Bicycle chain on radiator
Mixed media, 2009
The artist explores themes of interconnectedness, detachment and warmth.
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Bicycle chain on radiator
Mixed media, 2009
The artist explores themes of interconnectedness, detachment and warmth.
I went to the Apple store in London.
The worship space was brightly lit, and row upon row of devotees stood at wooden benches gazing in adoration at white machines of varying shapes and sizes. A glass staircase lead upwards, where further rows of worshippers were doing much the same as those downstairs. People wearing bright shirts stood behind other desks, and names appeared on large screens. In the upper sanctuary a gathering of the faithful sat on wide comfortable pews and listened to a sermon.
I found the whole experience quite baffling. I could not see any orders of service anywhere, so it was rather difficult to know what I should be doing. Eventually I plucked up the courage to approach a sidesman, who explained what the worshippers were all doing and answered some of my questions about the basic tenets of the faith. He took me over to one of the white machines and explained some of the ways in which I too could become a follower should I choose. There would of course be very real costs involved.
Wary of making a commitment on my first visit I thanked the sideman and explained that I was in a bit of a hurry. To his credit he did not seem to mind.
I left clutching a parish magazine and thinking that returning on another occasion might not be entirely out of the question.
Consider the following seasonal treats:
What do they all have in common? Let me tell you. Sultanas. Or some sort of currant / raisin-type thing.
It seems to me that people who don’t like these sorts of dried fruits are often excluded in our modern-day society, just as they have been for generations. And it happens most of all around the time of major Christian festivals.
Take my wife as an example. She doesn’t like dried fruits, so a packet of hot cross buns takes six days to get through in this household as it is only I who eat them. I only eat one a day you see. I put them in the toaster and then complain that it is difficult to get them out.
Anyway, that’s as far as my argument goes. Feel free to discuss.
PS. Yes, it is the worst blog-post title ever in the history of the Cartoon Blog. It is a cry for help. Most people won’t understand it, but I don’t care. Someone somewhere will enjoy it, and if it makes them happy for three or four seconds it will have been worth it. Anyone who can think of a better raisin / currant / sultana pun can have five points.
Posted by Dave at 8:01 pm on March 25, 2008 and filed under Utter nonsense.
Warning: video contains country music that some viewers may find cheesy.
The song is ‘Mississippi Squirrel Revival’ by Ray Stevens. All credit to the Evangelism UK website who are using it (one assumes) in evangelism training.
I would like to say ‘no comment’ to the rumours that I have two vinyl Ray Stevens records within my shelving.
We went on a splendid ‘roof tour’ at Lincoln Cathedral, which, incidentally, is the answer to yesterday’s little conundrum. This sign, which reads ‘DANGER – DO NOT TOUCH THE ROPES – BELLS UPSET’ is meant to indicate:
The photo is blurred because I did not want to use the flash in case a startled member of the party suddenly grabbed a bell rope in the ensuing confusion, thereby leading to even further upset.
Last week I found myself with nothing to do for an hour whilst in a parish caravan. A clergy friend I was visiting had to lead a group, and so I sat at one end of the parish caravan whilst the group he was leading took place at the other end. Having nothing with me to read I spent an hour reading the Book of Common Prayer, as that was more or less all that was available. It was actually an hour well spent, as I don’t spend an hour reading the Book of Common Prayer (We’ll call it the BCP) very often.
One of the things I pondered during my hour reading the BCP was the ‘Catechism’. The Catechism is a series of basic beliefs that people had to learn before they were confirmed. There are various Catechisms as far as I understand things, but the one from the BCP is on this page on this jolly good site about the BCP.
The instructions given for use of the Catechism are thus:
The Curate of every Parish shall diligently upon Sundays and Holy-days, after the second Lesson at Evening Prayer, openly in the Church instruct and examine so many Children of his Parish sent unto him, as he shall think convenient, in some Part of this Catechism.
