Wednesday, March 20, 2013

It's an Art and AARO week

This is a busy, busy week for AARO-related activities and last weekend was devoted to art.
A bit of the room at the meetup
Monday, we had the now regular, monthly evening "meetup" meeting at Joe Allen at Les Halles, here in Paris (a good place for such meetings). This month, instead of just a social, no agenda, get-together for a drink, we decided to have our Overseas Americans Week recap. Last year, that was a meeting at the Mona Bismarck address, really for members and those in the know, only. This year, we decided to use the open, anyone-can-come, no-meeting-fee format. Only four of us had gone to DC as a delegation this year, so we didn't need a lot of time to recap. Tim and I, the newbies, gave our impressions of going to the Hill. Tim remembered how friendly everyone was in the different offices, how they have to sit through presentations such as ours all day and still be friendly. I gave a brief summary of what is in HR12, the Voter Empowerment Act, for us overseas Americans. In short, go to Title IX. There is now a sister bill in the Senate. In spite of its 200 pages, we hope it gets passed. Some of the points raised in my meeting with the Philadelphia Board of Elections are dealt with, such as the requirement to accept our overseas ballot requests before 45 days before the election and to accept a request for all elections in the year to be honored. This is something they adamantly didn't like in Philadelphia; they told me they really wanted us to send our requests in no sooner than 7 weeks before an election and for each election. It also deals with the states' obligations to send out the ballots 45 days before the election and to report on success or failure to do so, and to be able to use express delivery to send out ballots as the election gets closer and for voters to return ballots by express delivery -- thus taking away the postal services monopoly. Lucy spoke to the aide in Representative Lewis's office who was most involved with this legislation when we were in DC and she was very impressed by the aide. John gave a summary of the residence-based taxation proposal that we support. Lucy encouraged all of us to become delegates in our own fashion by writing and phoning our representative's offices and establishing good connections with their aides and visiting them when in Washington. It was a well-attended meeting, but not a packed house. A group of us stayed on for dinner, so I didn't get home until very late.
Tuesday was our monthly board meeting.
This evening is the second tax meeting, called tax seminar 202. This meeting is going to be packed. I printed out 70 attendee stickers! John will be heading this meeting and, from what I understand, will be covering FATCA as well as tax issues.
This is my exercise on perspective
using primary (red) + binary (green)
 Over the weekend, I attended another "color workshop" at La Charpente. It didn't seem as well organized as the first one. I was rather lost in the instructions and had to start over a few of the exercises, and I was not the only one who was so confused. But I think I do understand how to work with colors better and create harmony rather than clashes.
Aude did a more complete job, orange and blue
It's tiring to do all those strips, mixing the colors, from saturated to grayed, to adding white, or later, black. My back is still killing me.
I haven't done any work on the negatives this week, but I have shared the black and white photos from the late 60s with the interested parties. Ken (Living the Life in Saint-Aignan) came out with a delightful nostalgia piece, using the photos. And via the web, I found the son of friends from those days and phoned his office and left a message asking his parents to get in touch and they did that yesterday. I'm kind of looking forward to renewing contact with them after so many years. They were really good friends and I'm not quite sure how we just dropped from each other's radar.
Now, off to that AARO tax meeting... and painting, tomorrow.

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