Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Well I never

 When I was a kid, I would show my grandma surreal cartoons that amused me, or read out bits of The Goon Show Scripts, or require her to watch the telly, poker-faced and mystified, while my sister and I rolled helpless on the floor in front of Monty Python’s Flying Circus. ‘Well,’ she’d say, attempting to respond appropriately, ‘makes you wonder who thinks it all up, dun’t it?’ I am so glad that I never said ‘well, actually it isn’t a matter of who thinks it all up, so much as of what thought-processes one might engage in, what associations of images, if you like, one might pursue, consciously or unconsciously, in order to ‘think it all up ‘, as you put it. Yeah?’

She was right, though, as on so many occasions when I refused to give her the credit. I mean, who does come up with such ingenious ideas as mayonnaise and coffee, for example? There must have been a train of logic, so how did it go? Mayonnaise was most probably an accidental discovery, but if you dropped your shopping on the floor and smashed six eggs and a bottle of olive oil, would it occur to you to whip the resulting mess up into something to dip radishes into? Same applies to coffee. Did two Ethiopians sitting by a coffee bush muse as follows?

A: You know what?
B: What?
A: See them berries?
B: Yeah. So what?
A: I reckon if we was to roast em, smash em up an boil em, that’d be nice with a digestive biscuit.
A: Fackinelle. Go for it.

Now look at the cartoon I chose for the header: a couple of cats diligently ironing strawberries, bananas and carrots into flat, blowzy objects like vests, stockings and knickers for the obese. Like the lady said, makes you wonder who thinks it all up, dun’t it?


Bo said...

Quite so!

Argentum Vulgaris said...

And who does?

Nice to be back Vilges. Didn't know you were a Goons fan, love them, still quote them.


vilges suola said...

In the case of the cat pic, it is one Kliban, cartoonist, now deceased.

Bluebottle: I ain't going in there, there's a big spider in there.
Eccles: I ain't scared of spiders, let me in.
(Roars, sound of huge fight. Eccles emerges.)
Eccles: Bluebottle, you got to learn to tell the difference between a spider and a lion...

Fionnchú said...

I think of millions of our ancestors over millions of years of evolution, trying this berry to ease their cramps, this infusion to excite their libido, this paste to comfort their headaches. "My brain hurts," conveyed with grunts and fingers and eyes rolling. I think of how many died in agony after such concoctions, and I do wonder how they figured out so many ways to get high, come down, and chill out without FAQ small print on a medicine bottle; oral testimony must have been prodigious, and no wonder the elders were supposedly revered, with lifespans averaging 20 or so!

vilges suola said...

I heard a story about a goatherd who noticed that his flock was unusually lively after chewing coffee berries, so he had a go himself, thus initiating the process that led in due course to the skinny latte and the mocchaccino. No doubt along the way there were plenty of abandoned experiments: it isn't terribly nice made with goat dung or cow's blood, and a less than satisfactory suppository.

Argentum Vulgaris said...

Damn, hit by a great steaming sploonge.

"The Scots are firing porridge at us!"

well done Vilges



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