Saturday, March 22, 2008

My road to hell is paved with obsession and pretty, pretty!

So, tomorrow is Easter. Did you get some Easter Candy? Yeah, me too. Did you decorate eggs? Yeah, me too. Did your decorated egg take you hours to complete? Yeah, me too. Oh wait, just me?

So Easter is another one of those holidays were me and my people get super-enthusiastic about the crafty part. Where as most folks think “egg decorating” and get some dye and make some really nice blue or lovely green eggs, or maybe they do a little waxing stuff or some stickers or crayons, my family shows up with boxes and BOXES of supplies. I remember one year there was an easter right after a wedding, and a friend of mine in town for the wedding was invited to join in the egg decorating festivities, but he declined. When pressed for a “why” he finally fessed up that he was too intimidated to decorate eggs with my family. “I mean cripes,” he said, “for me I’m happy when I get a really nice blue! You people are crazy!”

We’ve got crayons, pastels, colored pencils and markers, paints, drafting pens, 3-d attachments… I’m waiting for the year we finally motorize an egg. It’s coming – oh yes it is coming. Also we have these things – I don’t know exactly when we first got them, but long enough ago that I don’t remember us NOT having them, and also long enough ago that the best way to attach them to massive blocks of 4x4 wood was duct tape. (these days we’d have done something elaborate with power tools and high-tech hardware pieces. And then duct tape.)

Anyway, they’re these plastic egg lathes. They’re spring-loaded and you put the egg between the holder-bits and then you can turn it and draw and stuff and you don’t have to hold the egg in one hand while you are being creative. They ROCK! We have only three, and no matter how much time I spend on the internet looking for more of them I’ve never seen any other evidence of them. It’s like we’re the only people who ever thought they were a worthwhile idea. To which I say "just how is one supposed to draw shimmering, symmetrical scales with a forced perspective, to show movement of course,on their blowfish egg without some method of holding the egg still?" I’m just saying!

So beloved are our three egg lathes that we often have creative back-ups when folks are waiting for a lathe to free up. "No, I'm fine, I just need, NEED, to draw a perfect line around the exact center of the egg before I can finish the design. So I'll just eat some more dark chocolate M&Ms (perfect for egg decorating because of the lack of meltage upon one's hands -- nice job, people at Mars Candy!) while I wait for Aunt Whosit to finish painting Monet's Wildflowers."

This year my big plan was to bead an egg, and everything mostly went to plan, except the part of the plan where it said “expected time required to complete egg: not so much, maybe 45 minutes tops, it’ll be cool” and it apparently should have said “expected time required to complete egg: bring a sleeping bag, drink lots of fluids, don’t forget to stretch first, what the heck are you thinking anyway?” Still, at 1:something a.m. I was the happy owner of a lovely, beaded egg.

The whole collection was very cool. We’re just an artsy-fartsy bunch! So I say that if the rest of the Easter-celebrating world wants to spend this holiday with prayer and worship and such they should have a big old blast with that. And pardon me while I work on next year’s egg, which I think will be an aircraft with working propeller, landing gear and tiny air stewardesses. Made from Peeps. (You know you're jealous. Jealous of our madness!)


Anonymous said...

My idea of Easter! I think I know the lathe you're talking about. Here's one site that has it, but there are others that are cheaper (by maybe $10)

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job said...


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