Friday, October 31, 2008

shots from the day so far

I am actually lurking about the Cornell campus and working in the pot shop there today all day, so this is a brief break. You can see some clever frat boy dressed the Ezra Cornell statue for Halloween, and look at Penny and Buster warming up!
Lastly, the missus. We had a picnic just now near Uncle Ezra's statue (gawd I'm stuffed) and I am not sure she looks all that spooky or dressed up for Halloween--I mean, who knows what is under that parka? Tart? Minx? Witch? Racoon?

Her ghost in the fog

By Cradle of filth. I have been on the fence about posting this today---it is death metal, somehow very horrific and somehow very forewarned! NOT for everybody, esp. not for my mom and dad, niece or or or......

le canard pitcher

(pitcher by Gary Rith--yes, it does pour through the beak!)

SO! Halloween. We have had one or two kids in the last two years. The little monsters better behave and leave my Obama signs intact. Maybe I should move them for the night. My wife usually puts on her leather miniskirt and fishnet stockings and acts the saucy tart that she is at heart, but this year I think she is going goth rather than saucy. Skulls, skeletons, something like that. I will be hiding somewhere, too scared to emerge from my lair.

In other news, I have heard back, oh yes I have, from the two sisters I wrote about below in Romy and Micelle, and they have made comments. Is it embarrassing when people you actually know read your blog? Let's spill a bean or two and admit that if you see cutting remarks and jokes at my expense from either an Elizabeth or a Wendy, that would be the 2 sisters. As I said below, I was friends with Elizabeth from about the age of 12 to around 22 when we lost track of each other, and Elizabeth, of course, was a knockout with a genius IQ with a super cute little sister a year younger, Wendy, and here we all are in our 40s. My wife, as these two girls would have agreed, is lucky she didn't meet me until I was 26, because as Beck said about teenage boys "I'm a loser baby...". Teenage boys are a life form lower than pond scum. We have a lot of growing up to do, and you just hope nobody remembers what you were like at 15. Wendy and Elizabeth remember what I was like at 15.

In far more important news, I had a call from the kiln parts people that my kiln parts are, of course, delayed. It will be nearly a month soon since my kiln worked, and just about all of its innards have been repaired by me (SIGH!!!!!!!!!!) SO, I go to Cornell's studios and work these days (lunch with my wife the saucy tart today!), and below and above are some recent pieces. The ducky pitcher looks most superb, and my pal in California Cheri with the duck loving daughter should take a close look....

(mugs by Gary Rith)

Must be Halloween: Ghostown

by the Specials. This is the third year, and we have live and studio videos!!!!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

this whole reunion thing

(click on pic for BIG VIEW)
I did a little digging. I am not a hoarder or keeper of stuff, and there is very little of my childhood kicking around. My mom probably has some of my stuff from when I was a kid.
Best I can do for high school is my football team picture from 1981. I was and I am a little squirt, one of the smallest on our team, but I started at right offensive guard and played 3 years in high school. Just knock the knees out of the guy across from you. Worked every time. Our teams were well known for being terrible and many of the guys smoked doobie or got drunk before games. Didn't help our record much.

le zebra mug, two massage therapists, Farrah and ME

The zebra mug down there? I was trying for a spiraly thing on the mug, which is a little trickier than you might imagine, and that worked well, but the photo is really horrible for some reason. The bowl with the dog is going on sale in my etsy gallery---remember to shop now and beat the Christmas rush!!!

In more important news, last night my wife, as sleep descended, tried to feed me cute and friendly scenarios for the dream hamster--maybe it wears glasses? Maybe it would read me a story? But you can't tell a dream hamster what to do. No sign of it last night, despite her meddling. I did however dream that I was at the world series and could hardly see the game because I was between 2 massage therapists and they were touchy feely types and couldn't keep their hands and bodies to themselves and it was a bit of agony for a person who would RATHER NOT be touched by anybody.

And my old pal, mentioned below under high school reuninon? She did check the entry, she even commented. I had forgotten the Farrah hair, yes I had....

