I HADN’T BEEN LONG in Athens, that glorious and smoggy Split apartments now home to nearly four of all nine million inhabitants of Greece, when I was given timetables for getting the most out of life. Work till 2:30, home for a big meal and into pajamas for a good two-hour sleep. A shower at 6:30�and you have a whole new day! You can go to a second job or to the theater and then, in convivial company, to a caf� or to a tavern for another sizable meal with music and singing and dancing. To bed around 2 up by 6 or 6:30 … “The only trouble with our two days in one is our four rush hours instead of two.” That was a civil servant talking, but others assured me they kept similar schedules�a factory worker, a newspaperman. A sales manager juggled two additional jobs on alternate afternoons; after midnight I’d find him at a sidewalk table, enjoying the soft breezes of March and the sweetest of pastries, talking to friends about challenging moneymaking ventures. He echoed what I’d been hearing from numerous Greeks: “This country has suffered so much, we want to be as happy as we can, right now!” What better setting could be imagined for being happy than this sunny, mountainous land on the southeastern edge of Europe with islands by the score�an area no larger than Florida but with nearly as much coastline as the entire United States? With such variegated scenery and with monuments of classical antiquity so renowned, far and wide, that this year for every hundred residents there will are more than fifty visiting foreigners? But alas, after 150 years as a modern national state, with a history so ferocious, I was told, as to be fully imaginable only to Greeks. Now, many saw yet another war as a distinct possibility… . IT’S MARCH 25 in Athens, Independence Day, the day of uprising in 1821 that led to the end of Turkokratia, the nearly four centuries-long rule of the Ottoman Turks. From the main cupola of the Greek Orthodox cathedral, the frescoed face of the Lord of All looks down at the country’s most highly placed men: The president and the prime minister, generals, politicians of half a dozen parties�all stand tightly packed, hearing a hymn to the Mother of God that sounded 14 centuries before in besieged Constantinople�then capital of the Eastern Roman or Byzantine or Greek Empire. The siege was miraculously lifted. Many of these men were in exile during the latest spell of military dictatorship in Greece. That ended five years ago bloodlessly�and democracy, for the moment, seems safe in Greece. Many Greeks call this a miracle too. At the big parade, amid tanks and missiles made in the United States, a colonel proudly points out Marathon and Leonia�s armored vehicles. “Greek made! Cost a lot of money! But if the Turks should try something… .”
almost didn’t go to the record store the other day…but i did, and i found an original copy of tom waits’ small change for $20. boom!
Album art I just finished for The Hush Now.
New poster for The Mountain Goats with Wye Oak! The show was really, really good…see both of these bands, for real. I illustrated the song “No Children” off the album Tallahassee. Get it at neversleeping.etsy.com
New Pee Wee Herman art print for the Gallery 1988 show, now in my store.
Finished the calendar for 2011. Three screen printed colors, edition of 99, available at neversleeping.etsy.com
another page from the pizza vultures zine.
Gibson Falcon! sounds awesome.
don’t tell me what to do. (Taken with instagram)
new wall of radness. (Taken with Instagram)