Stream of Consciousness

Sunday, June 10, 2007

A weekend of unplanned adventures & inspiration

Today I woke up at 9 am with no roommates and no plans. Sometimes I hate being alone, I'm just in the mood to be with people. But today was a good alone day. Had breakfast and came up with a game plan for the day, talked to Kightlinger way over in NZ, and headed out the door at 10:30 am. I really love driving down the road, blaring the radio, singing at the top of my lungs. I mean, really, is there anything that compares to that?

Some guy was driving like a complete asshole getting onto the 795. Karma came around to bite him in the butt when along came Mr. State Trooper.

My first stop of the day was the American Visionary Art Museum down in Fed Hill. Some of the exhibits were interesting, some were ridiculously hilarious, some made me think, and some really made me think. I've never just done a museum by myself before (other than the MFA, but that doesn't count). It was interesting to get lost in my own thoughts about a piece or installation without comparing them with someone else's. It was nice to be able to stare at a pencil drawing, finding humorous vignettes only upon close inspection, that I might have otherwise passed by because someone I was with was ready to move on to the next gallery. My favorite part of AVAM was the expansion warehouse. (I would love to live in converted warehouse space one day, so cool!) I've discovered I really like provocative pieces that are designed to catch you off-guard. And I especially enjoy environmental pieces, as opposed to paintings or drawings.

This quote was mounted on one of the walls:

People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered;
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful you will win some false friends and true enemies;
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.

What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
Do good anyway.

Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give the world the best you've got anyway.

You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and God;
It was never between you and them anyway.

-Mother Teresa (Adapted from The Paradoxical Commandments by Kent Keith (1968))

I really think there's a lot to take away from that. Forgiveness, inspiration, drive, passion, ambition. And remembering that what you do should be for no one other than yourself (and your god).

I finally made it over to Blu Bambu in Inner Harbor, an Asian kitchen Blake has been bugging me to visit since she found out I was moving down here. I was surprised, I thought it was going to be take-out typical Chinese food. But they had this really cool Mongolian stir-fry bar. Nice and healthy with lots of flavor and not that expensive. Then I stopped by the Hard Rock Cafe to get a pin for John.

Next it was over to the Mount Vernon neighborhood to visit the Contemporary Art Museum. They're currently displaying an entire collection by Joseph Grigley. He became completely deaf at the age of 10. His pieces "explore the idiosyncrasies of language and the dynamics of everyday communication." Totally unexpected and definitely got me thinking about something I wholly take for granted. The coolest installation was called "We're Drunken Bantering about What's Important in Life" (2007). It's a collection of notes - snippets of conversations people had with Grigley - posted to a wall. "With these works, Grigely asks the question: “We presumably know what a conversation sounds like—but what does a conversation look like?”"

The rest of the day was filled with the delightful routine chores of a sunday -- produce market, grocery store, nap, and gym. I also watched a documentary called F**k (at least, that's how it's listed on Netflix). It explores the nature of the word fuck, where it comes from, how we use it, why it's such a big deal, and the pervasive use of the word in American society. I might also watch another movie -- we'll see.

Yesterday was the Race for the Cure 5K at work bright and early am. We were going to do the last 1 mile Fun Walk, but at the last minute I convinced my roommate to do the full 5K with me. So we grabbed numbers, ran about half of the course overall, and I finished my very first 5K with a time of 38:25. I didn't get a plaque, I think we may have even been the last people doing the full 5K to finish -- but we did finish. And it was fun. I will definitely do more charity walks/runs in the future.

I spent most of yesterday doing a whole lot of nothing by the pool. Then went to an O's game with Kristen because she had free tickets. Nothing eventful, but fun to hang out with someone new!

Overall, it was a really nice weekend. I can't believe this chapter of my life is coming to a close so soon already. I'm finally feeling settled here. I almost forget what it's like to just hang out with everyone... I haven't been to Boston since February and haven't been home since Easter. Who knows -- more adventures ahead!

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