Saturday, January 3, 2009

are you usually drunk when you paint ...

... sj asked ...

heidi suggested i slap him for that question ..

and while i normally might be very tempted to extend my stick 7000 miles thataway and knock him upside the head, i thought i'd reign in my normal tendency to wreck havoc upon his poor noggin' ..

and instead look at definitions for the word drunk .. although, of course, we all know that it is really just the past participle of drink.

when i really want to know a definition i go to the urban dictionary first ..

and this is what my extensive research found :


- a sublime way of existing in a world full of idiots .. ...... (sounds tempting, actually)

- chemically inconvenienced .... (pfft ... sounds like a lame excuse to me .. yo, officer, i'm not drunk ..hick.. just a wee bit chemically inconvenienced.. )

- when you have to hold on to grass to keep from falling off the earth .. (hmmm .. been there, done that .. unfortunately .. a long, long, long time ago .. cheap scotch should be outlawed..)

-bane of the convenience store third shift clerk .. (i have too much class for that one .. i don't shop for cheap beer and wine at 3 in the morning ...)

so, and now, while i do imbibe in liquids that might cause me to be .. umm .. chemically imbalanced at times ..and it doesn't take much to put me in a sublime way .. 2 glasses of wine or beer .. tops .. the 3rd glass i'm holding on to the grass.... by the 4th glass .. it's not pretty .. and i haven't gone there in a very, very, very long time. haven't had to hold on to the grass in ages either..

i don't paint drunk ..

... because when i paint the rooms of my house i prefer to do that while rather sober ..

and that's primarily the type of painting i do .. when i have to .. paint the walls of the houses i live in ..

and i know that's probably not what sj had in mind when he said paint.
i'm not a painter the way boneman and k9 are. i don't use paints the way dd does. i might use paint in my artwork, but i use it rarely ..

so, and that's the end of my post .. or so i thought ..

but then i couldn't leave well enough alone and had to look up the word drunk in one of the more mainstream online dictionaries ..

and amongst a few obvious meanings such as 'inebriation' i also came across this definition:

drunk (adjective) - overwhelmed by strong influence or emotion as in: she was drunk with excitement at the prospect of knocking sj's lights out ..

and then i remembered .. primarily because i had also been thinking of sj's 20 year old question ..
yes, i did use to paint .. (thank you, sj, for bringing back that memory)

with water colors .. for the pure sheer joy of it .. a long, long, long time ago as a child and as a young woman in my early 20s...
i loved my pelican water color set. i had a metal container (actually, i still have it) with those dry round cakes of water color in them. i had the set with 12 colors, a set i'd had since i was a young girl. of course, the paints would be replenished, but i never had to replace the container.

i've never taken a water color course. i didn't care to then. i might now. it would depend on the instructor. i didn't give a hoot what those paintings looked like back then, about displaying them, about preserving them, about keeping them .. all i cared about was watching the colors interact, letting them run and drip and i'd just paint with an almost drunken giddiness. i would paint indoors in the itty bitty rented flat i shared with a boyfriend. at times boyfriend would paint too .. one time we even painted outdoors ..

it was that weekend when the backpacking through europe friend of a former girlfriend of boyfriend showed up needing a place to stay for a few days. (she was canadian come to think of it. i remember the maple leaf on her backpack.) we had a lot of fun that weekend.
we spent hours in the fields behind the german village where we lived just painting away .. i laid on my tummy .. i painted the grass .. the little friendly green grass snakes that writhed and wriggled and smiled at me .. i layed on my back and painted the brilliant blue pulsating hues of the sky .. the sun whose bright lights hurt my eyes, .... and i held on to the grass .. cause, you know ... i thought i just might float away ..
too much sun, ya know? hmmm ..


what can i say .. stress relieve .. i was in a job at the time where i and a group of other women found us in the unfortunate situation of having to fend off inappropriate behavior by a male. it was not pretty. he was the husband of my boss. she believed him. it went on for months. but, in the end we prevailed ..
geesh ...
what memories ..
i hadn't thought about all this in ages.
thanks a friggin' bunch, sj ..
(now .. where did i put that stick of mine?)


