Thanks for popping in.
Well, patience is a virtue
when it comes to our Shaving Foam technique!
I left the second piece overnight, and didn’t blot it,
so we could see what would happen?
The shaving foam completely disappeared by itself,
leaving a perfect and permanent print.
VERY COOL RESULT.
I recall a very striking piece I did a couple of years ago using the shaving foam technique.
Very fitting today, the 11th November, Armistice Day.
I woke up this morning to a disturbing Facebook message from my daughter Grace, who was the victim of a verbal racial attack on a New York subway yesterday. The other woman mistook her for a Mexican and behaved pretty abismally.
Grace was shocked. It was the first time in 5 years of living in New York that she had experienced this kind of direct racism.
I don’t often think about racial incidents in my life.
Being a white English woman,
you wouldn’t expect too much of it, right?
I remember during the first week of grammar school in Rochester,
somebody scratched a huge swastika in the side of my beautiful brand new leather briefcase with a compass when they found out my Mum was German.
My parents had given it to me for passing my 11+.
I remember being mortified.
I remember being turned away from a restaurant in Nürnberg with my mixed-race American husband,
not being allowed in although it was half empty.
I remember being furious.
I remember being called an Ami-Nutte across the street;
this is a slang German expression for a woman who goes with American soldiers.
(Nutte = Hooker, not Nut. I could have handled Nut !!!)
I remember being speechless.
I remember not being able to find a flat to rent because he was black American Military.
(By the way, he was a young lawyer, a Doctor of law)
I remember reeling.
We moved away to California, because Grace had been born,
and the racism in Germany was even worse after the Iron Curtain came down.
Then that realisation that we had jumped
from the frying pan into the fire...
I remember Grace not being invited to a 2 year old friend’s birthday party because her Dad was black,
“..because the grandparents wouldn’t approve...”
I remember rushing round my white friend’s house, to tell her.
Her response was, “are you surprised?”
Her husband said, “That’s what you get for marrying a N****r”
and I remember grabbing Grace and running home and sobbing for hours.
We moved to Sacramento. By this time we had left the military, and my husband worked in a Law firm. I worked from home, Mark had been born, and Claritystamps were already born too. I would occasionally get out for an hour and go sit in the sunshine outside our neighbourhood Starbucks, and share a coffee with a few locals, who always sat there.
I remember one day, my husband parked up and strolled across the carpark towards Starbucks.
“F**king N****r’s coming this way” said one of my coffee drinking buddies.
“Well, that particular F**king N****r happens to be my husband,”
I responded. Left my coffee and ran,
so that my other half wouldn’t walk into it.
I remember a terrible scene at Sacramento Hospital too, when Grace had split her forehead wide open one Sunday morning -
there was blood everywhere, but the receptionist assumed that we didn’t have insurance because of her father’s skin colour,
and refused to let us in.
Her dad went berserk.
Yes, I remember that morning very well.
I’ll stop there.
I could write a book about the racial bigotry
I have experienced and witnessed over the years.
Had I stayed in Kent and married a local white lad,
I am sure things would have been different.
But I am not sorry to have lived those things.
- I am the sum of my experience.
Oh. And I also have two of the most beautiful, bright children a mother could wish for.
These memories are like tiny pebbles in my shoe.
Every now and then they shift and get between my toes.
They are not huge boulders, but they cause discomfort nonetheless.
I remember my ex father-in-law. He died last year.
He was a very angry man; I never could get on with him.
But then again, he was the sum of his experience too.
He watched his best friend be lynched by the KKK as a lad.
Just rode up to the two boys. Hung one from a tree and told the other one to go tell what had happened.
Pebbles and boulders, eh.
My son Mark called me the other day from San Francisco.
He was surprised that some of his friends had voted for Trump.
Ironically, he has felt the bigotry more here in England than there,
which is why he went back.
He put it well.
“Not everyone who voted for Trump is a bigot.
But everyone who is a bigot voted for Trump.”
Old Father Time could tell a tale, and the wheels just keep turning.
I remember being called irresponsible for bringing
mixed-race children into the world.
On the contrary - it’s the only real way to fight racism.
Put the lid back on Gray.
You’ve said enough.