Thursday, October 28, 2010

Art for Art's Sake-Parks for Parks' Sake

It is indeed affirming to hear one's husband at the ripe old age of fifty-something claim that he will buy a bumper sticker for the family car that reads, "My Wife is an Honor Student at Sacramento City College". Never mind that these bumper stickers are a figment of his imagination and he would, as a member of California State Parks department, be better served (but possibly in violation of the law)to display a "Yes on 21" bumper sticker.

Next Tuesday is the day when most of us have the opportunity to vote in the 2010 Mid-Term elections. On a personal level, what it means to me and my incredible husband of 5 months is that we Californians have the opportunity to achieve much that is good and noble and real for an undeniably unique environment here on the Left Coast. It means we may be able to strike a claim to a place for our children and grandchildren in a wonderfully amazing site that they and their generations will be able to appreciate as we and those who preceded us have done.

As much as I have studied and adore the art of Europe and owe my bumper sticker to learning the paintings of France, England, and Germany, if I were to stop and give homage to the paintings of the West I would have to humbly confess that the places and times laid down on canvas back there could never be more beautiful, more stunning, or more compelling than the images rendered here in the great vistas of the West. California, from the places of the missions to the mining camps and the coasts, the sloughs where countless Eastern hopefuls panned for gold, and the undefiled tracts in which wildlife is still unfettered. It is the hope of generations, the hope of our past and future.

I used to think that the ideal sojourn would be in Paris, London, Venice, or Munich. Yes, well, it would be grand. But to this fifty-something art student San Francisco, Pasadena, and Los Angeles seem equally compelling. And that's not only because of the world-class museums in those cities. It's also due to the opportunities we Californians have of experiencing nature, the art of our creator, first-hand in our astonishing state. I humbly hope and pray that by this time next week, our precious public California parklands will be forever protected and taken out of play of a capricious legislative budgetary football game.

If you never studied art or art history, and you are a Californian, please educate yourself about the places in our state that truly are our Creator's works of art. Plan to vote next Tuesday, Nov. 2nd, in favor of Proposition 21, to create a funding source which supports parks, wildlife, and an endowment of natural beauty for generations to come.

Get the bumper sticker.

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