Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Art of Watercolour

From L' Art de l'Aquarelle:

We created a prestigious book on a selection of the artists that have appeared in the watercolour magazine over the last two years... the book is completed and printed. It is sincerely well above and beyond any other book on contempory watercolour artists that we have seen.

24 of the world's greatest artists
100 never before published images
6 major paintings explained
24 x 28 cm.
Full colour high quality reproductions of all paintings on 150 gms paper

For information about purchase, email: Sonia Seince at

Sunday, November 28, 2010

BACH & friends

Pianist Simone Dinnerstein says that playing Bach is "as close to religion as I get." This sums up my feeling as well as that of most of the musicians who appear in Michael Lawrence's superb new documentary, BACH & friends. The Baltimore filmmaker (see also the brilliant Barrueco: A Gift and a Life) has assembled a stellar and eclectic collection of musicians who all owe a lifetime of gratitude to the most remarkable composer in history. Fascinating interviews are joined with spellbinding performances into a two-hour (plus second bonus DVD of all performances) journey that awes as it stimulates.

All of the performances are noteworthy, but special highlights are organist Felix Hell's amazing rendition of the D Major fugue, mandolinist Chris Thile blazing through the E Major prelude, and Joshua Bell playing the Chaconne. Great camerawork captures Bobby McFerrin, Bela Fleck, Richard Stoltzman, Jake Shimabukuro, Peter Schickele, The Emerson Quartet, my friend Manuel Barrueco, and many others demonstrating the universal effect Bach has had on music and their lives. A provocative, recurring theme throughout the interviews is the notion that Bach did not "compose" the music, but rather simply wrote down what he heard in his head, channeling some otherwordly muse.

My favorite segment of the production is perhaps the Badinerie performed by the Swingle Singers, featuring the wonderful Joanna Goldsmith. This piece reveals the deep connection Bach has with humanity, transcending race, language, and the centuries. It brings to mind something Randy Kentfield once wrote:

It seems to me the various art forms are at varying stages of spiritual development, which I take to be a progression from identification with finite biology to a union with infinite physics. Dangling from the lowest rung of Jacob's Ladder are the verbal modes of expression. Poor, harried humanity, in order to deal with the world at the level of animal survival, has invented labels for what it sees, and has become attached to those names; the underlying processes are hidden from dull men's eyes by the dead weight of their illusory forms. The visual artist is somewhat more liberated. He can transform an animal's limited eyes into totally new ways of seeing. But the musician - that man has forsaken folly and revels in God - deals in a fluid medium unseen and unfelt but ecstatically experienced.

Thanks to Michael Lawrence for another landmark documentary, and I'm delighted to learn there will be a second Bach installment. I highly recommend BACH & friends, no matter your taste in music or art - there is something here for everyone to learn from and aspire to.

BACH & friends page on Michael Lawrence website

Thanks to Michael Lawrence for printing my comments!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Bienal Internacional de la Acuarela - NAWA


Kathleen Alexander, Carol Carter, Mark Mehaffey, Thomas W. Schaller, Nicholas Simmons, and Keiko Tanabe have formed the North American Watercolor Artists, a group of six U.S. watercolor artists, to represent the United States in the IX International Watercolor Biennial in Mexico. The exhibition will be held at the National Museum of Watercolor in Mexico City, December 5, 2010 through February 13, 2011. Artists representing countries in five continents are participating in the Biennial, which is invitation-only. Begun in 1994, the purpose of the Biennial is to establish or enhance friendly relationships among watercolor artists and promote watercolor painting around the world.

Kathleen Alexander

Carol Carter

Mark Mehaffey

Thomas W. Schaller

Nicholas Simmons

Keiko Tanabe

Museo Nacional de la Acuarela


I'm very happy to be included in this group of incredible painters, and look forward to representing the USA in the upcoming biennial. As soon as there is a website for it, I'll post a link. In the meantime, each of us has submitted one painting for the exhibition, and we may have more opportunities to exhibit as a group in the future. Each of the other artists has done a lot of work that blows me away, and I expect this association will inspire me to try even harder and do better. A big thanks to my five compadres....we are the NAWA!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Upcoming Workshops

More workshops have been added to the schedule for the next couple of years. Next week I'll be doing one for the California Watercolor Association, which you can read about in the current newsletter. (thank you for the great write-up!). Next month I'll be in Florida for a few days at beautiful Amelia Island and a new venue for me, Amelia Island Artist Workshop. I'm looking forward to that, I've heard wonderful things about it from other artists. I believe there are still spaces available, see contact info below.

