Dec 23 2011

#237 “Friends”

From Frances in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (courtesy of MC)

Nothing stirs my soul more than receiving artwork from a friend of an artist instead of the artist himself/herself. Why is this? Well, simply put, when this exchange takes place and one friend offers a gift of art to another, much more than the art itself is exchanged. Messages are sent through the action that go deeper than words, and a sacred bond is created between both the giver and receiver that is difficult to establish in any other way. The message from the bestower to the recipient is one of love and trust. The giver offers herself up wholly and says, “Here is a piece of myself that I give freely to you. I value you enough to share a personal creation with you. You are important to me, and I want this gift to serve as a reminder of my love and affection for you.” The message sent from the one who receives the gift to the one who gives it is one of acceptance, admiration and empathy. This message says, “I take you as you are and I love your gift not because of the level of talent it displays but because of the sentiment behind it. I will value your art as much as I value you as a person. You are dear to me and therefore anything that you have to offer to me is precious and special.”

As you can see, this type of gift-giving is deep and meaningful for both parties. Therefore, when I receive a picture such as the one above (that was seemingly a gift from one friend to another), I become a third party to this important process and am honored to be involved. It’s almost like being a fly on a wall and witnessing some deeply sentimental event. While this wolf may be no more than the combination of a couple circles and a few lines and dots on a notecard, the symbolic meaning goes much deeper, and to me, this small illustration is a reminder of the hope that still exists in this world through the love and selflessness of good friends.

Thanks, Frances. Thanks, MT. If you’re ever in Chattanooga, send me a message. Maybe we can get a cup of coffee together, and perhaps even more new friendships will be born…

Jul 27 2011

#88 “Catchphrase!”


From Laura in Little Rock, Arkansas

“Stay cool, Bro…”  What a fantastic phrase. There is so much positivity contained within it. So much energy as well as an overt admonition to simply relax and take it easy. Also, there’s an implied sense of brotherhood. Ladies and gentlemen, I tell you: this phrase has it all: encouragement, love, support, and of course, a slight sense of nastalgia for the very recent past. This is one of those phrases that never really “went away,” but also, it seems that we probably wouldn’t be surprised to hear that someone was “bringing it back.”

After pondering this wonderful wolf illustration and its eloquent catchphrase for a short while, my mind began to wander to some of the more popular phrases from pop culture that I remember from my youth. Then, another idea came upon me, and simply put, I have decided to bestow upon you a pop culture catchphrase game. Grab a friend or participate all by yourself; the choice is yours.

Here are the rules:
1. Examine the list of catchphrases below and then try to identify the character and the movie/television show that are most associated with the quote. Write down your answers separately; don’t shout them out. Also, make sure that you don’t sneak a peek at the answer key located below the phrases.
2. One point is awarded for the characer. Another point is awarded for the movie/show. Therefore, each quote is worth 2 points.
3. After all 25 phrases have been examined, the game is over. Check the answer key below and tally your scores.
4. The player with the most points is the winner and must treat the other players to ice cream immediately.

1. “Bam!”
2. “De plane! De plane!”
3. “Dynomite!”
4. “Hey! Hey! Hey!”
5. “I love it when a plan comes together.”
6. “Live long and prosper”
7. “Don’t have a cow, man.”
8. “No soup for you!”
9. “The tribe has spoken”
10. “The truth is out there.”
11. “You’re fired!”
12. “You eeeeeeediot!”
13. “Who loves you, baby?”
14. “Oh my God! They killed Kenny!”
15. “How you doin’?”
16. “Homey don’t play that!”
17. “Here’s Johnny!”
18. “Baby, you’re the greatest!”
19. “Space: The final frontier…”
20. “That’s hot…”
21. “Yabba dabba do!”
22. “Watchoo talkin’ ’bout, Willis?”
23. “You got it, dude!”
24. “Did I do that?”
25. “Good Grief!”


Answer Key:
1. Emeril Legasse, “Emeril Live”
2. Tattoo, “Fantasy Island”
3. J.J., “Good Times”
4. Fat Albert, “Fat Albert”
5. Hannibal, “The A-Team”
6. Spock, “Star Trek”
7. Bart Simpson, “The Simpsons”
8. The Soup Nazi, “Seinfeld”
9. Jeff Probst, “Survivor”
10. Fox Mulder, “The X-Files”
11. Donald Trump, “The Apprentice”
12. Ren, “Ren and Stimpy”
13. Kojac, “Kojac”
14. Kyle/Stan, “Southpark”
15. Joey, “Friends”
16. Homey the Clown, “In living Color”
17. Ed McMahon, “The Tonight Show”
18. Ralph Kramden, “The Honeymooners”
19. Capt. Kirk, “Star Trek”
20. Paris Hilton, “The Simple Life”
21. Fred Flintstone, “The Flintstones”
22. Arnold/Gary Coleman, “Diff’rent Strokes”
23. Michelle, “Full House”
24. Steve Urkel, “Family Matters”
25. Charlie Brown, “Peanuts”