The first time in Throop history that creative slavery provided a weekend paycheck greater than wage slavery.
I am marking the following date for the biographers. August 27, 2021.
Finally, a head up and held high over the course of a weekend. After 13 years laboring part and full time in the arts trade, I have received a single week’s pay surpassing the most I ever made in the restaurant industry as line cook or sous chef.
Those aren’t peanuts! A man could afford the bare necessities with a haul like that. Unfortunately the pay did not adjust for cost of living. The last time I earned a wage sautéing a chicken breast was in 2008, and my pay then was $12/hour. So I would have had to make nearly twice that in art sales this week if I was to exceed a present-day seasoned line cook’s salary. Nor do I expect sales like these to carry over to the next week, or any other for perhaps another 13 years. No regularity will come of it. Granted I have made as much and sometimes more on opening night of an exhibition, but that’s a kind of one artist’s art market displaying a year’s painting harvest to a captive audience. (I captivate with elaborate overhead in preparation. The food is good and the bar is open—even if many are bored by paintings, there remains easy conversation and bacon in the quiche). And although I might sell a few pieces, taking out my time and investment turns the majority of exhibitions into red letter ones. Sometimes I break even. Twice I made a $200 profit. The other twenty or so times the house suffered a financial loss that should instigate ultimatums after submitting a tax return, married filing jointly. However, the wife has been partially brainwashed by artspeak, and sincerely thankful for my dutiful butlering along her professional career track. I’ve cooked every meal and heartily nurtured every child. We’ve loved a couple generations of cats since 1998, and I’ve scooped their litterboxes exactly 8,212 times more than her twelve attempts.
The $550 is a milestone for me. Two buyers and four paintings have left the studio, all with metal frames, three with a certificate of authenticity. The first week in the black since 2008. Studio art professors can hire me for inspirational talks. I’ll tell the truth. Art making is for westerners who are devoid a lifelong monastery or Zendo to practice their color-mixing mysticism. Teach the initiates to kill the Buddha, to annihilate commoditization, to pulverize their egos. Simultaneously instruct them how to love and revere another soul who accepts minimum wage earnings post graduation, until he or she cannot partake in that hand-to-mouth lifestyle any longer, and opts for a steady careerism to pay off a mortgage and new car every five year plan. Hopefully you taught well, and the student earned a requited attachment to the other soul he/she loves. Together they will suffer like its Friday night every night, and money will come and go, and go, and go.
Here are the other three paintings to validate my success before they get acclimated to their new homes:
Now to go turn that big money into gold and silver for my granddaughters!
Thanks for reading,