And all Fathers, Mothers, Masters, and Dames, shall cause their Children, Servants, and Prentices (which have not learned their Catechism,) to come to the Church at the time appointed, and obediently to hear, and be ordered by the Curate, until such time as they have learned all that is here appointed for them to learn.
So soon as children are come to a competent age, and can say, in their Mother Tongue, the Creed, the Lord’s Prayer, and the Ten Commandments; and also can answer to the other questions of this short Catechism; they shall be brought to the Bishop. And every one shall have a Godfather, or a Godmother, as a witness of their Confirmation.
And whensoever the Bishop shall give knowledge for Children to be brought unto him for their Confirmation, the Curate of every Parish shall either bring, or send in writing, with his hand subscribed thereunto, the names of all such persons within his Parish, as he shall think fit to be presented to the Bishop to be confirmed. And, if the Bishop approve of them, he shall confirm them in manner following.
What a good idea. Why don’t we do this sort of thing these days? Perhaps we do, I don’t know.
It does sound a bit tricky though. I probably wouldn’t be confirmed yet if such standards were insisted upon these days as my memory is flaky. I’d still be diligently going along upon Sundays and Holy-days after the second Lesson at Evening Prayer for instruction by the Curate.
Perhaps a more practical test would be better for those whose memories are not sound. Those who opted for the hands-on test would, on the day of the confirmation, have to demonstrate before the Bishop and the congregation that they could perform an ecclesiastical task. Updating a page on the church website, carrying a candle with due reverence or removing the cling film from a selection of ‘bring and share lunch’ items should do it. The congregation would ‘mark’ each task by cheering or booing. Successful candidates would be confirmed there and then, whilst the failures would have to go away and learn to do something else.
Of course some people are not good at exams, be they academic or practical. Perhaps those individuals should be made to complete some coursework over a period of time. Develop a portfolio demonstrating a range of core competencies.
To be honest I’m just making it up now and talking rubbish.
If you have any better ideas feel free to post them in writing, with your hand subscribed thereunto, in the comments.
Jonny Baker writes about Facebook oppression.
Sorry there hasn’t been much on the blog this week. I’m going through a slight drawing crisis. I need to get back to the days when I just used to draw any old rubbish. It usually turns out better that way than when I become too painstaking in my pencilated* preplanning.
Today I am wavering between answering the 161 e-mails and sorting out the 2 large boxes of probably important (but we don’t really know) paperwork. I start on the one task and then attempt to fool myself into productive procrastination by embarking on the other task without myself noticing. It never works because I can always see through my own cunning plans.
Talking of changing the world, this song always gives me a sense of wellbeing. Warning: the sound is rubbish. The video is good, if repetitive.
Have a great weekend.
*Not a word.
I have had cause to glue several pieces of wood together lately, so I thought I would keep you updated.
The budget dining room chair
This became broken because someone had been leaning back on it in the way that we were told not to do at school. I poured some wood glue into the holes and then put it back together. Unfortunately since my gluing the chair has one leg that is longer than the others so the chair wobbles when you sit on it or when a cat jumps on it. At the moment the short leg has a piece of folded-up newspaper underneath it which means that it is approximately level. As a longer term project I plan to cut a little bit off the other three legs (using my saw). This may need to be repeated so it is likely that the chair will become quite a bit lower than our other chairs. We will mainly use it for sitting at coffee tables or to take the humblest seat like it says in the Bible.
The budget two seater settee
This became broken during a particularly lively game of scrabble. One moment I was thinking of words using seven vowels, the next I was on the floor. I poured some wood glue into the holes and then put it back together. I plan to be a bit calmer when playing scrabble in the future.
The budget Argos lightbox
This became broken because it was not very well made in the first place. I use the lightbox to trace cartoons from one sheet of paper to another or to trace things I cannot draw, like horses. The lightbox had been broken for several months and broke into two pieces every time I picked it up to use it, which was a mild annoyance. I poured some wood glue into the holes and then put it back together. From now on I will be doing more cartoons about horses. Actually I do not think I have ever done a cartoon about horses.
