It’s time to open the door and get out and prepare the soil for seeding and enjoy the start of growth and blooming especially my Mullein/Verbascum brought from the Pyrenees to my farmhouse a lot of small, but beautiful things to enjoy, being an essential part of trying to survive mentally in the middle of a lot of terrible news from other parts of the world, take care all over !
Then the answer came in an indirect way reading a blog by a man, who loves to wear overalls and has started, guess what, a WAR of overalls, a war between the different brands of overalls, oh my goodness, I thought. Then I realised that most men, who are fans of overalls, are also fans of war, of being bullish and macho! making overalls a kind of : here I’m coming strong and powerful! ok, but that’s not why I am wearing overalls! Perhaps all this has also something to do with the fact that as University professor I’m not supposed to wear overalls, but to wear jacket and jeans, and women are not supposed to wear overalls, but to wear dresses or jeans. I’m wearing overalls because they make me feel free and able to breathe all the way from top to bottom, to jump or dance, be childish, if you like, have fun,relax, and NOT suppose to promote myself, but be comfortable with myself and feel inner peace and not afraid of being dirty, and ready for making things in the garden, in the kitchen, being creative or walking on the beach etc. I also love knitting, not in the sense of knitting myself, but to use the results of my wife’s knitting match excellent with my overalls and I love to buy yarn in different places, to choose the color of the yarn, and I love the micro aesthetics of worn out overalls so of course it is not strange that my friends are people who love to work in the garden, to make food, to knit or paint, etc. and the fact that these guys are women, well that’s how the world is! I’m glad to have all these friends making me feel an ok guy, even if I happen to be of different gender than most of them. They seem not to care so I don’t need to care either so I better just continue to enjoy my good friendships.
I’m not blogging so much, since I feel I don’nt have so much to tell about. I have sort of talked enough about overalls. It is just a natural part of my life and that’s it! Never the less, I want to tell you a little about my life as retired or I feel more comfortable to talk about my senior life ! I don’t feel I have re-tired, but more moved into a new phase of an active life, into my senior phase. It is a really exciting phase, because basically I don’t need to do much more than keep the fire alive and to get some food and go out and take care of the trees and my family and yes, not forget that, clean the house so it is nice to stay indoor apart from this, you can just sit with your scones and coffee . At some point it might be enough, but I need to do more as long as I have good health, and for that reason, I still work on perhaps too many projects, but the good thing is that I can stop them almost whenever I want to, only need to remember to close projects in a decent manner. I don’t want to leave angry and bitter. I see too many some folks in my age who have not been so lucky as I have been, turning into being bitter and grumpy, and that is sad. No, I will continue my very interesting historical research together with young folks, document studies also with younger folks, and probably also more opera work, we will see. Anyway, I need to answer some emails :) so Enjoy your life, be positive as long as you can !
Hi, I’m not blogging as much as I did when I worked :) You know, retired people are busy! and I am a typical retired in that sense. Now I’m getting close to the end of the first year of being retired and I must just admit, it is wonderful and fantastic to be retired, at one important condition, as long as your health is ok! I know not all of my friends are so lucky and I feel it as an enormous privilege to be healthy and strong and to do a lot of joyful things.
I can start with taking my well worn Carhatt jacket and my just as much worn insulated overalls on and cut down a broken branch from a tree soon ready to be cut down a bit, and then go and take a view out on the fields with the Sun flowers as bells and go inside our farmhouse and get some coffee and scones and next day go either to Struer to work in our World opera lab at the music school and play with the rest of the world or go to the National Archives in Viborg and work under the roof with old documents and discuss it with other historians in the archive and around the world, and all can be done in overalls, even when I go to conferences, some of my colleagues support me, by coming in their own well worn overalls like Kiersten at DOCAM on Kent State University last August, , so over all I still feel very happy, in the middle of a world with so many conflicts, wars, crises etc. etc. it must be heaven on earth to have such a life, not least when you could add this shot of some of my dear kids, so again a happy blog-post and if you ask me if I don’t have any problems, I must admit not much personally besides being sad about the illness of friends and the bad things around the world, but yes, I have for sure have had a lot of problems and depressive periods in my life, a lot of struggles with stuttering, with being on the fringe, with challenging the systems, but that’s history, and it is not yet time to tell about all that mess, if ever! for now now I’ll say happy holidays to everybody reading this blog and a prosperous New Year.
