For those of you who don't know me personally, I do a good deed a day before my birthday. Or many good deeds, if I can. I give donations, help, compliments. When my daughter was getting her book signed by the very dignified illustrator, I figured I should compliment him or his work. I could check another act of kindness off my list. Besides, I am a genuine admirer, but I didn't want to just say, "We love your books."
Kadir was sitting at a desk on a little stand. He looked like a visited diplomat, very regal. "You look like a work of art sitting on that pedestal," I said as he signed my daughter's picture book. Good one! I told myself. But he gave an awkward little small, and I swear, he gave me just a tiny bit of a "crazy lady" look. I wanted to jump back in line and say, "I'm not hitting on you, you know." But I have learned from age and experience that doesn't generally help matters. In the end, I just shrugged it off. Meh. I've said worse.
And the exhibit was stunning. There were paintings of boxers, civil rights leaders, presidents and a whole room dedicated to the soft, evening-set paintings from the successful children's book, Baby Bear.
When my daughter and I reached my car, I flipped down my mirror, and saw what the poor Mr. Nelson had to look at. My hair was wet and stringy from the storm outside. My much-too-dark-for-me lipstick was smudged. I looked like Hatchet Face from Cry Baby. I shrugged. Meh.. I've looked worse.
If you want to see Words and Pictures: Illustrated Works by Kadir Nelson exhibit, in person, visit the Fayetteville/Cumberland County Arts Council before February 28th.
That was my Friday night. What are you doing this weekend?