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Welcome to the world of the Vincent D'Onofrio obsessed - and a bit of real life thrown in.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

The Sleeping Beauty

Dandy was deeply asleep (as usual) and purring very loudly (as usual) so I decided to capture it on film. You can't hear the purr as loudly as I had anticipated to start with, but when I dared to wake him, he gave it his all. For about two seconds. Then the effort made him fall right back to sleep again.


This is not a complete album, but nevertheless there is a great selection of pictures to be had.

Meanwhile, Judith has told me that my blog is loading slowly. I changed the archiving to daily in case it was the large number of pictures making it slow, but apparently this has not helped. Is anyone else having a problem, and can anyone suggest a solution?

Friday, October 30, 2009

My Knee

I am REALLY pissed off. Last week I warned my neighbour to be careful of a dangerous stretch of pavement (sidewalk) on the way from our houses to the shops. Today I went flying when my foot twisted in the dip.

The lump on my knee is like one of those eggs you usually get on a bumped head.

I will sue.

Posthumous Collection

Sad though this story is for the lonely women taken in by the perp, it has some wonderful Bobby moments.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Mystery Solved?

There has emerged a partial solution to the mystery phone call problem.

In the summer, when my friend was visiting, she'd left her mobile phone at work, and needed to call her husband. She used my home phone, but didn't get an answer, so she left a message. So that's how his phone "knows" my number.

But that was more than two months ago. Why it should suddenly spontaneously get called by his recall button after all this time remains unexplained, especially on the eve of our next reunion.

Tate Britain

Until the conversion of Bankside Power Station a few years ago into Tate Modern, this was THE Tate Gallery in London (there are some regional ones, too). It was the brainchild of a Victorian philanthropist, Sir Henry Tate.

The name Tate was familiar to generations of Britons because Tate and Lyle was the most common brand of sugar on sale. In other words, the Tate fortune that built and stocked the gallery had its roots in the sugar plantations, and therefore slavery, too, though by the time the gallery was opened in the last years of the 19th century, slavery had been banished from Britain for many decades.

J. M. W. Turner had died in 1856, leaving a huge legacy of his paintings to the National Gallery, which had been founded during his lifetime. His early intentions were to have his works exhibited alongside those of the Masters who had inspired him. In fact, he had produced many of his paintings as direct challenges to the works of artists both living and long dead.

The difficulty was to find somewhere to display them. There has always been supposed to be - but never has been - a dedicated Turner Gallery. Some of the biggest, finest paintings are in the National Gallery, most of the others have been on display at the Tate for decades. More recently there has been an exhibition of others at the Courtauld Gallery in Somerset House, which used to be the records office of births, marriages and deaths.

The Tate has decided to mount an exhibition of a selection of Turner's paintings alongside the pictures - by people like Rubens and Rembrandt - whose art he tried to challenge.

His challenges were usually more than successful. I haven't included paintings by the other artists (it was hard enough to find the relevant Turners on the Internet) but here are a few of the wonderful pieces he painted in response to other pictures he saw and places he visited.

His seascapes - like Peace: Burial at Sea - are in my opinion unrivalled.

His views of Venice are much more atmospheric than
Canaletto's crisp renderings of the same subject.

His classical scenes, like this one of Dido's Carthage,
illustrate Turner's innovative use of colour to express light.

By the end of his long life, this diminutive Cockney artist was creating pictures that were almost completely made up of his representations of light. They are abstract in the extreme. But he remains my favourite artist. You can keep your Constables. Give me a Turner storm at sea any day.

Today my old school friend Jenny (who introduced me to Turner over 40 years ago) went to see the exhibition. It was great, but it was not enough. We had to go upstairs to the Turner Galleries afterwards to get a bigger fix.


I really wanted to slap that self-absorbed, bubble-headed thing. Liked her mother's cat, though.

Those lashes - did you ever see the like?

Couldn't choose between the next two...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The Twilight Zone

When my phone rang about 6pm this evening the man on the other end asked if I'd just phoned him. I said, "I don't know who you are, so no."

Just now (one hour later) it went again. This time it was my friend Jenny. We're meeting for lunch and an exhibition tomorrow, and I thought that was why she'd phoned. But no.

It had been her husband on his mobile. He missed a call and pressed the button to call back - and got me!

I don't have his mobile number. He doesn't have my number on his phone. Even Jenny doesn't have my home number on her phone.

Apparently my number descended out of the ether and placed itself in the "last number called" column.

When Jenny told John we are having lunch tomorrow the synchronicity nearly him freaked out.

Explanations, anyone?

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Just for once the tie's not in the way

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