visceral….sorry to say, you can’t buy it, rent it, stumble upon it, find it in someone else, pray to it, inject it, eat it, tax your adrenaline glands, and Little Debbie….sure as hell doesn’t have yours….

Have a great day!!

“I’d rather be dead than singing ‘Satisfaction’ when I’m forty-five.”
Guess who???

 

A Few Thoughts About….

Thoughts from the "Tinman"

“What delights us in visible beauty is the invisible.”

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“Spacious Skies” ©Robert Redus 2016

I remember singing, “America the Beautiful”, in parochial school, it was right up there with Onward Christian Soldiers…and for the most part, I thought the song ended with the first, “From sea to shining sea”….well, I don’t know how many of you are aware of this, but it doesn’t and there are 3, that’s right, count them, three more verses…my vivd imagination kept me afloat, thinking that somewhere in 1974 I was going to find out what and where the amber waves of grain, purple mountain majesties, and the fruited plain, were and how I was going to get there…sort of a personalized, “Easy Rider“, moment where instead,  I just dreamed of riding the Panhead that Dennis Hopper was riding in the movie.

So my brother Kenneth…an avid adventurer and I began a few treks, jumping a freight train to end up eventually in Santa Fe New Mexico, with just the clothes on our backs, toothbrushes, water, and of course a can of, Sterno…where I have to say, I attended the most incredible News Years celebration in a bar called the El Toro Lounge…I wore a handmade paper hat with a picture of Katherine Ross glued to it…we did some great hitchhiking and exploring…and never once did I see on the map or hear from other travelers of these legendary….waves of grain, purple mountains or fruited plains…hmmm…and we traveled a great deal over the years…..and

nothing…

So…I’ve always believed that I have a choice of being right…or being happy…and yes I can be both…but more often than not, happiness and rightness do not share the same space…one way streets, I will always forgo happiness for the sake of being right…the book, “Napkin Notes, On the Art of Living” speaks a great deal about this and how it’s entirely about you…check it out…

Here are my thoughts this morning translated into photographs…hope it make sense….have a swell day!

nfhd.5.25.03©Robert Redus 2016

 

nfhd.5.25.04©Robert Redus 2016

nfhd.5.25.07©Robert Redus 2016

nfhd.5.25.05©Robert Redus 2016

nfhd.5.25.06©Robert Redus 2017

Enjoy

“I have always felt a little homeless. It’s a strange thing.”

Too Much of Anything is Too Much…

Thoughts from the "Tinman"

“Infinite growth of material consumption in a finite world is an impossibility”

IMG_0318To say enough is enough in this day and age is like screaming into the wind, expecting results that are going to be life changing…everyday our world is dominated by political disarray…instability and the growing threat of a world we’ve never known becoming normalized…and its not just that…everything we encounter is dramatically opposite of what we as human are really designed to live in…I thought it was kind of like harmony…we were supposed to get along…sort of move forward at our pace and help when we can and get help when we need it…

In my 60 years…most of which were fog living…cliff standing and juggling while driving at high rates of speed…I was a rambler…a mover from place to place a “Serial Stroller”, if you will…and in that time, I’ve encountered a great number of people who just want things to  stand out as…well…simple…small…easy and relatively light weight…kind of like a great down sleeping bag…functional…kick as warm and equally as valuable…light weight…

 

I went to buy cream last night…just plain old organic half and half, (I prefer Straus) …and I realized how screwed up we live…nowhere to be found was organic half and half…there was almond creamer, soy creamer, every flavor you could imagine creamer, non-dairy creamer, organic hazelnut creamer, store brand creamer, big plastic bottles of creamer, small glass jars of creamer, creamer I could not figure out how to open creamer, creamer in different languages creamer, creamers with warning labels, pretty generic creamers and finally tucked away on one tiny isle amidst the sea of creamers was…organic half and half…I was more than mesmerized…sort of felt I’d survived an inquisition during the Spanish Inquisition…My curiosity got the better of me…led me to the other isle of the store…34 brands of coconut oil…acres of cereal…bread to feed everyone on a super busy headliner gladiator Saturday at the Colosseum…soft drinks enough to give a small country diabetes…enough spices to season every dish everyone with my last name will cook for the rest of their lives and the lives of their grandchildren…my point was easy…WHY?

Why do stores offer so many choices that it causes us to be unable to make a choice…5 items, maybe eight…and maybe put in a working organic garden for seriously fresh produce…a small micro brewery…maybe a meat eaters and vegan taqueria…a magician and a community meet up every week…stores would be smaller…but far more exciting, employees, I’m sure would be happier…and paint the walls with murals, hang local artists work on the walls…have debates…and campfires in winter…and for god’s sake change the names…use only names that sort of define the kind of grocery store it is and the extras….”Bob’s Rock and Roll Thursday Night, Free Organic Pancake Grocery”…we’d all get it right… Bob serves organic pancakes for free on Thursday nights and chances are you’ll hear some rock and roll music…ah simpatico!!!

It’s the choices…a few are good…too many change us…make us spend what valuable time we have wasting it on the green bottle or the red one that rests upside down, or maybe the white one that can be made into a candle holder when it is all used up…

Time is really very precious…more valuable than anything we can create…think about or build, and granted time is this weird made up construct but even if we didn’t call it time…it would do the same thing… and in the midst of all of this time…we wander…wander wondering what it is has to happen for “That” to happen…whatever that might be…

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Jimson Weed, Datura, Flower, Teachings of Don Juan

We all need to get it wired up really tight if we plan on seeing this through…want to change things…change you first…once that happens change leaks all over the place like kiddy pool with a big hole in it…who are you…what do you want and want to be…as John Prine said, “Move to the country, plant a little garden, grown a lot of peaches, try and find jesus on your own”…or whatever the words to your song might be…

Here’s where I was yesterday:

Whitewater Preserve, just outside of Palm Springs, and it was spectacular….

