Oct 28, 2009

I bought a pillow

That, sadly, is the most excitement I've had in the past few days. It was pretty, it was on sale, and

I've always had a thing for peacocks (go ahead, cue the jokes).

A few months ago at the zoo, in fact, I took my first digital photograph ever....of, you guessed it, a peacock, a particularly nasty one too.

Immediately after I snapped his picture, he rushed forward and tried to peck my leg. That's what they do, it seems. There's a metaphor there, I'm sure.

Anyway, too bad it was the zoo, or he'd be decorating my couch right now...and not that pillow. That's all I'm saying.

The pillow also reminded me of one of my favorite rooms of all time, Whistler's famous Peacock room, which I've long dreamed of seeing in person. I figure if I start with the pillow maybe I can work my way up, right?

It also reminded me of 5th grade, when our pretty new art teacher, Miss Martin, (from some foreign land called "Connecticut" or something) initiated us into the mysteries of papier mache.

Our assignment was to create a "favorite animal".

Amidst the sad lumpy teddy bears and boring kitty cats, the crosseyed puppies, the pedestrian turtles....and an elephant that looked like a giant turd with a tusk...

was mine---a near life sized peacock, painted up in iridescent acrylic, lacquered with about twenty two coats of polyurethane, complete with three dimensional wired tail feathers.

Oddly, I was ridiculed. Apparently nothing screams "fag!" like a peacock.

Somewhere in the intervening years it dry rotted and had to be thrown away, despite the twenty two coats of polyurethane. There's a metaphor somewhere in there too, I'm sure, but I'm too tired to care.


David said...

Jason - come on to DC and see the Peacock Room at the Freer Gallery. You won't be disappointed.

jason said...

Hopefully one day I will!

Elizabeth said...

It's worth the trip! But peacocks didn't work out so well for Whistler either! The guy who commissioned him didn't like it!

Ur-spo said...

have you ever ate roasted peacock?
it is supposed to be quite a treat.

Muscato said...

My favorite Peacock Room factoid: one reason that the patron wasn't happy when Whistler escalated from a-few-decorations-here-and-there to a full all-room mural was because the gentleman's dining room was already decorated, with priceless leather panels supposedly originally a gift from Katherine of Aragon to Henry VIII.

But it is fabulous, all the same.

All of this makes me wonder if my little schoolfriends (or the staff) got any clues from my project (4th grade, I think), in which I explained Tudor politics using my sister's collection of Henry VIII-and-his-six-wives Peggy Nisbet dolls...

Jill said...

I was chased by a white male peacock on my first honeymoon in Hawaii...I'm not sure what he had in mind if he had caught me! My ex-husband and I separated 8 months after that. It was the only chasing I had received throughout the entire marriage. God, I miss that peacock!

ayem8y said...

I once had peacock feather inspired turquoise wallpaper in my powder room. I miss that.

“Apparently nothing screams "fag!" like a peacock.”

Try walking around McRae’s Department Store with your very own purse at age five. Or throwing a tantrum Christmas morning because you received a baseball glove and a mitt instead of a Baby Hungry doll.

Anonymous said...

Can I just say I think the pillow is a real find - and I am jealous. Can I also say that I'm pleased to find myself amongst the best commentators on the Internest?

Mean Dirty Pirate scores the highest points for the McRae's Department Store reference and wins an extra point for clarity of vision.

As Auntie Mame would say: "How Vivid!". I was there!

TJB said...

My art class project, when we had to sculpt a person or animal out of clay, was to recreate Zsa Zsa Gabor, circa 1965, complete with wiglet. The sculpture itself didn't turn out so great, but my initial, preparation sketch (complete with diamonds, false eyelashes and wiglet) was FABULOUS.

Salty Miss Jill said...

That paper-mache peacock must have been magnificent. How fabulous of you to build one!
Peacocks are my favorite creature. Thank you for this post!

Dean Grey said...


I'd love to see the Peacock Room too! Green is my most favorite color of all time! That room must look expensive and amazing in person!

I want one now!