Tying One On
Saturday, November 03, 2012
|Ivette Hernández - La Evangelista|
|San Francisco, New York City, Washington DC|
|George Waterhouse Hayward and a half-Windsor|
I had a restless Thursday night. I experienced many dreams. But in a moment of lucidity I remembered something. Last week when I was taking pictures of Alissa
in her Burnaby apartment she asked me if I could tie a tie. Of course I can so I did. I was handed the tie and tied a full Windsor. Since I am a man there was only one way I could tie it. I had to put the tie around my neck and pretend I was going to wear it.
Women from another generation (perhaps fewer in this one) like my mother, would tie ties facing me. Looking back at my mother doing that, I can imagine the comfort that came from being preened and combed by her. In contemporary terms, in our age of blatant pornography (can it not be blatant?), I can imagine taking a photograph of a grown man having a tie tied by a woman, from the front!
I know after having read JJ Lee's
sartorial magnum opus The Measure of a man - The Story of a Father
, a Son, and a Suit
, that the Duke of Windsor popularized fat tie knots and thus we have the Windsor knot or the full Windsor. I note that my father must not have been a full monarchist as his portrait has a lopsided (an endearing feature of such a knot) half-Windsor.
|The Duke of Windsor, Illustration by J.J. Lee|
I write this on Saturday morning and I recall that yesterday from 5 to 7, MSNBC aired a concert to raise funds for Sandy’s victims. Since I was thinking about ties I noticed that Bruce Springsteen was wearing a black one with his shirt collar unbuttoned. With his vest I must say this was an attractive sight.
Last night I took my granddaughters to the Waterfront Theater to The Number 14
. We laughed and laughed but I was also there to see that red haired woman (usually a theatrical director) Sarah Rodgers perform a routine she first did in 1998.
In my living room, not far from this monitor I have a pile of ties which I will scan for this blog. I chose a red one (in honour of Miss Rodgers). It is a made in San Francisco tie featuring a cable car.
While I sometimes tend to dress well I don’t think that just dressing well is enough. The tie puts in the finishing touch of nostalgia, purpose and in some cases to inject a political stance. Had the T-shirt not have been invented, men would still be wearing ties to prove points and promote causes. My favourite example of the latter is to wear my Fraser Institute (a right wing Vancouver think tank) tie to liberal functions. I remember going to one where the former Premier, Mike Harcourt noticed it and smiled knowing I did not mean any harm!
|Alex W-H and a half-Windsor|
When I married my Rosemary in 1968 she would take a bus to Calle Madero in downtown Mexico City. She went to a small haberdashery called Lord’s. Two very old and very distinguished men ran it. Rosemary bought ties that were made from imported English wool. You might note in the scans here that the ties went through various stages of widths. I rarely use them but having read Lee’s book I will wear these ties and I am sure that Lee will approve even if their widths are not current. I have a particular fondness for my Lord’s ties as they represent that exciting era in my life when I was newly married. We had little money and Rosemary would spend hours at Lord’s choosing a tie. They were not cheap. They were wrapped very nicely and Rosemary handed them to me (most lovingly) on my birthday or Christmas. I cannot look at my Lord’s ties without thinking of that former tenderness in my life. After a 44 year marriage it seems that the simple wearing of one of the ties will bring it all back.
In my life with ties I have one regret. When I was 10 I insisted my mother buy me a green silk, hand-painted tie that featured Argentine Formula One World Champion runner-up Juan Manuel Fangio. The tie had in bold lettering Juan Manuel Fangio Sub-Campeón Mundial. In our 1955 move to Mexico from Buenos Aires it disappeared.
For those who do not know the Spanish word for tie is corbata. We know that the French word is cravate.
