Posts in COLD

Unsafe Work Environment

published by Fran Shea

We have a New Andrea.

The Original Andrea got a life and only wants to email me about hypothetical cold-press coffee dates and cramps. They grow up so fast.

Jen’s on vacation and that means two things:

1) I am crying less.

2) I (the intern) have (has) more work to do.

The reps are faxing in their Christmas orders because they want to remind me that this Summertime happiness I feel is fleeting.

It’s good to keep me grounded.

Oh, and here’s why my work environment is not safe:

Goodbye Craftstravaganza 2011

published by Fran Shea

I was right in the middle of a dream where both of my eyeballs were, curiously, weeping blood. This was, of course, followed by an intense search for a public toilet and, AS USUAL, the only available toilet was in a high-traffic area of the Southdale Mall.

Thank God Jen called and woke me up. But not before I reluctantly (why do I always do it??) sat my bare bottom on the toilet.

If I’ve learned anything in my life it is how to be wrenched from a sound sleep and into a car in under 5 minutes.

It’s not pretty but neither is childbirth.

Jen and I stopped for our traditional latte at the May Day Cafe and then it was onward to the State Fairgrounds. The Fine Arts Building was our cold and unwelcoming host, its huge doors left open to remind us that April can be just as cold as November.

I’m sure the whole building was full of crafty-goodness but unless tables were set up on the way to the bathroom, I wasn’t going to see them. For eight hours, I did observe the folks running the Burlesque of North America table. They are screen printers – a craft that I have always had a crush on. Anyway, despite the sweetness of their prints, they were just as freezing as us.

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Poor thing!

Our big experiment for this year’s fair involved a QR code

qr-code-token

that led to our latest Watch and Share card.

It was successful. If you measure success in terms of wishes and smiles. Which I do.

zp-craftstravaganza-booth-2011

Your Flippant Attitude Will Get You Nowhere

published by Fran Shea

Do you hear me? DO YOU?!

Like-minded people know that a flippant attitude will get you somewhere. You can be either: A) A bartender. B) A regular on The Hollywood Squares. C) A wise-cracking cellmate. D) Christian Lander. E) The Voice of the People.

Those are pretty much all your choices, so think carefully. Obviously, I chose E. Only because the role of Christian Lander was already taken and I have claustrophobia.

I looked out the window today and saw this:

My reaction could only be this:

Blog Post #184 – aka: The Perfect Winter Card

published by Fran Shea

Oh, Winter! You blustery old fool – you are the antagonist of the seasons. And as I am the protagonist in my own story, I gladly throw my fleece-lined hat in the ring. It is February and that means Triumph is within my grasp. I can smell it like a plate of clam fries. Mmm, clam fries… Once Upon A Time, I found myself sitting in front of an abandoned plate of clam fries. They were left by an angel disguised as a drunk couple. God is so mysterious!

Here is a new card, inspired by the soft blanket of snow that covers this land:

An irresistible, wriggling delight.

published by Fran Shea

The first week of January is known as the first week of January. It’s also known as the time that the patient angler, eyes fixed on the bobber bobbing on the surface of the nearly frozen water in the middle of a hole cut through the ice-crust of their chosen lake, watches and waits. Watches and waits for the bobber to disappear, the bobber attached to the line tied to the sharp hook, the hook baited with an irresistible, wriggling delight. 

I love that the Zeichen Press fax machine is the bobber in the story. Ring, ring, ring! Thank you reps for dangling our delights (?!) in front of those hungry buyers! You wear snow-pants so we don’t have to. But we do anyway.

Because of you, we have time to direct important things:

Goodbye 2010

published by Fran Shea

2010 has a short driveway and as we backed down it we (I) felt wistful. It seems like only last year we were freezing in Brainerd. Here we are again, eating thick-cut bacon and praying for the strength to survive round after round of Name That Tune. I don’t believe in New Year’s Resolutions because the prisons are overcrowded as it is and also because the world isn’t ready for my style of leadership. (Deer-in-the-headlights.)

deer

This was a big year for Zeichen Press – and as I sit in my Fiberglass Insulated Cell, I feel gratitude. I also feel greasy from all of the bacon, but like the sparrow, I will take a sand-bath to freshen up when the time is right. A new website, a fleet of repsprints in Room & Board, the dog’s wig:

millie-wearing-a-wig

Who wouldn’t be grateful? I believe Jen and I are coming up on The Five Year Anniversary of Our Zeichen Press Partnership – we will celebrate by not murdering each other in cold blood.

Don’t worry, we’ll send out Save-The-Date cards.

Are we there yet?

published by Fran Shea

Christmas is just around the corner and that can only mean one (or more) thing(s): The shop is closed and the kitchen is open.

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ALSO, it means that the children and animals are underfoot (more than usual) because of the 5 foot snowdrifts blocking the exits. snow-out-shop-window

But don’t worry if you haven’t sent (or bought) your Christmas cards, yet! We (Jen and I, mostly Jen) are here to hold your hand straight through this blustery season! Did you know that (legally) you can send “Christmas” cards until January 6? THAT, is the official end of the Christmas Season because that’s when the Wise Men hauled it to the manger.3-wise-men

*Playmobile dramatization.

I used to mark the end of the Christmas Season by my son’s birthday (February 7). That day meant it was time to shove the Christmas tree out the second story window before the arrival of the birthday party guests. Now the tree stays until it becomes a fire hazard, and not a moment longer. So responsible!

So, speaking of an Epiphany: Don’t waste another minute reading this scatology! Go and buy some Seasonal Cards!

Are we there yet? Letterpress printed on recycled paper. Comes with coordinating envelope and packaged in cellophane sleeve.

$*#-ing Cold OR A Step-By-Step Letterpress Project

published by Fran Shea

Proposals were requested by a public entity (m-m-mysterious!) and WHO ARE WE not to respond?? We felt it our duty (doodie) – as citizens – of this great state, to answer the call.

What follows is a step-by-step account of the creation of the proposal. Zeichen Press style.

°°°

1) Do I look bitter? I’m getting into character. 

2) Brrr! This type is as cold as my heart. Here is the part where lead type is put into something called a stick. Sometimes reading backwards makes me so angry.

3) Now that cold, lead type is locked up into a (cold, metal) frame using fancy (cold, metal) things called quoins. This whole thing is very heavy and sits flat on a proof press. Ready to do my bidding.

4) I load up my brayer with black ink so I can roll it across the type.

5) When I’m sure that my type is evenly inky, I roll this over it. *Notice the vice-grips. I don’t remember why I put them on there and am now afraid to take them off.

6) Isn’t this magical? Ink + paper = awesome.

7) (I would show Jen printing the pages for the guts of the proposal but I felt too fragile to withstand another one of her icy stares.)

8) Printing done.

9) This is where Andrea is shackled to the table and sews the pages into little books while I throw olives at her head.

10) And this is where the little books are finished.

I suppose other people will email their proposals. That’s cool, too.