Good Morning Long Branch from Anchovy World Headquarters this morning 7:39 am

George Feb 25 Bruce Feb 25Georgie and Bruce listening to Mister Anchovy playing the banjo this morning on 27th Street.

Life with George


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Casting Call

Amongst our mail today was a flyer from HGTV about a TV show called May the Best House Win. On one side, here is what it says:

Is your house, condo or apartment your pride & joy?

HGTV’s new series MAY THE BEST HOUSE WIN features four house-proud individuals who will open their doors to one another. They’ll critique and mark each other’s homes and the one with the highest score gets $1000!

Any size, any style, rent or own. The only requirement is that you love your space and think other peole will too! If you’ve ever dreamed of being on HGTV and showing off your design skills and unique personal style, now’s your chance.

On the other side of the flyer it reads: We are casting in your area for HGTV’s May the Best House Win…and then there’s a hand-written note:

Love the one-of-a-kind yard! For sure a stand out home. If you want to come on our show please let us know.

Imagine that. For a chance at $1,000 we could turn our little piece of paradise into a reality TV freak show. I think not.

Fall Gardens

I like this little garden a lot, at the back edge of the yard on the edge of the woodsy patch.

Tuffy P has done a fantastic job looking after this front garden, which just keeps getting better. Even in October, it has retained a great deal of variety and character.

My Attempt at Giving up Painting has ended in Failure

To steal a line from the Merle Travis, “like a fiend with his dope, and a drunkard his wine…” I’ve found my way back into the little studio I’ve been calling The Anchovy Can. It seems I’m unable to stay away indefinitely.

Here is another new painting, a small diptych called Lost Forest. It’s made with acrylic paints on canvas if that matters.

Just for kicks, here’s Lost Forest out in the garden…

A Pleasant Surprise

We received a letter from the City of Toronto today. How unusual. It started like this:

We are pleased to inform you that your property/garden has been nominated for the City of Toronto Etobicoke York Great Gardens Contest 2011. Unfortunately, it was after the nomination deadline; July 6th 2011 and therefore was not listed for judging.

How nice.

A Glimpse Inside the Anchovy Can…

Here’s a sneak peak into the top secret cave hidden deep beneath Anchovy World Headquarters. The larger painting in progress is called Sunday Afternoon in the Forest of No Return.

In the Garden

Tuffy and I both love hollyhocks.

Daylilies between houses along the sidewalk.

More clematis are opening up each day at the side of the house.

These started last year with a small transplant from our neighbour’s garden across the street. Are these some variety of primrose?

The Big Bird

Tuffy P and I have been work on this owl mosaic for months. We finally finished it up last night and hung it out front this morning. All the tesserae have been cut from various tiles, broken dishes, bowls and vases using a little tile nipper which enables us to cut them to more or less custom shapes. The ground is 3/4 inch plywood and the cement is an acrylic compound which we’ve tested over a period of several years. The stuff seems to be indestructable. We don’t use any grout; we just sink the tesserae into plenty of compound.

Upping the scale on this, our third bird, gave us the chance to stretch out a little and mess around with different size bits, as well as different textures and introduce greater complexity to the whole piece.

3 cats a-playin’

You should have no problem spotting the three cats at play in this photo. Can you name them too?

In the foreground is an excellent early season example of Amanita chipbowlius, a toadstool indigenous to the Long Branch area of Southern Ontario.