I’ve been drawing so much more than I have been in the past few months. There is a group on Flickr that I joined, and in that group, artists draw portraits of each other in their respective styles. Just going through all the beautiful and unique portraits has been teaching me so much about rendering the features of the human face. I’ve been developing my own style of drawing faces and found myself using markers more than pens. I’d used my markers for about two years, only equipping them when accentuating small parts of my drawings. Then, when I got on board with the art group, I saw the need to replace my markers promptly.

So today, after postponing the purchase for weeks, I ventured out into the crisp, frosty air of the premature winter. Fully armed in three layers of blouse, sweater, coat, and an extra adjunct that was my scarf, I walked in step to the sound of my music: “Did I go at it wrong? Did I go intentionally to destroy me?” I took the shortcut in front of the local elementary school that led to a good acre of pubs and pig-intestine restaurants. The green tarmac concealed by the yellow gingko biloba leaves, I walked with my eyes on my feet, mesmerized by the vivid golden color.

I crossed the sidewalk, squinting as the wintry gusts blew my hair about my face. I sidestepped the people whose visions were impaired by their mobile phones, tablet computers, and mp3 players. The aesthetically pleasing buildings with services inside to make people more aesthetically pleasing towered around me, and my mind unprofitably filled with ruminations on the practice of going under the knife to enhance one’s visual appeal.

Then I stopped.

A sniffing, red-nosed man in only a mauve windbreaker sat on the sidewalk, an upturned cardboard box in front of him. A thin layer of blue felt covered the top, and scintillating shapes caught my eye. On the side of the box was a piece of A4 paper that blazoned in a lurid azure “Four-Leaf Clovers for Sale. 1000 Won for Your Luck.” The gleaming bits I had seen on the box were an array of four-leaf clovers, laminated and cut accordingly. The man looked up at me as I paused for a split-second in my stride. As a glare from his spectacles blinded me momentarily, I thought of all the things Luck could assist me in.

The instant I would purchase the fortune-bearing leaf, a multimillion lottery ticket would blow into my face. I would choke on a magical piece of lint blowing in the wind, and I would then be bestowed with a transcendental singing voice. A brilliant stuffing recipe for a Thanksgiving roast would simply fall into my head. An inventive plot for a spectacular novel would formulate as I would gaze upon the venation of the charmed clover. An esteemed film director would catch a glimpse of my plain face and think it was bizarre! idiosyncratic! and ask me to star in a new “dramedy.” My blog would suddenly get fifty million hits! My hand would suddenly be gifted with an unparalleled talent to paint rolling landscapes! The cure for cancer would come to my brain! Unite the two Koreas! Achieve world peace! Reverse global warming!

The man looked down and my senses returned as the hallucinogenic glare directed its power elsewhere. Spots appeared in my eyes. Glancing at the four-leaf clovers, the quixotic reveries flashed in all their glory and instantaneously evaporated. I turned. I looked ahead at the bookstore building that looked not unlike a compact disc rack and onward I went. Though with an amulet, successes could perchance be more frequent, I let the one thousand won bills rest in my wallet.

For who requires luck to simply purchase a pen?


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