Wednesday, August 17, 2011


Image borrowed from Bing


MacWinterbottom, first name Toulouse, lang syne had nursed ambitions to be a painter, but circumstance, not the least of which was Mrs.MacWinterbottom, persisted in thwarting him. Ah, yes! The winterbottom of his discontent, Mrs.MacWinterbottom, (neƩ Spring) first name Autumn, whose insistent "If you've nothing to do, why don't you mow the lawn." (Aliter - hoover the stairs, load the washing machine, defrost the freezer, tote that barge, lift that bale . . ) She had stentorian tones that made her Old Man shiver. Getting a little drunk was beyond her pale.

MacWinterbottom had everything except nothing to do. He had a calico smock with paint stains. He had a black beret that flopped. He had a properly shaped pallette with paint stains and holes in all the right places. He had an intense, artistic look about him. Often he could be seen with his outstretched arm straight before him and his thumb pointing up as artists do. He had canvasses, tubes of oil and acrylic and drums of tempera. He had a fine bouquet of brushes in many sizes standing in a pot of turpentine. He had an easel. He had a studio. But he also had Mrs.MacWinterbottom who asked how was she was expected to clean a room chock full of all this MacWinterbottomish crap, and if he thought he was a painter, where were all the pictures? In retaliation he poked out his tongue at her behind her back. Or dreamed of going to live in Tahiti. He even had a little song along the lines "I'll swan off to Tahiti. That's where Gaugin's went," with add-ons about Constables flagging down speeding Hay Wains, and Edward Hopper the One-Legged Yankee Doodler.

"I could have been hung in the Royal Academy," he told Mrs. MacWinterbottom, "I could have been a contender."

"You should have been," she replied. "From a lampost. Preferably upside down like that Italian painter Mussolini. Or was it Hitler? Didn't Hitler want to be a painter? Maybe you should get some books about painting. Books might help. Try Amazon."

Amazon offered several such, including:-

"Painting for Dummies"

which MacWinterbottom bought and, not being a Dummy, began reading at Chapter 1. "First, choose an artistic name"

Whoever heard of an artist called MacWinterbottom! I mean, Get A Life, man. Your name's a turn-off for a start. Go to our Name-A-Nartist website and choose from the drop-down menu!

The MacWinterbottom's broadband rumbled into action, bringing forth:- Albertolli, Boticelli, Caravaggio, Degas, Escher, Folinsbee . . . Vettriano, Wankie, Yamamoto, Zuccarelli and others too numerous or unheard of to mention. It even included Winterbottom, but not MacWinterbottom.

Guess which name he chose before moving on the Chapter 2. "How to Sharpen Your Pencils."

You're right! Within a month the art world acclaimed a new kid on the block, M.Toulouse L*****c, and the rest is history, despite rivals who said the whole thing was a low trick. (Low trick, L*****c, geddit?)

Richard Cavendish-Westwood

aka: Doctor FTSE

Posted over on his site Stop--This is Getting Very Silly
Listed as #58 over on Magpie Tales 78

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