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One last pencil. It's a big one. I did it in a high school art class, most likely either freshman or sophomore year — I don't remember exactly when — and it's busy. Busy enough for annotations.

Good-sized image behind the cut:


Like I said, big and busy. Also art proof that Donnie Darko was right and we did wear Ocean Pacific and Hobie T-shirts back then. Yes, that's a self-portrait, reversed like I was looking in a mirror because I was really committed to predicting the reverse selfies of today. Kidding. It was just reproducing how I look in a mirror.

The middle is a line from Brazil.

Around the image, clockwise from top left: Cold War nuclear anxiety in the form of a weird visual joke; the aircraft carrier U.S.S. John F. Kennedy, with the letters that went back and forth between me and my dad while he was deployed (I wrote him 40 letters and postcards over the six months of his 1988-89 cruise); a video of Die Hard, a film I already knew was awesome (I'd seen it first-run in a theater!); the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch, because I already knew Monty Python and the Holy Grail was awesome; a tribute to the Oregon Coast, which I already liked to visit (that's Cannon Beach in the insert); me (hi); and, in my hands, literally in this case for some reason, a computer, since I was already using them for writing. The huge pencil, I think, is a metaphor, since that's not how pencils work.