Rabbit painting by Cody Bustamante hanging at Scott Paul Winery

Rabbit Receiving his own Information

Rabbit painting by Cody Bustamante hanging at Scott Paul Winery
Rabbit painting by Cody Bustamante hanging at Scott Paul Winery

On a gig for Western Living Magazine, I toured the Willamette Valley recently. Lots of gems to discover there, like Whole Hog Wednesdays at the Dundee Bistro. And of course several hundred small, high-craft wineries that produce the amazing fruity, farmy pinot noirs of the region.

But I particularly enjoyed “meeting” the mascot of the Scott Paul Winery. He’s a rabbit. And the painting of him, which Scott Paul used to inspire the rabbit on their label, is by Oregon artist Cody Bustamante. The painting is called “Rabbit Receiving his own Information”, and it shows the animal with his head cocked to the sky, as if listening to a timely bit of advice.

The story behind the painting is a good one.

Scott Paul is the brainchild of former big-time disc jockey Shadow Stevens, whose real name is Scott Paul Wright. After a career in radio, Wright went to work for Epic Records. The work situation there was reportedly very stressful (maybe in part because Wright was involved in such culturally dubious projects as launching the career of Brittney Spears). In any case, Wright became sick. And around this time, a friend sold him the painting “Rabbit Receiving his own Information”.

The friend also told Wright the story behind the painting. The Rabbit is illustrating a life lesson: that people are occasionally stopped short by illness only to find that the resulting inactivity allows them to really listen for the first time and here their “own information”. From that information, then, can come about great change.

In Wright’s case, the change was a decision to turn away from the corporate music world and start Scott Paul Winery. He and his wife moved to Oregon. On arrival they made a final discovery, closing the loop on this story. They learned that the artist who painted this important work lived in the area.

Rabbit had come home. And so, in effect, had Wright.

Some people might find this whole idea of one’s “own information” as a bit flakey,or new aged. But I find it very appealing and hopeful. And the story of Wright had within it a strange parallel for me. That’s because – having never heard this story previously – I had named the main character of my new novel The Blue Light Project “Rabbit”. And my Rabbit too is touched all at once – while he was suffering from stress related illness, no less – by his “own information”. And in his case, it was also life changing.

Here’s to having the time to here our “own information”.