........................................................................................ - a weBlog by Snowy and me.

Sunday, 31 May 2015

The IKEA Effect (2)

Modern art perplexes the public,
to the point where its practitioners
come to believe that their vocation
is to confuse the minds of the public
rather than make art of substance.
This is fine in installations,
where the space controls
how the public respond.
The control stops them thinking to ask
what the artist did to get that gig.
But the shortfall in craft
shows up clearest with modern painting.
When punters wander past huge canvases
of abstract expressionism in public galleries
they are vaguely impressed by the size
whilst confused/bemused by the content.
Many secretly think 'I could do that if I wanted'.
And if they had done it then they might do it better,
but only if could they make as good a name
and got themselves the agent, and claimed the space.
Their pride is like the IKEA effect-the glow
that people get when assembling flat pack furniture
in their own home, a glow which they deny others
when they see that they have done similar in their homes.

Saturday, 30 May 2015

Collective Solopsism

Most people are uninterested in what you know,
they are far more engaged by what you think of them.

Friday, 29 May 2015

Each Day

that I live in France I seek the virtue of the ordinary.
I walk to the poubelle to find something useful
that the locals leave behind, that will others take further.
A bit of patience or warmth, or even some affection,
and often find none-maybe there have little
of these things in their homes in the first place.   

We Are All Blighted

and many of us are blind,
but for as much as we combine
through forethought and kindness
we will cover each others blindsidedness.

Thursday, 28 May 2015

A (nearly) Uninhabited Point In Space

“Is it your reputation that’s bothering you?
But look at how soon we’re all forgotten.
The abyss of endless time that swallows it all.
The emptiness of those applauding hands.
The people who praise us; how capricious they are,
how arbitrary. And the tiny region it takes place.
The whole earth a point in space - and most of it uninhabited.”
Marcus Aurelius (121-180 A.D.)

Tuesday, 26 May 2015


I scored a goal today,
it was an own-goal but hey!
Any achievement is better than none.....

Monday, 25 May 2015

Sunday, 24 May 2015

My Teenage Insecurity

If the winners don't win
then the sky will fall in,
and like the others
I will be in the dark.

Saturday, 23 May 2015

No Need For Panic

From housewives clearing supermarkets
of sugar and bread to store at home,
because they heard rumours of a shortage
(the only shortage was when they emptied
the shops) to the market for buying a house
going well out of reach for the many,
and that was before their jobs disappeared
-I have seen enough panic based consumerism
to know that the biggest shortage in the world
is non-material. It is that sense of reason
which combines with generosity of spirit.  

Friday, 22 May 2015

The Wisdom Of Silence....

...and being lighter than the shadow you rest on can't be improved on. From here.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

The IKEA Effect (1)

I disliked the last election campaign
in my country. It went on too long
and all the parties put up fronts
so defensive that no media interview
would ever have unpicked their logic.
Only one comment stuck in my ear,
a commentator said of the parties
that all the stalls that were set out
had the defect of 'the IKEA effect'.

When anyone in the privacy of their home
assembles flat pack furniture they glow
with a sense of achievement at the effect.
But when they see other peoples houses
furnished with the same type of furniture
they think the furnishings looks cheap,
failing to recognize that theirs are no better. 

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Unatural Selection

What sort of fitness
can it be when the fittest
outlive the rest-through hubris

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Monday, 18 May 2015

Plastic States

It is well known but easily misunderstood
how false pomp leads to fake deference
-we collectively disown that process.
And how could it be openly discussed
whilst dissenting tongues fall into unreason
-in awe of the majesty before them?
But every so often the power of propaganda
declines, revealing a balder life underneath.
Then history becomes a series of exposes
of the lies one generation tells about another
in the hope of controlling the future,
nobody knowing how far their lies will go.
In this space the more we explore
the more we find that nobody lived
as they were described as living at the time. 

Sunday, 17 May 2015

Futile Questions

One of the sillier questions
popular media likes to fritter away
the public's attention span with
is 'What is Artificial Intelligence?'
usually setting up the question
without definitions of  'natural',
'artificial', or indeed 'intelligence',
the better to avoid all conclusions.

The short answer to this question
is that artificial intelligence does exist
but it needs natural intelligence to set it up.
Where it is recognized for what it is
it does fewer tasks than its makers intend.
Technology is always sold to us with the strap-line
'It will make the future work better'.
Where A.I. works well now its achievements
mostly go unrecognized by natural intelligence.

This is because natural intelligence
prefers to avoids the proof of redundancy.

Saturday, 16 May 2015

Dogs Don't Care

whether intelligence is artificial or natural-as long as it serves with good will


Signs Of Greater Age (33)

With every election that passes
the party stances seem more alike.
As the rhetoric gets more cliched,
so it's users become less aware
of how they are repeating pasts
they never lived or have forgotten.

The media reports their words
and exposes how each repetition
reduces all meaning in the language
to arguments with no consequence.
With this nothingness the norm becomes
that those who didn't vote, seemed to not care,
or spoiled their ballot papers are the ones
who most fully understood the voids
at the centre of the arguments proffered.
They become the majority who foxed
all the good intentions of the ballot box.

