I was just talking with my mom about our days of work, and by the end of it I was crying. Do you want to know why?
Because today at her work the regular UPS man came into her office to have her sign for a package, and noticed her picture of the floor of Jackson Pollock’s visit from our recent visit to his studio (I researched in their house for a few days).
(The picture of the studio floor in Jackson Pollock’s barn studio at his home in The Springs, East Hampton, now The Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center, a Project of Stonybrook University.)
And he was excited to see a Pollock, and my mom was pleasantly surprised that the UPS man recognized a Pollock and got excited about it. And then he surprised her further by beginning to babble on about art, in her office, after she signed for the package. “Oh, I see you also have a Caillebotte (she has Rainy Day Paris Street which I cut from the dust jacket on my Marilyn Stokstad Art History textbook on her wall). Seurat’s Island of Grand Jatte is my favorite, I saw it in Chicago once.” My mom is happy to talk art with him, and then encourages him to look closer at the Pollock picture, saying “It’s not just any Pollock.” And he thinks, and then realizes it’s the floor of his studio, and then goes “Ah! The floor! You know why he painted on the floor? Because he would put on Native American music and dance around to it because he was inspired by the west, he grew up out there.” And my mom’s now like, wow, this UPS guy really knows his stuff! (How charming is it when strangers turn out to be closet art fanatics, right?)
And then, realizing he has made an art historical friend, one who would appreciate being let in on his deepest secret, leans over excitedly and goes, completely seriously:
“Now I know this is illegal, but one of my friends saw a Pollock once and got real close to it, and he peeled a little piece of paint off, and swallowed it!”
UPS MAN, YOUR FRIEND DID WHAT.
UPS MAN. YOU ATE A POLLOCK.
(Also let’s all just take a minute here to remember that Pollock painted with lead paint.)
(Which he probably did as a precautionary measure to keep people from eating his paintings.)
Staring at him blankly, trying not to die, my mom goes, “…I thought you were gonna say put it in a pendant and wore it around his neck…”
But the UPS man said no, his “friend” wanted to “be one” with Jackson Pollock.
Like…what. How. Is this real life.
So my mom is sitting at her desk wondering if she just got Punk’d, and I’m crying hysterically at home while she tells me this because it is just the most unreal and bizarre thing I’ve ever heard.