Wednesday, May 20, 2015

It's Time for another "Where Do You Meet These People?"

Subject: male
Location: Fort Wayne, Indiana
How We Met: grad school
Length of relationship/friendship: n/a

My need to talk ruined this one, which is why I recommend getting a therapist. They are NOT supposed to talk about you.

I signed up for a class I thought was going to be great, but turned out to be really disappointing. It was frustrating, and having to do service learning wasn't something I'd bargained for. The place we were working with was incredibly disorganized and the CEO couldn't be bothered to meet with our class.

It was safe to say that pretty much everyone in the class was disgusted. Some more than others, and that was me. There was a male classmate who seemed as upset, if not more, than I was. One class, he was grumbling more than usual, and I decided it might be nice to ask him if he wanted to talk after class.

Please bear in mind that I was not attracted to this guy at all whatsoever. That was my first mistake. I forgot that if you are a woman, you should never, EVER approach a man unless you are attracted to him. If you ask a guy out for coffee and you think he's completely gross, you are opening up a can of worms.

I wasn't interested in this guy at all. Because the guy is GROSS. I don't know what I was thinking, asking him if he wanted to talk about class. This guy looked like your basic homeless guy. He wore pants with bizarre patterns. It was like he wore his pajamas to class. He had long hair and a beard and reeked of cigarette smoke.

When we got the restaurant, it was okay for the first hour. Then we started talking about personal stuff, and that's when things got ugly. I told him about my problems with men, and I didn't get any sympathy at all, because, ta da! I was talking to a man! He was trying to make me feel better by saying I had nice breasts and that is just one of the worst things you can say to make a woman feel better. I mean, I see my fucking breasts every damn day. I KNOW I have nice breasts. I remember what I wore that day, and I felt weird about it. I was wearing my women's Cincinnati Bearcats shirt, and when I put it on, I felt a little self-conscious. It's not the kind of shirt that I would normally wear, because it was form-fitting with a V-neck.

And yes, it called attention to my breasts, and he commented on them. It's really tacky and creepy that he did that. I want some understanding, but instead I got yelled at. He told me because I've given up on men that I should join a convent. I told him I wasn't religious. He said it didn't matter, I should just join a convent since I've given up on men. I started to cry, and eventually I went to the bathroom. We were finished with our food at this point.

I came out of the bathroom and as soon as we got out the door, he started yelling, "did I make you feel like shit!? Huh? Did I make you feel like shit?" I was shocked and just wanted to get the hell out of there, but the FUCKING PIECE OF SHIT CREEP FORCED ME TO HUG HIM.

I finally out out of there, but I felt dirty. I felt dirty, and angry at myself that yet again, another man treated me like shit and still copped a feel, sort of.

And during the time we were talking, he mentioned a girlfriend in Florida, where he was moving after graduation. Uh huh. Sure you've got a girlfriend. A few minutes after that, he insinuated that I should have asked him to go out sooner. I should have said, "well, since you have a girlfriend, I guess it's a good thing I didn't." Girlfriend, my ass.

And how the hell did it turn out this way? How the hell do I ask a classmate if they want to talk after class and it goes into the toilet so fast? I'm more angry at not answering his emails and basically not telling him what a sleazy, disgusting asshole I thought he was. After all that, he sent me two emails and asked me to call him.

He claims he's moving to Florida. So I guess I could have called him and basically ranted at him, but this guy (who told me he has a class D felony) is scary. He was furious that this place we were doing the service learning wanted us to take a drug test. I didn't think that was so out of the ordinary, because pretty much any job, especially a low-level retail/factory/service industry requires a drug test these days. There's every chance that if I call him up, or email him as to how disgusting I thought he was, that he could contact the college, and I'd be the one in trouble. He plans on teaching and I wonder how that's going to work out for him. He doesn't communicate himself well, and having a master's in English means he'll be in contact with more women than men, I'm thinking. I know judging people by the way they look is very harsh, but we all do it. I think tattoos are disgusting. I don't like facial hair on men. I don't like when people reek of cigarette smoke. And yes, I'm in no way perfect. I don't know why I'm so bitchy and judgmental. I think part of it is being bullied by boys in high school who basically said, YOU'RE UGLY YOU'RE UGLY YOU'RE UGLY YOU'RE UGLY YOU'RE UGLY. Hey, if you are going to criticize me almost to death, you shouldn't be surprised when I start picking you apart. And I'm incredibly picky when it comes to men. Pretty much no one measures up, and the ones that get my attention are married. ALWAYS. Fucking ALWAYS.

Because of this incident, I'm never asking out a man again ever. It's not like I'm in danger of that happening. I'm not exactly at a datable age or weight, and I've pretty much accepted that fact. I know the kind of guy I want, but I'm not going to get that guy. Why? Because until I become the kind of woman that the kind of man I want wants, I'm going to be by myself. Since I can't shave off 20 years and order myself up a great job so I can fix up my house, and working out four hours a day is a drag, I won't be going out at all. Because I don't want to date someone I'm not into.

I know women who purposely go for the bigger guys. Not me. I love Cedar Point, and skiing, and the last thing I want to happen is to date some huge slob of a guy who is 5'9" and weighs 300 pounds. I get with a guy like that, we won't be going to Cedar Point or skiing. I know that sounds horrible and judgmental. Don't care. I just don't fucking care anymore. I'm surrounded by men who are unattractive in EVERY sense of the word: shitty personalities, felonies, cigarette reek, clueless, mean, trashy fucks. I would rather fantasize about a man I can't have (and I've had a horrible schoolgirl crush for nearly two years on an unattainable dude) than risk asking yet another so-so/gross guy out "just to talk" and have him think I want to sleep with him just because I asked him to talk.

FUCK YOU ALL. Men are assholes until they prove themselves otherwise. And Lord knows, that's just way too much work. Just fuck you. And fuck that class D felony trash can/ walking ashtray that looks like a woman's worst nightmare.

This is what I want to do to my former classmate:

Friday, May 1, 2015

Carroll Fine Arts Night Display Ideas!

Carroll High School Fine Arts Night Display Ideas!

Hey! I know I already posted this about a year ago, but I'm reposting it again! Strangely, I've not had a lot of customers ask about fine arts night this year for some reason. Anyway, I'm re-running this for students who need some help with display stuff.

It's that time of year again! No, not prom season--it's awards and recognition season, and once again, it's Carroll High School's turn. Check out Carroll's Fine Arts Night Wednesday, May 7, from 6-8 p.m. at 3701 Carroll Road, Fort Wayne IN.

I work at a big box home improvement store. Sunday, I had two young ladies and their parents come in trying to figure out an inexpensive way to display artwork. Face it, even if mom and dad say it's okay to blow $200 on a one-time only display, why would you want to? If you ARE going to spend money, it makes sense that whatever materials you decide to use, you can use again.

So here are some ideas for displays. I realize time is short, but I decided to put some ideas together. If you like them, spread the word!

For an impressive display, get your hands on a refrigerator box. If you can't find one, try and get a couple of range/dryer/washer/dishwasher boxes and paint them the color(s) you want, then tape them together. You'll have at least four sides, and a fairly tall display. You can weigh the boxes down with books for extra stability. Try and find boxes with flaps intact. I would suggest going to the home improvement/appliance stores in person to get the boxes. If you call the store, chances are you will be transferred to a department staffed by one person. They will probably be busy, perhaps too busy to look and see if there are any boxes to be had. If you actually show UP in the store, you stand a better chance that someone will track down some boxes for you. Cardboard is cheap (in this case, probably free) and is fairly lightweight. Be sure to use cardboard to mount your artwork on instead of buying expensive mats at the art stores. I think they still sell Post It note glue sticks, or some sort of adhesive that isn't permanent. Use that, or make corners for your artwork for temporary mounting.

Painting your cardboard: You will have better results if you use a primer. You don't want any printing on the box to show through. So if you are going with a black or red background, chose a gray primer.

Try and think of unconventional ways to display your artwork. A patio umbrella makes a novel way to hang artwork, as long as you have a sturdy base for it. Use fishing line and duct tape to attach the artwork so it can hang from the umbrella's outside edge. No one will see the duct tape since it will be on the top of the umbrella. Make sure the umbrella is high enough so people can walk under it.

Bookcases can serve a dual purpose of displaying 3-D artwork, such as sculpture or jewelry, and you can use the three sides to display photos or paintings. Remember to mount your prints on cardboard, and don't frame them, so they aren't heavy. If you don't have a bookcase, look for inexpensive ones such as these. You can use them over again, and to save space when you aren't using them, they are easy to take apart.

