Thanks Ladies! — Double Helix pg295

Colorful companion to my memoir The Incompetent Psychic

‘You Are Here’ 2016: Topographic Map of Benicia CA, the Carquinez Strait and Bay Trail

I’ve come to believe that what makes great art timeless is a creator’s intention to convey the highest good. (I’m still practicing. Slowly. Over lifetimes.)

By now I had hit my vitriol limit. To make Winny and Gaby shut up and leave, I asked to be reimbursed for having 2,000 postcards reprinted. I needed to remove Gallery First after being dis-invited to join. They refused, but were inspired to leave quickly. Amazingly, I didn’t have a teary little breakdown after it was over. I actually felt pretty good — almost like I had gotten through a dissertation with a particularly harsh testing committee… and passed. The best part was that none of their ickiness stuck to me. Burning some sage cleaned up the energy-funk, and I was ready for the next better idea.

Allison came by the next day to sincerely express she had no clue that was going to happen, conveyed how awful she felt about the whole thing, and offered admiration that I handled being dissed and dismissed with poise. Kind of her, but it wasn’t all me. ‘Please show me the Truth’ is a pretty awesome prayer. — From Epilog

Insults by douchebags will ideally inspire life lessons. If I don’t find a way grow I’ll just whine like a little victim. The worst thing about blame is that it’s boring. Revenge is even worse. Vengeance is ultimately destructive and seldom amusing… but with a little effort I got past that.

Not everyone who crossed my path in this memoir was well reviewed. My father, his sister Della and a few ex-boyfriends took turns in my deluxe eviscerator. Writing this final story of being rudely insulted by two other artists sent me scurrying to better authors for counsel. Geoffrey Chaucer and Anne Lamott came through. Both helped with justification — moral, humorous and both. For ethics I just changed the names.

There was a line in the wonderful 2001 movie A Knight’s Tale where the character Chaucer told his adversaries, “I was naked for a day. You will be naked for all eternity.” I dove into Google to explore deeper into Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales written seven centuries ago, and its correlation to this century’s film. Instead of slogging through Old English on my own, this brilliant blog by Jena M. Steinmetz popped up so I didn’t have to. As an English scholar and a Heath Ledger fan, Jena makes all the points I wanted to… but much more eloquently. She also cautions everyone to mind their manners around writers because, well, the risk of being eviscerated in fiction (or memoir) for all eternity is a likely consequence of being rude.

In Bird by Bird Anne Lamott suggests, “You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better.”

Thanks Anne, Jena and Geoffrey! And thanks to the two women who kicked me out of their artist clubhouse. That startling encounter made for an engaging story to sum up life lessons learned and affirmed in art, community and manners. I’m only being a tiny bit sarcastic when I say thanks bitches!

A signed copy of Mernie’s memoir is available at www.etsy.com/listing/839838936

Unsigned copies can be ordered wherever books are sold.

Mernie paints and writes in Woodstock NY. A signed copy of her memoir The Incompetent Psychic available via www.mernie.com

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