West Tisbury: Cataract surgery, jazz tribute, art exhibits, and Elder Technology Fair

—MV Times

What a difference a week has made in our weather. Last weekend’s below-zero cold and wind, already an anomaly in this notably mild season, proved itself more so as temperatures returned to the 40s and 50s to which we have become accustomed.

Does anyone self-correct language rules anymore? I hear these things in my head as I write, speak, or listen to others. The one that affects me like fingernails screeching on a blackboard is “me and …” Its use is so rampant that I imagine it will soon appear in style books as an acceptable locution. Another reason to be grateful I am closer to the end of my life than to the beginning of it.

Mike took me off-Island last week for my first cataract surgery. Everyone told me it was a piece of cake. That proved true for the actual surgery. I was well and truly anesthetized, and slept through the whole thing. It was uncomfortable for the first day, but nothing that Tylenol couldn’t relieve. The hardest part is remembering not to bend over, and to administer the endless schedule of eyedrops. There is an adjustment to having one eye with distance vision and one with close up. My reward for clearer vision is that light is blue/white and cold, not the lovely warm gray softness I now realize that I treasure. I hope my paintings won’t be ruined with clarity.

I won’t say I’m looking forward to repeating this on my second eye, but I don’t feel the terrors of seeing a knife hovering over my eye, or going blind. What a fate that would be for an artist. Or for anyone. I am grateful to all of my friends who gave advice and encouragement, to Dr. Hu for his expertise, and especially to Tom, the anesthesiologist, who deadened me to the world.

My husband has been the best nurse, and I thank him for his thoughtful care. Having had so much eye surgery himself, he has anticipated what I might need. He has had to do almost everything all week, since I can’t lift anything heavy, not firewood, grocery bags, not even Nelson, who weighs quite a bit over 10 pounds. I remember Mike joking about not being allowed to pick up the cat. True then and now.

My first real outing was to the library for the Second Sunday Jazz Concert. It was a tribute to the late John Alaimo, who so often played with Jeremy Berlin, Eric Johnson, and Tauras Biskis. I couldn’t miss it. Neither could the roomful of friends and fans of John and his wife, Holly. Many of the compositions had been written or arranged by John, or were among his favorites. It was a great concert.

The setting was an interesting complement to the music. Ed Schulman’s work has a rather energetic quality, mostly abstract figures that seem to be frenetically dancing within their allotted space. Many are small pen and ink pieces that the artist draws with a combination of swirling lines and shapes that really do depict movement, his own descriptive visual language. They will remain on view through February.

A new exhibition, “Love Lives Here,” has opened at Featherstone. The photograph on its website shows a wide range of art and media that fill the large Francine Kelly Gallery. Featherstone is open daily from noon to 4 pm. This show will run through Feb. 26.

I can hardly wait till Saturday, Feb. 18, to attend the Return of Elder Technology Fair at Alex’s Place at the YMCA. All Island elder technophobes are invited to bring their computers, phones, and/or iPads for technowiz teenagers to help with whatever problems we bring. Come between 10 am and noon to learn the secrets of the universe.

If you have any West Tisbury town column suggestions, email Hermine Hull at hermine.hull@gmail.com.