Art, Drawing, Influences, marker and ink illustration, New work, New York, New York Cares, Volunteer Work, wisdom

Jo’s Journey (A Somewhat Irreverent Guide to Doing Anything Better) – Pinning My Hopes on a New Eyebrow Hair

If you’re a regular reader of  this blog, you’ll know that my dream is to leave my corner of the world a slightly better place.  I value kindness and generosity.  I also prize creativity and effort over whiz-bang, flash-in-the-pan success.  With such a seemingly wholesome approach, you might be surprised to learn that I wrestle big time with my own demons…

Demons that jump out at me from the mirror shouting:

Jo's demons

Your face is too thin!

Maybe you should get braces again – your right tooth is crooked!

Ha ha!  Your haircut makes you look like a boy!


Oh my God! Your eyebrows aren’t symmetrical!!!

(And those are just the criticisms about my appearance.  There isn’t sufficient space in this post to address what the demons say about my talents, or lack thereof.)

Perhaps I’m not alone in having these thoughts, but it sure seems like it sometimes.  In case you’re interested, when I’m assaulted by my demons, my go-to cure is…

  • Lots of mindless research on the internet (i.e. lately, when I remember, I’ve been trying to do the muscle-building, cheek-enhancing facial routine here)

– followed by –

  • A self-imposed internet and glossy magazine holiday
  • A session of volunteering with New York Cares – nothing better than helping others to get you off of focusing on yourself
  • Laughter  (Most recently, I amused myself by accidentally vacuuming up one of my athletic socks.  When I went to retrieve it from the bag, I was thrilled to find the bathroom tile I had vacuumed up earlier in the week.)
  • Creating my vision of beauty through art or music.  (If you’ve never been, please visit my Etsy shop here.  And, if you want to hear/see me perform  this week and are in the NYC area, I’ll be onstage at the Lincoln Center’s Rose Hall on Friday.)

In the meantime, I’m pinning my hopes on a just-emerged eyebrow hair.  With any luck (and a lot of peer pressure from the hair follicle world) I’m hoping that a few other eyebrow hair buddies will be inspired to hatch so that I end up with symmetrical eyebrows.  Maybe then everything in my life will be perfect.

(I can always hope.)


  1. This picture is great! Very cute. As for the demons……they come to visit everyone, I’m guessing. Shake hands with them, offer them a cup of tea.

    • Amen, Helen. That’s great advice, and I’ll keep it in mind.

      Actually, with my performance anxiety demons, I did learn to give myself permission to let the demons take over. That is, I’d think, “Ok, go ahead. Shake so badly that you collapse in a heap on the floor.” Of course, as soon as I gave myself permission to become a basket case, the demons retreated. 🙂

      Hope the Berio isn’t too heinous. Judging by comments on Facebook, you don’t seem to be the only one with Berio issues;-)

      Ciao, Joana

  2. It has clever parts, but then the vocal parts are quite distracting. I dunno, I am not digging it. Also, it’s confusing because I am sitting in back of violins, and their bowings are sometimes exactly opposite ours (I’m told this happens more than you might imagine). I can’t see my own section well at all. And it’s hard for me to concentrte all the way through. So yeah, I’m having a tough time, even though it’s not as difficult a piece as I thought it would be. Certainly, most of the pitches don’t matter. Of course, the rhythm and dynamics do!

    • Hi Helen,

      I’m not sure I’ve ever done any Berio. However, I’m not a fan of pieces that are devilishly difficult, and yet probably sound to the audience like the music is being made up on the spot. (In other words, if you played all wrong notes, the audience might not know the difference.)

      I did a performance at Lincoln Center of the Verdi Requiem last night. As the final note of the entire piece was “morendo-ing” away, the ring tone of an audience member’s cell phone (playing Mozart’s 40th Symphony) took over. How about that for a mood-breaker! 😉

      Ciao – Joana

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