Anonymous said...

So that's a no then ... and then a yes then ...

Try saying "bane of the convenience store third shift clerk" wen your sober, let alone after imbibing the sniff of a cork!!! Lol!

SJ said...

Well done. I thought this question would get you fired up and it did. Great answer really.

7000 miles sticks and stones may break my bones. But my spirits *hic* will be unbroken.

J Cosmo Newbery said...

Drunk, with enthusiasm. Good plan.

I always think of the Hitchhikers Guide t the Galaxy when thinking of 'drunk'. Arthur Dent was told that passing through hyperspace was like being drunk. "What's wrong with that?" asked Arthur.

Ask a glass of water, was the answer.

dianne said...

Absolutely brilliant post dearest Foamie, one of the most enjoyable I have ever read.
"a sublime way of existing in a world of idiots"...sounds good to me and "overwhelmed by strong influence or emotion as in: she was drunk with the excitement at the prospect of" and that's as far as I will go because I've been there many times. Lovely that you still have your paint box, I had a Reeves paint set which was given to one of my children. You should paint with watercolours they are great fun to work with. You have cheered me up so much with this and I am right there with you in memory,laying in the soft green grass in a field looking up at the brilliant blue sky...such a lovely way to spend some time. Lovely photo too. ♥♥

Anonymous said...

ha ha
haha ah haha
ha aha ha ahah ha
ah haha ha ha ahah aha ha
hah aha ha ha aha ha ha haha ha ha

you're right, i really am easily amused :)

but good post, too -- very funny(!)

¤ ¤ ¤


foam said...

try saying "bane ob de conbeniethe sdor dird shifpptt clerk" when you are really still very conjested ..
not pretty .. :) ..

sj ..
your bones seem to be intact ..
i'm not doing a very good job with my stick i see .. hmmpf ..
unbroken spirits, eh? .. let's break into them then!!!
partaaaaaay at sjaaaaaay's .. :)

yes .. it's a sublimely good plan .. i ought to make it a resolution for 09 since i just tend to exist in a state of perpetual exhaustion more times then not.

yeah .. and the glass of water doesn't even get to go through hyperspace with a towel ..
anyway .. i think towel whenever anybody mentions that book .. :)

dianne, ...
and with that comment you have just become my all time most favorite blogger in the whole wide blogging world ..
just kidding .. you know i'm truly very fond of you .. :)
yeah, i might need to start painting with watercolors again. it really is fun. i actually came across a new set of watercolors in tubes that my husband gave me last year and which i then promptly misplaced ..
i'm glad this post was able to cheer you up momentarily. .. XO

i like easy men ..
err .. i meant tp say men who are easily amused .. :)

Celestine said...

this post reminded me of watercolour painting we all did when we were children. so fun and dreamy that was. we'd all the creativity and wanted to explore its expressions.

maybe il go look for some watercolour paints. just throw some colour around lol.

Helene (the Artist Formerly Known as Kate) said...

lol that sj and his questions! lol I dont ever paint while drinking either... I cant seem to get out anything creative! lol I may have to have a go at it though as I havent even tried to paint recently... perhaps it will help me get my mojo back...

Pamela said...

I'm a one glass of wine slide under the table drinker.

But, perhaps it might help me with my watercolor block. I haven't wc'd anything worth a picayune for a year.

Little Lamb said...

I see a missing post beneath this one.

AlmightyHeidi said...

Foam...tooo funny!! I took 2 watercolor courses and LOVED them. Loved the way the color was fun..all of a sudden..i have an do some drunk watercoloring..however I might grab the glass of watercolor water for the brushed instead of captain morgan..but what the hell we all need some more color in our *cheers* (made myself laugh thinking about it)

foam said...

celestine ..
yes, there's a wonderful age when most children are wonderfully creative and free and have no self-doubts when it comes to creating ..

helene ..
you should try painting again .. go for it! i remember a few photos you posted of your paintings. i really liked them.

pamela ..
actually i'm that kind of drinker too when i drink on am empty stomach ..
maybe all of us closet water color artists should make a resolution to paint again in this new year..

little lamb ..
very observant as always ..
it's not missing though.
you found it, didn't you?

