Today’s essay has nothing whatsoever to do with the illustration above. Why should it? The beauty of WinnieToons is very simple: I can say anything I want, because almost no one reads or follows it, so there are very few people to offend, sway or otherwise impact. Most of the feedback I receive is from spam/scammers trying to find-out if I’m naive enough to fall for one of their schemes allowing them to empty my bank-account.
(What bank account…?)
Sometimes I get as many as 12 to 15 hits a day — some with comments. Aside from approved friends, all but one or two of these comments are in Chinese or filled with characters that look either Greek or Russian. My favorite comments are written in colorful pigeon-English using hilarious garblings of the language — frequently with repetitive phrases I’ve seen in previous entries. Of course I’m expected to believe I’m hearing from a variety of “interested” readers.
> Do Tear Webmuster Person: Design you do xlempry is example of good type. This is much informitve data which for I have been looking. Keep work good up. I forward look to next post on this most important of topics which of you have deep subject knolege. <
This enlightening entry was ‘copy and pasted’ from ‘Tanya’ at firstname.lastname@example.org – if you attempt to send the ‘Tanya’s’ of the world an answer via email (which I once did for shits and giggles) the address line reads “No Reply.”
The human race exhausts me.
I was going to kill-off this blog a couple weeks ago, but as I remain unemployed and have nothing better to do, when I’m not scrambling — I’ve kept it limping along. Truth to tell, there was a great hue and cry on Facebook when I announced I was ending WinnieToons. People would miss my colorful photoshop collage-cartoons that sometimes take hours, earn me nothing and offer a 15 second chuckle to my “following” — who are folks I actually do love. But no one reads these days — or almost no one. Even I don’t read. Well that’s not entirely true. I don’t have time to read. I’m too busy attempting to stave-off my ultimate demise and financial drowning. My day is spent dealing with lawyers and fighting to get my next gasp of air while the world tosses humiliating Styrofoam cups of water onto my sinking head. I’m too busy attempting to breathe. Besides, who can read when the pages are soggy from being submerged by an underwater mortgage?
The conclusive proof that there are too many greedy people in the world is exemplified by the dramatic up-tick in blithering, entitled assholes clamoring for more than they deserve while hard work is rewarded with a pat on the head followed by a slap in the face.
I got a message from an old boyfriend the other day. I can’t answer for whether I’ve been a good lover/boyfriend during my multiple attempts over the years, but I’ve certainly been a generous one. Back when I was dating the aforementioned boyfriend, I literally painted the asshole’s house – for free – inside and out. I gave him lots of artwork (also for free) to fill his bare walls — and I saw him through one of the most difficult periods of his life. That said, I have no idea what I actually saw in him, and got very little by way of return. I was aware of this while we were going out, but I was on the rebound. He was another case of bar-light/bad-sight — good from far and far from good. I’ve always had a much easier time getting into relationships than getting out of them. Did I mention I built the shutters for his house and hung his 2nd story flower boxes? Of course at no charge. I also faux-finished his living room – for the low, low price of FOR FREE.
Looking back, he is, and always has been, one tight-fisted cheap-assed son-of-a-bitch with a generally bitter, mean-spirited attitude toward life and everyone around him. He’s the kind of guy who mistreats waters in restaurants, letting you know exactly how you’re going to be treated if you make the mistake of allowing him into your life. Mistreating waiters is always the first clue you’d better run for the hills, or you’re going to become the “help.” Part of this is my own fault, because I’m the one who allows shit like that to happen to me in the first place… I give too much. I’m too generous. It’s my nature. But it wouldn’t matter who he was with, his life’s motto is: “What is his is his and what is yours is his.” He’s hardly unique, I’ve encountered any number of idiots just like him — only difference is, he was the least rewarding of the bunch. The only memorable thing I ever got from him was crabs – twice. I have terrible taste in men. Either that, or all the good ones are taken…
So, as I was saying, I got a message from this self-absorbed old boyfriend who’d contacted me during his busy day of wasting air, food and water from the space he takes-up — YEARS after we’d stopped seeing each other and drifted apart as social friends. Out of the blue, he wanted me to paint a forgery for his living room wall — AND he expected a “deal” on the work. He didn’t want something challenging or worth-doing like ‘The Raft of the Medusa’ – he hasn’t got that much imagination. He’s merely another one of a string of no-talent movie buffs who LIVE vicariously for Oscar night. Over the years I’ve had the misfortune of dating a couple of these drama-queens. He’s fond of “theater” too, but I wouldn’t exactly call him a thespian, he’s not quite butch enough. He’s an imperious blank stare – an audience attendee and self-appointed critic of all things he, himself is entirely incapable of doing. To quote Gloria Swanson from Sunset Boulevard, he’s one of “those little people sitting out there in the dark.” So he want’s a forgery. I’m not into dishonest forgeries. I’ll paint a reproduction, but I’ll give it a contemporary signature and date.
