Red, White, and Blue – Olympic Gold

By WR Jones

    I was watching the Olympics with my daughter and one of her friends last week.  It was some event with females.  I mentioned that I didn’t go by countries, I cheered for the cutest girls from wherever.  My daughter, rather sharply I thought, warned me not to become a creepy old man.

    I would not dedicate the hours required to get to the Olympics if you  guaranteed me a gold medal.  I suppose most of those athletes don’t consider it to be the sacrifice I would.  They must love what they are doing.    There are those in this world who would give their life to get a gold medal.  They think they would be remembered.  Ya, by momma.   I just can’t imagine swimming mile after mile after mile – mind numbingly boring.   Of course it paid off handsomely for Phelps, but how about those others that helped him get all those medals.  How much do you suppose they will get?  Can you name them?  Ok, you have a great short term memory, you can name them – then who were the teammates of Mark Spitz.  How many cereal boxes are they on?

    How would you like to run the hundred yard dash over and over?   Bullshit – you drive the car three blocks to get a doughnut.

    There should be a painting event.  Four rounds – three obligatory paintings: figure, still life, landscape, and then a paint whatever you like round.   You could take a chance and paint an abstract or do a safe, low degree of difficulty, portrait of one of the judges and his family.

    Many of us would certainly be better painters if we had the same dedication for our love as those Olympians do.   Up in the morning to paint for a few hours before work.  After work, paint from 6 to 11, then all day on the weekends.  Christ, that is like being a professional.

    I think I will dedicate this post to Carol King of New York – she is a less than dedicated painter – someone I can pattern myself after.

    Ok, Carol, I added the link so everyone – well,  three of them (counting Mom) anyway, can see your high productivity of at least a painting every quarter.  And I added you to the blog roll so they can be dissappointed on a daily basis as they check for new work.

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25 Responses to Red, White, and Blue – Olympic Gold

  1. Nice painting, Bill!
    Was there some relationship to the gal and the post? No? It doesn’t matter… I enjoyed both.
    Your thoughts seem to have paralleled my thoughts and many others lately about how dedication can make you excel at something but only at the expense of other important things. I guess that’s one reason why all of us are different — what we choose to spend our time on and how much of ourselves we dedicate to it. I’m for balance in life……. Guess I’ll never really excel at anything.
    Oh well……

  2. Well it IS truly amazing how much difference practice makes. Do something over and over and you get good at it. Of course some folks like Spitz or Phelps have God-given gifts in the first place. But they never would’ve gotten those gold medals without the hard work of practice every day.

  3. wrjones says:

    Thanks, Marian. I strive for high mediocrity, don’t often make it, but one needs a goal.

    I don’t think God did that – it must have been the devil. Those poor fellows will never know the joy of being here in the middle with the masses. Remember it is companionship over comfort.

  4. grfxho says:

    I think I’d prefer a bit of both. Uncomfortable companionship can be the worst kind…

  5. 100swallows says:

    Heck, Bill, unless these paintings of yours are old and you keep taking them out of the storeroom to post, I’d say you are a very dedicated painter, regular as those athletes training,and with no end of ideas. Funny you don’t see yourself that way.
    Do you write the posts after looking at a painting–do you get ideas from there? Or do you write first and then rack your brain to show how the painting illustrates the story?

  6. wrjones says:

    grfxho – you are so grounded. I could use you as a life coach. I’m sure you could get me qualified for “best life” in the next Olympics.

    100swallows – I generally pick a painting and try to make it somehow connect to the story even if by the barest of threads. The ideas just come by random chance or old experiences – I’m not having many new ones. Today when I got gas the TV at the pump proudly proclaimed that Shell oil had talked to the people and found they want free gas. Wa-la, Shell is giving away $2900 of free gas a day. I drove for a few block before thinking – “Are you shitting me again?” They make profits in the Billions – their generosity is astounding! I will have to post about this.

  7. Nava says:

    not to BECOME one? but you are doing such a good job at being one already! please don’t ever stop… of course you’d cheer for the cutest girls – just like I’d cheer for the purple cars at a race. I mean, Duh?

    Just reading about this Olympics makes me cringe, having been formally and officially bestowed upon with a Plantar Fasciitis and equipped with a lot of things-to-do (which is my excuse for slacking!), I can hardly walk now.

    I am all for that painting Olympics – just add a portrait category, will ya?