2011 includes a watercolor expo at the Burchfield Penney Art Center in Buffalo, five days at the incredible Manoir de Maison Blanche in France, and a return to Idyllwild in the San Jacinto mountains. 2012 includes workshops and judging major shows for San Diego Watercolor Society, Florida Watercolor Society, and others. More events are added regularly, see updates on the Workshop page of my website.

4-day workshop - California Watercolor Association - Concord, California. October 18-21.
Contact: Karen Powers 510-502-6211

3-day workshop - Amelia Island Artist Workshop - Fernandina Beach, Florida. November 12-14.
Contact: Mikolean Longacre 904-415-3900

2-day workshop - Plaza Art - Rockville, Maryland. November 20-21.
Contact: 301-770-0500

1-day Photoshop Secrets For Artists seminar - Plaza Art - Rockville, Maryland. December 11.
Contact: 301-770-0500


3-day workshop - ArtCenter Manatee - Bradenton, Florida. February 4-6.
Contact: 941-746-2862

2-day workshop - Plaza Art - Rockville, Maryland. February 19-20.
Contact: 301-770-0500

3-day workshop - Brazos Valley Art League - College Station, Texas. April 7-9.
Contact: Cynthie Hanks 979-229-6242

Judge - 2010-2011 National PTA Reflections Program (Visual Arts)

Demonstration and 1-day workshop - Watercolor Expo - Burchfield Penney Art Center - Buffalo, New York. May 13-15. More information TBA.

2-day workshop - Strathmore Mansion - Bethesda, Maryland. May 20-21.
Contact: Holly Haliniewski 301-581-5125

5-day workshop - Manoir de Maison Blanche - Dordogne, France. July 4-8.
Contact: +33 553 56 90 55

3-day workshop - Idyllwild Arts - Idyllwild, California. July 18-20.
Contact: 951- 659-2171 x 2365

4-day workshop - Ann Arbor, Michigan (web page TBA). July 25-28.
Contact: Debra Zamperla 734-662-8734

2-day workshop - Plaza Art - Rockville, Maryland. August 13-14.
Contact: 301-770-0500

4-day workshop - San Antonio Watercolor Group - San Antonio, Texas. September 13 -16.
Contact: Sandy McCoig or Karen McCauley - 830-281-4903

1-day Photoshop Secrets For Artists seminar - Plaza Art - Rockville, Maryland. October 1.
Contact: 301-770-0500

2-day workshop - Plaza Art - Rockville, Maryland. November 5-6
Contact: 301-770-0500

1-day Photoshop Secrets For Artists seminar - Plaza Art - Rockville, Maryland. December 17.
Contact: 301-770-0500


2-day workshop - Plaza Art - Rockville, Maryland. February 4-5.
Contact: 301-770-0500

4-day workshop - Waterloo Watercolor Group of Austin - Austin, Texas. April 2- 5. Demonstration April 1.
Contact: Nancy Charbeneau 512-795-0203

5-day workshop - Utah Watercolor Society - Salt Lake City, Utah. April 30-May 4. Demonstration May 1.
Contact: Joyce Baron 801-375-4933

Judge - Utah Watercolor Society 2010 Annual Open Juried Exhibition. April 2012.

4-day workshop - Niagara Frontier Watercolor Society - Buffalo, New York. May 14-17.
Contact: Carol Siracuse 716- 867-9044

4-day workshop - Acadia Workshop Center - Mount Desert Island, Maine. July 30-August 2.
Contact: Gail Ribas 207-460-4119

4-day workshop - San Diego Watercolor Society - San Diego, California. August 13-16.
Contact: Alice Kayuha (619) 876-4550

Judge - San Diego Watercolor Society International Exhibition. October 2012.

Judge: Florida Watercolor Society Annual Exhibition. August 2012.