Friday, 15 May 2015


is usually lied for
more than died for,
and rarely lived for
in the hope
of honest reward.

Thursday, 14 May 2015

The Most Depressing Phrase In The World

is 'family values'-for all that it defends
and encapsulates in people, what it denies
is any valid exit from all it upholds.
Very few people are born orphans,
and even fewer are allowed to remain so
with dignity. Thus family values
force all seeking a life outside of the family
to be so driven by the need for escape
that they become enraged whilst trapped,
and get further trapped in their anger
when they finally, permanently, escape.
Learning to lie by omission to family
to be similar enough to them to be polite,
and keep your own space outside their system
is an art beyond art, beyond all explanation.

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Structured Self Interest

The bigger the gain,
the more covert the lie
to sustain it has to be.
The better the lie works
the less that those
made to do without
know what previously
was rightfully theirs.

My New Diary

I am sure it will fill up quite quickly....

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

The Shadows Of Ownership

For decades I led the loss leader life,
accepted being an 'also ran'
for the gain of those ahead of me
who preferred me to live at some remove.
And I did it so selflessly
that my lack of thought for gain
became integral to how I lived.
I am now too old to be openly told
to ask for less for others to have more.
And what I now have is in my own right
rather than some plan made up by others
for me to less than them for their sake.
What is mine is so now
because my shadow
is all there is to say so.

Monday, 11 May 2015

Sunday, 10 May 2015

Groundhog Day

If satire changed anything
it would be banned.
But mirth at the expense
of those in power
has to be encouraged
to give the powerless
false hope, the only hope
those in power can offer.

Saturday, 9 May 2015

Yesterday I Voted

'because I thought I should',
and to keep somebody out of office.
I tried to be uninfluenced by the press.
On seeing the results I realized
that what I'd done had made me
as useful as a zombie at a funeral.

Friday, 8 May 2015


is the thorn in the flesh,
the pride in the prick
that sticks under the skin
of those it invades-
l-o-n-g after the event.
The mercy comes
in how the mind splits
and buries the bitterness
of forced submission.

'Life' is what happens
when a divided mind
reunifies at its own rate.

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Empathy Always Requires Reminders

Whether the reminder looks like seeking cupboard love or not.

Pretense About Debt

is what divides the have-nots from the haves
and sets the invisible line between them.
Many seem content at being sold more,
but what puts a person into one set or the other
is that the haves will frighten their debtors
into infinitely deferred repayment,
with the sheer size of their expectation.

Whilst those with less don't need proof
to know that they'll be cut less slack
and have to cut back what they cost.
And still those with less are more likely
to share with those who have less than them.

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Pat Answers To Difficult Problems

Since patriarchy is the power behind patriotism,
and war is what secures the power of nation states,
what notion of a nation should a matriarchy uphold? 

Whatever it might be,
and there will be several,
myths about conflict
remain the best way
of describing it.
Though technology
will be what creates
the new stalemates
between nation states.

Monday, 4 May 2015

The Paradoxes Of Being An Anti-Natalist

We are never one of a few, but among many.
This is the first paradox - that we are
too many wishing were a few, the better
to boost the life chances of other species,
and limit the ruin of the planet for profit.

As anti-natalists our contentment comes
from causes other than population reduction
through refusing to breed, and these means
often arrive through almost hermit like detachment.
Being seen as anti-social by most of society
is normal. But equally our malcontent
finds accord with other anti-society sentiment;
that is a second paradox we are enriched by.

It takes graft to work out a belief,
where you work for less for yourself
-this is the third paradox. In normal society
the natural corollary of wanting less
for others is always to greed for the self.
This belief reached it's height with rationing
where the millions made their humbug patriotic,
and bullied each other for Britain for as long
as the memory of war permitted,
in some instances right thorugh the 1980s.
This disguised competitiveness
renews itself in each generation.
Today it goes by the name of being anti-immigration.

Anti-natalists are better than that.
They want less for themselves,
so that others can want less too,
out of wholesale thrift and altruism.
Their greatest gift to society
is the drive to not have children
which is the blessing that society spurns.

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Impersonal Problems

are the sort we prefer to have,
 for the social status they give us
and how much we can leave
other people to sort them out.

Saturday, 2 May 2015


So that is why I find asking for less, less beauty for the hope even less ugliness, attractive. 

Domestic Heresies(4)

'Expectations are dangerous
when they are both high and unformed'-
'We Need To Talk About Kevin' Lionel Shriver

Friday, 1 May 2015


'Anyone who is not self disciplined
will soon be disciplined by other people'
-Frederich Nietzsche

Essay Ahoy

I very rarely comment here
on aspects of popular music.
It does not need input but here
is a short essay I wrote recently
about the life of Syd Barret
when he lead Pink Floyd.
It is published online by a news
and appreciation site for the band.
Thank you Matt
for accepting my small contribution.