Feline Focus

Feline Focus
My latest puma, July 2016


Beloved companion to Sarah, Nov 2015

Window To The Soul

Window To The Soul
Watercolour Horse, June 2015

Sleeping Beauties

Sleeping Beauties
Watercolour Lionesses, Nov 2012


"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read."

"Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others."

Groucho Marx

Snow Stalker

Snow Stalker
Another snow leopard - my latest watercolour offering - July 2013

28 April 2017

A Pile Of Pooh!

The REAL Pooh!

Okay, I have to do this: it just cannot be borne any longer. *clasps hand to heart, and sighs deeply*

There is something I’ve been needing to get off my chest for a while now (and I don’t mean my bra.  It’s a saying we have here in England - not sure if it’s used in the rest of the UK because I don’t live there.  But it’s rather apt, given that your heart is situated in the chest area.  But I digress).  I know it’s not earth-shatteringly important in the scheme of things, but to me it is a major bugbear (bear - Pooh bear - ha ha ha *rolls eyes at own wit*), and the time has come to put people right.

Winnie the Pooh was written by AA Milne, who was English.  He wrote two books of stories about those characters, which were published in 1926 and 1928.  That’s all.  TWO BOOKS SPECIFICALLY ABOUT POOH.  He died in 1956.  

Since then, the character of Pooh has been appropriated by Disney, and therein lies the problem.  More books have been written about the Pooh characters, and people quote from them, and attribute said quotes to the REAL Pooh, and AA Milne.  Except that they have nothing to do with the real Pooh at all.  

They are the Disneyfied, homogenised (and I have to say it, so please don’t be offended because I know it’s not all of you), Americanised versions - which means they now churn out sentimental stories about Pooh and friends that are saccharine-sweet, sugar-coated, sappy clap-trap, full of dumbed-down ‘life lessons’, and rousing motivational speeches about how “you’re braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”  Yuck!!!  Makes me want to tear my hair out, and vomit.

(As a side note, I just checked on Google the date of AA Milne’s death, and the first two of three Pooh quotes listed were Disney ones, the first being the awful one that I’ve just quoted above!  AAAAAaaaaaahhhhh!!!! *runs screaming around the room in circles, like a demented duck*)

STOP IT!!!  Just STOP IT, would you?!  If you’re going to quote AA Milne, and Pooh, at least make sure you’re bloody well quoting the REAL thing, and not the bloody fake shite that Disney churns out.  These characters are not sweet, or cute, and one-dimensional - they are nuanced, and have depth.  The humour is subtle - it’s dry, ironic, sardonic, laconic, droll, deadpan, sarcastic, wry, and even (God forbid!) anarchic.  The man was English, for God’s sake: his humour is quintessentially English (or British).  And here’s the proof:

“Owl,” said Rabbit shortly, “you and I have brains.  The others have fluff.  If there is any thinking to be done in this Forest - and when I say thinking I mean thinking - you and I must do it.”
“Yes,” said Owl.  “I was.”
“Read that.”
Owl took Christopher Robin’s notice from Rabbit and looked at it nervously.  He could spell his own name WOL, and he could spell Tuesday so that you knew it wasn’t Wednesday, and he could read quite comfortably when you weren’t looking over his shoulder and saying “Well?” all the time, and he could…
“Well?” said Rabbit.
“Yes,” said Owl, looking Wise and Thoughtful.  “I see what you mean.  Undoubtedly.”
“Exactly,” said Owl.  “Precisely.”  And he added, after a little thought, “If you had not come to me, I should have come to you.”
“Why?” asked Rabbit.
“For that very reason,” said Owl, hoping that something helpful would happen soon.
“Yesterday morning,” said Rabbit solemnly, “I went to see Christopher Robin.  He was out.  Pinned on his door was a notice!”
“The same notice?”
“A different one.  But the meaning was the same.  It’s very odd.”
“Amazing,” said Owl, looking at the notice again, and getting, just for a moment, a curious sort of feeling that something had happened to Christopher Robin’s back.  “What did you do?”
“The best thing,” said Owl wisely.
“Well?” said Rabbit again, as Owl knew he was going to.
“Exactly,” said Owl.
For a little while he couldn’t think of anything more; and then, all of a sudden, he had an idea.
“Tell me, Rabbit,” he said, “the exact words of the first notice.  This is very important.  Everything depends on this.  The exact words of the first notice.”
“It was just the same as that one really.”
Owl looked at him, and wondered whether to push him off the tree; but, feeling that he could always do it afterwards, he tried once more to find out what they were talking about.

I rest my case.  And here endeth the rant.  ‘Normal’ programming will now be resumed.

Snow Leopard

Snow Leopard
An experiment in watercolour and gouache

Quotes Quota

"Do you believe in Magic?" asked Colin.

"That I do, lad," she answered. "I never knowed it by that name, but what does th' name matter? I warrant they call it a different name i' France an' a different one i' Germany. Th' same thing as set th' seeds swellin' an' th' sun shinin' made thee well lad an' it's th' Good Thing. It isn't like us poor fools as think it matters if us is called out of our names. Th' Big Good Thing doesn't stop to worrit, bless thee. It goes on makin' worlds by th' million - worlds like us. Never thee stop believin' in th' Big Good Thing an' knowin' th' world's full of it - an call it what tha' likes. Eh! lad, lad - what's names to th' Joy Maker."

From 'The Secret Garden', by Frances Hodgson Burnett


Copied from photograph of the same name by Roberto Dutesco

Quotes Quota

"There is no way to happiness - happiness is the way."
The Dalai Lama

"If you don't stand for something you will fall for anything."

Malcolm X

On The Prowl

On The Prowl
Watercolour tiger

Quotes Quota

"What saves a man is to take a step. Then another step."

"There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind."

C S Lewis