Archives for posts with tag: business

chocolate dipped strawberries
by J.K. Shawhan

My boyfriend calls me Strawberry
because of the freckles
under my eyes, because
my fingers go knuckle-deep
in sweets, dipping
grocery-store bought fruit
in a vat of chocolate,

because customers complain to me
while nabbing wallets out
of Prada & Vera purses
that $2.95 is ex-PENSIVE—
businessmen in black suits
stare through my stained,
holey apron—Don’t
you have a discount,
for half a dozen?—

No, because the store owner
is broke, & all her money
is in caramel & candy,
& because she can’t afford
a Saturday off & her daughter
has to work here
& her daughter’s daughter has
to work here, dipping
out-of-season fruit
into a vat of chocolate,

getting smudges on elbows
that match the freckles
under her eyes, because
her income & house & college
tuition relies on several
pieces of candy—

or maybe my boyfriend calls me Strawberry
for none of these reasons;
he just likes the taste
of them for breakfast, too.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: “Strawberry” is about my experience working at my grandmother’s chocolate store. The poem is a part of a collection I began writing recently about the store and what it is like to work with three generations of family. My hope is that this collection will go alongside another collection I am working on about art and travel, and create one large collection about life, relationships, and finding yourself.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: J.K. Shawhan studied business and writing at Illinois Central College and Bradley University. While attending Bradley University, Shawhan won Co-Third Place for the Chester Sipple Poetry Award for a collection of five poems, and she began working on a collection of poems about other art forms. Her work has appeared in Bradley University’s Broadside: Writers and Artists, in the University of California, Riverside’s Mosaic Art & Literary Journal, and in the September 2015 issue of Wordgathering. Shawhan also founded the Little Laureates Writing Club at Illinois Central College and worked as a Cashier/Assistant Manager/Marketing Manager of a family-owned candy store for most of her life.


As mentioned in our August 31st post, the Campbell’s Tomato Soup cans with Warhol-inspired labels are available starting today at Target (yes, the “discount” store). Of those pictured in the photo above, I like the blue and green one best. Target will offer a limited edition of one million cans at 75 cents each.

Not to spoil the party (so I won’t talk about it here), but  readers may wish to check out for a discussion of the ingredients in Campbell’s Tomato Soup. (Anyway, if I buy a Warhol-inspired can of soup from Target, I don’t intend to open it!)


Since we’re discussing Warhol and soup, this post includes another entry in The Cecilia Prize, the contest that honors the good intentions of Cecilia Gimenez — the parishioner from Borja, Spain, who picked up a paint brush and tried (that’s the operative word) to restore “Ecce Homo,” a flaking fresco of Christ on the wall of her church. This Warhol-inspired entry, Ecce Soup, was created by Twitter @ewajoan.


Most Americans will spend what many consider the last weekend of summer going to the beach or pool, having backyard barbecues, enjoying long bike rides, or getting the kids ready for school. But for art lovers, there is only one place to be this Labor Day weekend — your local Target store.

That’s right, folks, Tar-zhay! And why would an art aficionado spend the last precious days of summer vacation or last long weekend until Thanksgiving walking the endless aisles of a discount retailer? The answer: Warholia! Yes, exclusively at Target, starting September 2, 2012, you can purchase your very own “limited-edition line of Warhol-themed condensed tomato soup cans,” to quote from a recent L.A. Times article by David Ng.

Priced at 75 cents each, the cans commemorate the 50th anniversary of Andy Warhol‘s creation — yes it’s been that long (in 1962, the Ferus Gallery in Los Angeles first exhibited Warhol Campbell’s Soup can paintings).

According to an official Campbell’s Soup spokesperson (how would you like that job?), a portion of the proceeds will benefit the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts.