I became intoxicated in an art gallery yesterday. It wasn’t alcohol, but imagination, color, texture, and the idea that with a piece of plastic, I could buy something.
Last year in Taos I went to galleries with Enid – watched as she opened her fancy purse and bought a large painting of rolling hills. I felt a vicarious thrill, like a woman hanging on the arm of a gambling man – balancing with him on his slippery slope.
“Just one little painting won’t cause any harm.”
“It’s not like it’s a habit.”
I am Mabel Dodge’s long-eared cousin from across the tracks. I collect art collectors, bring them to Taos and lure them into galleries.
This year, Pat and I go into a Pueblo shop. She tries on a ring and buys it, just like that. I buy a card to send to a friend. Pat buys a dream catcher. We egg each other on.
“I don’t know about the Little Orphan Annie mug…”
“You have to buy it.”
We’re co-dependent users.
A large watercolor entitled “Mystery” catches my friend’s eye. Excited as a child at Christmas, I clap my hands.
“You have to get it. It’s not like you buy one every day.”
She closes her eyes and breathes deeply. She asks her Higher Power for help, and, admitting that she is powerless, hands over her credit card.