As a creator, it’s tough to have a great inspiration every day. If you add the constraint that the inspiration has to be in a narrow field, you bring down the odds considerably.
[Scott Adams - from today's post on his blog.]
It is quite difficult drawing cartoons about religion all of the time. I am quite often driven to distraction in various ways, the details of which you are mostly spared as there is nothing worse than a blogger going on about how difficult their life is. Which mine is not really, when looked at in the grand scheme of things. Unfortunately it is difficult to look at the grand scheme of things as we do not understand it. Which is where religion comes in, which is why I draw cartoons about it.
Sorry, I decided that today’s post was rubbish once again, so it was struck forth.
1. When a blogger starts to tear paragraphs out of the paper and post them it is a clear sign that they have lost their way, unless of course they did not start out with a clear direction in the first place.
2. When a blogger posts at 23.59 hours it is a sure sign that they have falsified the time so as to give the appearance of daily posting when in fact they have fallen short of their stated ideal.
3. A 23.59 hours posting is also a sign of a lack of inspiration and, in extreme cases, faltering morale.
Posted by Dave at 11:59 pm on July 3, 2007 and filed under Utter nonsense.
Someone called me on my mobile telephone. They were not speaking English and they asked for someone I had not heard of. I told them that I thought that it was likely that they had the wrong number. They did not comprehend and so the conversation continued. Eventually they understood what I was saying, but insisted that they did not have the wrong number, before hanging up.
Perhaps they were right – perhaps it was I who had the wrong number. On a related note: a month or so ago my wife accidentally sent a text message to an old mobile telephone number of mine. The number is defunct, though I still have the old SIM card in my possession. To her surprise someone answered her text, and obviously wanted to know who it was who was doing the texting. It took a few text messages back and forward to sort out the confused situation.
The fact of the matter is that when you buy a mobile phone these days you are probably being given someone elses old number. Conversely when you stop using a telephone number someone else will be given it. There are not enough numbers in the world, so they need to be recycled.
There is a deep and profound message to all of this, but I have not yet thought of it. Oh yes – Make the most of your telephone number while you have it, because one day you might have a different one.
Posted by Dave at 11:01 pm on June 4, 2007 and filed under Utter nonsense.
No-one knows where good ideas come from. You can go back to the place that you had the last idea in the same frame of mind and order the same coffee and the likelihood is that you will just stare out of the window with a blank sheet of paper.
The harder you try to have a good idea the less likely you are to have one. But then again if you stop trying to have an idea then you probably won’t have one either. I find the best approach is somewhere in between. Put in a bit of half-hearted effort every now and then and try to trick your brain into having a good idea when it is not expecting you to.
Of course not-really-that-funny ideas are ten a penny, or you can get a bumper pack for a pound. I have notebooks full of the things.
I try to save my very best ideas and not use them all up at the same time. I draw a cartoon based on my second best idea hoping that the best idea will keep for a rainy day. Unfortunately a lot of ideas dilute over time. Some of the goodness fades in the sunlight. When you write them down in the notebook they are fresh and alive, but when you open up the notebook the following morning they aren’t quite as funny as they first appeared.
Sometimes an idea will come to you at a point at which it is not socially acceptable to write it down. You have the choice of either (a) Committing it to memory knowing that that will probably be the last you hear of it (b) Break the taboo knowing that the idea was worth the cost of being thrown out of the Society for ideas writing at an inappropriate juncture (c) Make some shifty notes under the table cloth.
In the comments section of this post I propose we have an ideas amnesty. You can write ideas here with no fear that anyone will ridicule you. You can ask for ideas, suggest ideas or harvest ideas. They can be about anything – they don’t have to be cartoon ideas. It doesn’t matter how rubbish they are. Of course, some of the worst ideas are also the best ones. It is just that we are looking at them upside down.