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New York

Why I Write "Artist" On My Taxes
by Andy Ritchie

When the IRS yearly barks Occupation:

Vacancy domes my bubble eyes.

I think of the three semi-regular and semi-semi jobs I tend.

The tightrope that occasionally slips slack.

Only one word can contract

My fractious fractal path.

I think of the one gig I did:

Paid in wine was my flint and steel.

I think about the applications I've sent.

A day late. A day early.

The wrong day.

This young year: F-f-five?

(I save 'em all, with their slight variations, as if my refined, singular expertise on a single, saleable subject will ever pursue the same job description twice.)

I count again, flit, and fret.

How many are floating? Flaming?

Replies? Not even snake eyes.

I think about the applications I have yet to render.

The browser tabs with Craiglslist ads.

The saved drafts in Thunderbird.

I think My resume is sweet, dude! PDF and e'ythang. Muh'fuckas can't jock me! Good stuff.

I've hokey-pokeyed my extreme, my moderate, my banal personality parts

In iterations.

My The Man-pandering.

I think of how I write about other artists, displacing the little time I have to create


I'm not jealous of the attention others receive from me.

That would be ironic, maybe, or maybe there's no word for that.

I think I don't want anyone to write about me


An interview would be venting by the venti.

A review of my raw dough?

Not 'nough and no.

A general interest piece? Just compile my Twitter feed.

Compile me, ply me,

Occupy me?

But always, I'm already always occupied.

And I write Artist as my occupation.

--Andy Ritchie, artist and writer living in Oakland

Posted by Andy Ritchie on 4/27/10

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