The League Of Mongrel Messiahs

There are somethings that are missing from yesteryear (which was apparently at some point in the mid-fifties) that this world is in dire need of.

Sense of community (“sure”).

Being able to fix your own car (“uhuh”).

Children playing in the streets (*yawn*).

And the only food that was bad for you was too much for it (“and who really gives a basket of warm, fluffy fucks?”).

Not to mention that there’s no real music anymore…

Perhaps the problem is that these are issues whined by those who came from those times and are now, regrettably, dying to the tune of some K$sha ballad whilst their grandchildren are too fat to get out the door and play in the streets where they will be preyed upon.

What we need are some new things to miss from the past.

Such as Leagues.

Why aren’t there any Leagues anymore?

There used to be Leagues bombarding your front doorstep with still-warm prints of their latest campaigns to do away with this or to bring for the that and many other times simply stating their existence as any good League surely has the right to do.

And I refuse to permit any form of online gaming groups to be classes as a League on the grounds that they are useless (thus far), proffer not even a single leaflet and really are simply not the sought of people you’d want to be stranded with in a dark zombie-strewn forest.

Keyboard skills do not translate well to activities that do not require keyboards.

More activities without keyboards; they’re long missing too. I’m now at the stage at which writing with a pen hurts my hand after only a few sentences and I – being cursed with verbiage – am left feeling overly impassioned by the toll and toil of my inky craft in what amounts to a the longer nouns on my shopping list. I’ve stopped buying croissants as a matter of…it hurting.

Croissants are the food of the typing-types.

And Messiahs. There used to be tonnes, as though it was raining with Messiahs and we were up to our blessed ears and had our holy hands full with the constant barrage of those who had come from as elected by their own relative Almighty and were seeking my salvation and bank account details (plus free cool-aid).

I can cure you.

Especially your sciatica.

Just kick my dog in the face, like I do.

Of course, don’t kick my dog in the face as I’ll consider that an invasion of my personal property (as well as an invasion of my best friend’s face with your foot). And when I say ‘kick’ – I mean: nudge him in the face with your foot whilst he nibbles you. And when I say ‘dog’ – I’m referring to my Lurcher/Greyhound of whom it requires a good deal of height so as to foot-nudge properly; the effect might not be the same on your pug. But kick that too; it’s good for the species (ours).

And the species matters to me, just like it should to a Messiah.

I’m not the Messiah to canine-kind, but they’re welcome in the healing process of your sciatic nerve.

Dogs are another thing that used to be done better.

Mongrels were proper mongrels; full of salty beans and with a hint of wolf and whiff of poodle mixed together into something that wanders down the street with as much swagger as any worldly millionaire that knows that one day its steak and women as an evening’s entertainment – the next its soup for dinner and soup for romance.

The League of Mongrel Messiahs.

I’d take their leaflet.

This might be a little beside the point since you’re not in the room with me but – gosh my typing sounds good today. Although at times it can be a little stalted as I try to remember the spelling of “stalted”, as though it were a pleasing piano melody that contained an unneighbourly and offbeat pause that could ruin the piece altogether.

Perhaps that’s the key to good writing. But how should a scribble sound?

Short sharp dashes aplenty, with many pleasing whooping whirls too; just like a good signature. I’ve always felt that when writing with the passion of really writing, it should be a highly physical and audible thing with just the right amount of shoulder pulse and groove amongst the melody of those nifty little z’s and capital N’s that the young folk and Nazis are so fond of (whilst also including some woo’s for the older pups and owls; for I’ve also always felt that ‘woo’ looks like an owl laying down and imitated).

Hmm.

A tad off topic but somehow more to the point.

How very me.

I imagine the League of Mongrel Messiahs would have their leaflet written only by the most audibly-pleasing of writing techniques.

But which sounds most musical?

Skywriters.

The only form of writing that provides a “whooooosh!” throughout; such an essential aspect that emails and texts insert it onto a sent message just in imitation of those fabulous flying machines.

But all I’ve got is a keyboard.