4-day workshop - Florida Watercolor Society - Orlando, Florida. September 10-14.
Contact: Linda D. Neal 321-544-8888

4-day workshop - Greentree Studio - Lawrenceburg, Indiana. September 28-October 1.
Contact: Sandy Maudlin 812-539-4505

3-day workshop - Santa Clara Valley Watercolor Society Workshops - San Jose, California. November 12-14. Demonstration November 11.
Contact: Jeanne de Campos-Rousseau

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Ocean City & Hold the MSG

Ocean City, Maryland is a place people like to go when it's warm and sunny. Last week I was there during what must be the off-season for the town, and it was windy, foggy, rainy, and almost deserted. Perfect. I had a condo overlooking a very wild and dramatic beach, and got some good pics. See the view down the beach from the balcony, above.

Unfortunately I had to cancel the last day of the workshop for the Art League of Ocean City, due to an illness. Yes, an illness called Worst ****ing Migraine Headache I've Ever Had Thanks To MSG. Ever gotten that one? I had dinner the night before at Outback steakhouse. Chicken. Ever wonder why everything tastes exactly the same at that restaurant? Because they bury it all in their "seasonings." Most of which are obviously loaded with MSG in one or more of its disguised or undisguised forms. Doesn't matter what you order - steak, chicken, pork, it all tastes the same. Anyway, aside from that I really enjoyed the place and the welcome fall atmosphere. Thanks to ALOC for inviting me, the great accomodations, and sorry especially to those who traveled far!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Luna Faerie Meets Wes

Having fun on a 3/4 size kid's guitar! First the bass line, then rhythm, then lead on top using the Lexicon JamMan looper. All improvised, one take.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Square 1

E-Z Terms - 102 x 102 cm.

A blog buddy urged me to organize thoughts expressed in my replies to comments posted on this entry. Realizing it could add up to something close to an artist statement or explanation about personal "process," I pause. Re the former, I rarely read artist statements. They tend to subtract points from the work before I've even seen it, and in some cases allude to things that tell me I'm about to see some bad art. Without getting specific on that score, I've also heard this opinion from galleries and curators, etc. I don't recall ever reading an artist statement that measurably enhanced my enjoyment of the work, so I'm reluctant to compose one. Anyhow, I prefer the idea of art speaking for itself.

The process part is more interesting, especially if you happen to like the artist's work.

When I used to hear artists discuss their process(es), I always felt like a bit of a chump. They had this thing that sort of guided them and it seemed as though there was a discipline to it. I, on the other hand, had no such method or consistency. Eventually I decided that not having a process was my process, flying by the seat of my pants. Rather than fitting subject matter into a certain approach, style, or ethic, I simply would get an idea for a painting, imagine how I think it would look best to me, and then figure out how to do it -- or at least try to do it. This often means going back to square one with each new piece. In workshops I tell people that I often feel like a rank beginner when starting a painting, and that this is my "comfort zone." Not knowing where it's going but listening to the picture as it takes shape has yielded better and more surprising results than anything I likely could plan. It doesn't always come, and it can't be forced. I like how the poet William Stafford described it as a thread: you search for the end, pull gently, and follow. Which is starting to sound suspiciously like a process. :)

And so I've ended up with a body of work that is all over the map. I like it that way, diversity is one of the things I value most in art. Part of this is due to an inclination to avoid much of what I've seen in watercolor since I first got hooked. There is a lot of recycling in every medium, and watercolor is no different -- maybe worse. Perhaps because of its immediacy and associated traditions, there are legions of watercolorists who develop a style that often says to me "this is how I paint skies...this is how I paint trees...this is how I paint figures" etc. Facile and attractive, but I can tire of it quickly. Lots of painters play almost every tune in the same key, same tempo, with the same feel. I've been to concerts like that, but I don't stay long.

The painting above is an example of something that popped into my head a while back. I've never painted a dog, and don't even particularly care for dogs (un-American, I know!). But I had a hankering to see something like a junkyard canine with a fence and sign. Nothing deep, just shapes and colors and edges. Got it out of my system.


Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Artist's Magazine - Shanghai

The new October 2010 issue of The Artist's Magazine has a feature I wrote about the Shanghai Zhujiajiao exhibition (see earlier posts here and here re the judging and opening) on The Artist's Life page (edited by Cherie Haas). Photos include my wife Olga at the opening with my painting Russian Woman, myself with the other judges, some of the award winners, and the lucky shot I got in the water village of Zhou Zhuang. Sorry about the low-res pic -- if you don't subscribe, please go out and buy this excellent magazine!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Cabaña Con Carne

Cabaña Con Carne - 61 x 142 cm.

