Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Importance of Being Alone - or Not

I will readily admit it: I love to cave. Just me and the fur kids and some creative project or just a good book. Being locked into a tower in the middle ages would not have been torture for me. And I actually survive on being snowed in for a couple weeks at a time. But I am not totally a hermit as I thought.

A friend was sharing with me a Zen philosophy they got second hand about the nature of people. They did not remember the source of this knowledge so if any of my readers can enlighten me I would appreciate it. Seems, per this philosophy, people came in three categories - for clarity let's call them A, B and C. They used 1, 2 and 3 and I got immediately confused. Type A people are totally happy all by themselves. People belonging to this category are hermits or mystics or recluses. St. Francis of the Assisi and the Dahlia Lama, monks that take vowels of silence, etc. The type B people are those that do best in one on one situations are alone. They shun gatherings or "let's all meet at the bar" events. Their roster of friends is short and they would rather see them mano y mano as opposed to collectively. And type C personalities want to be in a crowd. They love gangs and cliques and clubs and events.

I am definitely not of that latter category. And I, like many artists, have a very strong leaning toward the recluse. We generally only attend those events forced upon us by our gallery owners or looming poverty, i.e. fairs. But I do form strong attachments to a limited number of friends. And yesterday sitting in the parking lot of Whole Foods in Santa Fe and scarfing down olives with another artist friend I had day tripped with was absolutely delightful. It was our reward for doing the gallery tripping earlier and acting businesslike and we scoped out the scene on Canyon Road.

When I am stressed to the max or disappointed by some sequence of events I want to climb back into my cave dwelling and pull up the ladder behind me. I admit to going days without answering the land line. And only a select few have my cell phone number. I even run under the radar at social websites and other than fugitive peeks at my e-mail have either stayed off the internet or used it only for online games. I have absolutely no desire for a long-term live-in relationship EVER again. But I like my short list of friends. I like having someone to call and chat with while the paint dries or meet for lunch or day trip to Santa Fe.

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