Saturday, September 16, 2006

Reuben of Redway

Ferndale was first on the agenda today, the Victorian village where the great Kinetic Race finishes up each Memorial Day weekend.  Stan Bennett, who makes kinetic marble sculptures in the back of the local museum was a participant in the earliest days of the race. He spoke of Ferndale as being kinda like Brigadoon, a place that time pretty much forgot, and artists descended upon, though many have now moved on. 


We did too, dropping back into the Avenue of the Giants, for some serious redwood tourist action.  Our plan to enjoy the Drive-Thru Tree was thwarted though, by our taller than 7’ roof rack.  But a friendly couple in a white sedan let Don hop in back for a roadside thrill none of them will soon forget.  “Hey, pipe down in back...”

The real mission for the day was to find Reuben Sorensen in Redway.  He’s a Wisconsinite who hoboed around for years and ended up in Humboldt County.  Reuben paints from visions that give him the images from which to begin.  He’s made are hundreds of small papier mache cars that form a freeway perimeter (though he’s never driven), paintings of basketball and baseball players sans heads (“can’t draw faces well”), and a whole series of adventures centered around a mysterious red box and “headwrapping school”. Oh, and Scrabble-styled letter arrays that scream to be deciphered even when they can’t.

Reuben went to considerable trouble to pull things out of storage and display them for us in and around the yard.  And his friend Katie served up huge mugs of hot coffee, fruit and desserts, though somehow the luscious looking cheesecake never quite made it to the camera guy’s mouth! We’re still hearing about that one...

Today’s music in the van-”Neko Case”,”Por la Vida”--Tribute to Alejandro Escovedo, Best of Simon & Garfunkel, Johnny Cash “American V”, “I Believe to My Soul” Soul Music Sampler

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