Results from the 2018 New York State Fair

So let’s recap.

After getting shut out in 2017 – and in 2016 – and in 2014 – one of my pictures broke through and made it to the walls of the second floor of the Harriet May Mills Art Center at the New York State Fair, effectively stopping the #syracurse streak.  For now.  Whether or not the picture earned a ribbon on its display, I don’t know.

Meanwhile, three of my other artworks – Saratoga Vichy Crate Art Project, Saratoga Vichy Table and GLF Quality – my three upcycled art creations – are in another part of the Harriet May Mills Art Center, in the Arts and Crafts wing.  And while my photos have been squeezed off the walls of the Art Center, my arts and crafts projects have not only received some displays, but they also earned some silks – a 2nd place last year, a 3rd place two years ago, and two Honorable Mentions last year.

And today’s the day I find out how my four pieces – three crafts and one photo – did.

But you know my rule.  My rules at Syracuse are very simple.

Before I can enter the Harriet May Mills Art Center and see how everything went, I must go to the American Red Cross bloodmobile and make my yearly donation of Type O.

I must go to the restaurant in the International Building – the one that has a fair-friendly Kosher menu – and order a set of celebratory deep-fried matzo balls.

And I must take in the 2:00 pm concert at the Chevy Court, whoever is performing.

And this year’s free concert on the day I attend the Fair … is Jackyl.

What, you’ve never heard of Jackyl?

Were you never a fan of Full Throttle Saloon on TruTV?  The show about a biker bar that stays open one week a year, right in the middle of Rally Week at Sturgis?

Trust me, Jackyl is a legendary biker band.  Heck, the lead singer, Jesse James Dupree, is not only the lead vocalist, but apparently he also plays chainsaw.  You heard me.  He plays chainsaw.

You heard me, chainsaw.  What, you think I speak Husqvarna?

So I went over to donate blood at the bloodmobile.  But it wasn’t open.  At least not until 11:00 a.m.  Urgh.

Then I went over to the Kosher food stand and ordered the deep fried matzo balls.

“We don’t sell those any more.  Nobody liked them.”

“I liked them.”

“You may have been the only one.”

So I had to settle for a deep fried apple blintz a la mode, along with a diet cola to countermand all the sugar and ice cream.

It just wasn’t the same.

And going over to the Chevy Court to see Jackyl … oh my God it looked as if there was a bike rally in the audience.  And every tenth person in the audience was wearing black T-shirts with the back logo of “Rock Me Roll Me Jackyl Me Off.”


You know what?  This isn’t working.  I need something that works.

Let’s just go to the Harriet May Mills Art Center and try my luck.

First off … a visit to the Arts and Crafts wing, the Marker Baker Eddy gallery on the ground floor.

Search, search, search … and right off the bat, I find the GLF Quality stitching project.

Yellow ribbon for honorable mention!

So this is working out well … so far I’ve continued a streak of ribbons in the Arts and Crafts discipline, my third year of earning silk.

And around the corner, there’s the Saratoga Vichy Crate Art Project.  And look, they put it on my Saratoga Vichy Table.  How nice of them.

In case you’re wondering, that’s another honorable mention for the table … and a Third Place Ribbon for the Crate Art Project itself.  Swank.  I’m getting there, I know it.

Okay.  Here’s the deal.  It’s time to go into the photo wing of the Harriet May Mills Art Center, personally entering this space for the first time in three years … and let’s see how American Dreamtime: Solarcan 368 did.

There’s three options here.  It either HAS a ribbon, it has NO ribbon, or there wasn’t enough room and it didn’t make it on the wall after all.

Which would suck eggs.

But, after some detective work … I found American Dreamtime: Solarcan 368 in the photo wing.

It’s on the wall … and no ribbon.

Yes, that’s an advance from last year, where I was NOT on the wall … but, for all intents and purposes, I’m just not cutting through.

So, now I have to prepare for 2019.  After several years on the outside, now I’ve finally nudged my way in again.  But “nudging” isn’t enough.  Not for me.

There’s an old saying in professional sports.  “You have to lose a game in order to win one.”  That seems like a conflicting statement, but in reality it means that you can NOT expect success every time.  You have to expect some failure and rejection in your life, to make you work harder and be more dedicated in your personal craft.

And as of today, the clock is ticking.  I’ve got twelve months to prepare for another New York State Fair run.

After nearly three years without appearing on the walls of the Harriet May Mills Art Center, I’ve cracked through on that front.  Now let’s keep pushing and see what happens next year.