Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Memory for Forgetting project for an english class i took at tufts this summer.
Could we have done something differently years ago to prevent this awkwardness that exists between us now?

I don’t know.

Like these two coffee cups, do you think these could be art? Would it have to be specifically these cups with this coffee that we are drinking right now to represent this conversation?

I don’t know.

Love always,

Upon entering class on the morning of the performance, I had a total of sixteen notes in the pockets of my pants. Each was written to a different class member.
The performance began as a continuation of a preceding performance by Alaina Gurdak. Using her action as a jumping off point, I placed my audience in a semi-circle in front of a television playing her Buffy the Vampire Slayer DVD beginning at the point in the episode where her piece had left off.
As everyone sat and watched the television I began pulling the notes out one by one and taking individuals aside to read them these letters, essentially ending an imagined romantic relationship with them. This continued until I had “broken up” with everyone excluding one class member who I had formerly dated and had been through a break up with and one student whose letter I had either forgotten or lost. When I realized this, I ended the action by sitting down next to her and asking her to explain what I had missed in the television show.

the unfinished scarf

I didn’t love her when she was making it for me. It hid a lot. In her closet, draped over the arm of the couch. Seemingly untouched for days at a time. Crotched or knit, (I don’t know the difference,) in two shades of green that crossed her lap in thick stripes under distraught and twisting hands that worried it would never be finished before I left for Ireland. She was making plans to destroy an ex boyfriend’s scarf that she had made, and while mine was being constructed I was listening to her talk about dismantling the one that came before. Just made me feel next in line. Like someday she’d be making a scarf for some other guy, smiling and talking to him about sending mine down river. I hate that.

The colors were great. She worried about the colors, that they wouldn’t go with me or I wouldn’t like them or whatever because I never really wore green, (the whole time I was in Ireland I was looking for a green scarf.) It was thick and looked warm. There was a little flaw in it where she had done one two many rows I think, and it bowed out in places. Missed stitches. I preferred it that way, thought it had character. I told her it showed someone made it for me. Took the time. I told her that but she really wanted it to be perfect. I’ve never ever worn it.

In the end she never finished it. I imagine it postponed, deferred, canceled. Buried in her room someplace in a corner where she isn’t forced to look at it and someday it’ll end up in a plastic bag bound for the garbage or a charity shop after a spring cleaning or before a move to Boston.

I just couldn’t love her when she was making it. And I didn’t see the big deal.

He was leaving and I wanted him to have something that I had made to keep with him, remind him of home and of me. It would keep him warm while we were apart for the winter. The yarn was expensive, but I thought it would be a worthy purchase.

Muted yellow and gray, I chose the colors because it seemed like they might be found in one of his paintings (his mild colorblindness always caused us to see things slightly differently though). He likes stripes, but when making stripes I have trouble keeping them straight, always dropping stitches and gaining stitches. I had to go back and redo a portion of it at one point and it caused a bit of frustration for me.

He left in January and it was still only half done as it had been for a couple of weeks. I had planned to finish it and send it to him. This never happened. I still feel regret about it. I may finish it someday. It is more likely that I will not.