Based on a photo I found, with some serious adjustments! Da Vinci watercolors on 140 lb. Fabriano hot press paper.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Happy Birthday, Tommy!

Carmine Appice and Nick

Did some fun reminiscing a couple nights ago with an old friend of yours. :)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Kiss The Sky

Kiss The Sky - 102 x 102 cm.

Da Vinci watercolor on 140 lb. Fabriano hot press paper. And check out my new axe! The guy who dreamed up the Tommy Bolin "Teaser" guitar for Dean finally got one of his own. These guitars take a while to make and I wanted people who ordered them to be first in line. More soon.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Just finished a workshop at Idyllwild Arts, a fantastic private arts academy in the San Jacinto mountains of Southern California. During the school year it serves as an arts-focused boarding school for grades 9-12, and adult classes are offered during the summer. The campus is spread over a mountain and consists of about 100 buildings in a breathtaking setting. Last night while wandering around I happened on the ampitheater and was quite taken with six enormous canopies that cover the hillside leading down to the stage. Sunlight was streaming through them and it was beautifully surreal. There are lots of artists visiting here teaching courses in clay, metal, sculpture, painting, Native American arts, etc. I had a great group of people, and look forward to returning again.

When I drove here from Santa Ana airport last Friday and started up the mountain I quickly got a sense of how remote the little town of Idyllwild is -- like going back in time, and I fell in love with the place. Proximity to airports is a bit of a problem, otherwise I wouldn't mind moving here. Today I hiked along Strawberry Creek and took a lot of photographs. Tomorrow it's back to LA area meeting with DaVinci and hanging out in Laguna. Rough, huh? :)

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

100 Mid-Atlantic Artists

La Vida Breve - watercolor by Nicholas Simmons

La Vida Breve will be featured with several other paintings of mine in a new book by E. Ashley Rooney, 100 Mid-Atlantic Artists, published by Schiffer Books. I'll post a notice when it is available.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Johnnie Bolin!

Tommy and Johnnie Bolin - Mile High Stadium, Denver
August 29, 1976

I was in Dayton, Ohio two weeks ago doing a workshop, and on what was supposed to be my last night in town (Thursday), I was sitting in a restaurant having dinner. I got a call from Johnnie, and without mentioning where I was, asked him where he was off to next:

"We're playing in Dayton on Saturday."

"Dayton? That's where I am!"

I hadn't crossed paths with Johnnie since the NAMM show in January of 2008, so I hung out for a couple days. And glad I did! It was great to see him, especially looking so healthy and happy. Black Oak Arkansas was playing Dayton's rock & roll club, McGuffy's, so I also got to meet rock icon Jim Dandy and the rest of the band. Too good to pass up. :)

This gives me an opportunity to post a few of my favorite pics of Johnnie, such as the one of him with Tommy when they were little kids. Even then, music was obviously going to be the family occupation. I love the photo of them together (see above) many years later when Johnnie was playing drums in Tommy's band, and performed for over 50,000 people at Denver's Mile High Stadium on August 29, 1976, only a few months before Tommy's death. Also on the bill for this show were Gary Wright, Steve Miller, and Peter Frampton at the height of his fame. You can read more about this period of the Tommy Bolin Band on the Tommy Bolin Archives site. There is some rare surviving footage from the Mile High show, where Johnnie can be seen drumming. (it was shot on silent 8mm film, so the audio has been dubbed from another concert)

Johnnie has played with too many bands to list here, and has been pretty much everywhere. He can really tear it up, as you'll see on the video I shot during the BOA gig the other night. Not great audio, but I wasn't expecting to see him or I would have brought a good camera. Johnnie became a sponsored DDrums artist recently, and soon there will be a page for him on that site.

Besides the colorful musical career Johnnie has lived, he has also endured a lot of personal tragedy, and survived. Tommy's death at age 25 devastated not only the family, but the entire town of Sioux City (the whole state of Iowa, actually), not to mention legions of music fans. Johnnie's younger brother Rick died at an early age in the 90s, followed by his father and mother. Johnnie's the only one left, but he has a spirit of optimism and kindness that rubs off on all those who know him. He is blessed with a son, Bobby, who just may have some of the Bolin musical genius in him as well, and must be the best-looking kid in the Midwest!

