To Avoid Splitting Infinitives – Boldly!

I think I’ve mentioned that I have this thing about heads.  Puppet heads.  Doll heads.  Vintage bottle stoppers with heads.  I like heads.

I remember very clearly the first time I saw this piece, because I was thunderjabbered and hoovermonkeyed and utterly at a loss for the sorts of words found in dictionoodles.  Smooth, shiny heads!

Barber Shop Quartet Set

Until I stepped closer to the case, I didn’t even realize that they were FUNCTIONAL HEADS, heads that opened and closed bottles of beer and wine.   I knew then that it was fate.

Or that fate is cruel.

Or that I should look at price tags before making fate-based declarations.

My sweet, beautiful, functional heads cost $45 dollars, and realistically, there is just no way to alter a $45 dollar item if you like to get paid in say, standard currency, rather than (I don’t know) fairy kisses and mouse farts.  When I got home, I checked the internet – just in case someone found one of these in her basement and wanted to sell it for 10 cents – but no, the ones I found on eBay cost $45 dollars, too.   I had abandoned at least 97% of my hope by the time I found a set that didn’t cost $45, and when that happened, I did not walk to the register; I ran.

It wasn’t  my intention to alter these guys this week.  This week, I was going to finish up the salt and pepper commissions I talked about last week and work on my Big Lebowski dolls.  Here’s the thing about paint, though – and I seriously forget this part, every time.  Paint is wet.  You can’t paint the shirt onto center of the salt shaker, then pick up the salt shaker at its center and start working on the hair; you have to stop.  To wait.  For the shirt.  To.  Get.  Thoroughly.

And completely.

Dear God.

Will it ever get.


Perhaps you can see now why I block that part out.  It’s annoying.  To avoid madness, I have to find side projects to work on while I’m doing salt and pepper shakers, like  . . . HEADS!

Kirk's First Face Coat

First Coat on Uhura

Painting Their Heads



Only Spock Has a Face

All Four with Hair

First Coat on Base

Before Bar Trek

At this point in the writing, I’ll pause, because at this point in the painting, I paused.  Part of me wanted to scrawl “To Boldly Drink” across the front of the piece, but ummmmmmmmmmmmmm . . . that’s a split infinitive.  *Twitch*   You know.  “To speak” is an infinitive; “to badly speak” is an infinitive with a homewrecker adverb in the middle.  *Twitch, twitch*

In this case, painting the split infinitive onto my piece would be entirely true to the Star Trek franchise, but it would also hurt me more than a Romulan flu.  I used to earn my living circling split infinitives with a red pen.  How could I write “To Boldly Drink”?

At this very moment, I might be sitting at my table still, caught between my love for Star Trek and my love for grammar, if my husband hadn’t walked by and said, “Bar Trek?  Too obvious?”

Oh, how I love  my husband.

Bar Trek First Coat     Final Shot

Ahhhhhh.  Bar Trek.

Making this piece gave me tremendous joy, not only because I love to alter things in nerdy ways, but because I really savored and appreciated the rareness of the experience.  This won’t happen again.  This piece is special in every sense, the only one in the world that is or ever will be.

You know.  Unless you happen to have a vintage BARber Shop Quartet bar set in your basement that you want to sell me for 10 cents.

Until then, this is in my shop on Etsy.

Bar Trek - Side Angle

Complete Set with Functions


Live long, prosper, and for God’s sake, don’t split infinitives.



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