And a croissant.

And a large dog.

And what more would you expect from my League of Mongrel Messiahs?

Hope?

What could be more hopeful than a chap looking to be your Messiah with croissants and a dog as such vital aspects of his arsenal?

Salvation?

Whilst a good-looking slogan (especially on a sash and even more especially on a slash and keeping the question mark) – I hardly think this is something to be provided by a Messiah. Promised, perhaps, but not provided.

A manner in which to wait until the final finality?

Sure!

I can do that.

It’ll involve sticks and shouting, large amounts of general things, landing hard, smoking a pipe, a large ego with just cause, meadows, fishing via the stabbing method, boulders and some saintliness.

Or just some occasional blog-articles.

Either way…

At least we have some new things to reminisce about now.

Sam

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Male Pattern Baldness, Hunter S Thompson And Shaved Freedom

I’ve long had a reaction to the claims by your typical racist chap that harps on about how black people look like apes.

The problem is that some black people do look like monkeys and apes, but this is in the same sense as the fact that there are people from all races who look like the FA Cup owing to a prominence of ear in the East and West of their head.

And in another similar sense, you then have those white people that look like chimpanzees; like my Northern Irish American-Film Lecturer: Ken Somethingsomething.

All in all, people look like things; it’s a human tradition.

Some look like dolphins, some look like insects; ultimately the fact that you look like our closest relatives throughout the Animal Kingdom (fellow humans aside) is probably a good thing.

This is just a thought I’ve had throughout the years, since meeting Ken.

And it’s not as though Ken wasn’t a handsome chap.

He had a desk-bound ruggedness, a man filled with poetical passion that let itself loose as he lectured the sweet-protestant-Jesus out of me and gave some rather fabulous ticks as he marked.

He was a ultimately an attractive man, if attractive men are you’re thing, and it was just the sheer shape of his face and the recession of his hair into full-blown male pattern baldness that made him appear more monkey-like than your average American-Film lecturer.

Also, for the record, male pattern baldness (MPB) is not a cause for unattractiveness.

Since we’re talking about it, yes, I do have an example.

Hunter S Thompson.

Thompson is an icon, a man who has transcended the mortal world and become a literal folk-legend; one of those historic men of whom there are countless anecdotes of his presence at scenes and his actions that caused scenes.

His works inspired generations, with 40 crucial years of extraordinary output that forged a new genre of literary journalism, and this is his writing alone. His attitude, the demeanour with which he strode the Earth is legendary.

He is amongst those men, such as his hero Hemingway, who made writing one of those very masculine occupations – not a world in which women were not equally capable – but one in which miners and welders and other such grizzled and anti-intellectual stereotypes wouldn’t be able to call them pussies.

Because Hunter S Thompson was not a pussy.

His into-the-fray technique of gonzo journalism evokes those terms that just feel masculine in this context. Much like my favourite Monty Python sketch in which good ‘woody’ words are discussed (not ‘tinny’ – “sorry old horse”).

Journalist.

Author.

Novelist (bit tinny…).

And Hunter changed the world from behind a type-writer and a cattle-prod, dousing the reader in the glory of the righteous crime of ‘not-giving-a-fuck-with-intent’ and wearing long white socks and with male pattern baldness.

And the male pattern baldness is only relevant here by its irrelevance.

Thompson changed the world, and my life, with utter and total freedom and male pattern baldness, and all whilst looking slightly like an aging chimpanzee.

And what I also adore is the fact that he took the helm of his head; echoing the essence of him being Master of his Fate and the Captain of his Soul by shaving his scalp and changing the world.

But still, I catch my Dad eyeing me fondly from the eyebrows-up, missing my hair that was his.

But to his fortune, he doesn’t look like a monkey. Or an ape.

They’re different, you know.

Sam


A Nice Big Nose

I’ve a nice big nose.

It’s useless.

But it’s nice. And big.

It’s quite handy for obscuring either facial cheek from the opposing eye above.

