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Romeo, my pup, likes to invent games for himself. This afternoon, after we had been playing fetch for a while, he took his ball and started dropping it between some branches of a bush. Then he would maneuver it out and drop it again, and again, and again. In the summer he would do the same thing: drop the ball between the slats of a chair on the dock, watch it fall, pick it up and drop it again, over and over and over. With never ending fascination.

I could easily liken this to my painting process, the fascination of repetition, or going further, liken it to human nature. Thinking around the possibility of getting stuck in repetition. I just finished reading Howard Norman’s Devotion. The main character is stuck in a pattern of inertia, letting other people lead him, leading to the threat of dissolution of his hasty marriage, a marriage begun with passion and apparent devotion. But his steadfastness in his pattern becomes devotion to whatever task is before him, even though it arises from a less than admirable trait.

It is so common to see someone repeat mistakes, hard to break that pattern. Romeo could teach them.


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