Wednesday, June 9, 2010
The Sticking Point
There I was yesterday, crafting away as usual. I prepared to glue a layer of clear acetate onto cardstock. The only thing that works and still looks nice is spray adhesive. I donned a rubber glove to protect the hand holding the layer of cardstock (I learned that silly lesson long ago!). I picked up the cardstock pointed the nozzle at it, and pressed the button. Evidently the nozzle was partially clogged with old glue. Spray went everywhere - all over my arm, my hair, my glasses, my non-gloved hand, and half of what I had sitting on my side table (scraps of paper and my cutter). I had to laugh. Hardly any of it hit the intended victim, the cardstock in my hand. Alas, all is fair in art and war. I cleaned up as best I could, although there isn't much to do but let the stuff dry and move on.
A little while later, I was dealing with a recalcitrant bottle of glue. It's wonderful glue that turns into a shiny glazed finish when dabbed appropriately - I use it a lot to accent eyeballs. It also comes in handy to create a watery or wet effect, which is what I was after since I was working on some marine life cards. The tip often gets clogged on this one, and I'm used to dealing with it. I simply poke a pin through the dried glue tip and get it flowing again. This time it seemed a bit of dried stuff had gotten into the glue. I would unclog it, try to use it, and a tiny blob would come out before it quit producing again. Frustrated after several attempts, I jabbed the pin into the tip again, heard the telltale gasp of air, inverted the bottle and gave it a squeeze. Nothing. I squeezed harder. Uh uh. "Give it up already, Rat Bastard!" I uttered, and gave it a really good squeeze. Sploosh! The thing exploded like a 14 year old boy at a Victoria's Secret conference. Glue smothered the whale I was working on, ran all over my work surface (which I keep covered with scrap paper for just such emergencies), and slid into two stamp blocks before I could stop it. Once again, I cleaned up, getting more sticky stuff under my nails and on my clothes in the process.
I was beginning to stick to everything I touched.
I decided to take a break from the treacherous world of card making and get some envelopes ready to go with orders, and some addressed for shipping. I grabbed a stack of six envelopes off of my shelf, only to discover that they had been stored (probably even bought) unflapped and back to back, in such a way as to firmly glue them all together accordion style. I decided to keep the stuck together envelopes and craft them into an art book at some point in the future. By this time, I was nearly hysterical with laughter. I took a deep breath and ran my sticky fingers through my sticky hair. Bad idea. I sailed right over the edge and free fell into the giggle abyss.
It was definitely breaktime. I sat on the deck and sipped some coffee, still having fits of giggles everytime I'd shift my mug from one hand to the other and hear the inevitable thwup as my agglutinative fingers pulled back from the ceramic.
There are some glues in our lives that do exactly what they're supposed to, they hold us together. Love, humor, art, compassion, intelligence... they're glues that keep us from going the route of Humpty Dumpty. Then there's pesky extraneous stuff that adheres anywhere it wants to for no good reason. Ire, indifference, judgment, apathy, ignorance... tacky stuff that's difficult to get rid of once applied, and picks up lint and dirt as we move through the day.
The means to gain happiness is to throw out from oneself like a spider in all directions an adhesive web of love, and to catch in it all that comes.