British scholar Noel Malcom in his book "A short history of Bosnia" offers valuable research about the racial relationship between Iranians and some ethnicities of the former Yugoslavia. He writes: "The name Croat, or Hravat in Serbian, is not a Serbian word. It is similar to the Iranian name Choroatos, found on tombstones of Greek dwelling regions of south Russia." He goes on to add that the original form of the word is "Khoravat" as mentioned in Avesta, meaning "friendly".
|Ned Pratt - Architect|
In 1656, Louis XIV formed a regiment of Croat volunteers inside his army. The members of this regiment, in accordance to their ancient tradition, wore a neckerchief of plain of floral silk, its ends dangling from the tie. It could also be used as bandage if the soldier was wounded. After this time the Croatian scarf was accepted in France, above all in court, where military ornaments were much admired. The fashionable expression, ’a la croate’, soon evolved into a new French word, which still exists today: la cravate. Some 170 years later, the necktie became a universal fashion.
Source: Iran Chamber Society
|Betty Comden & Adolph Green - writers Singing in the Rain|
|My animal ties|
|Ian Ballantine -Publisher founder of Ballantine Books|
|My Brooks Brothers Christmas tie & my Argentine Polo tie|
|My grandfather Don Tirso de Irureta Goyena |
& his chaffeur
|My two Ernst ties & centre a Brooks Brothers from NY City|
|Cordelia, Ivette & my Fraser Institute tie|
|David Baines - Vancouver Sun columnist|
|My two Peruvian ties, notice coffee stain & |
a Quebec tie given to me by Rosemary
|Brother Edwin Reggio, C.S.C. & my granddaughter|
|From top, Smithsonian, Texas & my fave tie from Seattle|
|C Valparaiso & my Seattle tie|
|Sir Elton John, Diana Krall & Elvis Costello|
|My Frank Lloyd Wright & my Michelsons of London|
|My ugly ties|
|My seconf fave tie with the paper airplanes, |
my Christmas tie & the infamous
Fraser Institute tie
|Rosemary's Lord's ties|
Jacqueline & My Bell Curve
Friday, November 02, 2012
My grandmother was the most understanding member of my family. Many a time when my parents were about to severely punish me for something I should not have done she would step in and say, “Alex is an artista. We are both artistas. Artistas are different. You have to understand that." More often than not my grandmother saved me from a whipping by my mother using her slipper or my father using his hand (both on my behind).
Some still see in me elements of the artist and I even act the artist but deep inside me I live with the logic of mathematics. I see most problems with a Spockian logic. From the very beginning that I saw La Odisea del Espacio
(Star Trek) in late 1969 when they had been dubbed into Spanish in Mexico, I identified with the logical mind of Spock. His very opposite was the all human Doctor McCoy. Only Captain Kirk had elements of both in balance to be the starship captain that he was.
When I learned about sine waves, and parabolas and bell curves (in statistics) I saw how our human actions could almost be explained or in some cases foreseen. It was the inverted parabola, one that hugs the ends of the Y and X axis and touches them at infinity (this is called an asymptote) that I began to understand how my wife's emotions worked. Alex, I will smile and be pleasant. I will relax. I will be the carefree wife you long for only when I am free of this present worry that is our finances. Our finances might become a problem of a car that went kaput or our daughters getting bad grades at school. My wife's asymptote was like Lucy taking away the football at the last moment. Maybe this time, this time only the football would stay and Charlie Brown would kick the ball and not fall. Happiness was around the corner even if that parabola showed otherwise.
In a nutshell I am a photographer who finds inspiration in logic. I find inspiration in scanning a situation (Spock-like) and only doing what I think is possible.
A photographer's career you might think would follow the pattern of the statistical bell curve. It might in some situations be a sine wave curve with ups and downs but in the end that curve would be the wrong side of the bell curve (down there, on the right side) A statistical exception might be a talented artist suddenly found dead at the height of fame. We wonder what would have been of Modigliani if he had lived more years.
I was telling a subject of mine yesterday that at age 70 paying work was all but gone. I told him, I am an old man. I am 70. My subject (older than I and quite active) said, "Well you are at an age when you should be retired."
