Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Ornament

I feel pretty rough this morning and I really want to write about that and an exchange yesterday with another concerned customer (about my health) but this ornament must have its story told.  I said it looked like something the artist son would have made.  We’ll call him John.  I feel like I’m assigning letters to variables in algebra equations!  More about that- the process of choosing fake names- later.  John is the older son and studied art or design at a fine university I think in New York State.  It has been years since I’ve seen him.  He was the first one to leave the nest only a couple of years after I started cleaning for the Anthony’s.  Though he has not been around for me to see him, the house is full of his art work from over the years. 

In the old house one of his paintings was in the kitchen, one in the upstairs bathroom one in the media room, geez I can’t remember all of them off hand.  And now as I bring them to mind I am struck by the variety of subjects he chose to paint; the one in the kitchen was a still life of a potted plant in their cellar that had vines draped over exposed pipes.  I never asked about that one but I’m positive it would be a good story.  The painting in the upstairs bath was a large canvas of a male figure seated showing the back and the lowered left shoulder; a calming study of the complete figure.  It looked like he was studying the use of color to express degrees of warmth.  The one in the media room was of a solitary older man in mid stride, a fairly distant perspective of the subject compared to his other works in the house, except for a small whimsical piece in his bedroom of a hot air balloon in flight.

What makes me think the sculpted figure ornament is one of John’s creations is a wire sculpture of a male figure that used to be perched on the light fixture of the half bath in their old kitchen.  I did ask Lisa about that one and I swear I remember that smiling quality of a really happy mother recalling the surprises that come with children; I think she told me the wire had come from one of the neighborhood refurbishing projects, very thin, plastic coated in various colors, and how John had used it in his creations.  That same figure now sits in the guest bath of the new condo, looking like a modern Ponderer.

I hate to stop here, I’m afraid I’ll get distracted and never come back, but my eyes are very sore and the discomfort in my chest has spread this morning to the neck and head and despite aspirin is intensifying.  I have to rest in the hopes of being able to work tomorrow with out too much pain.  I’m sorry to be such a whiner, but I’ve never been noble that way, and I do hope one day someone with this same condition will find courage and comfort when they come across an account of the same pain they experience.  It is very humiliating to read medical descriptions of painful symptoms subsumed under the heading of hypochondria.  Until science has a way of chemically revealing this subjective pain, like acids changing the color of litmus paper, people who live with it need to hear the accounts of cohorts to remind them that they are not victims of their own faulty imagination but people in real physical distress.

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