This skill hasn’t really lent itself to the everyday, or even the exceptional life, at this point.

I do use it to turn off light switches when my hands are full.

I’m glad I haven’t seen any of the other apes doing this yet; I guess that what comes from being too stupid to have a big nose. And thumbs.

People can’t tell I’ve a big nose from straight on though; only when I turn, and knock pedestrians over with the nostrils.

My sense of smell is abysmal.

I can only tell if there’s been a gas leak when I hear the sound of the fire-brigade (plus the intense burning sensation that I can’t do much about because my hands are full and I’m not trying to turn on the light with my nose).

My voice isn’t nasal, it’s just a regular, nothing-much-about-me voice.

My nose in profile looks like it should belong to a pickpocketing villain who overhears your plans of escape and warns the dodgy policeman in exchange for some sort of nose-pleasing rub.

My nose looks suspicious, but I can promise you it’s not up to anything at all calculated.

It’s a nice big nose though.

Would I have it removed?

No – unless I could flip it upside down, attach it to my wall and keep two joss sticks in it.

But then I couldn’t smell them…

Could there ever be the chance that an acid attack might genuinely improve my nose?

I can imagine the compliments…

“Well, I can see all his teeth at all times and his eye keep dangling out, but his nose really is much improved in terms of distance to me.”

That’s the thing about my nose – you never quite realise just how close to you it really is.

It’s like rats.

I feel I can’t impress enough upon you how ridiculous the size of my nose is in relation to how bad my sense of smell is.

I have an exceptionally average-sized hanky.

My sneezes are mediocre in volume and spray.

There is nothing large about my nose other than the size of it.

And it is at this point when once comes to realise that some facial components are simply genetic traditions of your family, passed down from large-nosed grandpapa to large-nosed mama, until it lands in your lap and quickly works its way up to the centre of your visage: the bulls-eye of what people look at of you.

My nose looks like an Easter Island head, only – not just the nose – the entire head is the epicentre of my face.

And it inhibits me zero-percent.

I do, however, have the natural benefit of having a big nose, large thick-rimmed glasses and a big moustache; meaning that I can appear perpetually disguised as though I’d just walked out of a joke shop and wished to vanish into the midst of a ‘Generic Disguise Convention’ (filled with burly burglars in delicate dresses and sneaky chaps wearing a particularly suspicious hedge).

Are there any benefits to having a large nose?

Being easily describable in a witness statement.

Were I to commit a crime and the victim get away; you’d find it easy to describe me to the police.

Because I’ve got a nice big nose.

You can even tell when I’m wearing a full face mask because the mask looks like it’s pivoting constantly from a central location.

And it’s not a particularly sturdy nose either. I’ve been cracked upon it multiple times and shriek as nasally as the next chap.

There’s really not much more to it than that.

I’ve a nice big nose.

But then, so does my Mum, and her Dad.

Go figure.

Maybe it’s a gift.

And perhaps it’s a gift because, as I’ve said before, sometimes all you need is something to say.

And with such a large conk as my face possesses, I’ve had something to write about.

I didn’t need to write about it, but I did.

Go figure again.

Sam


28 Going On ‘Missing, Presumed…’

I just spent 4 hours being unmanly.

Manliness is easier when sitting down, but therein lies the flaw of the matter – video games, despite all their sword-flailing/bullet-busting/gore-for-all enthusiasm, are not a manly way to spend ones time.

Stewing up a stench, gaining body fat in every region aside from the virulent thumbs, and alienating myself from my own inner dialogue, is not an effective use of my Monday; nor is it a good reason for all those cavemen predecessors to have procreated and died in a long line of folk known for their good thumb-work all adding up to me; eating more calories than I could possibly spend because I feel like it, with booze before noon, and a disdain for the unfashionable sunlight because it creates glare from my television screen.

Video games are a waste of evolution.

I can think of other species that would have died to have had those thumbs (in many cases – they did die – Dodos with thumbs would’ve vanquished those pirates); and here I am – wasting them like any other comparable metaphor that I can’t think of.