Since January 2006 I have posted in this daily blog, daily. I have inserted photographs, many that come from my extensive files. But there have been many other photographs that are recent. Of late, and at age 70 I have made it a point (for myself at least) to think that I am not at the bottom of a bell curve. In fact I may be on the upswing of a sine wave or on the top of a positive parabola pointing up and not about to reach zero on any axis at infinity, but somewhere up there!
I think of Manuel Alvarez Bravo's El Trapo Negro
, an exquisite nude taken when he was 85. I have lots to go still if my curve might just resemble Bravo's. I am no Bravo but I can dream!
Posted here is one Fuji Instant Print of my new subject the 25 year-old Jacqueline who posed today for my red shawl series
. It is a good photograph. I am very excited about it. And I took it ( I only took one) just a few hours ago. That must mean something at the very least at the top of that statistical bell curve. And now down I go?
Thursday, November 01, 2012
|Santa Conchita de Denpropetrovsk|
I was raised as a Roman Catholic by my mother and grandmother. My grandmother went to Mass several times a week and was from a generation that said her rosary twice a day. But she and neither was my mother, of the bible thumping variety. My grandmother who was a product of an education in Spain at the later part of the 19th century was anti-Semitic. She would point out people on the street in Buenos Aires who had the “map of Jerusalem” on their face. And she asserted that the Jews had killed Jesus Christ. I don’t think she really meant it but simply repeated what she might have learned in a nun’s school.
In the mid 50s I attended a Catholic boarding school in Austin, Texas. I had very good teachers who taught me math, science, civics, music, world history, American history and religion laced with a generous amount of theology and philosophy. My teachers, almost all Brothers of Holy Cross became very strong paternal surrogates for me and I remember them all with fondness and pride.
But in spite of the above, like my grandmother or my mother I am not a bible thumper.
I will not deny the killings involving religion, and in particular an almost forgotten and very religious 30 Years’ War (1618-1648). And most certainly I will not deny the existence nor defend all the proven allegations of priestly abuse, financial corruption within the Vatican, the selling of indulgences so damned by Martin Luther and many more etcs.
But I will also bring into this mix how religion, and in particular Roman Catholicism has given us cathedrals, light/knowledge in the Middle Ages, illustrated manuscripts that salvaged on paper ancient scholarship and the works of Aristotle and Plato. Roman Catholicism, and its offshoots into Lutheranism and Protestantism, have given us religious music and inspiration for such works as Haydn’s Mass and so many of Bach’s choral works.
Many would argue that such works, including much of the art of the Renaissance, would still not condone all the abuse and death. They would be right. But we should live that reality.
As it happens with so much of that behind us and with so much awareness of all those religious wars few politicians in the present are willing to say publicly, “The Middle East is a conflagration between the differences of the Sunni and the Shiite Muslims.” They are no different from the Catholics and the Protestants of the 30 Years’ War.
On the slightly lighter side I must write here that Catholic symbols from the doctrine that I was taught so well, have served me well in inspiration for my photography. Many of my poses are based on images in my mind from Russian religious icons. My inspiration has been based on the Maddonas of da Vinci or the saints of El Greco.
The original reason for stained glass windows and statues of saints in Gothic cathedrals was to bring images to people who could not read or who had no access to illuminated books chained to the wall. It is not coincidental that the revolution of printing and of books started with the Gutenberg’s bible. How many Last Suppers or Adam and Eve in paradise or about to be cast out have been painted?
Sometime in the 80s my friend, Argentine painter Juan Manuel Sánchez, while sipping a café con leche in a sidewalk café in Buenos Aires was asked to name his favourite saint.
The idea of asking such a question is a Spanish tradition called the tertulia. Originally it only involved men. Post Franco women have taken part. In a tertulia men got together at a bar or café to drink and discuss politics, religion, football or who was the first man to circumnavigate the globe. Tertulias held heated discussion on the later citing that it could not have been Ferdinand Magellan as he was speared to death by local in the Philippine island of Mactán. It was his second, Juan Sebastián Elcano (very Basque) who finished the voyage.
Sanchez’s answer was Santa Conchita. What follows is a bit irreverent and off colour so be forewarned.
