Monday, December 30, 2013

painter's dilemmas ....

sitting in "the studio", the british film institute's tiniest cinema in the south bank complex, and waiting to watch an old black and white fillum ... as the auditorium lights grow dim, so the empty screen is underlit with some lights that are more orange than an actual orange, you might reasonably call the colour ABSOLUTE ORANGE, and the rectangle throbs in a way that might have made mark rothko take his life a lot sooner

and then in a few seconds, just as the fillum is about to begin, but before the lights are dimmed, a few stragglers arrive late and occupy the front rows

statistically improbable as this may seem, three of the twelve have ginger hair, though shades and textures vary ... and so one is immediately confronted with a painter's conundrum ... can you really afford that much cadmium ?

to make matters worse, when we get home, the loved one sits in front of our black christmas tree with it's tiny purple lights, and she is wearing a purple top and purple nail varnish

it's easy when you know how ( part 999 ) ... although barenboim sometimes looks as if he still can't quite believe the written perfection of the sweetest parts of beethoven's fourth piano concerto

Saturday, December 28, 2013


in the sunlit "bare ruined choir" of the sycamore tree outside the kitchen window at mid-day ...

1.  four fluffy squirrels chasing one another in the "heart" of the tree

2.  five velvety jackdaws having a quiet chat whilst they explore the topmost branches

3.  four resting parakeets, brilliant as jewels, quietly contemplating the prospect of their journey north to the thames

Sunday, December 22, 2013

lolita sevilla RIP

despite every intention of getting up early, the loved one had to wake me, shake me from a complicated dream about being late ...

... much too complicated to explain such a dream here, multiple levels of visual metaphors, mistaken and transformed identities, metamorphoses, changing agendas not just hidden but well and almost truly buried, etc, etc ...

i rushed off to the flaming 14 bus at flipping quarter to seven instead of farting quarter to six ... and blinking well forgot the absolutely bloomin' necessary bleedin' tripod

so here are some sub-standard hand-held pics of fortnum and mason's windows, somewhat lacking in designer's wit or exuberance compared with previous years, i'm sorry to say

Friday, December 20, 2013

the white sheep of the family ...

touch screen calligraphy

on the bus, going home, a lady from the orient brushed her forefinger across the screen of her phone and a character of her native script appeared, in bright red on a white page, as if painted by a skilled calligrapher

she sent it, and it was replaced a few seconds later by the reply

it looked as if their way of communicating is a lot easier than typing

she might have been using this app ...

i got home and googled "ideograms and pictograms"

the surprise was that i knew next to nothing of heterograms and logograms, etc, etc

Saturday, December 14, 2013

A little less conversation ...

At Casa Yustas, a wonderful hat shop in Madrid's Plaza Mayor, the languorous young Spanish woman ...

... not unlike the young lolita sevilla ...

... who couldn’t find a cap that was large enough for me ... ( “Mas grande ! Mas Alto !” I begged her in badly broken Spanish) ... was joined behind the counter by her boss … a young Chinaman !

He said, “I’m sorry I don’t speak very much English ! Can you speak Chinese ?”

Placing the tip of my middle finger between my eyebrows and tapping gently, I said, “No, but I can think Chinese !”

Thursday, December 12, 2013

the spanish lady at the barajas airport check-in desk said "do you know your flight has been cancelled ?"

i pretended to be nonchalant instead of bilious

and then she said,

"another aircraft that should have departed an hour ago is still at the gate !"

all well and good ! however, landing at heathrow a little earlier than i had expected, there was nowhere for our plane to park

and eventually the two hundred and something passengers found ourselves in the bowels of the earth, waiting helplessly for a transit train that never arrived, even though the automatic announcer told us thirty times it would be along in just one minute,

so we walked what felt like a mile through an even deeper tunnel which has been started for such contingencies, but not completed ... it was effectively a mile-long building site with bare cement floors, machinery and equipment everywhere, and lifts at the far end that only worked intermittently

having already walked about ten miles around madrid in the morning, i was frazzled

and after two hours sleep, followed by yet another twelve hour working day, i still am !

domes ... in madrid and in the alcarria