Block 800: October 2, 2015


Is this the start of the countdown, everyone?

Only 200 more to go and that’s all he wrote.

Here we go, folks; make it all count.

Date: October 2, 2015

Crane: 800

Days Spent on Project: 955

Location: NW Portland, OR

Person I would have sent it to: TBD

Music I listened to while sewing: Through the magic of Twitter, somehow, SOMEHOW, the group Superwalkers tweeted at me and thanked me for listening and liking their song “Judge Me.”

That’s a reason to love Twitter. And, so I’ve been listening to and loving a song they sent me a link to… “Kings.”

How cool is that? They sent me a link.

Sometimes the world is small in the right ways.

Thoughts/Feelings behind the block: Someone asked me today if I get excited to hit “milestone” numbers in this project. Every one hundred. Maybe 250 or 750. Maybe 333 or 666. I don’t really think I do, actually; instead of feeling accomplished with one specific block, this project really has become about making one Crane at a time and moving on. It’s now a routine. It’s a part of my morning activity. Cut the pieces out. Pin it together. Stitch the pieces together. Iron the seam allowances. Trim the edges. Photograph. Write about the day. Move on.

I have to admit that, now, 800 Cranes into this project, how routine it all has become. It used to be about taking the time to meditate on the project at hand… forgetting about the trials and tribulations ahead of me as I waged war as a freelance theater artist in New York City… it was my 45 minutes to an hour every morning in my small but functional studio space in my apartment. It was my reprieve. It was my solace. It was my daily “You Time” to be had in the morning, when the sunlight had a chance to peek into the apartment windows, between old buildings, which meant I could Instagram the block documenting it for posterity.

It is a little sad. This is now a process I do every day. This is now something I’m lumbering towards finishing, even though when I hit 1000 Crane Blocks, I still have to finalize and figure out the most appropriate way to quilt the darn things. I have to answer the next question: how does it all come together, really? What is the best way to finish it so that I show my true intention?

How do I use these Crane Blocks as a visual reminder (for me) of the people who’ve shaped me throughout the past 36 years and the gratitude that I need to give them?

I hope, in my heart of hearts, that this project– the product and the process and the writing– might mean something. I hope it doesn’t become simply something that is completed and then shoved cumbersomely into a chest or box and forgotten about. I hope it takes on a life of its own in the years ahead and reminds people that we’re the sum of the people around us.

I’m starting to understand that our lives are only as rich as the people we choose and don’t choose to bring into them. I genuinely am starting to believe that we are who we are solely based on the connections we have around us. It’s not the experience that shapes us. It’s the connection between us that shapes us.

I don’t know.

It’s all another reason why I’m wondering how long I’m going to be stuck in Portland, as it’s showing itself to me currently. It’s not only that I feel creatively stagnant here; it’s really that I feel socially stagnant here, with hardly any *real* connections forming between people i meet at work or out on the streets or in this city. Portland is fine, but it’s not contributing to me as a person who needs social connections.

I guess I’m looking for the next now less because of the desire to push my theater experience and design experience. I’m looking for the next now more because I don’t want to be as alone as I feel here.

Again, I felt alone in New York. I did. But in Portland I feel adrift amongst solitude.

Maybe this is all a bit convoluted for a Friday night discussion… I wish I were out or with friends or on the phone or something.

Make your time count, guys.

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