I’m currently in my home state of Texas, preparing for a small exhibition in Austin, slidin’ back quick ‘n easy like into that familiarity I call home. My carefully crafted, neutral American accent has fallen apart as I’ve slipped back into some bastardized hybrid of English and Twang. I say “yes ma’am” to any female older than the age of eight including the girl ten years my junior handing me the keys to my rental car. “You be careful out there, sweetie. Today’s gonna be hot and them roads are dangerous.” As I take the keys and step into my tiny, 40-mile-to-the-gallon Toyota Yaris, I drawl, “Ma’am, dangerous’s my middle name.” I’m pretty sure I cocked my hand as if it were a six-shooter. I think I might have even winked.
My three-jump cowgirl of an agent, Ree Reynolds, called me up and said, “I done wrangled you another showin’. I know you like to hang out more often than Mamma’s washin’, but it’s time to git busier’n a funeral home fan in July and git paintin’.”
Testily, I answered, “Quit hollering down the rain, girl. Y’know I paint quicker’n a knife fight in a phone booth. Call me when yer ready. I’ll be here waitin’ on you.”
“You waitin’ on me, you best be backin’ up, ‘cuz I just done called you.”
“A’right then. We gonna put up some new paintin’s?” I asked.
“I ‘spect we will. Y’can’t get lard unless you boil the hog.”
“Yes’m, I ‘spect yer right.”
“I ‘spect I am. You gonna git ‘er done?”
“I reckon I will.”
“I reckon you better.”
I done got me a lil’ show up at a lil’ place called The Flightpath on Duvall St. in central Austin. I’ll have a whole mess o’ work hangin’ ’til July. If you’re in the area, stop on by and check it out. It’s better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.