(pots by Gary Rith)

Psychedelic Furs- Ghost in You

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Romy and Michelle's high school reunion, and ME

How to write this and protect the innocent? Plunge forward, I say!
I am not a reunion type of guy. BUT, if I had graduated from high school (rather than going AWOL 14 months early) it would have been 1984. 25 years ago this spring. Who cares, eh? Well, you get into your 40s, as I have, and you're still listening to the Talking Heads and Van Halen and quoting Monty Python skits and you say 'the world has changed but I sure as heck havn't'. Except for getting married, having a house full of pets and being a whole lot happier than my teen self, I am the same. Not even bald.
Anyway, came across a couple of old high school pals online yesterday.
Day one of 7th grade I sat next to -- because of the alphabetized seating chart, and Mr Washburn cracked a bad joke about --'s last name, and then for the rest of the year? Every time she raised her hand? He cracked the same stupid joke.
We had a lot of the same classes in the next few years, and she even lived around the corner from my house and we hung out from time to time. I had the hots for her, naturally, and even her little sister --, a year younger, but luckily we never ruined our friendship (s) by being boyfriend/girlfriend. I even named my new basset hound puppy after the little sister. Besides? Honestly? These two young women were waaaaaaay out of my league---waaaaaay too smart and beautiful for me. But we were pals.
SO anyway, we happened to move late in high school and I sorta left high school and went to college, but we exchanged letters etc. up until we were 22 or so and then it fell off...for about 20 years, until today! And do you know, she and her husband live up the street.....well, not too far away.

small cup, big frog

(cup by Gary Rith)
Just fiddling around here....

a dusting of snow and a happy pair of dogs

Buster and Penny love snow. People on hillsides all around us got tons of snow, we got just a little.
Thankfully: a) my parka arrived last week, cause it is COLD b)the weather is due to warm up!


My bloggy pal and customer Knight ordered a black vase and was so pleased with it she vlogged it. Knight is a New Yorker and lives in black, and you will see that the vase suits her color scheme very well.

In other news, back to the usual dreams last night, and this was a good one. Dreamt it was warm (HA! snowing here) and I was at a strawberry farm and there were fresh strawberries and a banquet! Yay!
So here are some funky little sugar bowls.....


By Ladytron, who are from Glasgow or somewhere like that. A kickin' good tune for my ghost themed week.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

other people's doggie videos!

MY SIL Emily linked this heroic small dog who saved kittens from a house fire yesterday....and...

and WEP suggests this beagle escape video....

snow falling on beagle

OK, here it is: I was walking Penny across the bridge behind our house and the rain really turned to snow. Bleh. Maybe I'll get some good pics later. For now, I have torn my kiln's wiring apart (HAHAHA! I am not going to say I hate my kiln, but it sure does break down A %$#*& LOT) and I just took the screens off the doors! Winter! Oh, the kiln? I will see if somebody will send me a relay. New elements CHECK, new wires CHECK, kiln still doesn't work? order some relays and hope they arrive soon...........

VLOG studio tour with GR!!!!!!!

Thought you might like a tour of my lair......


My parents are deep in the woodsy hills and are getting dumped on by snow already. Still rain in Ithaca, but ch. 9 tells us:

Rain changing to snow around dinnertime. Over higher elevations it will be snow all day. 3-6 inches over higher elevations with a coating to a couple inches over lower elevations.

absolutely horrific

I had maybe the worst night of dreams in my life, one after another and some of them absolutely horrible--all were entirely vivid.
I remember one where I was out with my parents at a fancy place and I thought the bill would be a rather pricey 150 BUT it was 450......
Then I had probably the scariest dream I have ever had in my life: I was the prison guard who led people into the death chambers and shut the door (that is the brief version of the horror I saw in the dream) and I had to convince them it was a shower and the smell and the building itself and the despair and the horror of it was SO REAL...YES, I awoke and my heart was pounding and I was awake until morning BUT fell asleep again and this time I was hiding in a NY apartment knowing there was an assasin waiting for me out there and through the window I saw a guy with a sniper rifle across the street and the laser pointer was searching across the room for me and all I had was my camera and I flashed it....and then the final dream, also bad.
I was sitting at a table fiddling away making sacred items out of clay (communion cup and all that stuff--I have made some communion sets for Episcopal and Lutheran services, and other items for Jewish services)
and there was a Catholic priest sitting across from me bugging me. "Why are you doing this or that..." and I whacked him in the nose with a clay covered brush...