Any woman called María in any country where Spanish is the national language is never just a plain María. She can be María del Perpetuo Socorro (call me Soco or help for short!), María del Pilar (call me Pilar), María de Guadalupe (call me Guadalupe or Lupe) and finally the problems one María de la Santísima Concepción. This latter María is affectionately called Conchita the diminutive of Concepción.
Conchita is universal in all Spanish speaking countries except in my and Juan Manuel Sánchez’s Argentina.
And the culprit for not being able to use the word Conchita is the Swedish father of taxonomy Carl Linnaeus. The image shown here will illustrate why in English a clam is sometimes a term for what women have that men don’t.
Argentines are perhaps more traditional in their taxonomy and faithful to the ideals of that Swede. Thus in my country you cannot say publically concha
(conch or clam) or its diminutive conchita
. Marías de la Santísima Concepción are either plain María or Concepción.
So when Juan Manuel Sánchez says his favourite saint is Santa Conchita it is a bit of an irreverent joke on his part.
For a few years both Juan and I painted (he) and photographed (me) women in settings suggesting ethnic Maddonas or Santa Conchitas. There was a Chilean, a Peruvian, an Argentine, a Coptic Egyptian and a Vietnamese. I cannot show any of those here as they all involve extreme nudity. The Vietnamese one is one of my faves as she is called Santa Conchita de la Cochinchina.
Cochin China was the old French and Spanish name for Vietnam. In Argentina, even to this day, the place in the world that is the furthest and if you want to wish someone to hell you would say, “Vete a la Cochinchina.” Even though the word Cochinchina is not at all obscene in any way it sounds obscene. In Argentine Spanish Santa Conchita de la Cochinchina sounds awful.
It is in this spirit of my playful irreverence to my Catholic background that I post in this blog my latest Santa Conchita. It is a Santa Conchita for which I took a version that I can show here without any fear of death threats from the Vatican or Burnaby BC Bible thumpers.
As a young boy I looked at the map of the world that was much vaster then than it seems now. One of those spots that I looked at with sheer wonder for being far away was the town of Dnepropetrovsk then in Russia but now in Ukraine.
A couple of weeks ago I photographed a young woman from Russia. Here she is as Santa Conchita de Dnepropetrovsk.
Bill Millerd & Pancho Wish Us A Happy Halloween
Wednesday, October 31, 2012
|Bill Millerd & Pancho|
Some who read or look at the pictures I post in this blog may have noticed the frequency of appearance of a papier-mâché skeleton. We in the family affectionately call him Pancho and he relaxes in an antique Windsor chair in our dining room. Pancho never complains of the food we serve at the table.
Pancho was given to me by my friend, architect and teacher Abraham Rogatnick
a year before he died on August 28, 2009. He had purchased the skeleton in Mexico sometime in the 60s. Rogatnick had attached a hangman’s noose to the skeleton’s neck and on every Halloween he would perch him outside his 11 Avenue home (across from poet George Bowering
Rogatnick gave me the skeleton with the following words, “I am going to die soon so you might as well have him as you will appreciate him.”
During an open garden in 2010 I hung Pancho under our Cercis canadensis
in the back garden. People came to look at our lovely early summer garden. The roses were in bloom. One woman who came with her children was aghast at the site of the hanging Pancho and complained to us. I attempted to explain that after having lived many years Rosemary and I saw death in a different light but to no avail.
Since 2008 Pancho has never contributed to our dinner conversation. He is impervious to everything and I am almost sure he will outlive me. Lauren, below has a deep afection for Rosemary's cat, Casi-Casi and our Pancho.
|Lauren & Pancho|
Today, is Halloween, Bill Millerd, the artistic director of the Arts Club Theatre Company came to pose for my red shawl series. When he was about to go I showed him Pancho. Millerd and Rogatnick had been friends for many years. I asked Millerd to pose with Pancho. He did this. Millerd, who has an effusive smile, did follow my directions to be serious. So here is Millerd wishing us all a Happy Halloween even if there is a touch of melancholy as we thought about our mutual old friend, Abraham Rogatnick.
