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Monday, September 14, 2009

The Value of Work

Paint Dancer - detail
One week ago exactly was Labor Day, and being that I am always late, I feel it appropriate to talk labor today. Every now and then, you see a painting that rocks your world in some could be the technique, the paint quality, the colors, the rhythms or the subject. Subject it was. "The Floor Scrapers" by Gustave Caillebotte. Not only is it a lovely painting, but it elevates the stature of the laborers by its subject, even though the workers are situated at the bottom of the picture plane. Lovely. I love to work with my hands as well, as do most of the people in my family. Even though our education leads us to work in a cubicle, most likely on a computer in what might be considered a white collar job, there are those of us that would be most happy working with our hands in whatever may be considered to be blue. Matthew B. Crawford speaks to this subject in his new book Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work. Sitting down all day is highly overrated.

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