Well. I am all jingly jangly and my heart is pounding. I always have fun and nice dreams with hamsters or whatever, where did this all come from?


(vases by Gary Rith)

Le Ghost theme....

Halloween coming up, eh? Time for a few ghostly type tunes, this week. Let's kick it off with the POTTERY SCENE FROM GHOST the movie! From what I heard, Demi had a few pottery lessons so she wouldn't look too foolish, but the movie hired a professional potter to make all the stuff in the studio....hope it paid well.

Monday, October 27, 2008

a petite zebra haiku

A petite zebra haiku by Gary Rith (not as tasteless as it could be, plus something for the ladies....)

Zebra=striped horse
Zebra bikini=smokin'!
Zebra briefs=hawt dude!


You may have noticed that I am becoming zebra obsessed. Maybe I need zebra undies for Christmas?

le pots

(by Gary Rith)
BTW, I am kind of digging the new color schemes here, how about you?
My pal Michelle from BC, Canada's left coast, said 'hey, what if a mug had a BIG animal, and the tail became the handle?'. I thought about it, and loving zebras as I do, thought I would try this--where the handle becomes the zebra body. I would guess that there are many more zebras in my near future.
Plus some entirely zebraless dishes!
DREAMT, as a person does, of the little hamster, in brief, as usual. It had some bird seed (what the heck do hamsters eat? a carrot, a pepper slice? do they eat bird seed? I guess the one in my dreams does). It was very cutely holding a large sunflower seed in its paw--that's it. The hamster report: briefly sighted.
Also dreamt that I was over at the house of a bunch of hockey players and we were eating bowl after bowl of cereal....I don't eat cereal in real life. Well, Puffins sometimes.
Frankly, it was a great weekend, and even self-employed work at home guys grumble on a Monday morning....

le missus and the yarn

Would you be surprised to hear that our 2 cats love yarn and knitting projects? The missus had died several skeins of yarn with veggies, like carrot tops or onion skins or marigold flowers---a beautiful rainbow, being rinsed here Saturday then the scarf was begun on Sunday...

Jane Says

The dancers, elves and freaks, all of it.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


I am awakened by my beagle who jumps on me and sits on me and my wife takes my picture.....

the pet in my head

Before Penny awoke this morning, gakking and throwing up again (sigh--up at 5:30 on Sunday) Dreamt, of course (having seen Socks and the City last night), that I was in NY city visiting my SIL Emily and had an argument at the deli because I wanted peanut butter and jelly on my bagel and they thought I was crazy. Spent the whole night arguing with those people at the deli.....
AND the little hamster visited, but all I saw was its face and BIG EYES (which look a little accusing, I have to tell you). Ever since I learned it can read it has been what? Nervous that I'll tell everybody my dream hamster can read? Something like that.

Sea Hag and the Pet in My Head

(Gary Rith and his new BFF Colleen, artist, soapmaker and owner of the Sea Hag)
Me and the missus went to Sea Hag Soaps and Mercantile yesterday. It is a famous gallery in Pennsylvania that has been selling my work for about a year, but I had never visited, allowing other people to deliver for me. I got my fat check last week for the prior month's sales and said "HOLY SALES SLIP we gotta go too this place with EVERY POT I CAN SPARE!!!!!". 'Cause Christmas is coming!
Central and western New York where we live is a long and narrow slice, Lake Ontario (and Ontario!)is just over an hour north of us, Pennsylvania an hour south. Brackney is over hill and dale right on the state line, and it makes our little town of 300 look big---Brackney, PENN has a post office, and 7 lakes. It is like a little fairy tale, it is so pretty there, with all these little wooded hills and lakes and cottages and barns and cows and sheep. Funny that Pennsylvania would look so different from neighboring New York, but somehow it does? More hills, tighter together, more trees, more wooly sheep? Something like that. Plus anytime there are 7 lakes and loads of tourist cottages and all, you have fewer trailers and more COTTAGES.
So, Colleen bought 30 acres, a barn a creek, and pond for 40 thousand back around 9/11 and I AM JEALOUS. The barn is absolutey huge and perfectly restored. They really do make a boatload of soaps there, plus there is a huge gallery for selling art, and with the pond and creek and hillside and live music groups that is a destination. She has the prettiest hillside, she really does, and the thing that amazes you is how crowded the place is and how nearly impossible to find.
OK, so lucky me, I have reason to GO BACK, preferably when the weather isn't as stinko as yesterday.


