One day last week I was sitting in a coffee shop - a lovely urban coffee shop - having a lovely London Fog, working on my next book review.
I was enjoying a peaceful few moments to myself while Jack was a preschool when within minutes the lovely urban coffee shop was converted to a hunting lodge with the addition of a young deer's head.
A man and a woman walked in carrying tools and the deer head under an arm (quite a sight) and very quickly replaced a lovely painting that hung over the fireplace with the deer head.
One minute I was sipping warm, sweet goodness, enjoying the relaxed, sophisticated atmosphere, and the next I was picturing Bambi being shot, his head chopped off and then mounted on a plaque.
The couple that hung the head turned to me and gleefully asked, "What do you think?"
So.... I told them. I said, "I don't like it so much, actually. I prefer the abstract painting that used to hang there."
The woman said, "Oh, don't worry. We'll hang the painting somewhere else."
Then, I just had to add, "Why did you hang Bambi on the fireplace?"
The woman laughed and said, "That's not Bambi!" The man said, "I didn't kill it or anything. It was a gift."
"Yes, but the mind goes there," I said. "I was just sitting here feeling very peaceful," a state not easily achieved in Mommydom, "and now all I can think about is death."
I don't think they quite knew what to make of my bluntness. As it happened it was time for me to leave, so I punctuated my argument by packing up and walking out the door. Still makes me laugh to think about it.
You should see this thing. In fact, I need to get a photo. (Yes, it's still there.) Only I don't know how to do it inconspicuously. It's horns have been replaced by two rainbow coloured corns. Tacky does not begin to describe this thing.
Just picture this:
With two of these on it's head:
I have no idea what these people were thinking hanging this on the wall.
This deserves a nose flick if ever a nose flick was deserved.
But wait! There's more.
It's for sale! That's right. For the low, low price of $700, you can own this ridiculously embellished reminder of what once was a beautiful woodland creature.
I no longer think of death when I go to this coffee shop (I also no longer sit near the fireplace). Instead, I laugh at how little control I have over my environment. We all want a place to relax and feel at peace. If we're lucky, we'll find moments where the stars align and we get what we want. We should appreciate these moments deeply, because anything can happen at any moment to interrupt our state of bliss. A rainbow-corned Deer can happen to anyone at any time!
I hope you have a peaceful, no need to flick anyone in the nose, rainbow-corned-deer-free day!
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OCTOBER 10, 2011 UPDATE:
The rainbow-corned deer did not sell. Shocking, I know. I asked the lady in charge of the art selections for the coffee shop what happened to it. She said it was returned to the artist and hangs in his home. She then went on to say, "It was just going to go in the garbage! I think it's pretty cool that he took something that would have been thrown out and turned it into art!"
Know what I think? I'm pretty sure you do. I'm not so impressed that the artist took a dead deer head and stuck two tacky rainbow coloured corns on it. I'm even less impressed that he chose to list his reclaimed garbage for $700.
P.S. You wouldn't believe what they replaced it with! Check out what's now hanging over the fireplace. I apologize for the lousy quality of this image (I'm no good with phone cameras, and I was trying to be inconspicious - pretending to take a picture of my son and his friend). I'm not sure a higher quality image would make any more sense of this piece of 'art'.
Sigh. What are people thinking?
OCTOBER 11, 2011 UPDATE:
Couldn't resist. Had to get an up close photo. Happened to have my SLR camera with me today. Turned some heads taking these photos.
"Untitled" Sculpture Abstraction -2008 - Mixed Media - 1000.00
I blew up a section of it so you can see just how crazy this thing is. I'm seeing a tiny plastic rake, some baseboard and a lifesaver.
I think my nickname, Mardi Gras Wedding describes it pretty well. What makes me laugh, in addition to the asking price, is the year of the piece: 2008. The artist has been carrying this thing around since then... perhaps adding to it on a regular basis.
If he only knew how I have been mocking him.
But, I tell you what. If this thing sells, I am going to start taking Jack's collages more seriously. And I'm not above dumpster diving if it's going to provide this kind of income!