A black and white photo of me smoking a cigarette in a room with two other people in the background

It was a very good year

Location: Marlborough Street, Boston. At a party in the apartment of Becky Wheeler and Barbara Witte, recent Wheaton graduates. Also attending; Lexington High School friends, also recent college graduates: Alan Engborg (Brandeis), Selden Loring (Northeastern), Tom Hayden (Harvard), and Charlie Pierce (Harvard). Charlie took the original photograph which I was not aware of until Selden sent it to me thirty-five years later.

When: Winter of 1959-60. In June ’59 I had graduated from RISD with a B.F.A. in Painting.

Employment: Mass. General Hospital, Maintenance Department. 5PM to 11PM, Monday thru Friday, mopping floors in the O.R of the White Building with Wally, an older black fellow. (most of maintenance crew was black…second jobs).

Salary: $33.00 a week, after withholding tax.

Home: A rented room on Beacon Hill at 77 Revere Street, just up the hill from MGH. $14.00 a week. (note: No phone. No radio. But I read a lot of Dostoevsky)

Food: Breakfast and supper was at the Riverside Cafeteria on Charles Street. $1.00 each. Lunch: a Twinky and a small carton of milk from the corner store on the next block.

Art: I made twelve paintings and two hundred drawings. After a while I became represented by the Nexus Gallery on Charles Street. Income from art was about $1,000.00.

April Fool’s Day: I received a letter from Cornell University stating that I was accepted into the Graduate School on a full Cornell Fellowship toward the M.F.A. in Painting…..everything paid for, plus a $2,000.00 stipend to live on. In the second year I got a similar Woodrow Wilson Fellowship to complete my freedom to paint there. My rented room in Ithaca was $10.00 a week.