Pump up the volume.

Saturday, October 25, 2008


I met new people today, and they now know this blog. It is embarrassing to admit, when there might be new readers here, that I just watched Socks and the City, the movie. It is entirely new to me, but I think the wife found it amusing.
Me? "Which character do I hate the most? The least??" I asked myself. Definately Miranda, YUCK. Carrie? Ugh. Kim Catrall's character is funny and loveable though. And has a cute little dog!
Overall? 3 out of ten. Plllbbbt.

hamsters and confessions

You know about my dream hamster, right? I was wondering when it might visit me again. Its visits are invariably brief and pointed. (I have a pet hamster that visits me in my dreams, yes I do...)
So, the confession, other than lifting this pic from somewhere else? We were in PENNSYLAVANIA this morning drinking coffee and gossiping (more on that tomorrow) and we got home and I grabbed the beagle and fell asleep. A nap. I was whupped!
So, the hamster is there. It is opening a book and looking at it and it looks up at me and its eyes pop open in surprise.
So, now I not only have a dream hamster, I have a dream hamster who can READ, and the hamster was keeping it secret.....

le zebra teapot and sugar bowl!

(Gary Rith making pots)
Soooooo, Friday was MOST awesome.
I shipped a box to WALES, United Kingdom, an order to Old Grey Poet, which Kate was sending to him, how cool is that? I cleaned the cat box and blogged, per usual but then had a DATE with the wife late in the afternoon at the hippie cafe! (usually you hear me call it the hippie bakery, but Friday? We went into the CAFE side. Much fancier (NOT) I love dates with the wife, although my allowance can only afford so much, but I had a COUPON!!!!! (Yes, I use coupons when I go on dates, doesn't everybody?)
But, before that I had spent a super pleasant afternoon fiddling with zebras and all my pals at the Cornell ceramics studio. The place was absolutely packed. When I was in college, everybody went to the pottery studio on Friday afternoon to warm up for the weekend and listen to the Grateful Dead (and smoke herb--but not me, no no!), but yesterday, as it had been in college, everybody just as quickly clears out by 5 to go out drinking. Well anyway. Big adventures today plus somebody from Cleveland called and wants to visit the studio (? I am very famous in Cleveland?). More later....

le beastie in le bed

Penny usually gets into bed first. She warms things up.

The Fixx

Red Skies. More post anarcho-punk 80s dance music. SOOO good.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Desert island: the summary

There has been some discussion here of the five people who you would want with you on a desert island, the drink's available on that desert island and what you want to do on that heavenly island.
Lynda called and said she was busy and cannot therefore join us, but Jennifer Love Hewitt said she wasn't doing anything for the rest of her life and Paul said we could use a ghost whisperer.....and George mentioned that Jennifer should bring some bikinis and....well.
I'm serious, I think about this EVERY DAY: who comes with me, what do we do? ALWAYS: no mosquitos allowed on my desert island!!!!!!!!!!!!!

desert island mememememe

I ask myself, and you: what would you need on a desert island? Let's imagine the island is very self-sufficent: about a hundred acres with a nice high hilltop with a clean and dry cave, a nice little beach and cove, plenty to eat and no mosquitos. Heaven, in fact.
SO: who do you want to join you, 5 people, what do you want to do to occupy yourself (sorry, anything but TV or computers, mostly), and you are allowed a fridge full of your favorite beverages which would be______

