Number Nine, Number Nine

Clump #150:  Clear paper pile number nine from floor of study.

It’s the Flippin February Paper Pile Purge.  I’m still plowing through the piles my younger daughter sorted out to help us with our paper-pile-up. And I’m flippin out over another snow coming down over the previous snows and the ice, now like broken glass.

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Today’s paper pile was fairly easy to take care of.  As I document this project day after day, a trend is becoming obvious: I feel the need to apologize for the small size or effort of the day’s clump.  But really, by processing papers on a daily basis, it is … easy.  Will the lesson be solidified by the end of February?

Our clump of magazine subscription invitations and other similar items, before:

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And after, split into shred, recycle, and two papers needing phone calls:

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Another lesson learned today: a clump this size is doable even when one is very, very tired, as I am now.  I went to a three hour watercolor class at Longwood Gardens, and all that mixing of color has worn me out.  I can imagine how lame that sounds … so arduous!  Watercolor painting is something I’ve long wanted to do, and was feeling stressed about the reality of making it happen … and, I guess, not measuring up. My clump-by-clump clearing has given me courage to do what I have previously feared.

Our watercolor teacher follows the method of a man named Michael Wilcox, who wrote the book Blue and Yellow Don’t Make Green.  He posits that all the colors an artist needs can be made with six shades, two each, warm and cool, of red, blue, and yellow. Here’s my misshapen color wheel:

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So many great life lessons from a good teacher:  “It’s only paper!” “Stop futzing!”  These in response to students, really the whole class, trying to be too perfect.

Since this is the ninth pile of my month-long paper project, I was reminded of The Beatles, their song, Revolution 9, and the fact that today is the 50th anniversary of their first appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show.  I, like many, have a vivid memory of the event.  I was lying on my stomach in front of the television.  My father was saying over and over, “Isn’t that ridiculous!” to all the screaming and carrying on.  I agreed with him, but inside I was screaming and carrying on too!

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It’s hard to believe now how long those haircuts looked to us then.  Revolutionary.

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