Rock Theory and Appreciation 105 - Ephemeral

Dr. D isn't an art critic; he just plays one on webTV.   But then, you'd found him out as a sabermetric poser too, so you were expecting that.  One thing we will say in SSI's defense - the Mainframe is not only a blunt instrument on the culture crunch.  It can appreciate subtle, feminine art if the core concept appeals.

I found Helen Lessick's 'Ephemeral' to be a bit puzzling, quite a bit challenging, and, on discovery, satisfying.  Pass the Brie, Hodgson.  There's a good lad.  

Jeffy hasn't yet gotten to 'ephemeral' at Lookout Landing yet, so here are your SSI pre-test crib notes.  By 'ephemeral' we refer to something that is wispy, that lasts just a short time and then disappears too soon.  The Mariners' 2000-2002 battle for the American League pennant was ephemerally frustrating.  The Mariners' acquisition of Cliff Lee was an ephemeral victory.

Okay, here's the quiz.  This art uses the medium of baseball cards, which are the opposite of ephemeral - they're collectible.  And the ideas on the cards are ... like the baseball.  The baseball, as in the leather-covered sphere that Hisashi Iwakuma somehow causes to spin forwards and to the right when he throws a Shuuto pitch.  Take out a #2 pencil, kiddies.  What is ephemeral about the baseball?  Or about a baseball card that is rose-petaled between heavy acrylic slabs and screwed in tightly as though it were a prehistoric fly in amber?

Click to some other article - preferably this one right here - while you try to solve the Sudoku puzzle by yourself.  :- )  Remember, Ms. Lessick actually called this 'Ephemeral,' so the whole idea is supposed to be about things that are not here long enough.

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Hm.  You'd have to ask Ms. Lessick, but until she turns up ... the idea seems to be that it's not the baseball cards which are transitory.  It is the images on them that we impotently try to catch in a bottle.  We all remember 1995 like it was yesterday, right?  Well, all of us above 30 years of age.  Who pitched for that team other than Randy Johnson?  Who started the game that Randy Johnson relieved?

And that's 1995.  What about baseball stars of 1962?  Of 1932?

We get it.  Reminsicence is like trying to catch smoke with your hands.  The art "happens" because the thought is double-echo'ed by the style of drawing.  The outline of the ump is uncertain and unsteady.  The light pastels are almost see-through and ... is he standing on the ground or floating?  Is this a phantom out of Eight Men Out?

Great art encircles its theme with several different devices, giving a layered effect.  'Ephemereal' works for me.

Especially ephemeral works for me when we're talking about the Mariners' 2010-12 American League seasons.  1983 was an ephemeral season and 2012 dissipates into the same mists of 94-loss Mariner seasons.  Kevin Millwood, as heroic as his season has been, is another in a line of hundreds of 1983 Mariner pitchers.

That's why Baker, and I, and you will continue to clamor for the Mariners to "get carried away with winning" and deliver moments like those in 1995 and 2001.  And why we'll continue to blog about those Players We Can Win Our Next Pennant With.  

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