My frienship with Johnnie is one I cherish, and I think about him everyday.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Juan Carlos Cardesin

Hidden Landscape IV - watercolor, 28 x 42 cm

Juankar Cardesin is an artist in San Sebastian, Spain. It would hardly scratch the surface to refer to him as a watermedia artist because his work is all over the map -- not just medium-wise, but also in subject matter and handling. It's hard to put into words what he does, it really must be seen. And felt. However, following the initial shock of stumbling over his blog (thanks to another heavyweight San Sebastian painter and compadre, Enrique Ochotorena), I came to two conclusions about his art:

1. He is absolutely fearless, or, alternatively, he is terrified of everything.

2. He is an extraordinarily sensitive person, responding like litmus paper to his environment.

I should explain. I believe Juan will paint or draw anything, and in the way he feels at the moment -- something that is very, very difficult to do without succumbing to self-doubt, and that artistic governor that shuts down the motor when things get too far afield. There is an honesty in that approach that is enviable. But in attempting to analyze it, I wonder about the presence of a yin yang gene that, instead, drives the artist through fear and awe; fear, if nothing else, in the prospect of losing an idea or precious flash of inspiration. This is a raw artist, exposed nerve endings in a constant state of flux, without buffer or filtering mechanism between heart and canvas. This guy won't make you question whether or not he is an artist, but whether or not you are! And that, is scary.

In artspeak, Juan might be characterized as a sort of Expressionist-Deconstructionist-Minimalist, with notes of Picasso, Schiele, Mauricio Lasansky, and Euro-trashism. Decay is a major feature in much of his work, be it human or industrial. The painting above, Hidden Landscape IV, is watercolor on Martele Damier paper, which is a synthetic surface similar to Yupo. This painting arrived on my doorstep out of nowhere last December, which tells you something else about the artist: he's a wonderful and generous man. We've become quite good friends via the Internet, and it was my loss last fall when my planned trip to San Sebastian fell through. I did experience a Cardesin-induced near-cardiac-arrest when I beheld his magnificent Shining Mountains while judging the Shanghai Zhujiajiao International Watercolor Biennial (shown below with our mutual friend, Javier Oña, a great painter from Cadiz, Spain).

Shining Mountains - watercolor, 65 x 95 cm

Going to Juan's blog is always a chest-pounding adventure, you never know what you're about to see. And good luck trying to keep up with him -- he's incredibly prolific! He has what a departed friend of mine, jazz pianist Fred Williams, used to call "the worm." The term refers to musicians and artists who are so compelled to create, they simply cannot stop, cannot rest. I've said that true artists are explorers, and Juan Carlos Cardesin is one of the trailblazers.

Juan Carlos Cardesin links:




Saturday, May 1, 2010

Cinema Paradiso

Music by Ennio Morricone from the Giuseppe Tornatore film, Cinema Pardiso. This is an arrangement I made of the main theme and love theme. If you haven't seen the movie, I highly recommend it -- the last scene is surely one of the most beautiful ever. Also, don't miss another Tornatore/Morricone masterpiece, Malena, my favorite movie of the past decade.
* * *
I'm headed this week to Krakow, Poland. My next post should include some photos of that magical city, where much of the world's attention has recently been focused. To na razie!

Friday, April 23, 2010

Kanuga - Go On, I Dare Ya!

James Toogood, Nicholas Simmons, Ted Nuttall, Mike Bailey

While Olga was in Shanghai, I was in Hendersonville, North Carolina for the Kanuga Watercolor/Watermedia Workshops. And what a week that was! About 250 people from all over the place enrolled in courses taught by eleven artists: Mike Bailey, Linda Baker, Mary Alice Braukman, Gerald Brommer, Jeanne Carbonetti, Lana Grow, Ted Nuttall, Beth Patterson, Pat San Soucie, James Toogood, and myself. Also there for presentations and independent study projects were Carrie Burns Brown, Joan Fullerton, Don Getz, Taylor Ikin, Carol Ann Sherman, Susan Webb Tregay, and some others I'm forgetting (sorry, send me the names!).