Kathy Marsden - Psychiatrist
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
My Mother's Red Shawl - El Rebozo Colorado
Kathy Marsden - Psychiatrist
The White Couch
After receiving my degree in counseling psychology 20 years ago, I decided to open a private practice in my home. There was only one possible location for the office: my sacred meditation room.
I did not relish the concept of sharing such an intimate space with strangers, especially strangers who might infect it with distressing vibrations. However, I put aside such distasteful thoughts, and took myself off to IKEA to buy some suitable furniture. I decided on a rather austere black swivel chair for myself, and for the prospective clients, a boxy-but-plush white 2-seater couch and matching armchair. To complement the existing décor, I added to my IKEA cart three square silk pillows – two brown, the other crimson madder.
The chair was incidental – extra seating for families, or for acrimonious couples who disdained close proximity with each other. The White Couch was the therapeutic crucible.
I would not have guessed that there were so many ways to approach or occupy a couch. Individuals or couples, each initiated their unique relationship to it.
Some marched directly towards it and sat down without a second glance. Some perched on the edge, back rigid, palms pressed firmly against knees, waiting expectantly for the go-ahead from me to begin their story. Or, conversely, they’d launched into their story before I’d had a chance to seat myself: a clear indication of a recalcitrant client, one who did not acknowledge the therapist’s inherent right to initiate the session, set the tone and define parameters.
Others lingered in the doorway, glancing uneasily from chair to couch to me, perhaps waiting for invitation or suggestion. An alternate variation was to try first the couch, then the chair, then the left side of the couch, then the right. Some settled for the middle, and unwittingly descended into the crack between the two seat cushions.
There were slumpers and slouchers, sprawlers and wrigglers, coffee-spillers and tormenters of the silk accent pillows. Fetal balls bound themselves in tightly crossed arms or huddled in the recesses of coats; the restless sat, stood, paced, turned abruptly and sat again. The angry pounded the arms of the couch, the lamenters drenched it in tears. The freshly clean scented the upholstery with the cloying fragrance of drugstore perfume or dryer balls; the unwashed shed grease, sweat and flecks of mud upon the receptive fabric. Smokers of cigarettes spewed stale odours uniformly throughout the room and my lungs, and the inebriated – well, the inebriated were sent home. Therapy cannot penetrate the miasmas of alcohol.
Despite their foibles, individual clients were controllable. I had learned to interrupt and overrule. Couples, on the other hand, regardless of their level of animosity, had an inscrutable alliance that kept both me and the couch on tenterhooks. We observed uneasily as battles physical, verbal and psychological were enacted before us and upon us. Overt violence was not tolerated, and offenders were – after one warning – dismissed. But there are uncountable levels of covert violence that shattered my composure, threatened the integrity of the couch, and certainly disturbed the tranquility of my meditation room. Upon the departure of such clients, there ensued much dusting, vacuuming, opening of windows, lighting of candles and burning of incense.
Just over a year ago I retired. Despite my grievances, it was a difficult decision. With few exceptions I had great respect and reverence for my clients, who shared their deepest thoughts, feelings and secrets with me. So profound was the meeting of souls that I often sensed a palpable energy flowing between and around us, an energy reminiscent of ocean waves, a sparkling night sky, a warm scented breeze.
These transcendent experiences, too, were absorbed by the couch, and when the last client departed, they were what remained.
Of course I removed all the covers, washed them, and hung them out in the sun to refresh and re-whiten themselves. But no further exorcism was required. The couch abdicated its therapeutic appointment, and offered itself as an abode for meditation.
André De Mondo
- Real Estate Agent
Johnna Wright & Sascha
Director/Mother - Son/Dreamer
Decker & Nick Hunt
Cat & 19th century amateur
Vancouver Sun Columnist
Statesman, Flag Designer
Vancouver Sun Columnist
Lauren Elizabeth Stewart
The Unplugging In Venice
Monday, October 29, 2012
“Voici mon secret. Il est très simple: on ne voit bien qu'avec le cœur. L'essentiel est invisible pour les yeux.”
Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Le Petit Prince
On Wednesday the 17 of November my wife and I went to the opening production of Yvette Nolan’s The Unplugging
at the Arts Club Theatre Company’s revue stage on Granville Island.
This play about a near future post-apocalyptic age in what could be our British Columbia is based on an Athabascan legend. In spite (because?) of the beautifully simple set by Drew Facey with sound design by Alison Jenkins that features Native Canadian chanting, a cross between what seemed to be women joined in by howling wolves transported me to a baroque theatre in Venice.
This is an unlikely mental transportation for me as I have never been to Venice.
It was only 12 years ago that I discovered the astonishing fact that to experience nostalgia I had to be away from the place I was feeling nostalgic for. It was 12 years ago that I had a show with some Argentine painter friends called Nostalgia.
Were I to be in Venice on a gondola on a bright sunny day surrounded by myriads of American tourists I might instantly feel nostalgia for Vancouver. With my penchant and love for taking photographs of the undraped female I might just approach some lovely signorina and say, “Would you pose undraped for me in my palazzo studio while holding an umbrella? I am feeling nostalgic for rain, mountains and green forests. And yes, I fell nostalgic for our Native Canadian culture which we overlook, ignore, and perhaps even consider with disdain.” Yvette Nolan’s play instantly took me to Venice because I knew that what I was watching would have been seen with wonder in such places as Venice, London or even in my native Buenos Aires. Here a play featuring Native Canadian culture is to be avoided. And yet I so fondly remember one of the best plays I have seen in my life to have been Kevin Loring’s Where the Blood Mixes
a Vancouver Playhouse production I saw back in 2008.
It was today that driving home I noticed Celia Duthie
and her British husband Nick Hunt
having lunch at Max’s Delicatessen on Oak Street. I stopped and joined them. They are off to a 6 week trip to Europe. Nick Hunt told me, “In Britain I found Turner (J.M.W.) boring but not now and last year Celia and I went to a show featuring The Group of Seven in Britain that we thought was fabulous.” Mexicans call this malinchismo. Let me explain the origin of a deprecating epithet applied to the idea that only what is imported from abroad can be of quality.
Bernal Díaz del Castillo in his Historia Verdadera de la Conquista de La Nueva España
mentions the appearance of La Malinche (as Mexicans call her and Doña Marina as Spaniards reverently call her) in April of 1519, when she was among twenty slave women given by the Chontal Maya of Potonchan in the present-day state of Tabasco to the triumphant Spaniards. According to Díaz, Malinche was the noble first-born child of the lord of Paynala near present-day Coatzacoalcos, then a "frontier" region between the Aztec Empire and the Maya states of the Yucatán Peninsula. In her youth, her father died and her mother remarried and bore a son. Now an inconvenient stepchild, the girl was sold or given to Maya slave-traders from Xicalango, a commercial town further south and east along the coast. Díaz claims Malinche's family faked her death by telling the townspeople that a recently deceased child of a slave was Malinche. At some point, she was given or sold again, and was taken to Potonchan, where she was ultimately given to the Spaniards.
|La Malinche, Ivette Hernández|
Since la Malinche was fairly attractive Cortés gave her to noble born friend Alonzo Hernando Puertocarrero. When Cortés sent Puetocarrero as an emissary to the court of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V (but also Charles I King of Spain) he kept her for himself. Her knowledge of the lingua franca of the region Nahua meant that when she learned Spanish she was able to translate for Cortés.
To this day Mexicans have a complex relationship with a woman they feel sold them out to the Spaniards. There are some, who to the contrary, think that as she was also the lover to Cortés, she was able to somewhat soften the effect of the Spanish conquest. The language and customs survived to the present day. The Aztecs noted such closeness between La Malinche and Cortés that they called them both by the epithet Malintzin. In the Mexico of today a malinchista is a person who prefers the foreign to the domestic. La Malinche fades into history in 1529 and or 1551, both dates given as her possible death.