Enjoy your week, stay out of the bad places and if you have some really great ideas…please share them with me….let’s make some great stuff happen!!

“When you arrive at a fork in the road, take it” 

Behind the Wheel

Thoughts from the "Tinman"

The worst enemy of life, freedom and the common decencies is total anarchy; their second worst enemy is total efficiency.” Aldous Huxley

I’m not really certain about the landing place for me. I can tell you it has  much to do with “The Road”, the adventure that always waits on the porch for you to come home. You know, that place that is uncertain in a kind of wonderment way. Have you ever taken a trip with no map, no directional device to get you there? That’s what I’m talking about. Just road, vehicle, you, enough water, gas and food to get you, “There”, where ever, “There”,  might be. Sounds overly romantic and irresponsible…c’mon, you have a mortgage, credit card bills, all of those things that have to be done before anything else gets considered. 

I’ve recently taken to to carrying in my car, a, “Bugout Bag“, along with a sleeping bag, a Camprest mat, my favorite pillows, some Mezcal Vago Elote and all of the goodies to make a killer cup of coffee basically on demand, oh and of course something to eat! This way, I can stop, sleep, drink coffee, mescal, have a sandwich and enjoy a great time looking at the stars for a few hours. 

My last drive, was home to New Mexico through the back roads of Nevada, Utah and Arizona. To say it was spectacular is an understatement. The journey changed me, solidified my feelings of adventure, place and the things I must do to keep a real smile on my face. Here are a few of the reasons:

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This is at near Gypsum Creek in Utah

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Rodeo Trophy Buckles, in a pawn shop, Gallup, New Mexico

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Bryce Canyon

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Zuni and Navajo Bracelets at the Gallup Flea Market

I started reading Edward Abbey, I can only imagine he would have been wonderful to take a road trip with.

Latest:

Just got home from 2 weeks in Palm Springs. I am working my jewelry magic at the Palm Springs Thursday night VillageFest. If you are heading to Palm Springs, make it a point to come by and see me, and stop at this restaurant in Flamingo Hills, La Copine….the food is great.

Please take a few moments to share where you’ve been, where you want to go, what you want to do….I’d love to hear from you.

Be safe, stay between the lines as much as you can, live harder than the serious stuff that’s completely unimportant, tell those you love, you love them often and most of all hug the adventure like nobody’s business!!!  

“You can’t study the darkness by flooding it with light.” Edward Abbey

July 13, Studio B2

Thoughts from the "Tinman"

“Analysis is like a lobotomy. Who wants to have all their edges shaved off?”

The word “Freedom” is defined as… “the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint.”…and as we know, if freedom truly existed, my right to act, speak, or think without hindrance or restraint will certainly piss maybe a few thousand somebodies off somewhere…probably more…just as your right to act, speak, or think without hindrance or restraint will do exactly the same in the pissing off department of living life. So,

Is freedom an illusion? 

Do we just like how the definition sounds, and by saying we are free enough times it will miraculously develop into the dictionary definition of freedom. And what about the guy who is cooking meth with the underaged wife, kids from 7 different women, 13 pit bulls, who has an incredible confederate flagged tattooed on his forehead who just moved in next door to you who believes in and does just about everything you loath, disdain, and in your core believe is completely and utter wrong and unacceptable…does he have that same freedom you have, does he deserve it..you make the call…How about the couple who believe in a different Big Guy in the sky than you do, or the family that says “Si” for yes, or maybe that kid who has been in the wheelchair since birth, oh, or Mr. and Mr.  who just moved down the street…what about those people over there…or there, (pointing opposite direction), or even those guys over there, (now pointing at about a 45 degree angle to the original direction), or anybody you don’t agree with or like because they are________________ (fill in the blank)… 

Rodney King said…”Can we all just get along?”…sorry Rodney, we don’t want to…our system isn’t set up that way, never has been and probably never will be…see you can have your freedom as long as it doesn’t ever cross the line of another’s freedom…think of it like a big circle around you wherever you go…kind of like the Maxwell Smart “Cone of Silence” without the silence thing. People who believe the same stuff can always cross each other’s circles until they can’t…while people who don’t believe in the same stuff can’t even get close for fear of a boundary encroachment. And until the idea of true acceptance is installed, we will continue to practice this method of freedom which as we all know is further away from freedom than not…

Today is a great day to start…purposely watch people, see how you respond to them, what they do, how they look, talk, walk, move, and do…it is pretty likely you are part of the problem…and realize or at least try to realize, that they are going about their lives mostly as oblivious as you are going about your life and really only want to be happy, healthy, loved, cared for and find some joy in their world, (this to me is freedom)…and if you don’t want them to have that or do that because it is not your version of being happy, healthy, loved, cared for and finding some joy in your world…you don’t want to be happy or free…you want to be right!!!…so there is a lot of vacant property you can move to in the desert and never have to worry about these people and you can remain…right…

Ask yourself, do I want to be right or happy?

“Nothing made me happen. I happened.”

Enjoy…

https://youtu.be/ju-k30jOJv0