Today it is 5 years ago we started to celebrate the best clothing item at all, overalls ! today I’m wearing overalls more or less all day all year around except from airports and very formal meetings,funerals etc. It has not been like this all my life. I sort of discovered the overalls in San Francisco in the summer of 2001! and I still have the same overalls, enriched by another overalls loving person, Michelle Hoffee, and she has also enriched her own overalls, actually her fathers, patched by old flour sacks. https://www.flickr.com/photos/madebylovecraft/7322229062/in/photolist-bBJMd3-ca3rWf-am1bVY-ca3mGo-ca3kAE-ca3nHf-ca3qru-cGxwxC-cGxSDY-agPWrs-bRZtCt-dbjY5S-db6wxQ-agmeDH-agmf92-agoYtJ
Since 2001 overall has become more and more my signature, a symbol for my way of life, trying to be relaxed, not too formal and not being afraid of being dirty and jump and dance, all things I have been afraid of earlier in my life, so when I started to wear overalls it was a kind of inner revolution for me, they allowed me to relax and enjoy life! At the same time, it has not always been easy, especially not as long as I live in a city and worked at a university. It is much easier now when I’m retired and live in the countryside. Anyway in April 2007, I started this blog and slowly, but steady I found out that there are also other people around the world who share my love for overalls.One of the first guys who responded was Kelly, http://byzantiumshores.blogspot.dk who is wearing overalls more or less all year like myself, one of the many overalls friends I have got through the years, not least Susan, who I discovered through her blog http://notquitejunecleaver.com/2007/01/24/i-have-been-tagged6-weird-thingshmmmmm/ and in 2009, we got more and more in contact after I had been discussing overalls on this blog for a couple of years, and then decided to have this international overalls Day and later Weekend, in order to take care of people, who cannot wear overalls all day ! and we got our symbol today on the 5th celebration of the international sister-and brotherhood of overalls lovers, I’m wearing the same overalls as I wore when I visited our San Francisco landlady Mary and I bought them in my usual thrift store in SF, Mission thrift! and tomorrow I’ll tell more about my wonderful overalls friends, not least Laury,http://www.soardreamfrance.typepad.com who probably are preparing this years overalls party in New Orleans, until then happy international overalls weekend all my dear overalls friends !
Today is a great day. My Verbascum Densiflorum is blooming, it has been growing the whole summer, but without any flowers. I didn’t expect it to bloom at all this year, but suddenly it is blooming. My Pyrenean Verbascum pulverulentum is still blooming, have been blooming all summer ! I’m really happy that my dream about having a special Verbascum garden has come through. Next year I’ll put seeds of verbascum thapsus from Ohio in and see if they can grow. So the garden grows and there are still a lot to do, not least with clearing the roots of the old raspberry plants in order to plant some new raspberry plants, so we can get a lot of raspberries
As regular readers of this blog will know, I have retired and now I am so called profesor Emeritus which means that I go up north to the Arctic University in Tromsø and teach a little bit and enjoy the city of Tromsø, the surroundings and my colleagues and friends etc., a bit like being grandfather, doing a little bit of work, but most of the time I just enjoy life and go to places you know so well.
That is my first track, my documentation studies track, a bit mixed with my 2nd track, friends and family. Since our grandsons live in Norway, we can visit them on our way to Tromsø and enjoy going out in the forests around Oslo and that leads to the 3rd track hiking / walking, which I happily enjoy, it is cheap if you just walk out of your door and certainly healthy too! and I hike of course in my most worn out overalls that leads to my 4th track overalls, which I love, especially for their special kind of texture when they get older, perhaps a reasonable interest for an old guy !:) but it is also some kind of interest in how things evolve and grow and dissolve like in nature and that leads to my 5th track, gardening, both keeping up with all plants growing up but also a special interest for special plants like the Royal Light plants, Kings Light or in Latin, Verbascum, of which I have at least 3 sorts, and all this is a part of a history, of a history of my life which leads to my 6th track, historical research, where I really feel at home! I’m historian by profession and I have loved doing historical research since I was a kid, running on archives as a teenager and doing genealogy as a teenager!! yes, a true nerd from the beginning! and now I’m back and going to be Visiting researcher at the National Archives in Denmark, doing research about my ancestor Jens Harpøth, a creative Merchant from 1758, who did a lot of inventions, tried to fly, did social work and business, who apparently also was a bit of an artist in this business letter above a drawing of a very noble man (he was very often satirical!) and I have also have had an artistic interest, which leads to my 7th track, opera, since I have written an opera about the merchant, which has not yet been finished, but hopefully will be premiered at some point ! but at least the first act was performed at Berkeley in 2006 at a workshop and since then I have worked with musicians and singers and still do planning a concert, Vivaldi “the Four Seasons” in a swimming Hall,
unusually stage and that leads to my 8th and last track, distributed performance, which actually started at the workshop in Berkeley, discussing how can you play together if you use technology, the internet and after that I wrote to my colleague at Stanford Chris Chafe and since then I have been working on this format, having Porgy standing in Stockholm and Bess in Stanford, singing I love you Porgy across continents! bringing the world together and next week I’m going to make a course for Danish music schools on how to play together between cities and the whole world ! so I better stop now ! have a nice weekend