Friday, June 10, 2022

More historical info

 Here's a photo taken by Brad Benson of me performing with Lauren Stripling at The Magnet Theater in November of 2014.


          How this page started:

          I made my very first attempt to post updates on linkedin with some of the above.

          This was one of those hard knocks things.

          First, they have rather small limits on the lengths of updates.

          Second, they remove carriage returns, so that bulleted lists become garbled.

          Third, There doesn't seem to be a way to edit a post once you get it up there.

          Fourth, it's really hard to enter text in there, because they automatically substitute miscellaneous links, while you're typing, and you have to hit "escape" while typing to avoid getting this miscellaneous, unrelated garbage in your post.

          So I deleted my post, put a link to this blog on linkedin, and am maintaining this for recent updates.  I also have a link to this update page on my website and on my profile at Paul Michael's The Network. I am grateful to this website for allowing me to be verbose and format and reformat my posts.

          Musings about getting into Art

          Update about commercializing my art

          Some people have been encouraging me to try to put my doodles into the field of surface design: fabrics, carpets, etc.  

          I went to the Printsource convention during the summer of 2019. This is a convention where people selling surface designs offer their wares to the buyers.  Apparently there are a number of such conventions in NYC.  This is one of the few that allows non-exhibiting artists to visit and talk to people.

          Looking at the exhibitors, it appeared that they had all put in several thousand dollars getting their designs printed up poster size and in books on thick display material.  They all had hundreds of designs.

          True, none of their designs looked similar to mine, but that could be fashion.

          I got the e-mail addresses of at least 20 businesses that hire artists for surface design.  I e-mailed all of them with a link to my google photo album.  A few got back to me saying that they liked my art, but they needed art in digital vector form, not hand drawn.  One company said that they need patterns that repeat so that they can be printed out on rolls.

          I’m just not willing to spend the time and money to create this type of exhibit or get the software necessary to create digital images.  I just want to draw on paper.  It’s a stress relief thing.  I don't want to work on making my designs repeat, either. I'm sure it could be done -- likely not too difficult -- but not really fun for me.  I do think my designs would be suitable for a scarf or an area rug, without repeating.

          There are some designers who do hand drawn designs — but companies that hire those designers did not get back to me.

          I have put a couple of designs on (link to my page), but no one contacted me as interested.  One of the artists at the convention told me that you have to promote them. No one just goes on there browsing.  Again, I’m not willing to spend the money to create a marketing campaign.

          In order to sell from spoonflower you have to order a sample and proof it.  I haven't done that yet, though I might at some point.  

          Original blog on Musings about getting into art

          In the past, I always regarded art as a distraction, not even to the level of a hobby -- just something to do to calm down.  I never thought that I was good at art.  When I was a kid, there were art classes in school, and I never felt that my representational art was as good as that of many of the other students in the classes I took.

          Also, my handwriting was very poor for a girl.  I don't think it was as bad as the boys' handwriting, but I got negative remarks for it.

          I started doing calligraphy to try to overcome bad handwriting. I doodled a lot, the way one might drum one's fingers or crack one's knuckles, just to release stress.

          I've posted some of my calligraphy on this blog before.

          Then, in 2017, I started remembering my mother's doodles.  She doodled in the margins of shopping lists and newsletters -- abstract shapes. I remember thinking some of them were quite beautiful -- but I don't have any of them now, because they were all thrown away with the documents they were drawn on.

          I decided to start doing doodles to give to friends, so that my doodles wouldn't suffer the same fate as my mother's.  Then I posted some on social media. To my surprise, people really loved them.  I've even sold some.  That's hard for me to wrap my mind around.  Someone bought art from me?  Curious.

          Animation/3D Modeling/Rigging

          Samples of my work

          WordPress Blog about my recent studies with blow by blow updates of samples of my skills

          Courses I've taken

          • Certificate program in 3D Modeling & Animation, wcc Sept 2021-July 2022, Prof: Joseph Thomas
          • Java Programming for Video Games, Summer 2021, Lehman College, Prof: Brian Murphy
          • 2D Animation, WCC, Fall 2021, prof. Deborah Krikun
          #Maya #Java #Zbrush #Adobe #Animator #PhotoShop #Animate #Illustrator #AdobeAnimate #Flash #AdobePhotoShop #AdobeIllustrator #AutoDesk #AutoDeskMaya #AutoDeskSketchbookPro #3DAnimation #3DModeling #Animation

          Wednesday, June 1, 2022


          Just memorializing a Facebook comment that I wrote in response to a post by Tulsi Gabbard.

           On the one hand, Uvalde was certainly a terrible tragedy. On the other hand, how many people were killed in automobile accidents during the same time as we’ve been watching Uvalde situation unfold? Why is traffic death not newsworthy? Isn’t that precisely the sort of corporate control of media that normally concerns you?  

          And why are we focused just on the mass shootings, and not the enormous number of gun related suicides?  Isn’t that something that the gun lobby wants to hide, that guns are not just showy phallic totems that make the owner look potent; but also the agents of misery, depression, self hatred, and self harm?