4 hours devoted to pixels is probably a major factor as to why I can’t do the proper word thinking no more.

Nobody looks back from their death-bed and wishes they’d spent more time wasting their life.

Oscar Wilde committed his last words as an epigram, proper sturdy wit that has lasted the ages as a bit of throw-away excuse-me-for-being-so-hopelessly-charming-and-acutely-smashing via the line: “Either that wallpaper goes or I do.” And he did.

Upon my own deathbed, surrounded by the failures of my life – obvious my omission – I shall advice this of the young: “Get ahead in Candy Crush early; it’ll save a lot of living”.
I don’t know why I don’t do things.

It could be the fear of failure. It could be the fear of success.

When I look back on the manner of living by which I have conducted myself, I could cry.

I’ve had a high-flying job, travelled the world, wooed fierce women and defeated great men, I’ve a formidable gang of friends and family that is quite simply better than yours, with a woman by my side whose perfection and reciprocated love for me is unutterable by any common tongue as it seems only constant and fiery devotion to one another will do.

I have a dog.

Fairly charming.

Me – not the dog.

My ancestors will die and leave me enough money that I will never have to work yet I can still envision myself being ignored by the people on the street as I begin to worry about eating that day and having very cold feet.

I was raised with my head in books and only the most-lofty of clouds, my arse in a theatre and my feet on the pitch. I was accused of being able to do anything I wanted in life, and so began a fear of taking those few short steps are all that require me to do so.

I have taken steps; no strides.

I could do anything, and it terrifies me.

Not deserved, what some would have killed for

I need to take no more steps, as I feel only strides will do. That great single stride that begins every great adventure, only it must be one that cannot be stepped back.

I’m not sure if its anxiety or simple stage fright (on that stage that all the world is, and all the people merely players).

Being an egomaniac is a terrible thing when you’re on your own, with nobody to make laugh and only the cold stare of your disappointed self, wondering why you haven’t made it great yet.

This ‘second coming’ wasn’t worth all the hype was it?

Time to be a man about this.

First, a good hardy slap to the right (upper) cheek.

Glasses off.

Ow (Damn I’m good at that).

Second, a promise to be immediately fulfilled.

An article, written post-hence, to be properly proofread and fully uploaded to all available media.

The subject: the greatest aspects of Earth I we need to flaunt to all alien life for two reasons:

1. They are intimidated by the Haka and learn a lesson in fucking off.

2. They hear the immortal tale of the human condition of lucky suffering – ABBA’s Mamma Mia.

3. Well, read the article and you’ll find out.

I have to say, writing is a marvellous thing, as reading is also, and I think you’ll find that together we can get a bit of both jolly well done, eh?

And remember, “do not go gentle into that good night”, but make sure you give the dawn a good kicking too.

With strides only,

Sam


I Want My Dog’s Face. Because Nuzzling Is Tremendous

If you could have one attribute from another species, what would you choose?

And nothing smarmy, like the strength of a bear or the power of flight, something that puts you more into the oddity category, rather than smarmy-superhero. It has to be inconsequential in all manners aside from how it effects your humour.

I’d go with a tail – I think that makes a lot of sense for our species.

Balance is one thing, plus climbing, but mainly I think it’s about our mindset. For one thing, there’d be no more campfire stories, and hence no culture, because before we start to weave a subtle narrative from the holding-end of the marshmallow stick – we’d go: “Oh look, a tail – better go get it.”

I think mainly it’s about company. Try and spend the evening with your hair, or a foot; it’s lonely and only worthwhile if it becomes expensive and weird, but with a tail – that’s a very flirtatious and flicky sofa companion.

More tails please.

What else?

Swivel-ears? Because it’d be cute. An animalistic attribute is only really worth it if people’ll think you’re adorable – like how my wife adores how I smell like a dog stirred with honey.

I’ve a dog, Freddie, and Freddie is my first dog and that’s of great importance to me.

He’s titled: ‘My Dog’, and he responds when called that – partly because of the importance he knows that term denotes, partly because I keep calling him “My Dog”.

