The dismantling of a home continues. A website where you
can list stuff you are giving away has made it easy for me to
dispel plenty without even leaving the wadding of my futon, on
which I am now sleeping having given away the bed.
Bed, writing desk and drawers were all given to Mark, of
Abbotsford, for the free shop he opened in that suburb on
Saturday. Aaron, of Duncan St, came and took away the
tinny-sounding speakers. Kylie came for the Living Art
cheeseboard that was definitely not art. And nor was it
living; it was ceramic.
To my old schoolfriend Kimberley I have given my prized glass
chip 'n' dip, a bowl-plus-bowl contraption that
revolutionised ... that revolutionised nothing, and that is
its charm. It is for serving chips and dip.
I dared her to take it to restaurants and see if she can get
away with eating BYO chips and dip while waiting for mains to
be served. She agreed that would be funny, but did not agree
to try it.
Unwanted posters and paintings I have been hanging, in the
middle of the night, on the wooden part of that scaffolding
between the town hall and the public library. Inexplicably,
these items, meant for the enjoyment of all, are always gone
the next day.
I sought advice on what to do with the old Sanyo Telecolor,
of course. Someone suggested felt letters would cling in the
static of the silent screen, and therefore I could write
messages on it. Letters, when tested, did cling to the
screen, but unfortunately they fell off too easily if a
passing person created a draught.
Someone else suggested I gut the telly and use the casing for
a fish tank, as is often done with old Apple computers to
make "Macquariums". This sounded like a good idea, if I were
into pet fish.
In the end I favoured the suggestion, by a commenter named
Rawlinson End, that I simply keep an empty TV casing "for
"It is, in effect, an enclosed stage from which you can
present live ‘talking heads' television, probably one head at
a time given the confined space. Begin with ‘Good Evening'
and take it from there."
Thank you, Rawlinson End. Perhaps a whole YouTube channel
could even arise from this. Stay tuned.
Jettisoning the jettison of a life requires ruthlessness. I
was outrageous in my cull of family photographs, have
massacred my collection of unread books, and am now turning a
tyrannical eye to stacks of CDs.
Occasionally, though, something slows the rampage and recalls
a little ruth. Inside a book called NBA Superstars, by
Jack Clary and featuring basketball greats Patrick Ewing and
Hakeem Olajuwon on the cover, I found a couple of watercolour
paintings, apparently scenes from the Queenstown Lakes
Unsigned, they were probably painted by my father, who with
my mother went through a brief watercolour-painting phase in
the early 1980s. From that era I have a work he did at Lake
Hayes. The way he rendered the poplars is similar to the way
of the poplars in the recent discovery (pictured).
The works could also have been done by my brother. He went
through a brief watercolour-painting phase in the early
1990s, which is when NBA Superstars was published. The
buildings in the work pictured appear to have been
whitewashed with twink, too, which is more suggestive of my
brother's style than my father's.
I am sure arguments will now erupt in the family as to who
the artist was, but I don't care. I am taking the picture
shown to Wellington, where I will hang it on a wall, and not
a public wall at that. I like to think someone has painted a
landscape with sensitivity. Plus, would you look at the sheep
in the foreground: just pencilled adumbrations of sheep;
whether they are coming into flesh or fading from it unknown.
Ephemeral, beautiful sheep.