For convenience-sake, I’ll give him a name, let’s call this ex-boyfriend ‘Chuck’ — like second-rate ground mystery meat. Chuck had torn a page out of a catalog from China — one of those ‘starving artist sale’ catalogs. He’d taken a liking to a perfectly awful abstract painting – technically-speaking it was a ‘non-objective’ but who cares – it’s all the same. It cost $250 retail including shipping and handling. The catalog description said “Each work of art is hand-painted so there may be some variation from what is pictured on the page.” Yeah, hand-painted in China by carefully selected political dissidents who for whatever reason were deemed unsuitable for assembling iPhones in forced labor camps – but weren’t yet ready to be dipped in epoxy as “subjects” for the traveling Chinese rip-off of the ‘Body Works’ exhibit. Of COURSE these ‘original’ paintings vary slightly from one to the next — it’s only natural — like every time you wipe your ass on a sheet of toilet paper you get a slightly different Rorschach-test. Check it out sometime. Think of it as ‘semi-creative chaos theory.’
Any way, he says to me, about the aforementioned piece of factory-painted crap from China — “I was going to buy this painting from the catalog, but I thought I’d give you a call so I could give the money to someone who really needed the cash.” Up-Chuck always had such a thoughtful, sensitive way with words. He wanted to award me a cheapskate commission to do a knock-off what was — in point of fact — itself a 2nd rate knock-off. AND match the $250 price including 1 week turn-around time. Since there isn’t a lot of freelance work these days, I (begrudgingly) agreed — but ONLY on the condition that I was NOT willing to have my signature on it. When I asked him for a $125 deposit, which is standard business practice (50% up-front with the balance upon completion) he completely freaked-out on me saying: “I was very hesitant about contacting you to do this project in the first place, because I KNEW you were going to try and nickle and dime me.” Can someone explain to me how dividing-up a prearranged (unreasonably low price) into 2 equal payments adds-up to “nickle and dimeing” someone? Apparently I was supposed to buy a set of 40″ x 50″ heavy-duty stretchers, canvas and art supplies out of pocket and then hope I wasn’t going get stuck with a piece of shit that looks just like the crap they hang in 2nd rate discount furniture stores — or worse — cheap motels. So he emails me back saying “Oh just forget it” adding “at lease MY life [meaning HIS] isn’t a mess.”
He couldn’t be more wrong. He’s an uninteresting, soulless, bitter, selfish, mean-spirited premature-ejaculater with a sunken chest. Before blocking his email address, unfriending him on Facebook and deleting his number from my cell-phone, I emailed him back letting him know it was an awful painting typical of pedestrian taste and I would be embarrassed to paint it let alone display anything like it in my home. I also told him to “get lost.” Nothing beats the wonderful world of freelancing in the arts.
I wish I’d been the one to take the photo below, instead I downloaded it from Up-Chuck’s profile page on ManHunt. If it looks a little feminine, that’s only because he’s slightly less than a man. There, now I feel a world better, having gotten it off my barrel chest. OK, it’s a saggier barrel chest than it once was, but I still have a barrel chest — and my creative dignity intact. I’ll have to remember to tell that to the utility company. The dignity part, not the barrel chest.