And Freddie does something that I couldn’t agree more with.

He nuzzles.

I cannot think of a more total show of affection than shoving your face into something with such emotional ferocity that it’s almost technically ‘eating’.

It’s as though Freddie wishes to become one with my knees, my palms, the top of my head, and I can’t blame him since those are all the most smashing parts of me.
And I’ve done this too, for many years, with my love – Jenny (particularly in the back of the neck as the sun rises).

You’ve probably done it too, when you’ve buried your face into the shoulder of a co-cuddler during a more intense an embrace, and you feel like you just want to be as close as possible that you’re quite prepared to enter their shoulder as a means of feeling better.

I can only recommend it – rub your face into the object of your affection and just see if you don’t feel well expressed.

The only issue is that I’m quite fond of dinner and I cram my face into my bowl of – it doesn’t really matter ‘of what’ – and then live with consequences for the rest of the dinner party.

So if not my dinner, and it not nuzzling on my own behalf, I’ll just take My Dog’s nuzzle when I get home from work.

I’ll take my dog’s face, because he gives it to me.

That’s ‘Brief…Therefore Witty’ enough, I feel.

Ta ta.

Sam


Perpetually IN – Cigarettes and Babies

So if any of you are distinct followers of this blog, you might know that I have a tendency for a smashingly swell idea for a regular series of articles that will blossom my writing career into something beyond the eloquence of a graffiti-less toilet wall…and it lasts one article.

One article, and then the rigour-mortis of arrogance and anxiety kicks in; wherein I’m so gifted a writer that I don’t need to prove it just yet, which is handy because I’m terrified it’d be no good.

I feel this one will last though, largely because it’s an interesting subject to focus on, largelier because I’m willing to devote one summary sentence before calling it a success as a matter of insistence and promptly moving on to insisting furthermore that “largelier” is a word. Of course it is; I’ve used it twice in one sentence alone.

The subject of focus will be perpetual fashion – that which is inherently ‘IN’ and irreversibly hip.

Do you recall the scene in ‘The Social Network’ in which Mark Zuckerburg ponders on how fashion is never finished? I didn’t, until I thought of these following few, bare, barely-articles in which I agree that, certainly, fashion is never finished; but it is for some things.

Like cigarettes and babies.

As Chandler Bing said: “Smoking is COOL!”

And there’s some on-the-nosemanship right there.

Smoking will never be out of fashion.

Whilst there are certainly manners in which smoking is not-cool, of course. Such as a when it’s grubby, withered knuckles and filthy tips shaking and stutteringly willing out some last form of devoted elegance as the rizzla wraps the tobacco and the dry tongue comes trembling out to seal the dirty deal before setting the whole ensemble on fire and then it starts raining. Oh wait – that’s still pretty cool.

Of course, dying of cancer or emphazema is as awful as can be expected; but that’s only related to this. Another article will come regarding whether or not dying of cancer or emphazema is cool (early insight: not cool. Tragically dying of any disease, preventable or not, hasn’t been fashionable since ‘Philadelphia’).

Humphrey Bogart in ‘Casablanca’ said it best as he wordlessly tapped a cigarette from its pack, tapped it again to ensure the tobacco was surely impacted well, placed it between is oft-watched, oft-listened to and thankfully rarely oft-smelt lips, lit the branch (otherwise known as ‘setting it on fire’ – also perpetually IN) and then performed the part of a lifetime; confidence set ablaze by the team-work back-up of tar, smoke and fire.

Very primeval; but I guess that was early film history.

Breathing smoke is inhuman and not possible; so we do it.

The ultimate accompaniment; that branch of flaming danger hanging from the lips like a gunslinger’s piece yet also perched, pinched, with the poise and whatnot-knowhow of a magician taking your attention and sneaking your watch; smoking is cool and I haven’t even begun to discuss how it acts like a phallus and is therefore inherently impressive (early insight once more; erect penises have been fashionable since day dot. Flaccid; well, I’ve got some tales to tell).

