Archive | March, 2017

Finishing Touches

30 Mar

The public works were due to be finished today but to no-one’s great surprise some bits and bobs are running a tad late. So we’ll have to wait till mid-April for the fancy fountains in Queen Vicky Square; such a shame as I was really, really, really looking forward to them …….

A little trompe-l’oeil

29 Mar

You’ll remember that scaffolding I told you about on Beverley Road, the stuff that was thrown up back in 2011 to stop a building falling down after its owner took out all the internal walls and how the council was paying £150 a week just to check it’s still safe … No, of course you don’t, never mind, you have a life, I appreciate that. Well somebody, probably the selfsame council but I can be bothered to find out for sure,  has decided to cover all that up with this impressive illusion. It sure works for me, I can’t see any more problems, can you?

What lurks behind the Brexit mask?

29 Mar

So the day after the so called Scotland Parliament demands (I like that: a jumped county council making demands of the UK government) it has a second independence referendum (no chance Jimmy! You blew that the first time round ) and the same day as effective direct rule begins in Northern Ireland the Prime Minister writes a Dear John letter to Mr Tusk saying so long and thanks for all the fishing quotas… So yes at long last the very welcome two year divorce proceedings with the EU begin with all the necessary pleasantries and crocodile tears … Expect the unexpected is my best guess for the near future.
The mask I found in a joke shop some four or more years ago I thought it might come in useful for scaring little children; if you don’t like it I have another …

Take up our quarrel with the foe

27 Mar
O soothest Sleep! if so it please thee, close
      In midst of this thine hymn my willing eyes,
Or wait the “Amen,” ere thy poppy throws
      Around my bed its lulling charities.
                                              John Keats
As cultured folk you’ll be aware how for millennia the poppy has signified sleep and forgetfulness in European culture. From the poppy we get opium, morphine and all those other lovely “ines” that make us fall through a hole in the carpet when life becomes too much… 
Whoah! whoah! stop all this liberal thinking right now! For the Royal (& sycophantic) British Legion, for hosts of hoopleheads and fellow travellers, for the whole UK indeed (or so it seems) and even for level headed Canada or at least those parts that love to dwell on the horrors of the last century the poppy has become The Symbol Of Remembrance. Well ha! So much for culture. This craze started in the 1920’s as a merchandising scam to sell cloth poppies to help ‘rebuild war torn France’ (a likely story) or perhaps it was inspired by that really bad and militaristic poem  “Flanders Field” (which at least had the idea of poppies meaning sleep). Whatever, it’s too late and the genie is out of the proverbial glass container and you can’t tell anyone that this is cultural illiteracy else they look at you as if you have two heads (which I suppose is two more than they have). 
So it comes about that, two years after the celebration (no better word) of the start of WW1, Hull gets a teeny portion of the crazy poppy themed thing that took over the Tower of London.  It’s an unimpressive, tawdry splash of  red down the side of the Maritime Museum. Puts me in mind of a slit throat or perhaps a some overly enthusiastic menstrual flux. Certainly does not inspire any thoughts of ‘remembrance’ despite it being blessed by vicars and cooed over by the hoi polloi (“Oh isn’t it beautiful!” ‘it’, by the way, is supposed to represent the deaths of thousands of men from high explosives, bullets, poison gas and general military incompetence so … well I just give up!) and idiots in WW1 uniforms standing in front of it like dorks!
Still it attracts folks to town to take piccies (guilty as charged) and of course selfies. Oh the name of this thing? … Weeping Window

Weeping Window

26 Mar

Here on Beverley Road the latest installation exposes the  close dependency between the various layers in the culture business each clinging on to the coat tails of the next one up and how rubbish flows from the top to the bottom to be transformed into a neat little heap of acceptable art. The piece has had a highly favourable reception in the press and TV. The locals simply can’t get enough of this and queue up to take their selfies in front of the gushing red flow of culture. It’s only here until May before it goes off to tour the country so get your skates on.

Ask a volunteer

26 Mar
If all this culture has your head in a spin and your can’t tell  your Amy Johnson from a wind turbine or your Humber Dock from the Marina then look out for a kindly smiling face in a light blue jacket and they will put you right or so I’m told. The Year of Culture, despite its millions of pounds of sponsorship, is depending on the unpaid work and goodwill of hundreds of these hardy souls. I think they get to keep the jackets. No, I’m not a volunteer (go on pretend to be surprised!); light blue is so not my colour!

Standing up for stuff

25 Mar

A small demo outside the railway station on Friday afternoon. They brought more placards than supporters which might be a bit embarrassing but they seemed more intent on a good chin wag than in letting the world know their concerns. The world, for its part, just passed them by.