First Friday

First Friday in Raleigh.  You would seriously have to be to be trying to be in a bad mood, to be in a bad mood downtown on First Friday.

Tonight, I was trying.  I left work in A Mood.  This was the scene at my desk this afternoon.

See, anyone who knows me well knows that I collect drinks on my desk when I am under stress.  Once in grad school, I left my drawing board for a Whole Foods dinner run before a long night of studio work.  I made it back to my desk with two kinds of fizzy water, two kinds of expensive vitamin-packed fruit drinks, a latte, and no food whatsoever.  So I do this.  Five drinks? Excessive, even for me.  I showed up for First Friday hydrated, but I told my friends I had an hour in me, at best.

I had already tried wearing my Zanzibar ring for good luck:

and seeing a blockbuster movie at Mission Valley:

and pretending to be a pirate, which sometimes helps.  Not today.

Nothing worked.  By 5 pm, I felt like the squashed and disintegrating drawing on the bottom of this ancient stack in the office.

It only took about 15 minutes of First Friday to set things right.  We started at the CAM, where some of us crawled around the giant inflatable exhibit.  There was lots of duct tape.  There were arts-and-crafts.  I love arts-and-crafts, and so do Julia and PJ.

My favorite part was the light installation in the basement.  You’re not allowed to touch it anymore- but when I first went to CAM, they told me that if I touched the lights, and then took off my shoes and touched the lights again, something cool would happen.  It does.

And then we went to Flanders Gallery, where they had photographs and beer.  I love photographs and beer.  We swung by DesignBox, where I coveted the Paul Friedrich coffee mugs, and JJ made a seriously cool vegetable sculpture for a contest:

JJ, by the way, has seven patents.  So he is better than average at inventing stuff.

We went by the Curatory and looked at $60 white tee shirts.  We went to Adam Cave and loved the printmaking exhibit.  We all found a table in the window of Raleigh Times, and had Dark and Stormies and veggie burgers.

And then the fire hooping started up outside.  How do you not love fire hooping?

I’ve been looking for a game-changer all week. Fire hooping just might be it.  If that doesn’t work, I have a Saturday which includes a first birthday party, all three of my godchildren, family time, friend time, a short road trip, and my favorite band.  Things are looking up, friends.  Things are looking up.

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