Friday, April 29, 2011

Alternate Fairy Tale Version

Are Weddings Obsolete? Weddings are, contrary to common misconceptions, for men. To be blunt,
women, generally speaking, know who the fathers of their children are.
Men, have our word for who the father is. Now is not the place to
explain why our word may not be enough to give men confidence about
the paternity of their offspring. But weddings function to maintain
faith in lineage. We have weddings for the same sentimental reasons
that tomcats kill kittens. A far more ancient motivation than any
individual could muster is at play here. And is it not lovely how life
whirls us around to the point that most people think weddings are for
the bride. Not really though. Now that we have DNA testing, perhaps we
won't need a ceremony, at which (crucially) guests attend, and vows
are repeated, vows about fidellity and so on. I guess the real
question is, is wedding cake obsolete? That idea, surely, is outrageous.

The Royal Wave

Jan Cox drew our attention to that "royal wave." Stalin, Idi Amin, and
of course royalty all over, have a distinctive hand wave in their
relating to crowds. The wave is both acknowledging and distancing. I
am not quoting Jan here, I don't recall his commentary. But once you
start looking for the royal wave it is interesting and standard. There
is something bloodchilling about it's robotic self-satisfaction. The
royal wave views with satisfaction the herd's need for a leader.
And this morning at Britain's Buckingham Palace balcony, there was one
perfect royal wave---the youngest flower girl. Three years old, a
woman, and she had it perfectly. Surely it will show up in some video.
Kate doesn't quite have it yet, she wiggles her fingers too much.
William's wave also is a bit personal. That child's wave though---she
got it.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Is monarchy Life's experiment with ordinary objectivity

Simon Schama is one of the leading historians in the world, and one I read with enthusiasm. He is a famous guy. He recently spoke in a televised interview (Charley Rose) about the shallowness of the British monarchy. Schama told a story about a luncheon he attended with "just a few other guests" and the husband of the Queen. Prince Philip at this luncheon looked at Schama and said, "You're a writer?" Schama did not need to elaborate on how such phrasing reflected the speaker's bored disdain and ultimate ignorance, masked as polite sociability.

This instance of British boorishness, which Prince Philip instantiates, is actually a shining example of how a more awakened man, to use the phrase Gurdjieff and Jan Cox, made familiar, would treat his own mechanical, that is, verbal, views.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Feathers of Tomorrow

No doubt every person on the planet would watch the upcoming monarchy event, the wedding, if they understood one thing. Those hats---represent an inarticulate faith--a  belief in the possibility of freedom, of romance, of success in human struggle. And such beliefs are surely true in some universe. The hats, which is what we shall see the most of on the telly, are the tendrils of a cosmos designed by human mentation. You see, weddings are for men. Women know how silly men's ideas are, about causation. But for one day, women pretend to go along. Those hats are the belief that a grain of sand can by itself, compose a beach. And I myself, toss MY hat in the air at least once every thirty years at the cuteness of such concepts.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The Ordinary Is In the Details

Jan Cox, in one of his wonderful cartoons, drew a chicken. One of his students said, doesn't that chicken need feathers? or maybe the student said, more feathers? Jan said something to the effect--the details are where imagination is. 

Monday, April 25, 2011

In Praise of Confetti, part conclusion

My last post, In Praise of Confetti, was restated in an article in The Telegraph newspaper. Huh, I am supposed to be saying stuff that is new, not something you can read in a major newspaper. Oh well, live and live.