In December of 1997 I started working at a company called ATI Systems in Tel Aviv which was essentially the Israeli branch office for the Japanese trading house Tomen Corporation. I was 24. I walked there everyday from my apartment on Epstein Street near Ibn Gvirol through Kikar HaMedina and all of the Gucci and Prada stores, past the Tel Aviv museum of Art to Kaplan where I sat for 8 hours everyday in a basement office next to Berlitz and across from a licensed Apple retailer and tech support store.
I hated that job. I only took it because the first job I took in Tel Aviv working for a psychologically unstable American woman promoting green building materials imploded after three months and the second job as a buyer for an Israeli tile company sucked the soul out of me and I quit after three days. I was running out of money and, as you might expect, living in Tel Aviv without money is depressing.
So I took this random job. The two men I worked with treated me like their little geisha. Something cute to look at and yell at, apropos all of the stories of harassment in the media these days. There was another man, Mr. Shabuya, from Tokyo, who sat in his office and did nothing all day, as far as I could tell. I was there a year when I told them I was taking my three weeks vacation to go to Turkey with my boyfriend. Then they fired me.
Anyway, while I was working there I befriended some of the techies from the Apple store across the hall. They had these amazing posters from the 1997 Think Different campaign and I'd had my eye on the Picasso one. The day I was fired I went to say goodbye to those guys and they rolled it up for me as a parting gift.
Over the last twenty years it has spent much time hanging in various apartments and much time rolled up in a tube in the attic so as not to scare the children. But I found it the other day and decided it was time to hang it once more with the hope that it will indeed scare the children so they will bother me less in my studio. Now every morning Pablo and I have a heart to heart, corazon a corazon. I tell him my creative hopes and fears and he keeps his big misogynist mouth shut and just looks right at me with his big genius eyes as if to say, You got this cha cha. Bring it.