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Three Pleasures

August 17, 2007

The previous post was grumpy. To restore some balance, here are three pleasures from yesterday.

The spirit’s moving in the fishtank. These little beasts are doing a fine job of getting a new living space ready for some fancier fish. Look closely, they’re ghost shrimp.

Pants and Tie at the El Mocambo… It’s funny because the Bowie records that I’m most into at the moment are from the Plastic Soul phase, but this is a type of Spastic Soul — coupled with the best band that Mute Records never signed in 1980, Neue Deutsche Welle funk-brutalism/bruit, performance pop (Mark Colborne is a Hell of a performer, all wired and worrying — Pants and Tie’s New Music Canada page makes mention of a “phallic Diamanda Galas, no less)… Compelling.

pt.jpg pt2.jpgpt3.jpg

Mr Trigg seems to be on fire.

Portugese gents playing bowls, or some combative southern-European variant, in the park outside my home. Here’s an mp3 of what it sounded like, and here’s what it looked like…

7 Comments leave one →
  1. Virginia permalink
    August 17, 2007 4:28 pm

    Ghost Shrimps are the squirrels of the sea and their little hands move at lightning speed collecting nuts (dried fish-y bits). They putter around like miniature vespa scooters.

  2. Heather permalink
    August 17, 2007 4:40 pm

    ROSS! Long before you met me, I had a ghost shrimp! His name was Space Ghost. I loved him and brought him to school in a jar.

  3. August 17, 2007 7:32 pm

    Did he learn anything?

  4. Wayne permalink
    August 17, 2007 8:23 pm

    Hi Ross

    every so often a song comes along that I obsess about unreasonably – Unlace me behind the hedge is the latest – there are others by Momus and Jake Thackray which come to mind – and that’s the best compliment I can think of…

    But what about that image of the riverbed mud? I’m sure there was a scene in one of Ken Russell’s films (maybe Women in Love?) of two drowned lovers that I remember from, what, 30 years ago, that fixates as well. Is there any connection?

    Do let me know


  5. August 18, 2007 4:35 am

    Well, that’s a huge compliment!
    That’s an interesting idea — I hadn’t really thought of that — the kind of things that were in my head at the time were that sinking in mud seems like a terribly Victorian way to die, especially when the death is only suggested / figurative… it was my attempted rural anglicization of the French petite-mort, I suppose. The song is so prim and proper that even mud and filth ends up being pleasantly aestheticised. (Or to put it another way, I was conducting an experiment: at what point do good manners become sexy?)

  6. Wayne permalink
    August 19, 2007 8:31 pm


    Yes, that does give me a way into the song, and I’m sure that good manners are often sexually provocative. It has something to do with formality and ritual, and what lies beneath … I doubt that the sexual aesthete should be anything other than well mannered, and that the most provocative aspects of voyeurism, for example, are always exquisitely polite.

    In the same way, some forms of repression can produce the most highly charged eroticism. Behind it all lies the vulnerability that produces the feeling.

    I really don’t remember that moment in the film very well, but I have a feeling that when the river falls and the lovers are revealed drowned in the mud, their vulnerability is intended to undermine the aesthetic charge of manners and class – the kinds of things that Lawrence found it difficult to deal with.

    You can have so much more fun if you aestheticise the mud itself …



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