---5 people: 1) my wife! 2) Penny the beagle! (sorry my other pets, but your aunt Emily will move in with you and spoil you back in New York) 3) Paul Newman, I bet he'd be fun to talk to everyday--I'd say George Carlin too, but I bet he would get irritating 4) George Clooney--they say he is a fantastic host, really easy to get along with 5) Lynda from art on a limb, cause she is smart and hers is the last blog I looked at before writing this and I bet she would be extremely good company for all of us
---what do you want to do to occupy yourself: man, I want a load of clay and complete pottery studio, drawing paper, writing paper, and a weekly subscription to the New Yorker magazine, dropped by parachute---if I can't have that, maybe stone carving tools to try out the whole Easter Island tiki thing
---a fridge full of your favorite beverages which would be: OH JOY!!!! BEERS!!! RED WINE!!!! LEMONADE!!!!!!!!!!!! if I have to limit myself? those pub draught cans of Guinness would work perfectly...

OK, hey, it's your chance, weigh in here or at your blog! Everybody's tired and bored and workin' for the weekend, so think about this!

(25 out there this morning, a good chance to try the new black parka.....)

funky little sugar bowl

(pot by Gary Rith)
I made this as a demo to a class--I can't remember what I was showing them, but essentially I was poking and prodding the little thing, seeing where my fantasies might take me.
Dreamt that my friend T, whose wife is an orthopedic surgeon, set me up for a dental appt with her. I dunno, she wasn't a very good dentist at all, which is maybe not surprising. She made me nervous alright.
I was awakened first by our fat little kitten Emily (age 14) looking for love and cuddles at 4:30, which would make me angry I suppose, except Penny was under the covers by my feet and started doing that DOG GAKK that means she is about to vomit, and I quickly grabbed Penny and dumped her on the floor to spew.
So I guess, thanks Emily for waking me gawdawful early so my toes were not soaked with dog vomit.....

post anarcho-punk: XTC

Senses Working Overtime

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Le LOL beasties

Thanks Penny and Spike and the Missus!


Got a petite package today from Patagonia. MY FAnTABULOUS PARKA arrived and it fits perfectly and covers my a$$ as well as all my face except eyes. It was roasting hot here in the living room (note the beagle in the pic). YES, it was snowing yesterday morning so this thing arrived just in time. I got my Bears parka thanks to the missus in 1993, and it is still awesome, but will be used for shoveling snow and that sort of thing. I wear stuff forever. I figure that 20 years from now? I'll be in this black parka. Heck, I'll put it into my will NOW, for the next generation.
Emily my SIL sent this faboo 80s music video, and Gord the red sign up there, cause THERE goes the markets, eh? Down the tubes?

le bathroom LOL

Our pal Nancy made little knobs for out bathroom cabinets, aren't they stunning? Traded a chicken mug for them, HA!
(Middle picture shows the ordinary knobs BEFORE. My old pal Greg had made the stunning table on the right of the sink last winter)

Le snore and le glory: I am a very late bloomer

(le snore white plate and le glorious frog plate by Gary Rith)
I just read an extraordinary article in the New Yorker about LATE BLOOMERS. We assume genius is expressed early, when in fact, a lot of innovators plod along their whole lives experimenting with creative ideas before getting anywhere. I am a plodder. I am an experimenter. So, creative innovation can come either way: your extraordinary young genius or your late bloomer.
Case in point. There is a fellow in town here who picked up clay just a couple years ago and his teapots have been featured at the Smithsonian (the biggest honor in the US for craft) and in a current exhibit here in town, my 95 dollar teaset (the piggy thing on the right of the page here!) is next to his THREE THOUSAND TWO HUNDRED DOLLAR TEAPOT which doesn't even have cups, let alone creamer and sugar.
So, I shake my head at that. I have been fiddling around OVER 25 YEARS and slowly moving down the creative road, and this guy just blazes onto the scene. It is most reassuring to know that it was true of Picasso and Cezanne---Picasso's great work came early, Cezanne's LATE. Hallelujah!
OK, these plates here are an example. I glazed the white and blue one, and said 'hmm, this is OK, but what if I experimented here, added a frog, and then a puddle of blue surrounded by GREEN?'. That is really the kind of sloooow plodding steps I take, but look what happened, look what I learned!