  8. Nava says:

    Damn, you saw distract us with your wiring, that I always forget to comment on your painting! if you are striving for “high mediocrity”, then sorry, but you’ve failed. This is a good one. Way beyond mediocre. Clever composition, and nice touches of (Olympic?) gold in her hair.

    I do hate that that four-eyed-geek emoticon that I keep getting whenever I leave a comment on your blog.

  9. Susan says:

    I’m with you about the Olympics. ANd what I can’t figure is how those swimmers don’t develop gills from spending so much time in water.

    Well done painting. Quite patriotic – she’s facing the flag colors rather than the viewers.

  10. grfxho says:

    She’s French though, right? You can tell by the flag behind her.

  11. bonnieluria says:

    Ah, the Olympiad Odalisque a la Jones.
    She looks like she’s competing in an event most of us can do and are well practiced in.
    Is the big screen TV hidden from our view?

    She’s quite serene and it’s a great painting. It’s shameful that your writing is such a darn distraction from your art.
    Your paintings warrant just as many comments as your commentaries.

  12. I paint EVERY FRIGIN DAY! I’m just as dedicated as those Olympians. Why? Because I have to EARN A LIVING AND MEET MY MORTGAGE PAYMENTS! I will never have enough money to fritter away in Vegas and I will never ever appear on a Wheaties box. I do have something, however, that many people envy…I can hardly wait to wake up in the morning to do my job!!

  13. Carol King says:

    Thank you Bill!!!!! I couldn’t be more proud. At least I excel at something.

  14. Carol King says:

    Oh, and the least you could have done was provide a link to my lame little blog.

  15. wrjones says:

    Nava, you are right, that avatar looks very nerdy. Here is an engineering solution that you might appreciate – signup for a wordpress blog (they are free), create your wordpress avatar to show your natural beauty (I’ve seen those eyes of yours), comment on wordpress sites from your wordpress blog. You can cross link blogs so you don’t have to actually blog on wordpress and people backtracing your comments can find you wherever you be.

    Thanks, Susan – she was facing me until I made that comment.

    Shay – she could very well be French. I was drinking pretty heavily during this painting and I can only say she couldn’t understand the Chumash I was speaking.

    Thanks, Bonnie – drop one of those big worms you got into a jar of tequila and I will drop by for a drink. Say, do you think I should send some WD40 to Carol for Iron Hips?

    David – you’ve got the real gold.

    Carol – I put the link so everyone can get to New York now on MY nickel. You should probably spruce the place up a bit as you will be having tons of visitors expecting an overnight stay with breakfast.

  16. grfxho says:

    I also really like the contrast of her golden hair against the blue background. I could keep looking at this one, Bill. It’s very nice.

  17. Dar says:

    She’s beautiful, Bill.

    Can we have a painting Special Olympics too, so I can play?

  18. wrjones says:

    Thanks, Shay.

    Dar – I didn’t think of it that way. I always dream of being on that stand accepting 9 gold medals. Let’s be serious here, I’d be doing very well indeed to get invited to the Special Olympics.

  19. Carol King says:

    Thanks Bill……for the link and for adding me to your blogroll… I really feel the pressure to produce.

  20. Julia says:

    It is pretty amazing when you think of the many financial rewards available to athletes (and moviestars, for that matter). While I don’t begrude them their fame and fortune, I do think it is sad that comparable opportunities do not exist for artists…and teachers.

  21. gypsy-heart says:

    Hmm…your daughter may be on to something. :)

    Very good painting, and I enjoyed my viist to Carol King’s site.

    Thanks for sharing all of it…we have been battling a storm here in Florida yet, I still managed to paint a little.

  22. wrjones says:

    Julia – artists are supposed to suffer, and teachers are destined to suffer (those little bastards).

    Gypsy-heart – hope you and your abode are ok after the storm. If your neighbor’s house blows down you should be able to see all the way across Florida.

  23. An Olympic event for those of talent… sort of “The World has Talent” would be interesting and maybe just as breath taking as the last minute in a race.

  24. Erika says:

    Are you going to vote for Mcain now that he has a hot chick on the ballot? You can be a creepy old Republican, like the rest of them

  25. wrjones says:

    Erika – any man who lets me keep my guns and runs with a hot chick gets my vote (maybe even a couple of votes).

    Your dog bit me last week. I woke up feeling cranky this morning; do you think I have rabies? For a second I thought I was foaming at the mouth and screamed at your mother to lock me in the bathroom so I couldn’t bite her. Turns out it was just dribbled toothpaste. I had to come out of the bathroom later to get coffee.

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