Thursday, July 30, 2015

The Hatred is Strong in this One, Luke

Goodness, the fuss about a lion.
I have a Facebook account which serves me a regular dose of people's thoughts, opinions, photographs and convictions, strongly spiced with nobility, beauty, wonder, politics, racism, hatred and stupidity. Much, perhaps, like anyone else's Facebook page. I have taken to removing ('unfriending') some of the worst posters, who lean towards the negative over the positive. So, rather than talk about those people who post beauty, useful information, home-pictures, friends, music, jokes or funny videos, I should like to comment briefly on those others who like to post pictures of dead or suffering animals ('animal porn'), or find and support ignorant racist cant from Stormfront or Britain First, or who choose teasers which are solely designed to bring the reader to a separate page often dripping with viruses (known, apparently, as 'clickbait'), together with those with aggressive opinions (often from the vegans, or that unfunny comedian Ricky Gervais) or other posters who have an agenda - not to be against something, but to be against someone else being either indifferent or - worse still - in favour (bullfight pictures from the anti-taurinos - yawn!).
If you believe that shit, go and do something about it. Don't just post a picture of a baby seal being squished by a baseball bat just to ruin my morning trawl through the Facebook over breakfast; why not go and buy a fucking airplane ticket to Canada? And while you are at it, seated on the plane perhaps wondering how you are going to persuade a team of highly-unpleasant seal-killers, or dolphin-slayers, or dog-eaters, or bullfight-enthusiasts  or even some fucking Zulu with a huge cheque hidden in his jockstrap hauling along an idiot American hunter with a bow n' arrow (for Christ's sake), just consider that the rest of us are not impressed by your thirst for revenge, your call for vigilantism or your support for public lynching, all from your own home and in the knowledge that you will never be called out. These kind of posts don't make you strong, or clever, or (God forbid) attractive. They make you ugly.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Some Pictures from Delfos

Delfos is a art and antique gallery on the Mojácar/Turre road, a place where you can get a drink, enjoy some music and paintings in a peaceful setting. The locale is huge, an old cortijo expanded and converted with a remarkable selection of regularly updated exhibits. Mariano, who runs the Delfos, is a true mercader - make him an offer...
Here's the web-page:

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Old Tee-shirts

It's surely tee-shirt weather. It's so hot this month ('breaking records' hot) that I have been suffering from two or even three tee-shirt nights. A revolving fan, the window open once it's gone dark, a cold shower and a few beers for dinner - it's still so hot that the tee-shirts are wringing wet after an hour or two of tossing in the bed.
I have some favourite tees. Like many of us, they were collected as souvenirs from different visits, situations, experiences and, of course concerts. Wow, is that a genuine Rolling Stones 1984 Eel Pie Island concert they ask, adoringly. Heh heh, yes, I was there. It was like this see...
But the moths get at them and the sweat makes them rot. After a while, the neck gets baggy and you leave them, half forgotten, on the shelf in the bathroom and then a funny thing happens. The Tee-shirt Fairy takes them. 
I never knew how many of my favourite tee-shirts had disappeared over the years. Ohh, that green one with uh, the flying saucer and the cows. My old Entertainer one which, truth to admit, was a fraction small, showed a bit of my stomach if I stood up straight. Damn, and the one from Gibraltar I got into a fight about..
The Tee-shirt Fairy had taken them all.
Then one day, while looking under the sink to find a cloth to wipe up some mess before my wife found it, I happened on a huge clump of old, torn and unloved tee-shirts. That's where they go. You know, a few of them were savable...

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Mojácar was an Artists Town

Mojácar was 'discovered' by artists. Until the 1950s, there was little to be said about the town. It had fallen into obscurity and there were few people left. The population was numbered in the hundreds and the rest had gone away, either in search of work, or through political problems following the Civil War. A film crew descended on the village in 1953 and shot part of 'Sierra Maldita' (short video here. Mojácar appears from Minute 3). There was no road to the village in those days, and the crew parked in the river-bed below and mounted the hill on donkeys.
The village was in ruins. Those who left would disassemble their homes, selling the iron rejas, the beams, lintels and woodwork. There would have been no chance to sell the house, no takers. An abandoned home in those days was a ruin open to the elements.
The artists came during that decade, a group from Almería who called themselves 'Los Indalianos', after the Almerian Saint Indalecio. They found a local totem here, the little Mojácar man, an inspiration to any self-respecting artist, and so named it after themselves, and that's how 'El Indalo' was born. They painted portraits of the local people, paintings of the town and the sierras, and were inspired by the light, the landscape and, I think, the poverty.Their art can be seen in the Doña Pakyta museum in Almería (where the Rambla and the Paseo meet) and is well worth the visit. The Mojácar Town Hall owns no examples of the Indalianos, and has no interest in the subject. Indeed, in the museum in Almería, there is no mention of Mojácar and the 'Indalo' is credited as a totem from Vélez Blanco (yet, in the enormously detailed 27 volume Espasa Calpe encyclopedia of 1920 - there's a set at La Voz de Almería - there's no mention of 'Indalo').
Then came the foreign artists and their companions. Apart from Jacinto Alarcón, mayor during the final Franco years who gave land or ruins to those foreigners who agreed to repair of fix them, little notice was taken of these settlers who brought in the money that began to make the local people wealthy.
Today, we have a remarkably ugly 'municipal art gallery' which shows exhibitions in a desultory way. No one goes. The artists themselves have largely chosen more welcoming villages in the sierras, as these days, Mojácar prefers tourists.