Sign of the Times?

 Pablo vs Harry

This weekend Lisa and I had two exhibits on our calendar – The Pablo Picasso exhibit at the Art Museum of New South Wales (on loan from French Picasso museum), and The Harry Potter exhibit at the Powerhouse Museum.  To see the original masterpieces of Pablo, we walked up and got tickets for the session starting 8 minutes later.   To see props and costumes from the Hogwarts movies, they were sold out except for the final session of the day, and we didn’t want to wait several hours.

Despite being the artist whose works have been stolen the most often, Pablo, you lost the hearts and minds of Sydney to the chosen one.

I struggle with anything non-classical in art – it grabs my attention and my interest, and that’s where it ends.  Some contemporary art in the 90s grabbed my attention and held it for a year or two.  I’m clearly a classicist, as the test I took my senior year in high school told me.

And yet you can still stare at paintings like “Landscape with two figures” and get lost in it for a little while.

Reading the biography of Picasso reminded me of what Kurt Vonnegut said during a talk he gave when I was at Stanford.  “If you really want to make your parents angry, and you don’t have the guts to become  a homosexual, become an artist.”  Despite being the father of 20th century art, Picasso’s life was a disaster.  Like most artists of his time he aligned with socialism (and was even a member of the communist party), but somehow seemed to exist in all worlds at once.   He apparently cheated on every woman he had a relationship with.   He wore striped shirts stolen from the backs of blind French mimes.  Okay, maybe not that last part.

I really doubt I would have liked Picasso if I’d ever met him.  I’m convinced he would have disliked me.

Cricket, in an upside down country

I’m going to my first cricket match this coming Friday.  I’ve been reading Cricket for Dummies and even making Lisa quiz me from my crib sheet of terms like “double wicket maiden” and “short run.”  I even watched a good chunk of the Aussie vs. Kiwi test over the weekend.  The bowler – batsman battle is much more drawn out than in baseball, which has a lot of appeal.  It’s not a skirmish, it’s a battle.  But the sport has so many ninny aspects to it (the fielders are wearing sweater vests during the match.  Yes, I said sweater vests.  They break for tea twice.  Yes, I said tea).  

This Friday I’ll be going to the 20/20 Big Bash at the Sydney Cricket Grounds, which lacks tea, sweater vests, or long drawn out battles – it’s more about launching the ball and getting the whole thing over with in under 3 hours.  A good introduction for a sepo like myself.

Heisman, the world is back on its axis

The anti-climactic sporting event of the weekend was the announcement of the Heisman trophy winner.  Stanford’s Andrew Luck didn’t stand a chance from the opening game this season, because he was the front runner. With Andrew winning, there was no story to be told.  Nothing sensational.  Nothing dramatic other than a guy who’s played at a higher level all season, though three of his last four games were his worst.

My meloncholy broke when I watched Robert Griffin III’s acceptance speech.  The world is a better place than I had thought.

I’m a massive Luck fan and will cheer for whatever team drafts him unless it’s the Steelers.

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