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September 21, 2011

Thank you everyone who came to see me last weekend during the Driftless Art Festival in Soldiers Grove. Thank you to those of you who were not able to make it but wished you had … I felt loved and supported beyond belief.  I apologize to those who I was not able to speak to personally … as nurturing as it all was, I was simply overwhelmed at times and needed to take breaks.

Playing with my shameless irreverence, I joke that everyone aught to try cancer on for size, just to see how loved they are.


The Festival was also a big success financially for me. Thank you for that too. It helped in a big way toward filling the gap in income this year from cancelled art fairs. I made as much as I would have from a big city, top tier art fair. Jerry and Liz Quebe (the originators and directors of the Festival) have put together a very nice, high quality festival over the years, and I’m glad I was able to do it before retiring. They made the generous commented that when they were cleaning up the next day after the show, they knew exactly where my booth was because the grass was worn down to dirt in that spot. They took this picture of my booth on Saturday.


Tuesday I had the discovery deposition part of my lawsuit in LaCrosse. I spent 7 hours in a room with 14 attorneys, and another 8 by conference phone. It was a grueling marathon, but I held up better than I expected. To be fair, all the lawyers showed me a lot of respect, and were patient and polite with me. I never felt like I was in a room with adversaries. At one point, in fact, when I asked my questioner if a certain line of questioning was relevant, he was sincerely concerned that he had offended me. After the proceedings he came up to me to make sure I was okay.

It was only while I was driving home that it all hit me. I had spent 7 hours in an environment I no longer care to be part of. For 7 hours my head was absorbed in mental processes that I no longer want to do. I felt like I was back in grade school taking a test I was not prepared for and for which I didn’t know the answers, so I simply filled in the spaces as best as I could, knowing it was all BS.

I can’t remember the name brand of the brake pads I put on my VW bug back in 1972. I can’t remember the name on the boiler in the factory I worked at in 1973.  I can’t even remember the brand of the shingles I used on a roofing job I did back in the 80’s.

But mostly I felt outside myself … alone and disoriented. I felt like a failure … I could have prepared better.

But it’s over now until the findings deposition scheduled for next week or the week after. But that is when my own lawyer has the show, so things should go smoother.

As for now, I am exhausted and a little off kilter. But I should be back in shape in a day or so, so you aren’t rid of me yet.


10 Comments leave one →
  1. September 22, 2011 11:26 pm

    Who did I see? Who intimated to me that you are looking into the molars of the great beyond? I don’t remember, and it doesn’t matter, but I only learned of this adventure a few days ago, logged onto your fb page tonight, and began reading your wonderful, startling, insightful, tear-jerking and rib-tickling self-and-other analysis… I’ve been reading for 2 hours, and let me just say it is an honor to know you. No wonder you and Marvin always had something to say to one another. I will call soon. Please tell Peg I’d like to speak to her as well.

    There’s more to say. There always is.


  2. September 22, 2011 11:10 am

    Rick…the show was a wonderful tribute to your soul…regardless of what happens in the world of form. And dealing with lawyers is never fun although it sounds like you made the best of it. I know Peg must appreciate you doing this, as it is for her……..

    We send big LOVE your way…..and we are loving the “roses” as it hangs in our bedroom, reminding us of your beauty…………


  3. Elaine permalink
    September 22, 2011 6:23 am

    “Trying on cancer.” I wonder would I wear it with such dignity, grace, courage and humor as you Rick?

    I “drifted” in Sunday, selfishly so, as I needed a hug and received more…a welcoming smile, laughter, your warm, selfless You, more. Thank you Rick. Thank you Peg.
    Our gallery of your art, your photographs are and always will be our “Treasure”. What a gift we are blessed with.

    My heart and energy was with you Tuesday and with Peg as she longed for you to be home. Never a failure Rick! Never are you that!

    Today…breath and enjoy the simple beauty that surrounds you. Take care.

    You have my heart.


  4. September 21, 2011 8:50 pm

    Ditto and Amen! to everything that has already been said.
    The full moon photo is hanging in the kitchen and the stormy sky canvas is hanging in the bathroom.
    Blessed be.

  5. Lauren permalink
    September 21, 2011 3:58 pm

    I love your art Rick. Today i was driving home from La Crosse and the clouds/sky were amazingly big and beautiful and I thought: This would make a great Rick LaMartina photograph.
    You are in my thoughts

  6. Deb permalink
    September 21, 2011 3:52 pm

    It was great to finally be at an Art Fair with you Rick, after so many years of benefiting from your knowledge of them. Thanks for stopping over to see me. It meant a lot. You are a fine mentor. Hopefully, that “bubble of love” you experienced at the fair, helped to shield you from Tuesday’s situation where it was easy to feel “small” . Love, Deb

  7. Rebecca Wainscott permalink
    September 21, 2011 2:54 pm

    Hi Rick, Thanks for sharing with us your feelings of vulnerability. This is the condition of our social services. It is pretty shameful that the victims have to endure such discomforts and jump through so many hoops in an effort to receive just compensation, and there are still no guarantees. I hear how hard it was for you, and I hope it will have been worth the effort.

    I’m so happy you did well at the fair. It was so good to lay eyes on you for even a few seconds. Easy to see how one might feel overwhelmed. I’m sure there are more people wanting to buy than could make it to the fair. I wanted to find something, but like Patti, it was a little too crowded!

    A Retrospective would not be out of order. I still think that Optimo is the place for such an Event. I hope you will consider letting us do this for you, and Peg. (Well, okay, it’s as much for us, but we do need it….and ideally you are still around when it happens!)

    Much Love, Rebecca

  8. Judith permalink
    September 21, 2011 2:47 pm

    Sending energy of R&R after two such contrasting experiences, Rick.
    So glad your art got the attention it always deserves- and you got the financial support you have always deserved. I was straining to see what’s new in the booth picture!
    I’m looking forward to hanging the fall sumac photo we have had for years.
    We’re so blessed to have your eye and your heart so visible in our home.
    Love you,

  9. Jane permalink
    September 21, 2011 11:56 am

    So sorry Rick that you had to go through that 7 hour ordeal. Very happy that your time at the fair was financially productive and a double bonus that you were surrounded by so many friends, family and fans!! When I looked around the fair, I saw so many people who truly know the value of art and supporting our local artists. Very exciting! Even more exciting to see you with Peg in that huge bubble of LOVE!

  10. Patti permalink
    September 21, 2011 10:43 am

    I was at the Driftless Art Show and could not get in your booth, it was so crowded! I was very happy to see that. I would have made more of an effort, but did not see you in the booth. I do want to buy the kitchen photos at some point.
    What a beautiful day on Saturday and glad to hear it was a good experience to off-set the necessary evil of court deposition. It seems like a waste of precious time, but I am sure it was helpful. Much love to you and Peg!

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