Posts in Winter
Asylum-For-Onepublished by Fran Shea
Listen, I could break out of this place if I had some sturdy cornhusks, one tablespoon of vaseline, two steel springs, and a puppy.
But do I really want to?
Jen is printing a card
in preparation for the MCBA Festival, not the Mutation Chinchilla Breeders Association—a real thing—but the Minnesota Center for Book Arts festival. It’s Saturday, November 19th and if you like celebrating books via buying book-like items (handmade paper, journals, our cards) you should totally go.
My contribution to the show is this lovely display signage I designed:
See you there!
Freak-Magnetpublished by Fran Shea
The sixth-grade science fair was less about science and more about showcasing the student’s idiosyncrasies.
My brother and I spent the Winter inserting motors harvested from innocent appliances into the wall outlet in the basement and recording the results in our notebooks.
The results usually included the motors jumping out of our hands, spinning impossibly fast and bouncing around the room like a pinball.
And also blown fuses. (“Geez mom, I don’t know why the power keeps going out.”)
I don’t remember why we had to perform those “tests” – they really had nothing to do with his perpetual motion machine (made of legos, of course) or my nail+wire+battery=magnet.
The electro-magnet can be turned on or off just like my freak-magnet. I prefer to leave my freak-magnet on as it makes life more interesting.
And now I’ll talk about the project du jour: I designed a logo for a company called Pretty Fluffy Chicken – PFC develops recipes, cocktails, and blog content for clients like General Mills, a cantaloupe grower in California and a law firm looking for a custom cocktail for an event.
This could only be the brainchild of the ladies from JSTK.
Anyway, here’s the logo:
Creature Comfortspublished by Fran Shea
The trees are already half-naked and that reminds me – it’s time to start throwing my end-of-Summer tantrum – it’ll be a doozy.
October has been more cunning (moody) than usual and for that I tip my hat. I never know if I should wear my hot-pants or my Forever Lazy ($29.95).
But did October imagine that I would wear my hot-pants under Forever Lazy?? I think not. I think not.
Speaking of Winter and claustrophobia and lack of space and re-organizing the warehouse:
Yes, reorganizing the warehouse is at the top of my list. Right after:
1) Stare out the window, and 2) Wish someone would bring me coffee.
Nuditypublished by Fran Shea
Because Summer is ending and because I can never have too many awkward locker room situations, I joined a gym. Let me be clear, the other women in the locker room aren’t at all awkward – only me. They undress shamelessly while I wrestle my sports bra off like Houdini. They meander from locker to shower completely nude while I fashion and drape a towel-sari around my body.
(That’s me and Lucy.)
I expect the entire Winter to be a blur of snow and uncomfortable nudity.
Thoughts of this inspired a (birthday?) card:
Urine in the Snowpublished by Fran Shea
Being buried alive happens – especially if someone thinks you’re dead. Why be unprepared for such misfortune? I practice digging myself free of the shallow grave by waking from daily, coma-like naps. That, and a spoon in my pocket give me peace of mind.
After I shake the dirt from my hair, I ask myself a series of questions: What time is it? Did I really just stab that woman in the neck with a pencil? Why did I have to use that toilet on the 50 yard line?
Whew! Every day is like a new adventure.
Sometimes my subconscious dreams up a new card and that usually comes out in my post-coma Q&A.
Vulgar! I know. I won’t apologize for ideas that The Lord puts into my head.
International Internetterpublished by Fran Shea
The intern packed up her carpetbag and rode away. I felt like we should hug but we didn’t – hugs are best left out of print shops. She made this before she left:
Go, my young grasshopper, go and use the life-skills I so generously shared with you.
Fred photographed the new cards – here’s my favorite:
That’s a true story.
ALSO: Becki Iverson at Metro Magazine wrote a nice thing about us. I think we’ll keep giving out that photo until we are 60 years old.
Nobody needs to see a photo of us taken in February.
Unsafe Work Environmentpublished 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:
A Well-Oiled Machinepublished by Fran Shea
My brother took some old bicycle parts (they weren’t really old, just unguarded) and screwed them to an outhouse. He called this his ice-fishing house and wheeled it the five blocks to Lake Harriet every morning before school.
It probably wasn’t an outhouse and he probably wasn’t ice-fishing. But the important thing was the procedure: Wake up before the crack of dawn, drag, push, and pull the little house through the dark and cold, onto the frozen lake.
What a strange young man.
It has taken us years to fine-tune our order-processing procedure at Zeichen Press. It is now just like a beautifully choreographed ballet. Costumes are optional so Jen never wears hers. Anyway, we are testing out a new step in the procedure. I call it the Order Chute.
Goodbye Craftstravaganza 2011published 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.
Our big experiment for this year’s fair involved a QR code
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.
Fran Scores!published by Fran Shea
Fred came over this morning (why was it snowing??) and showed me how to score cards on the Heidelberg. In exchange, I made him a mediocre latte and he spat it in my face.
I deserved it.
The rest of the day was just a blur of lugging boxes from the warehouse to the shop (the basement to the garage) and watching the Windmill do what it does: