Tuesday, January 13, 2009

There is Something Appealing About the Absurd


This all started with an innocent exploration of the internet. A friend told me about her Tarot deck which was based on the Wizard of Oz books of L. Frank (like that name) Baum. I thought the idea of a tarot deck based on something whimsical as interesting. But when I found the deck - I was disappointed - it was boring (at least to me).

However, as my mind wandered, looking for something interesting - I came upon the Housewives Tarot deck and I was hooked. The absurdity of the design somehow kept my interest. To think you could make a tarot deck based upon 40-50's housewives posters was either pure genius or utterly insane - Either way I had to go to their website and see more. Once there, I tried a sample reading - which told me I am great and headed for great things and thus I wanted to buy the deck then and there (note to self - positivity helps sell your product). But since I have over 10 decks already some of which make me wonder why I ever got them - I decided to wait a week or so to see if I still have the same interest.

I started to think about some events that have been happening to me in the last week or so. First I was attracted to this movie called "Super High Me" which I found at my library N,o it is not based upon my college years (decades? I don't remember), it is about a man who wonder if he could stay non-stop high from dope for 30 days. The thought of this makes me shudder. This is absurd but I wondered if . . . - Bottomline: I checked it out but have yet to watch it - However, the absurdity of cover - a clean-cut guy with a mouthful of smoke grabbed m attention and would not let it go.
Next I joined an online Artist Way group and it bugged me that instead of using the book to loosen themselves up, my fellow members were obsessing about if they were doing the exercises the 'right' way - So I started a mock discussion group in which I told everyone (in tongue in cheek manner) the right way to do things - only my 'right' way was totally absurd and undo-able. It is now the most popular discussion group there - my fellow members have by far topped my absurd instructions with their own and have loosened way up.

Next, I submit the piece I commissioned Grant Wood to do - it is of course me and my loving companion. Somehow, I forgot to claim ownership rights to it but that is not the point - the point is this painting is absurd - the woman (my little woman should be holding the pitchfork and it should be pointed at me ! But for some strange reason people like this picture - I know I do. But why? What is it about the absurd that draws us in? I do not know but I think I can tap this absurdity to help me release my creative juices - I have come up with the idea for a
Creative Writing Book for kids of all ages who were told they stink by nuns and English teachers (yeah the title needs work but so what)
I am thinking that the book will appeal to all youse guys

who want to be writers, ( you know - bloggers) who have either no talent or like me, people with a world of talent who are too wimpy to try and publish it.
You see the absurd idea behind this is that I, a person who has never been published could write this book and a publishing company would take me seriously. But say they did, and they wanted me to actually work on this, I think I would look like this (see accompanying photo of me on Navy Pier)
Still there is something appealing about this idea -
perhaps it is the absurdity of my pose.

Surreally yours,
Frank

7 comments:

Urban Panther said...

Housewives Divination Kit. Um. Wow! That's all I've got to say about that.

Spinning off on a tangent, because that's what I do, I also have multiple tarot decks, but I rarely use any but Froud's Faerie Oracle deck. His artwork is absolutely stunning.

I use Crowley when I have a really deep issue, but I use it sparingly as I always end up with a migraine.

Tao Master said...

Urban Panther - My favorite is Robin Wood - I use that in 80% of my readings. I use OSHO deck for deep problems and Crowley sometimes - is that the Thoth deck ?

Soulsearcher said...

I don't know about the designers or their artwork, but I did enjoy the Tarot readings you did for us at the Center. And I enjoyed this essay. Keep it up!

Urban Panther said...

Yes, the Thoth deck. It literally vibrates in my hands. However, Froud's deck is so rich that it draws me right in. I feel at home amongst these cards. Does that make sense?

Fiona Robyn said...

Hi - my emails to you are bouncing, so leaving a message to say that your weeds 'small stone' will be going up on 9.2.09 at www.ahandfulofstones.com - look out for it! Thanks for submitting.

Soulsearcher said...

Cool! You submitting something and it's getting posted! Congrats!

butterfly woman said...

You are on a roll TaoMaster! I too love the absurd, I suppose that's why the abstract surrealism of art appeals to me. I have seen you rockin and rolling on the internet and your fan base is incredible, you seem to have really tapped into who you are now, your imagination knows no limits.
CONGRATS on getting published. Those three lines of magic say so much. Now you are published and I know it's just the beginning of so much more. I will not stick you with a pitchfork anymore, no prodding needed. Though I do say we make an absurd couple!