          Friday, May 20, 2022

          2020 updates

          Moving these from my ongoing log for brevity of that one

          News from 2020

          recent performances 

          courses completed

          • Art 147, "Introduction to Digital Animation" Prof. D Krikun (fall semester 2020 -- via Zoom) New blog site created for this course 
          • Improv 2, Magnet Theater with Ross Taylor (retaking the course -- via Zoom) October-December 2020. Class Show: December 4 on Zoom
          • FTS 212 "Introduction to films and TV," Prof U Gonzalez, Lehman College online (Movies watched: "The Persistence of Vision," "The Kid," "Hugo," "13th," "Pulp Fiction," "The Unforgiven, "Pan's Labyrinth") (Encore program) (July-Aug 2020)
          • 6/1/20, 5/4/20, 4/27/20, 4/20/20, 4/1/20, 3/24/20, 2/25/20, 2/15/20 zoom dance class with James T Lane
          • 2/7/20 dance class with James T Lane
          • 1/21/20 dance class with James T. Lane

          CLE courses completed

          • November: several courses from NYIPLA 
          • 9/5/20 "Social Security and Disability Claims: A Primer" United CLE
          • 8/25/20 "Dissecting the New York Primary: Lost Votes and the Creation of a Better Process for November"
          • 8/19/20 "Practicing Law in  a Pandemic: Remote Lawyering in the Age of COVID-19 Part II" United CLE
          • 8/8/20 "Recognizing and Removing Bias from the Legal Profession" United CLE
          • 6/23/20 "Litigating and appealing health care and long term disability insurance denials" United CLE
          • 5/22/20 "Hot Topics in IP" JPPCLE

          media consumed

          • albums purchased: "Sing Gently" by Eric Whitacre Virtual Choir; The Soundflowers EP; David Foster "Eleven Words," The Hu "Gereg," Avi Kaplan "I'll Get By", John Williams "The Rise of Skywalker," Adam Lambert "Velvet," Adam Lambert "Trespassing"
          • Livestreams: 4 by Josh Groban; 1 by Matt & Savanna Shaw


          Thursday, April 28, 2022

          My art shows

           Nov 2020: art show in the Warner Library in Tarrytown, NY.  Instagram posts

          Flyer for art show: Cortelyou branch of the Brooklyn Public Library.  I'm hoping to move this show to libraries in Westchester soon.

          My art was previously on display at the Mapleton Library in Brooklyn.  Here was the flyer.  Please note that most of my drawings are done with sparkle ink, which may not be immediately apparent on still photos.

          My art was on display at the Borough Park Library, 1265 43rd St, Brooklyn NY -- 1/15/19-2/28/19.  This was the flyer -- tho the show was extended from the original announced date

          Monday, April 18, 2022

          Water failing inspection due to haloacetic acids -- Tarrytown NY

           I posted this question on the 10591 FB group.  

          Twice now I have received a notification that the water in Tarrytown has failed inspection due to excessive halo-acetic acids.  What, if anything, are people doing about this?  Do people have a preferred water filtration system?  

          I pulled an old Brita filter pitcher out of the cupboard, put in a new filter, and started using it again.  I had stopped, because I was more concerned about the plastic in the pitcher than I was about the water.  Now, tho, since we've gotten this notice, I decided to use it again.

          But someone told me I should use a Berkey.  Then I discovered that those were rather expensive, and, moreover, there are a baffling array of filtration options out there.  

          I'm thinking a whole house filtration system is overkill.  I don't need to flush my toilets or wash my laundry in filtered water.

          Anyway, if anyone has any thoughts, I would like to hear them.

          This has turned out to be my most popular comment in that group.  I got 60 comments before the admin turned off commenting.  I'm not going to reproduce all the comments here, but here were some interesting points.

          The Tarrytown Village Administrator posted a copy of the village notice.

          (This follow-up notice was originally circulated Village-wide on April 1, 2022, and is posted on the Village website)

          Dear Concerned residents of Tarrytown:

          Good morning.

          Although a Village-wide e-mail blast already went out, it appears that some people did not receive it. We wanted to make sure that the Village had shared this information with everyone.

          The Village sent out a village-wide e-mail with further information on Friday, April 1, 2022.

          This communication is to follow-up on the elevated chemical quarterly notice that the Village of Tarrytown issued on March 31, 2022.

          • Our water is safe to drink, wash and cook with.

          • Westchester County Health Department and the New York State Health Department gave us a notice of violation and mandatory order to issue that notice.

          • It is a quarterly notice of elevated Tri-halomethanes (THMs) and Haloacetic acids (HAAs).

          • This warning is targeted to people with suppressed immune systems and who have elevated risk of cancer over long-term exposure (20 to 30 years), so they can consider drinking bottled water for the time being.

          • THMs and HAAs are a byproduct of the chlorination process, and are created when chlorine reacts with organic material like algae, bacteria and parasites that occur in natural water like the water we receive from NY City’s Catskill and Delaware systems.