2 watercolor classes? wow! we want photos of your work!
and you know .. that's why i have never really painted and drunk alcohol at the same time ..
i'd end up drinking the watercolor water myself!
but really, should you ever paint again, i'd love to see photos of your work ..

Little Lamb said...

No, I didn't. What am I missing?

K9 said...

the evidence suggests to me that you paint nekkid not drunk. love that "holding on the grass so you dont fall off earth" grrrrrrrherhahahahaha! i know what you mean but i had forgotten until tonight. i still use pelican cake sets when i travel - mine are gouaches tho. you can snap in different colors now.

i remember live chatting with helene on her old kate blog once while *mildly* intoxicated. that was hilarious.

fun post.

foam said...

nothing, little lamb .. nothing .. :)
i just accidentally created a non post.
there never was anything missing from it.
folks are just having fun with the nothingness of it .. :)

hmmmmm ...
that would make much sense .. painting nekkid.
would save on trying to get paint splatters out of clothes. but no, especially when i'm outside and it's not appropriate to be nekkid i do stay clothed actually.

Little Lamb said...

Phew! I thought I was missing something. I feel better now.

foam said...


chickory said...

i dont use watercolors very often in my work anymore. but your post makes me want to do some in the new year. thanks!

whimsical brainpan said...

LOL! Those are some great definitions. :-)

Watercolors can be frustrating but fun. They used to be my main medium.

boneman said...

sometimes a taste of wine can be just the thing to forget your worries and the problems of the world, and ten you can paint to your heart's desire.

Of course, if you're doubting this, find a room in your house that you planned on painting and paint the walls while enjoying a bit of whatever blows your skirts up.
Beer, wine, or even Tequila Sunrises for a start.
Not absynthe, though
even if Modigliani and Van Gogh
said it was OK, stay with nothing stronger than Southern Comfort.

foam said...

chickory ..
they are fun.
they were good therapy for me anyway.

and just think ..
you don't need an expensive canvas .. :)

no absinthe? awwwwww, maaaaaaan ..
you are no fun .. ;/

Paul Maurice Martin said...

As to alcohol, I doubt that painters of the artistic type do their best work drunk either - even if at the time they imagine so!

foam said...

yes, no doubt you are right ..
although it is interesting how many well known artists were alcoholics. the artists that come to mind off the top of my head from the 20th century are modigliani, pollock, utrillo (i think), rothko .. oh yeah, and warhol of course (although he may have primarily been a druggie). but, they probably were most productive when they were not drunk.

dianne said...

Regarding the last chapter of your post dearest Foamie, I am certainly glad that the sexual harassment laws have been introduced, I have sure had my share of unseemly propositions and inappropriate advances in the workplace when I was younger and male supervisors and bosses ignored it or condoned it, sometimes they were the worst offenders. ♥

puerileuwaite said...

I was gonna ask the same question about your blogging ;-)

Ruela said...

I don't paint drunk too ;)

Great post foam.

foam said...

of course you don't .. :)

.... really! .. me blog drunk .. nonsense .. never heard of such a thing ..
said foam as she sips from a glass of .............. water ..

foam said...

ain't that the truth ..
but i have to say that luckily this was the only incidence that i encountered in the workplace back then ..

Merelyme said...

"sublime"...I love that word. you just keep doing your thing foam. we adore you.

Ruela said...

only a little glass of Vodka ;)

it's cold here.

Ruela said...


me freezing ;)

foam said...

merelyme ..
you are just waaaaaay too nice ..
but thanks .. :)

ruela .. lol ..
come to mama over here ..
i'll fix you a nice hot toddy ..
you know .. with whisky or rum, some honey, a splash of fresh lime or lemon, hot water ..
i think i'll go make myself one!

Anonymous said...

