The rest of us serve mainly as props for Pippa as she moves through a life that closely resembles a fluid, on-going performance art installation. She devotes a large proportion of her time and energies to just this sort of work — installations, constructions, depictions, contraptions, elaborations. She approaches the world as one version of a reality on which she might improve with a different, more off-center, more interesting re-presentation. She doesn’t displace, disfigure, or over-write the world, so much as she remixes it with idiosyncratic rhythm and color.
For instance, last night Margaret and I went to a pot luck for Seabury faculty and staff, after which we had considered sneaking upstairs to watch a DVD, cozy in bed. Whilwe were away, our daughter made our bed, prepared sumptuous snacks for each of us which she left on the lap desk that we use to hold up the TiBook (itself currently on leave in Indiana, helping Jane finish her coursework), and then added models of Margaret and me, dressed in our nightwear, with cut-out faces. Walking into your bedroom, flicking on the light, and seeing yourself already in your bed (albeit a flatter, black-and-white yourself) casts a markedly peculiar perspective on personal identity.
She’s master of a small conceptual-art repertory company, in which I’m honored to be a player.