Smoking is cool, yes; tragically.

It’s a three-pipe problem Watson!

Yes, the pipe is cooler. Partially because it is a habit that comes with a skill – just trying smoking a pipe without the insight of one who knows better – and mostly because my Grandpa used to smoke one (along with Holmes) and he used to smoke Old Shag.

A class that I miss, especially since my Nana banned in from the house.

Babies, however, are the point of all life in the human sphere (when we get to the nitty-gritty of it). Whereas the self-destructive definition of us as a species that is so self-involved yet also dangerously and adorably curious is a true picture of the folk of Earth; all that ‘human ingenuity that brought fire to the cave and saved the world oh-so coolly’ pales like a haunted and freshly laundered wedding dress in comparison to babies.

Babies were our ‘point’ prior to the species.

They make everything look better, including your outlook on life and especially the photo-plastered inner-wallet of that gruff chap who never says much but turns out to have a baby and is immediately more pleasing. A guy with a cigarette in his wallet doesn’t have the same impact on the public in the lunch line.

Babies are the new and original black.

Give a man a cigarette and he’ll look cool for 84 millimetres, give a man a baby he’ll look cool until he hands it back; which he should do if he’s a genuinely cool guy. The coolest guys will put out his cigarette before receiving the baby.

Put a baby in a suit. It’s cool.

Put a baby in animal furs. It’s cool too.

There’s little a baby can be put in that it doesn’t carry-off tremendously with much aplomb.

What doesn’t a baby look cool in?

Boats.

I’m not certain why, but a baby in a boat does not look cool.

Why don’t’cha just go figure?

I’ve focused on babies looking cool here; but that by no means equates to being ‘fashionable’.

But babies are still eternally fashionable; people just won’t stop with reproductive output.

Then again, it’s not as though babies are original.

That idea’s been had, a fair few millennia ago, and still…see them go – flaunted about and rightfully praised as the greatest accessory known to humankind and the very soul and individual origin of the it too.

Plus babies know all the classics of fashion; gurgling, crawling, toddling and tumbling, dungarees (it takes a man better than me to be able to work well with dungarees outside of a professional capacity) and the ability to simply be watched, nerve-wracking and utterly, utterly affirming of whatever one is currently pondering upon at the time.

Babies are IN.

Article complete. Cigarettes and babies are perpetually IN and I hope this series of articles with continue to be too.

Next time? I’m thinking vaginas and the Irish.

All the best,

Sam

(P.S. An interesting note on to cigarettes and babies as being perpetually IN; they are both enjoyed post-coitus, albeit one 9-months later)


Little White Squares Of Essence

When sitting down to write about Contemporary Art, there are two things to consider of the audience.

1: Prior to the first letter being inked (or in this case – pixelated), the reader will have dug their heels into the ground, before quickly whipping said heels off altogether and preparing to stab those stilettos between the authors eyebrows.

This is true of the coupled viewpoints on the matter, from the admirers of the form, to those who are adverse to it, or rather – in quote form: “How much?”, “Load of bollocks!” And “My two year old could’ve done that!”. (Indeed, then why didn’t your genius little two year old do it then and bring his postnatal worth up into the seven-figure bracket? Two years old and such an under-performing disappointment already…)

2: They’ve already gone.

Contemporary Art is to them confusing, accusatory, kind of funny, exceedingly odd, uncomfortable and alright-I-guess, to which is added the viewpoints of the above category and thereby making their lack of presence on the gallery floor more than understandable.

I’ve been all over the world and have walked into many an art gallery in my few years, so I feel I’ve a good handle on whether or not I’ve got a opinion on the matter.

And I’m pretty sure I’ve got an opinion on the matter.

And I’m about to share it with you.

Any second now.

There’s a great deal of art that floats my boat and splendid. Well done world. Good idea on all that art you did.

And some of the art I like provokes powerful emotions and thoughts within me, and that’s also fairly smashing.