Gott Nytt År ..
It is so correct it can be
you are so cunning good
you should be a teacher ...


foam said...

well good then ..
i guess i'm ready to teach swedish then?

boneman said...

ok, #1 just in case I overstated the importance, screw that.
If you paint good when you're drunk, or stoned, or whacked on too much hot cocoa, then, if you want to keep painting what you painted when you were (whatevered) (did I just turn 'whatever' into an adverbial noun?) anyway, get into that state.
If you were sober when you created it, stay sober.
But, remember this, because it is the most important thing to remember....don't give up the coffee.

#2 waht are you and /t on about when you're tahting? (did it again....)

Ruela said...


wait for me :)

foam said...

boneman ..
good advice #1 .. continue painting in that whatevered mode .. ya .. :)
good advice #2 .. don't give up the coffee .. nope won't do that ..
and tahting? taht is the question indeed .. :)

come on over then .. it can be ready in just a few minutes .. :)

Aunty Belle said...

Hey hey. GrRrrrrrr!
Still computer-less so I'se
typin on this phone thang
so gotta be brief

Got junque! Or is ya also havin
computer woes?

X. Dell said...

See? SJ just wanted to get you all fired up. He's not really interested in the question or the answer, you know.

I couldn't imagine painting sober. Perhaps I should try it drunk.

..................... said...

belle ..
do i have junque?
gahhhhhh looooord ..
i got everybodies junk it seems ..
i was just rummaging through some old files of my mother's. and what did i fine? my spelling tests from 3rd grade or so ......... geeeeeeeeeeeeeeeez .. sigh ..
as far as my computer goes .. it's a work horse, really .. but aged, and slooooooooooooooowing doowwwwwwwwwwn .. ..
yeah, i know .. :)
but, i was in the need for some writing inspiration and this one was fun ..
and i'm having a bit of a hard time imagining you painting drunk ..
but if you ever do paint drunk, it would be interesting to see the results.

Lady Prism said...

You had a very exciting youth! Must have been really fun to just relax down in the cool grass painting with a friend. I would have loved to do that.

When I was young there weren't a lot of grass to hang on to except at the manicured lawns of the catholic school I attended for 11 years. The nuns weren't very fond of me tho'.

Oh' but now I remember, my best friend's bedroom had a little outdoor garden with grass. That garden served lot of purpose he!he!...We also buried Myrtle there. He was a turtle who died pretty young.

Sj asks the most interesting philosophical questions.You're cleverly crafted answers, not to mention, the accompanying top level research that went along with it will surely ignite his unquenchable passion for asking even deeper questions about....about....about....modern man's chemically imbalanced life(??).

I think he might become a world guru and usher in a new age of mystical enlightenment. A revelation the world has never before seen..nor heard..nor experienced.

ps: I lost my internet connection for two days. It was a very harrowing experience to have to temporarily rely on a dial up. I hope you never have to experience such trauma. My line is back now :))

And I hope the start of the new year has been good for you!

benjibopper said...

wow, from now on if i ever have any question of any sort, i'm asking you first.

foam said...

i declare, prism ..
you wrote me a letter! .. :)
thank you so much for you sweet comment ..

and while i did spend some time relaxing with friends in the grass as a youth, this particular painting session happened when i was an adult .. young perhaps .. but an adult nonetheless.
and you know .. when i was in the german schools, i had some teachers that didn't like me either because i was a foreigner in their eyes, even though i lived there and my mother was 100% german. oh well ..
ahhhhhh, yes .. sj as the next world guru .. boggles the mind just thinking about it.

and i hate loosing my internet connection which happens very periodically it seems .. sometimes for only an hour, sometimes for a day .. IT SUCKS!!!
and the start of the new year has been like the end of the new year .. it's there .. another day, for better or for worse.

sooo, what you are saying is that you need a wishy washy kind of answer .. :)

X. Dell said...

I do have recordings of myself drunk. Those are pretty brutal.

foam said..., those would be interesting to hear ..
or not, perhaps? .. :)

The Phosgene Kid said...

You know you can substitute beer for water when doing water colors, actually seems to make for better paintings. Just thought you'd want to know that. Used to paint a bit myself.

foam said...

phos ..
that would be a good use of stale beer actually ..
not that there is ever much of that around here.

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