When in my prequent trips to Mexico I notice Mexicans in the street, Mexicans in buses, Mexicans at the beach, Mexicans everywhere, and in spite of North Americans from the US and Canada asserting that Mexicans are a happy "fiesta" people I can always discern a look of sadness and tragedy in their faces. I saw this when I was attempting to photograph the lovely Ms Hernández as La Malinche (a bit of my Mexican nostalgia).
|Anton Lipovitsky & Pippa Mackie|
The unplugging featured two excellent Native Canadian actors. One was Jenn Griffin (as Bernadette). It was not difficult for me to imagine the young (and very white) Anton Lipovetsky playing Seamus falling for her. I was too as tried to discern exactly the colour of her beautiful eyes. But it was Margo Kane who carried this play with humour and strength. How could I forget her? She was the only woman in that Kevin Loring play Where Blood Mixes. She and the others of that play indeed mixed in my heart.
But let me stop here with all the above melancholy and go to the quick. I was ready to throw rotten tomatoes in this play. But not what you may be thinking. I located the Georgia Straight
theatre critic, Colin Thomas. He was sitting near me and definitely within range. I was going to throw the tomatoes at him if his assertion that Anton Lipovetsky was a phenomenal young talent was not true. Indeed I had photographed him for the cover of the Straight’s Fall Arts Preview issue a few weeks back.
But Colin Thomas was safe. Anton Lipovetsky was perfect in the part of the young white man (in a case of reverse malinchismo) recruited to bring back the survival skill knowledge of the “natives” to help a community overcome living in an age suddenly without electricity.
Lipovetsky reminded me of a slightly older Petit Prince who might have, with his smile, charmed even a fox.
My theatrical wish list for Vancouver is to see more plays, with Native Canadian content like The Unplugging and Where the Blood Mixes. I would like to see more opera like Vancouver Opera's fine adaptation of Mozart's The Magic Flute
into a Native Canadian setting which I saw a few years ago. I would like to see more Karen Jamieson dance with contribution by Byron Chief-Moon
to see where Native Canadian dance has progressed to. And Mr Millerd if you read this, give director Sarah Rodgers
a chance to direct something for you. I want both Lois Anderson
(who directed The Unplugging) and Meg Roe
to get a bit more competition!
A Green Fountain On A Sunny Day
Sunday, October 28, 2012
|Hosta 'Green Fountain'|
Today it stopped raining and Rosemary and her cat Casi-Casi went out into the garden. Rosemary is doing what we call the fall cleanup. I have been lax in assisting her. Eventually I will have to cut down the dead Cercis canadensis
‘Forest Pansy’ and trim the box hedges and a laurel hedge by our north facing pond. I am postponing the eventual last mowing of the season. If wait a bit longer the winds will bring down more leaves and with the mower set to bag and mulch I do not have to rake them off. I will then use the mulch to protect my roses during the winter.
With the sun, sometimes out, I decided to explore in the garden. I observed that many of the hostas have lovely fall colour and many of my hydrangea flowers still have their colour, too. I will cut some of them and make an arrangement for our large living room glass vase. For reasons that escape me, our Clematis
‘The President’ had one bloom. I did not know that this clematis was remontant.
The big surprise was Hosta
‘Green Fountain’. This is a beautiful plain green plant with lanceolate leaves that droop a bit. When grown in a big pot (as I do) and the pot is raised the leaves cascade which explains the name. This plant a 1979 cultivar by Paul Aden has 'Green Wedge' and Hosta longipes
parents. But somewhere in that combination there is an inherited gene for flowering so late in the season. There are other hostas that flower (not in the usual June) but later in the season like hosta Hosta
I scanned one of the spent flowers and one that probably was never going to open and more so as I cut it off for the scan.
My hostas plus a few roses with water-logged and droopy blooms are saying goodbye. I hope to be around to greet them when they come back.
Fall is in the bag