What, exactly, is a ginger mouse? I really have no idea. I recently spent an evening brainstorming blog titles. Most of my attempts were plays on our somewhat amusing street name, but nothing really worked. That night I woke up from a dream I no longer remember. My first conscious thought was: “The blog should be called ginger mouse. Or ginger house.” It made complete sense to me.
The next morning I told Andy about this title, though by that point its questionable logic had long since escaped me. Ginger mouse reminded him of a poem, Why I Am Not a Painter, he read in high school, long before Mad Men made Frank O’Hara famous:
I am not a painter, I am a poet.
Why? I think I would rather be
a painter, but I am not. Well,
for instance, Mike Goldberg
is starting a painting. I drop in.
“Sit down and have a drink” he
says. I drink; we drink. I look
up. “You have SARDINES in it.”
“Yes, it needed something there.”
“Oh.” I go and the days go by
and I drop in again. The painting
is going on, and I go, and the days
go by. I drop in. The painting is
finished. “Where’s SARDINES?”
All that’s left is just
letters, “It was too much,” Mike says.
But me? One day I am thinking of
a color: orange. I write a line
about orange. Pretty soon it is a
whole page of words, not lines.
Then another page. There should be
so much more, not of orange, of
words, of how terrible orange is
and life. Days go by. It is even in
prose, I am a real poet. My poem
is finished and I haven’t mentioned
orange yet. It’s twelve poems, I call
it ORANGES. And one day in a gallery
I see Mike’s painting, called SARDINES.
So, ginger mouse it is.