Wednesday, March 11, 2015

The Smartest Man in the World reads Hugh Pugh aloud on his Podcast

A couple of Thursdays back on a late February evening my devoted, tolerant husband Frank accompanied me to one of my many fetishized podcast live events at Helium Comedy Club in Philly. This one, "The Smartest Man in the World" is the podcast presented by comedian and raconteur par excellence, Greg Proops. 

As we are almost exact contemporaries, Proops being just a couple years younger than yours truly, I find most of his material completely relatable. Lots of current events and commentary along with his insights relying on his breadth of knowledge of literature, history, music, sports and visual art. And he's funny, of course.

Here's the link to his site, which includes the link to the podcast we attended:

And an exact link to the show in particular, which was entitled "Flyers" (a nod also to Philly and our local hockey team):

Check out this cool episode: 

All this to get to the point as it relates to the Lover's Knot:  

Fans of Greg's podcasts know that before every show he literally walks through the audience and shakes every person's hand or sometimes, as was the case at the Bellhouse in Brooklyn last year, he greets everyone at the door as they enter!

Many people take this opportunity to grace Greg with personal gifts of art, music, books, sports memorabilia, or even "substances", so to speak. Thus, I brought along the small piece of stationery I designed featuring the Lover's Knot artwork and some of the extracted poetry to give Greg that evening. 

To my great pleasure, he read the first few lines of Hugh Pugh's Lover's Knot aloud to the live audience at the beginning of the show (when he acknowledges these gifts from his adoring fans) and it can be heard on the recorded podcast at about minute 6:10 in. 

So, a small thrill, to have one of my favorite entertainers speak the words to his listening audience that Hugh recorded with quill and ink for posterity in December of 1801.

I'm looking forward to the publication this Spring of Greg's first book: The Smartest Book in the World. (Of course!)

Monday, June 11, 2012

The Retronaut

The True Lover's Knot became a part of a virtual time capsule at "The Retronaut" in March of this year:

It was very exciting to once again give this precious artifact another unique and ultimately useful place in the minutiae of American Folk Art History. I've been remiss in not posting the link sooner and wish to thank Chris Wild, The Retronaut, for including it in his vast and fascinating archive. As the subhead of his masthead states:

"The Past is a Foreign Country. This is Your Passport."

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Another decade older and still charming!

This fine example of
calligraphic American folk art
turns 210 years old Friday, December 9th!

This Ring is round And hath no end…

The True Lover's Knot "turns" 210 years old this Friday, December 9th. Hugh Pugh, the pen-artist, signed and dated the artifact: Bedford County Decem'r 9th 1801.

"This Ring is round
And hath no end
So is my Love
To thee my Friend
Mary Fisher"

(Verse appears within the left circle of the labyrinth.)

"Be thankful. Be humble. Seek Mercy." I have utilized excerpts from Hugh Pugh's letters home to his children in Radnor, Pennsylvania written in 1803 and 1807, to create a set of three new postcards highlighting his thoughtful, anguished at times, missives to the family he left behind in Delaware County. They are printed on 5" x 7" card stock with rounded corners and I paired them with "hipstamatic" images I took this fall where I work part time at Cedar Run Wildlife Refuge in Medford, New Jersey.

Somehow the trees, with their fragile, close-to-falling leaves represented, in my mind, Hugh's separation from his own offspring. A little poetic license on my part, I admit, but when I think of Hugh alone, and obviously lonely, from the tone of those letters I continue to wish I could find out what became of him ultimately. Still no luck finding his last resting place, but I've put some of the research on hold in any case. Hoping that with all the new ancestry resources out there, eventually I will be able to solve the mystery of his last home on this mortal coil.

Monday, November 22, 2010


Lover's Knot Stationery

The Lover's Knot has proved so inspirational to me, that I designed and had printed blank notecards featuring Hugh Pugh's unique gift to posterity here:

Letters of Note Blog Entry for Monday, 11.22.10

I heard about this interesting blog out of Manchester, England, called Letters of Note last week, so I took the initiative to write to the author regarding the True Lover's Knot and he was so intrigued that he posted it to the site today, following our correspondence over the weekend. The Letters of Note Blog was listed in GQ magazine as #65 in their list of the "100 BEST THINGS IN THE WORLD RIGHT NOW".

Description of the site: "Letters of Note is an attempt to gather and sort fascinating letters, postcards, telegrams, faxes, and memos. Scans/photos where possible. Fakes will be sneered at. Updated every weekday. Edited by Shaun Usher."
The write-up Shaun posted about the Lover's Knot is concise and the blog in and of itself is quite interesting and well thought out otherwise. To see the the post, dated November 22nd, look here!

(If it's past the post day, you may have to look in the archive.)