I drove down after spending a night at a friend's in Richmond.* Kanuga Conference Center is 1400 acres of gorgeous woods set on a lake in the Smoky Mountains. Guests stay in cottages and cabins, congregate in the lodge for meals, and fill the auditorium for large events. Several other buildings house studio spaces and classrooms, some of them converted for the purpose of workshops during this event. That's a lot of tables, chairs, and demonstration mirrors.

The first day everyone arrived, Sunday, there was an exhibition of the instructors' work and a meet & greet with enrollees. I was surprised to see a few people I know from my workshops in the DC area, and even more surprised to see some internet buddies there, including Myrna Wacknov. An introductory presentation took place in the auditorium, and then a concert by Barbara Bailey Hutchison (see above), Grammy-winning singer and songwriter. She was fabulous -- if you haven't heard her on one of her seventeen CDs, you've heard her on a number of commercials. Wonderful voice, can play the axe and keys, really entertains an audience, and is beautiful on top of it. What's more, she was in my workshop - yes, she tears it up with a paintbrush too!

The next four days were consumed by the workshops and a schedule of activities that kept the whole group of painters together and talking about art. There was a huge critique session, a night with five painters demonstrating at once, a studio walk, and enough after-hours fun to keep the creative party going non-stop. The studios remain open all night, and I was stunned to walk into mine one evening at about 10 PM to see almost everyone in there working - made me feel like a slacker! One night the instructors were invited to dinner at the fantastic aerie home of Stan Hubbard, president of Kanuga, which offers a breathtaking vista.

The whole class was great, really nice and interesting people who got a lot of new work accomplished. Special thanks go to my assistant, Karen Bell! (see pics below) I also met many from the other workshops and of course got to know the instructors. Most all of them are people I've been very aware of but had never met until Kanuga. Others were new to me, but I now feel we are friends, not just colleagues. I had lots of fun hanging out with Linda Baker and Joan Fullerton, a couple of spirited and mega-talented painters who added a lot of sparkle to the experience. The well-attended evenings in Cabin 3 and 8 won't be soon forgotten!

One of the best parts of the week for me was getting to know Mike Bailey and Ted Nuttall, two guys who are so high on my faves list it's not even funny. I bumped into Ted that first Saturday night in a dark hallway, a cool way to have it happen. Besides being a giant among the greatest watercolor portraitists, he is truly one of the kindest people I have met in this business, and I have a feeling we will be friends for a long, long time. Mike Bailey....hmmm, what can I say? A brilliantly imaginative artist who doesn't seem to have a clue how asskickin' dangerous he is (or does he?!), and one of the finest writers and educators I've encountered. Reading Mike's blog is like getting a masters in fine art - for free. He's also one of the most hilarious cats ever, and that night in Cabin 3 he had me on the floor gasping for breath. (please don't quote that out of context!) I'm happy he's the new president of the National Watercolor Society; of the two major organizations in this country, NWS is generally the more progressive and they couldn't have invented a better artist to lead the way. The last night the three of us and James Toogood stayed up into the wee hours solving the watercolor problems of the world over a bottle of Glenlivet, courtesy of Ted. Things should start looking up. :)

The Kanuga watercolor workshops would not be possible without the amazing Robbie Laird and her husband Will Rasmussen. How they put all this together and make it so successful year after year (this was the 25th anniversary) is beyond me, but I saw it all happen with my own eyes. Thank you Robbie, it was a marvelous and memorable week!

*Easy trip until I got to Asheville via I-40 West and needed to get on I-26. Detour. That was Slight Hitch #1. On the map I-26 goes south to Hendersonville, but it's actually 26 East. That's Significant Annoyance #2. Weird stuff going on with those two roads, exacerbated by what has to be the worst signage this side of the Khyber Pass. Headache #3. Two wrong turns taking me about 10 miles out of my way, and an elaborate set of defective directions from Asheville "native." Cussin' Like Stable Boy #4. Look at watch, realize I'm missing instructors' Saturday night dinner. Punch The Dashboard #5. Then....the sign. I mean the sign:

"Future I-26"

What???? Yes, I was driving on Future I-26. I had catapulted out of our space-time continuum and was on a highway system that exists only in crystal balls and the perverse fantasies of the North Carolina DOT. I needed I-26 Of The Present, and would have considered I-26 Of The Past a bargain. I'd tell you more about the Future, but I'd hate to ruin it for you - drive to Hendersonville yourself....go on, I dare ya.