Friday, January 31, 2014

Boiling Over

“Before you head off to Thailand I need help with something,” my mother said to me on the phone yesterday.
     I looked at the phone in my hand, wishing it would take flight and wing away so I wouldn’t have to continue this conversation. “Please tell me you aren’t having another problem with your coffee pot.”
     But she was. Read about it (here).


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Jewelry Shopping in India

While on tours, some travelers resent being brought to factories or warehouses to see how goods are made. Tour guides have usually made deals and receive kickbacks if anyone buys anything. I’ve never found these merchants to be overly pushy and, as an artist, I appreciate craftsmen and tend to enjoy demonstrations showing how goods are made.But I'd never seen jewelry presented like this before. Read about it (here).

Monday, January 27, 2014

The Dowry

I should have listened better when my future wife told me her grandmother was evil. I mean, how evil could she be? How could anyone as sweet and caring as my future Mrs. Chatterbox be related to anyone evil? I was young and not knowledgeable in the ways of the world. And I should have listened better. Read about it (here).

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Expiration Dates

Mrs. Chatterbox and I have been quarreling over expiration dates for forty years. You can weigh in (here).

Friday, January 24, 2014

Another Rascally Rabbit

I usually refrain from commenting on stories in the news but this one caught my attention and made me chuckle. Did you hear about the controversy over the huge statue of Nelson Mandela erected in Pretoria a few days after the former president’s funeral? It seems the statue has a stow-a-way. Check it out (here).

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

The Angel of the City

The Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice is the most important museum in Italy for European and American art of the first half of the 20th century. Its most famous (or notorious) exhibit is the 1948 bronze The Angel of the City by Marino Marini (1901-1980). Erected at the front of the museum facing the Grand Canal, this sculpture sports an erection of its own. Check it out (here.)

Monday, January 20, 2014

Smarter Than the Average Bear

I was driving down the road on my way back from visiting my website builder when I spotted a rummage sale in an abandoned lot on the far side of town. I had nothing better to do so I stopped to see if anyone was selling a Renoir or Van Dyck for a few bucks. Unfortunately, no treasure was being offered for sale. But I was mistaken. Read about it (here). 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

More Talent Than Luck

Carel Fabritius (1622-1654) is not nearly as well-known as his famous instructor Rembrandt, which is a shame because Fabritius was arguably Rembrandt’s most talented pupil and someone we’d be better acquainted with if tragedy hadn’t claimed the painter at the age of thirty-two.Read about it (here).

Friday, January 17, 2014

Gate Crashing

 Back when Mrs. Chatterbox and I were having difficulty affording gas for our car, I won an all expense paid vacation for two to New York City. While in the Big Apple I saw and experienced a great many things, but what I remember most is crashing a private show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Read about it (here).

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

A Lurking Monster

It was a modest house, referred to by locals as an Old Portland, built nearly a hundred years before we purchased it in 2003. Mrs. Chatterbox and I weren’t looking for a fixer upper but this house spoke to us. Had we listened more closely we might have also heard rumblings of something sinister. Read about it (here).


Monday, January 13, 2014

This One Sold #8

Regular readers of this blog are familiar with a feature called Peculiar Pictures, highlighting work I painted but never sold during my career as an illustrator. I’ve recently begun posting works that did sell. This one was purchased from an online site selling my royalty free conceptual illustrations.Check it out (here).


Sunday, January 12, 2014

Renoir Update

Last year I posted a story about a painting by French Impressionist Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841-1919) purchased at a flea market in Virginia by fifty-one year old Martha Fuqua for seven dollars. The painting turned out to have been stolen in the 1950s. I asked you to decide who rightfully owned this painting. The judge has made her ruling. Check it out (here).


Friday, January 10, 2014

Buddhism Made Simple

Since Mrs. C. and I will soon be traveling to several Buddhist countries, I’ve been doing research to become familiar with the tenets of this religion. I came across this story which attempts to explain Buddhism with a simple parable. Check it out (here).

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Apollo and Daphne

 Rome is blessed with artistic treasures beyond compare, especially when it comes to sculpture. I'd brought friends to the Borghese Gallery to check out one of my favorites. Could I explain why this statue intrigued me? Check it out (here).  


Monday, January 6, 2014

Popping the Question

     It happened on a cold day around this time of year, nearly forty years ago. How could time pass so quickly? And I should have expected that it wouldn't go as planned. Read about it (here). 

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Packing the Suitcases Again

I’ve held back on announcing our next vacation because political uncertainty has made me skittish about one of our destinations, but there’s never a perfect time to travel so Mrs. C. and I are packing our courage along with our wash & wear and hitting the airport on February 6th. Read about our destination (here).

Friday, January 3, 2014

Unfettered Capitalism

Rest assured this isn’t a political post. It’s about my first lesson in capitalism when I was thirteen years old. My plan would have made me the richest kid in the neighborhood had things gone according to plan. Read about it (here).

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Happy New Year!


Thanks to everyone for all the support last year. I wish everyone a prosperous and joyful 2014. May only good things come your way. Happy New Year.