If I were to listen to my Dad, knowing he'd cringe seeing a picture of himself "online", I'd choose another image without him in it. But it would be like a missing brick to this project and nothing would hold firm if he wasn't a part of it. So whether he likes it or not, he became a part of this and I'll just either hope he never reads this or forgives me for the weakness of an admiring daughter. This has been a long mental, physical, geographical and emotional journey he's taken with me. He (and my mom) are my actual and poetic foundation. Though I be terribly fierce in my determination to build things, there is no way on this wonderful earth that my mind would be capable of working the way his does.
Today I asked about the two blocks on top of the ceramic/concrete slab lid we poured, what was the purpose. I couldn't make it out. I can usually visualize most things but had no idea if this was misplaced lumber or the start of something I wasn't up to step on. "It's a crane," I was told. And then as he smugly puts on an attitude when he really wants to get to me reminds me, "I'm an engineer, you know". As if I didn't know. And not ironically at all, he was wearing his shirt that proudly proclaims Enginerd when he said it. He probably didn't notice though. It was probably the next shirt in line in the drawer.
I'm going to go back in time as we're nearing completion, to show the journey, the motivation and plans for the future on this humble, beautiful memory I'll always have. But it hasn't all been sunshine and daisies. I am his assistant. I've have been barked at in the process when my brain or hands didn't catch up to his or in my penchant of snapping shots when I could. I've been used to not being able to catch up all my life as his 6' frame towered over me walking with him at adult pace when I was a mere pup. You just had to run to catch up and though he's slowed a little it's never been enough that I can ever keep up. The track and cross country star is still in that frame so you better see that hole and catch up. At least he's never held my small frame against me for if he had I'd remind him again that he could have made a beefier daughter had he tried hard enough. He raised no sissy girls though, that's for sure and certain.
My entire journey in ceramics started with both my parents. My mom sitting in the warm car knitting away for hours when I took my first pottery workshop in middle school. Later on the season changed with my friend Brighid with her mom picking us up after school in the off-season between the end of high school tennis and just before winter training for track. I loved those days. My mom urged my dad to come in before my last session that first summer to look at the wheels, knowing full well he can make anything. A plan was created and executed for my first kickwheel within a couple months time. My childhood dog, Lorenzo looked on through sawing wood and pouring of cement and later kept me company in the cool shop while I worked. I "practiced" until New York's November's weather made for cramped, cold fingers in wet buckets. That young I wore sandals in the snow because that's what nutty teenagers do. They seem to have no feeling for ambition drives most everything. Not much has changed even now. But I stopped then only because they put the foot down. "That's enough until next year." Protests fell on deaf ears.
Long before blogs as a busy teenager I didn't write these things down. But I'm older now, trying to play a little catch up and I'm sure some of these memories will pop up from time to time. These entries are for me but if down the road it can be helpful for someone else, that's really great. I'll highlight important things skim-worthy if the sentiments get in the way. But in the way they must stay as I'm looking back at 20+ years now in a career centered on this now so you must allow me my sentimentality. And this is my story and I want to keep on reading it to know if it's any good or not.