Saturday, 24 March 2018


I have been to see The Mikado and, despite reminding myself more than once that I don't like Gilbert and Sullivan, rather enjoyed it. The action was transferred to a school facing an Ofsted inspection with a number of clever devices to explain why they were singing about Japan. The whole thing was preposterous of course, but having the Lord High Executioner represented by the P.E. teacher was somewhat more relevant to my life than a chap in a kimono. I was also struck by the similarities between Nanki Poo's attitude to his impending beheading and that displayed by Meursault in similar circumstances half a century later. W.S. Gilbert was clearly fond of pointing out the absurd, but was he also an existentialist? Discuss.

I was going to start this next bit by reminding readers of a brief post about a very interesting talk I attended last November on the subject of the Italian Futurists, but I discover that I neglected to write it at the time. If it's not too late I shall briefly summarise by saying that they were very bad people, who led directly on to people who were not only worse, but probably as evil as it's possible to be. Not that it's any mitigation, but their aesthetic sense (the Futurists') did influence the Vorticisists and others, for example, C.R.W. Nevinson, often praised in this blog. Anyway, regardless of never having mentioned any of this before, I'm still going to point out that an article about the effect they have had (still the Futurists - keep up) on arseholes such as Trump, Putin, Farage etc can be found here.

Let's end on some good news: the fourth volume of Robert Merle's 'Fortunes of France' series will be released in English in a couple of months time; betting has been suspended on this blog's book of the year award for 2018.

1 comment:

  1. The Lord High Executioner as a P.E. teacher?! Memories of Bob Cross come flooding back! Haha - Rugby and cross country - how I hated those and as for gym - ugh!