Wednesday, March 07, 2007


Making time to do the things left undone... penned into the mental calendar for this last weekend. Mission mostly accomplished. As part of the Mr. The Dust Cakeday Celebrations, we headed back into the depths of Central PA, where I hadn't been for some time.

sticky fingers
sticky fingers © Laura Kicey

Saturday morning sun shone kindly on the fire engine red walls of Saturday's Market in Middletown. We made the rounds to see what was 'new' and visit favorites, still there, eternally for sale. The difference this time round was bold new moves we both made with the vendors. Bob One, famed for signs proudly selling items for steals such as: ALL COLLECTORS PLATES NOW $5 EACH, 3 for $20.00. So Bob One came through the aisles of his stand. Looking dazed. Wearing a colander on his head.

ornate frames
ornate frames © Laura Kicey

He sat down and started talking to random people walking by. I stood by and listened, I engaged him a little. He told me to refer to him as the Wizard of Odd. Mr. D joined me and I suggested he shoot him now. Bob One agreed to it but demanded half of the sale of any photos sold on eBay. Dustin agreed. He moved onto playing a tiny violin and talking about how all comedians are either Jewish, Black or can dance. And how Sammy Davis Jr. was all three of these things. His anecdote chronicled Sammy getting his eye poked out on a car horn and how he got free Caddy's for the rest of his life then died before he could really get too many. And how Bob One, himself pined to be a comedian but was lacking in Jewishness, Blackness and rhythm.

bounds © Laura Kicey

Our second favorite corner of the market is inhabited by Bob Two and his sundry chromey kitchen devices and random other crap. Generally when Bob spies someone taking interest in his goods, he calls out 'Hey Lady!' and then fills you in with some tidbit of helpful info, such as price or era or usage. He spotted us and our cameras on the approach and announces that he has a camera over by him! I went over and we started to chat. About him photographing thing while he was in the service. While he was traveling around Central America. Panama. I don't need to apply butter, he is on a roll. He reveals what the natives in Central America taught him. Cashews, he says. Cashews are deadly if you eat them before they are roasted. The natives down there... they toss them. There are these lovely orange fruits, the pit is the cashew. The natives eat the fruit and pitch the pit.

This lead onto a tangent about hating Hershey's chocolate and trading giant freshwater shrimp for mangoes. D wanders over to listen in and suddenly Bob Two whips a little metal disc bolted to another out of a nearby box and tosses out the challenge.

What do you think this is?

I study these little metal discs with the tiny bolt and while I've seen it before I have no clue.

See your mom probably had a bowl like this.

(he picks a nearby flat bottom bowl up)

If she got a hole in the bottom of her bowl she would unscrew this nut put the one disc inside the bowl and the other on the bottom and screw the nut to keep them together and plug the hole.

Its called an amender.

Baffling. And my mother thinks he made this up.

Somehow we got on the topic of camping. Little ground was not covered. Naturally we talked about building fires. Soft coal. Always keep it on hand, so you can start a fire no problem. And never ever start a fire on stone. Because if you throw water on it to put it out the stone will explode. Unless you throw dirt on it to put it out, then you are ok.

With much patience and nodding at these discoveries, I decided I felt gutsy enough to ask him to take his photo. He was all too happy to oblige, as long as we brought him prints next time we came. We have to do that sometime...

bob © Laura Kicey

To prepare for work on an article I am writing for LAB (which is almost done Joseph, really)... we returned almost a full year later to Violet Hobaugh's house.

mown © Laura Kicey

This time we didn't venture onto her property... which made reshooting certain things impossible... but plodding around in the frigid rain I made some new discoveries, though the things that haunt her were made no more clear. Still a fascinating, terrifying mystery that lingers long after you walk away.

windfall © Laura Kicey

The remainder of the weekend took us northerly to the Family D. Where we celebrated cake and birthing and moved some things to D's sister's new house in Sunbury and then toyed with photofanices around the house, pretending our bodies were furniture in the empty rooms.

movers © Laura Kicey

Finally Mr. D was fortunate enough to have a sale of one of his pieces in the Joints show just in time as the show came down on Sunday. Thanks again to Mugshots for having us! Now we need to figure out what to do with all these pieces that haven't sold... I think I hear Etsy knocking. If you are a Philly local, be on the lookout for Lifestyle magazine in your mailbox. My interview with Girl Wonder Shannon Collins
is in the issue that came out yesterday! Find it online here Thanks again Shannon!

Lifestyle magazine interview/article

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Anonymous Joseph Robertson said...

Sounds like quite the adventure. And a fruitful one, at that.

6:08 PM, March 08, 2007  
Blogger Michael said...

You spend a lot of time with weirdies. Why don't you come to Ann Arbor and have yourself a field day? I personally know a man who has no nose. He shows up every now and then and cuts quite a figure sitting outside Starbucks, with yuppies walking fifteen feet out of their way to avoid him. Love this town.

6:53 PM, March 08, 2007  

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