When I take a good long look at the later work of Vincent Van Gogh, I am filled with a very sad understanding of the artist; who and how he was before his thoroughly documented end.

Of course I would, I believe, feel differently (indeed – potentially not feel at all) if I were unaware of the documented (by art historians via pen and Van Gogh himself via thick globules of emotive colour) decline of the artist as a fellow.

If it weren’t for my parents, some minor schooling and a jolly good book or two, I’d think ‘Sunflowers’ was but a painting of sunflowers and that ‘Starry Night’ was a painting of a village with low light pollution.

Had it not been for all that prior knowledge, I’d have no idea about that distinct hue of ‘I-want-to-shoot-myself blue’.

It’s the same with art in a gallery, particularly Contemporary Art.

There are two facets to Contemporary Art, as follows:

1. It looks cool.

Like guns and smoking and smoking guns (and, I don’t know if you can ‘gun smokes’, but if you can, that too).

I saw a piece today that was a wooden mallet, nailed to a wall.

It looked tremendous, suited the wall very nicely, and was unforgivably cool; giving the poor mallet some of that ‘juxtaposition-medicine’. The sort of thing I’d wear on a t-shirt, although preferably inked on – rather than nailed.

Sometimes art can be cool and at other times it can be pretty, like singular strips of highly expensive wallpaper by a renowned wallpaperist.

To bring up Feng Shui (because I feel bringing it up here will really focus the article’s inner energy and help with my flow), I’d say that art can really tie the room together (as per Lebowski’s rug).

Not much to think about, like a simple absurdist joke; the point is in the silliness.

There are worse things to walk past; worse things to ignore.

2. The second facet is that they have a tremendous given explanation typed on that vital little white plaque next to the art work, detailing what you should be understanding and how you should be feeling, all whilst speaking in the definite.

You may have seen the Damien Hirst piece: ‘The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living’. It’s a shark, preserved in formaldehyde, in a tank suspended from a ceiling, whilst you look at it and think about how you cannot really configure death, only ponder about how you can muse upon it.

The use of the shark as an image of death having died, paired with the image of it frozen in time whilst we are not, gets you oh-so thoroughly.

This is an example of a sturdy bit of art, something which stirs you deep down in THERE and gets you whirring away up THERE. Just like ‘Sunflowers’, just like ‘Guernica’.

And a good deal many people know how they feel about it and these other pieces I because it said what to feel, just next to it, on a little white plaque.

That little white square of essence.

A picture paints a thousand words, but I’ve got a thousand and one words and a whole load of capital letters and exclamation marks! See!!?

This is by no means the rule of all Contemporary Art: the nice art made for walking past, the art that looks cool whilst you ignore before wearing it on a t-shirt and the art that is utterly visually moving. But for the rest of Contemporary Art…those little white squares of essence are the only tale teller.

I could say that they go hand in hand, and that one cannot live without the other, like conjoined twins sharing the heart, but although I tried understanding some of the lesser communicable pieces of Contemporary Art prior to reading the plaque beside it…I think I preferred just reading the plaque.

The thousand-word-worthy image to accompany that plaque; I can conjure that on my own in my head.

Because that’s what words cause us to do.

The writer does the hard work for these guys and gals, so I’ll keep on reading, but I want the author of those little white squares of essence to get some credit.

Perhaps the main plaque could come with another, minor, plaque, detailing the intents of the main plaque’s author and listing his or her’s previous work.

Or maybe they could really broaden the genre, and squeeze some Romance, perhaps a little Sci-Fi, maybe even a good dose of innuendo (and out-your-endo).

Either way, all I’m really trying to say is that I went to an art gallery today and I emerged opinionated.

Objective complete.

‘Guernica’ is heart-wrenching, ‘Sunflowers’ are heartening and the little white squares of essence are at times just as informative and emotive as the art whose meaning they attempt to convey.

Here’s to Pablo, here’s to Vincent and here’s to the authors of our art.

In related otherness, sunflowers are my favourite flower; I’ll tell you why soon.

Sam