          • Chlorine has for many decades been considered one of the safest ways to make drinking water safe to drink, cook and bathe with.

          • New York City treats our water with chlorine before it reaches Tarrytown’s system.

          • The THM and HAA chemicals are elevated because New York City had been using higher levels of chlorine.

          • New York City has since reduced their chlorination levels, in turn has reduced the levels of THMs and HAAs.

          • We may have to issue another one or two quarterly notices, if the quarterly average levels remain above the notice threshold, but the last readings this past quarter were back down into the range of levels that are safe.

          Let us know if you have any other questions or concerns.

          Very truly yours,

          Richard Slingerland

          Village Administrator


          Articles linked to: 

          Filters reported to remove haloacetic acids

          NIH article about haloacetic acids

          Environmental Working Group article


          Products recommended

          And apparently Brita filter pitchers are sufficient to remove haloacetic acids


          #NYCWater #HaloceticAcids #WaterContamination #WaterFilters #TarrytownWater #WaterFailedInspection

          Thursday, March 17, 2022

          My car pool fantasy

           I would like an app, for instance Google Maps, that would dynamically deploy car and van pools in response to trip searches.

          Participants could be pre-screened for safety and credit.

          There could be a mileage charge & toll charge that would be used to reimburse drivers for gas & tolls.  Perhaps drivers could get credits at a local gas station for miles driven.

          We need to protect the environment and reduce dependence on foreign oil.  We've got to stop being beholden to Russia and Saudi Arabia.

          One of the problems with existing public transportation systems is that they generally take much longer than driving.  I live in Westchester County NY.  I once interviewed for a job in Murray Hill, NJ.  I found that it took one hour & fifteen minutes to drive there.  When I checked the public transportation, it was 3 hours one way.  Driving was manageable.  Spending 6 hours in public transportation was not.

          With today's artificial intelligence, we should be able to do better with public transportation, by having routes be determined dynamically, rather than once every few months.  We should be able to approach the transportation time that we would expect with a car.

          #ClimateChange #CarPool #VanPool #ForeignOil #ArtificialIntelligence

          Saturday, January 8, 2022

          COVID-19: conflating absence of evidence with evidence of absence

           I started noticing this issue when I started blogging about masks in the spring of 2020, when I wrote a blog asking why the virus was innocent until proven guilty.

          That was after I started the blog in March of 2020 saying we should use masks -- and was frustrated at how long it took for that to become a public recommendation -- until July -- 4 precious months where we might have stemmed the spread of this virus

          It wasn't until November of 2020 that I saw someone with a platform condemning the medical community for the same pattern of behavior.   She called it conflating absence of evidence with evidence of absence

          It's still happening.  I was just having an argument with my cousin on Facebook, arguing about the need for eye protection.  This is what I said

          In fact there has been totally inadequate study of the role of the eyes in contagion. This whole pandemic has been cursed with making the virus innocent until proven guilty. 

          They had to prove it was airborne, even tho similar viruses were known to be airborne -- delaying mask recommendations for months -- and therefore allowing the pandemic to spiral out of control.   I blogged about this back in March of 2020.  I had extensive arguments with a friend who is a doctor who kept insisting that masks were not necessary — changed her tune a few months later.  

          They claimed they had to prove that children could spread the virus, even tho there haven't been other viruses that adults could spread and children couldn’t.  When the proof finally arrived, it turned out that children were more contagious than adults.  The widespread statements implying that children could not spread the virus — in the absence of evidence -- also helped the pandemic spread. 

          They alleged for the longest time that people couldn't catch it from animals, even tho it was generally believed that the virus initially jumped from animals to people.  Now they're finding it endemic in various animal populations — and they’re concerned about it.  White tailed deer are now suspected vectors. White tailed deer routinely kill off competing species by spreading disease that they’re able to live with, but other species can’t.  Why should they be surprised that COVID-19 would be in the same category?  Yet it had to be proven. Some scientists are now even suggesting that Omicron developed in mice — which may be a good thing, as it may be milder, but that wasn’t the obvious result of it having spread to rodents.

          The lack of recommendations regarding eye protection, despite the clear communication of the eyes with the nose, is in this vein. The virus hasn't been scientifically proven to be transmitted through the eyes, so, despite the widespread empirical experience in emergency rooms, no eye protection recommendation is given.  

          This innocent until proven guilty attitude towards the virus is really an appalling.  It has resulted in millions of deaths.  

          In fact, my personal experience with common colds is that they ALWAYS start in the eyes.  First, the eyes itch. Then I get the scratchy throat.  Then the cold develops.  If you look at the configurations of the orifices of the face, the eyes are most exposed.  The nose points downwards.  The mouth has saliva, which has been shown to kill many coronaviruses.  The eyes are just sitting there — sitting ducks.

          Here's an article about the possible role of the eyes in infection It's really only a matter of time before they "prove" that the eyes are important in infection with respiratory viruses.  In the meantime, people die.