If you don't have it, see if you can borrow it. If you have lots of jewelry to display, try using a dress form, and putting a cool dress or neat outfit on it. It depends on your jewelry. Funky, modern jewelry won't look right on a formal gown.  Also consider hitting up the thrift stores for velvet jackets to use as cushions for pins. If you have satin gloves, try stuffing them with fiberfill and stitching them shut. You can use those to display rings and bracelets. Scarves would work too. Try using goldfish bowls or aquariums to display jewelry.

Wire shelving, the kind used for linen closets, comes in various depths. With some zip ties, you can attach three or more of them together and form a vertical triangle, or a cube. The wire is usually spaced in half-inch intervals, so you can attach a variety of things. Most stores can cut the length of the shelving. We have it in four, six, eight and twelve foot lengths. You can get one shelf for around $7 or so. Larger sizes cost more.

Something else you might want to consider is lattice panels. You can use zip ties at the top as a hinge, then either use more zip ties at the bottom, or twine to secure the bottoms to make a sort of giant sandwich board. It will look like a giant upside down V. You can then display your artwork on both sides. You can then use the lattice for its original intention, or use it for a garden-themed headboard or wall display panel for photos or award ribbons. 

Pallets can also be used, if you don't want your artwork at eye level. You can zip tie pallets together to make an open cube about three and a half feet high. This might not be your cup of tea, but pallets can be had for cheap, if not free.

Go scavenging! People throw out all sorts of useful stuff. If you can find four doors all the same size, you can paint them. then hinge them together for a vertical rectangle (which will be pretty darn solid) for a variation on the refrigerator box theme. Screen doors are a lightweight alternative to traditional doors. I've seen brand-new screen doors for $21. But try to borrow or scavenge if you can.

If there aren't any boxes to be had, you can always go to Office Depot and get document storage boxes. I think they come in 10 packs, so you can save some money. You can paint these, duct tape them together, and make a giant wall to display your artwork.

Most home improvement stores have sawhorse brackets for about $7 per pair. A couple of two by four by 96 inch studs cut down can make a quick table. Just slap a piece of sturdy cardboard on top, and some fabric to hide the legs and you're good to go. you can also make a giant sawhorse by buying five of the two by fours, and a pair of brackets. The fifth two by four will go across the top. You will have a sparse looking frame, which can be painted whatever color you'd like. You can hang the pictures with fishing line, or clear line. Duct tape the line to the back of your artwork. Then, duct tape the line to the top of the two by four across the top, where no one can see it. The artwork will appear to float in the air. 

Use your imagination! A lot of great artists were extremely poor before they became famous. Use this opportunity for making a display another way to be creative! Bear in mind, I don't know if you have space limitations, or how much time you are allowed to spend assembling you display. Not all of these ideas may work. Think about your artwork and if there is a theme running through it. If you need a little bit of elevation, borrow a card table or coffee table. Check out the thrifts for sheets or lengths of material to cover tops of tables, table legs, etc. Stepladders may be an option as well. You could probably make a 10 foot by 10 foot display booth out of PVC pipe. Depending on the circumference of the pipe, I saw pipe for less than $2. You could attach it with the little corner pieces. I would estimate if you did just the frame, it might run you maybe $25. Also, if you have one of those little pop-up canopies, you could use that as a display area. If it's advertising beer or some other form of alcohol, you may have to cover up the logo so you don't get in trouble.

A little bit about paint: It never hurts to prime! If you are using cardboard, it probably will have writing on it, or it won't be the right color. If you are deciding on a very dark color like black or a deep red or brown, please use a primer. If you don't, the brown or white of the cardboard may show through, and you won't be happy. If you come to Lowe's, you can get a gallon of black paint for about $21. It's called Olympic Icon, and I recommend getting it in flat, so it doesn't reflect light. I suggest using the color Black Magic, which is my favorite shade of black. It's made by Olympic. It's a pure black; if you look at our other shades of black, you'll see hints of green, purple and even brown. If you do decide to prime, get the Valspar High Hiding Primer, which is around $18 a gallon. It's white to begin with, so tell someone at the paint desk you'd like it tinted to a gray.

If you think these ideas are helpful, please let me know! My email is Please spread the word, and if you try something that works, please let me know! I will find out the date of the Fine Arts night and post it here on the blog. I just wanted to get this post up ASAP. Please spread the word if you know a Carroll student (and parents!) freaking out over displays!