Rapt attention

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Same old thing.

I am back from San Francisco, the incredibly shrinking show in the incredibly shrinking business.

Funny place, the people in the Bay Area don't generally smoke tobacco but the crows in the region are up to two packs a day. Might have to wrestle a butt from one of these guys...

The mighty Hillsborough Antique Show, once bustling with dealers and filling two great rooms and adjacent hallways to the brim, is now coughing like an old camel smoker, half lunged, existing on mere fumes, barely filling half a hall. Can't catch a breath, can't catch a break.

The writing is on the wall that it is going to twice a year from its present three times, Del Mar as well is two shows this year. Los Angeles barely supports a show, Bustamante,  feeble but a faint pulse thanks to a few remaining Persian buyers but the Los Angeles Modernism show is pretty much toast. Believe that one is now gone. Same story all over the country. Shows shriveling up and dying, dealers going broke and getting out of the business, never to be seen again. Old is out.

Kids today aren't into the old, the historical, the ethnic, art, antiques, the classic.

Even fifties and sixties was tough this year in Palm Springs, the needle slipping forward into the dreaded seventies and eighties. My god, I haven't seen Corian like that since the 90's...Will look so good with the hanging macrame shell ensemble and the vintage plastic.

What the hell happened? Damned if I know, they stopped teaching art in the schools, their parents were into drugs or therapy, there were never any items of value or historic import on the shelves of their favorite television shows, the Ikea functional and minimalist plastic lab rat with electronics lifestyle won the race, as I said I have no clue how the thing is supposed to turn out.

Saw something today that said the kids weren't even into drugs anymore, they preferred their telephones, god help us.

Play on your phones, tattoo your epidermis until their isn't an inch of native skin left, put the cute little thing through your nose, vote Republican, do whatever the fuck you want, you little bastard muggles. I can take solace in being part of the last generation with taste on my way to the cemetery.

Met some lurkers and hidden blast readers recently, down here and up there. Thank you. Doctor Rick says he likes when I am bitching and moaning the best, so this is for you babe.

I managed to sell some things, not enough of them. Crowds were sparse, weather was too nice. People are too broke. Sky is too blue.

My car took another shit. I am not sure if I shared my story of Palm Springs, wherein my driver side door stopped locking and then even closing? After miles of holding it closed with brute force, the local dealer thought they fixed it but two weeks later, bingo, it happens again, so I can't lock my car for three days in a big city and can't even get a hotel on the way home.

Thank you Michael for putting me up. The Chrysler dealer up there charged me another $175 to look at it and then said it would be about 700 more to fix and by the way they can't get the part until this week. So we will see what the locals say and then I will contact the lemon law attorney who sent me the nice letter last month. Because the same thing happened to the side door two years ago. Mad as hell, not gonna take it blah, blah, blah...

Discovered the New England Lobster Company on Cowan in Burlingame. Been driving by, missing it for years, where the hell have I been?

Better lobster rolls than I had in Maine.

Expensive but worth it. Had good Szechuan with Rick one night.

If I wanted to continue to write I would but I don't so adios for now, muchachas and muchachos. Catch you when I feel perky and human again.

Drove all day yesterday and unpacked today. Put away wet and wrung out to dry, knocked down like a three pin taking a brooklyn dive.

© Rick Griffin Estate
I got interviewed on KPFA's Grateful Dead Marathon on Saturday regarding the John "Marmaduke" Dawson record. It was a lot of fun and went pretty smoothly. Simulcast all over. Thanks to all involved.

The late Rick Griffin was an old and very good friend of mine. He was not above purloining an image from the public bank when he felt it artistically necessary.

He kiped the crow for the Wake of the Flood album from a black board game from the 1920's or 30's. I have one around someplace. It was on a playing card. Love you Rick.

Rick called Jeff, Dave and I the three musketeers. We used to sit around and point out things to him that he never knew he put in his paintings. Occasionally we and sometimes I would work all nighters with him in the studio. At times an ordeal but always real mind blowing. An amazing man.



Isak said...

Wish you didn't tell it like it was. Oh, all you said is too true about the
world and the sub-categorical world of antiques. We have seen the rise of the
twentieth century phenom and now its decline and imminent demise. We never saw
that the world of antiques is generational. All of us missed it. I have always
felt that it was cyclical but thought our stuff was somehow so eternally beautiful
and desirable that it would be passed over as though the blood of the Pascal
lamb had been smeared above its door. Since it is Spring, I will remain hopeful
that it too will have its Easter again. That out of the soil of days and years to come it will experience a second rebirth and have people, see-ers and seekers, choose to
hunt for it and collect it again. Might Rudy's grand museum-to-be be the spark which
lights a national fire for it again? Will oldies like you and me live to see that or
are like Hillsborough itself a shadow of days gone by soon to be like your Marlboroed flyers cawing "Nevermore..." Isak

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...


Ha Ha! There is plenty of art in schools. I see it everywhere at the school my wife has taught math for over thirty years. Art might not be taught as it was when I was a kid in the late 60's or early 70's. My parents thought it was cultural doom and gloom at the time, as I recall. But today art in schools happens passionately, whether it is offered as a class or not.
Viva Zappa!

Anonymous said...

Best commercial for Marlboros ever. Good name for a rock band...The Smokin' Crows"

Can you photo shop Trumps hand up Kellyanne's skirt ?

Max Hall said...

Photo shop your trump protest poster over the cigarette pack the crow is holding...

Blue Heron said...

Hey Max, where you been? Hope you're feeling better.

Ken Seals said...

One word: Toyota