I am Chris Purdie is a performance art piece involving thirty-five performers playing the role of visual artist Chris Purdie. The cast wears the "Chris Purdie uniform" and performs the role as they interact with patrons attending the artist's reception. For the duration of the exhibition, there will be at least one "Chris Purdie" in the gallery during their hours.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Troy Tuesday

On Tuesday it was Iliad night, and a chance to Purdify the HB Double-Toothpicks. Because of a series of unfortunate inconveniences, I was unable to get to the library until 9:45 pm, but I accoutered myself in Chrisgear and went to get my copy of the Iliad. It was a very warm and lovely evening, and I was the most heavily dressed out of everyone I saw.

When I went to the computers to find where my copy (of the 92 in the library) would be, I found every computer was occupied by pretty people--apparently it was a date-night of sorts. I received a numbered of disdainful power-ignores (you know, when people go out of their way to ensure you know they are ignoring you), a couple sniggers, and a few down-the-nose glances. I went up to one computer with the intent of standing awkwardly close until the user left, but they noticed my purposeful approach, signed off, and let me take it--all without looking at me directly.

The Iliad I was looking for was in the Juvenile section, and I had a considerable amount of trouble finding it. Fortunately, there was an obvious Jock who sniggered (I don't know exactly what a "snigger" is, but both times it happened, the sound was similar and mildly spurnful) and gave me a slightly contemptuous sneer. So, of course, each time I failed to find the call number of my book, I just happened to walk all the way to the end of that particular row, pass just close enough to Mr. Jock (giving him a helpfully conciliatory grin) to make him uncomfortable, and cruise through the stacks for another attempt. On the fourth try I found my book.

When I checked out, the check-out-helper-lady smiled, was very kind, and completely separated herself from the sallow-minded people who had ignored me earlier. I do not know how many other Chris-copies she had helped during the day, but she took me completely in stride.

I do not know if the other people ignored me because I did not look like I was ready for a date, or if it was because my attire was entirely inappropriate, or maybe it was because everyone except the actual librarian was conceited and self-absorbed and wanted nothing to do with a slightly awkward-looking library patron. Whatever it was, I found myself liking librarians.

1 comment:

Chris Purdie said...

I love these posts! keep up the good work. I am happy you are enjoying your experiences as "Chris."