Wednesday, January 15 2014
This morning Gretchen still held out the hope that perhaps Walter (our newest cat) was strapped in the wall near the southwest corner of the teevee room. But I was clear at this point that he wasn't in the house. Somehow he'd managed to slip out through the pet door and disappear into the neighborhood. It had been raining yesterday, and so it had been still been possible then that he might have taken shelter in one of the finite number of roofed outdoor areas. But by today the sun had come out and temperatures had risen into the upper 40s, opening up a world of possibilities for a cat on the lam. Still, I checked the pines on top of the septic field, though the only mammal I saw there was the rabbit who has made those pines his or her home (he or she appears to have been subsisting lately on the tender bark of young Multiflora Rose canes).
I needed a variety of steel wire, twine, glue, and polyurethane for a sculptural project I wanted to attempt, so this afternoon I drove out to 9W with the dogs. On the way, I stopped at the State Trooper Barracks to drop off a flyer about Walter's disappearance (the dispatcher was very nice). As I was rolling out of the State Trooper parking lot, I cracked open a Mountain Brew Ice to enjoy for the drive out to Lowe's.
This evening, after a long nap, I awoke and began working on a potential sculpture. The idea was to make a 3D creature using a framework of wire. But the wire I was using (16 gauge steel) was too stiff to work effectively, even using a pair of needle nosed pliers. I made a crude legless horse that ended up being more of a legless sauropod and felt demoralized. Looking at a bead & wire lizard made by a craftsman in South Africa, I refreshed my memory of how wire creatures are made in the third world. The key with those seems to be the use of much thinner wire, lots of wrapping, and fairly precise measurement in the layout of the basic skeleton. But that was all too time-intensive for me. There had to be a better way. So I watched a few video of people making wire creatures on YouTube, the first of which made me feel better about the crudeness of my dinosaur horse. (I prefered the geometric precision of a scorpion design that I watched be assembled next.)
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