Tag Archives: moving an art store

i can’t sleep

i’m sick. in the eight months that i’ve lived in San Francisco, i’ve been legitimately sick three times.

when i lived in New York for four years, i was sick about twice a year.

when i lived in Seattle as a kid, i was sick all of the time. but in the three years between New York and San Francisco, i was sick only a few times with very minor sniffles that could hardly be considered a real cold. i never missed a day of work because of it.

San Francisco. there must be something in the water here. or the air. i know that cities aren’t the kindest environments for our immune systems with the bacteria and mold flying around. my immune system also happens to be on the weak side. my white blood cell count is well below average for a normal human being and has been this way since i was a child. i take vitamins daily. i drink plenty of water. i wash my hands on the regular. clearly, my habits were rewarded in Seattle. but here in San Francisco, no such luck. i think i’ve been coughing since November. off and on, of course. i received antibiotics in February for both bronchitis and sinusitis. i may have to go back to the doctor in the next couple of weeks if this newest plague doesn’t subside soon.

however, this time around, i have to make a confession. it was likely self-induced. we have been working our asses off moving an art store. this past weekend, i got four hours of sleep three nights in a row. this wasn’t even intentional. i almost wish i had a good story to tell you about how hard i’ve been partying. but alas, i do not. i’d slip into bed at 10:30, with my alarm set for 6:30am. and then i would toss and turn. i’d read. i’d talk to my cat. i’d think. and then think some more. i even cried a few times out of frustration at not being able to fall asleep. i cried for other reasons, too. before i knew it, 2:30am had rolled around and that is the last number i remember seeing on the clock.

there’s nothing worse than being unable to sleep. i was a professional insomniac for many years. those days are behind me now, but i still have fits of insomnia here and there when life becomes too chaotic. and rationally, i know that there is nothing you can do from your bed at 1:14am. it is pointless to worry about things, but yet i still do. and i know am not alone in this. it’s the wheels turning syndrome. i have wished, on many occasions, that there was a light switch in my head that i could use at bedtime to turn my brain off. i’ve yet to have this dream come true so i continue to muddle along, attempting to control the uncontrollable from my single mattress at one in the morning. when you wake up from little sleep, you feel hungover. whether or not a drop of alcohol has passed through your lips anytime before falling to sleep, you will feel hungover from lack of sleep. your brain hurts. your body aches. and every cell that is holding you together is screaming at you to stay in bed and sleep.

i want to recover by this weekend. nay, i need to. not only is my sister coming to visit, but come friday morning – someone who i have not seen in over fifteen years will be here to see me. i am so excited for his arrival it makes me squeal and squirm with the thought of it. i can’t even go into detail about it. but i am beyond excited. until then..Nyquil.

jessi

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Filed under Year of the Pig Studio // San Francisco, CA

moving, muscles, and m’lady

things have been a little absurd these days. absurdly crazy, that is.

the art store where i work is relocating and it truly is beyond exciting. our current location is underground. i refer to it as ‘the dungeon.’ there are no windows, therefore no natural light or airflow. thanks to very colorful walls and excessive lighting, it’s not dark down there. however, when someone comes in after i’ve been down there for a prolonged period of time i tend to inquire about the weather ‘out there’ in the ‘upstairs world.’ it could be snowing or sunny and i would be none the wiser. which explains why i am grateful for when i see someone wander in in a t-shirt or holding a wet umbrella. it gives me an impression as to what is happening outside. that said, the lair in which work is quite cozy, but i miss daylight. i miss looking out the window for a weather report. and in our new location we are above ground. even our basement is above ground. my manager said it best when she exclaimed, “i felt a breeze in our new space !” and seriously, i moved from Seattle to San Francisco. i not only expect, but also feel that i deserve, some sunshine in my life.

so, this means we’re moving an art store. i’m not sure if you understand what kind of an endeavor that is. when a 4,500 square foot place is packed from floor to ceiling (literally) with art supplies, it’s a little difficult to imagine moving it to another location. i have been a wishin’ and a hopin’ and a prayin’ for a magic wand to miraculously lift our current stock into our new store, but it hasn’t happened yet. i’ll keep you posted. since we still have a huge amount of stock at our current location we are liquidating it. we are, essentially, giving away art supplies. no, they aren’t free per say, but they might as well be considering the deep discounts we’ve been doling out in an effort to rid ourselves of our current stock. while i’m on the subject, if you live in San Francisco and you (or anyone you know or anyone that they know) is an artist – you need to get here immediately. seriously, get to this store without any further ado because our sales are ridiculous, nay – downright obnoxious.

so, the new location required a serious paint job. not because the existing paint job was sub par, but because our stores are multicolored. some may refer to it as some sort of latex paint explosion, but i like to think of it more as a unicorn that vomited multiple rainbows onto the walls. however, it’s not just some random hodge podge paint job, there is quite a bit of structure and planning involved (and, by the way, it looks amazing). i was afforded the opportunity to take an over sized roller, dip it into a pan with not one, but three, different colors, and roll the walls and ceiling. and i got paid to do this ! we listened to Johnny Cash and laughed and celebrated the new space. the only draw back being that when you are a somewhat scrawny girl (me) holding a somewhat large and extended roller and you are painting fourteen foot ceilings, there is a price that you will pay.

that price was not only complete disorientation (seriously, looking up (for five hours) at a ceiling with a roller in hand that might weigh more than you is liable to cause a serious case of vertigo). i’m not complaining because it was a blast to be a part of this whole experience, but i’m just sayin’. i was more than just a little dizzy after that sort of labor. but the complete loss of balance is nothing compared to the muscle, or perhaps ligament?, that i tweaked in the process. i still cannot laugh, sneeze, cough, breath, or lie down without an incredibly sharp pain in my upper left rib area. who knew painting could result in a ‘work related injury’ ? i wasn’t expecting it and i, personally, find it to be rather hilarious despite the pain.

i was also there the day some two tons of steel were delivered. steel, people. i aided in the movement of said steel down into the basement area. there’s no elevator. there are stairs. we did construct a makeshift ramp from some ply wood that made the whole experience far easier to manage, but lifting and heaving steel around when you have a seriously tweaked something in your torso is not incredibly comfortable. and it’s particularly uncomfortable when you drop a pile of said steel on your foot, causing a rather impressive bruise to form thereafter. what can i say ? moving this store is, truly, a labor of love.

i realize that i have, by now, rambled on for far too long. i have one more story to tell (which is quite amusing), but it can wait. it’ll have to because i’m not in the mood to bore you any further. plus, i’m not even finished telling the stories above because the new location we are moving into holds so much amazing history, i would feel criminal keeping it from you. but i will leave you with this post for now. it’s just about nine o’clock and bed is in my near future.

[‘m’lady is called ‘Filling the Void.’ she is acrylic and mixed media on glass. she was just displayed at a drag show fundraiser (yes, this is what happens when you live in San Francisco) and i shared her last week, but the picture was sub par so i figured i’d re-share her this evening. so, please, enjoy.]

jessi

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Filed under design, illustration (both acrylic and oilt)