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Tuesday 29 April 2014

Point and Shoot


Houston, Texas: photo by gumanow, October 2013, posted 8 April 2014

A wee bit
of intelligent
direction --

all reality
that hopelessly

and ungainly
forever spilling

into uncertainty
to need.

Austin, Texas: photo by gumanow, September 2009, posted 26 January 2010


Hazen said...


what if reality is just the way
things are thrown together
clouds, people, red wine
long afternoons of cold rain
the idea of this
and not that

tomorrow will be different
and no one will notice
it will feel the same
another arrangement this time
with quotation marks around everything
and everything this time
called into question

Heisenberg was on to something

TC said...


As one who dwells continuously in a penumbral uncertainty, for some time now I've been finding that unsettling top shot, with its strange cargo of mystery and question, parked every night in the same shadowy spot, right up my alley.

The photographer is Gary Gumanow. I love his work.

Mose23 said...

A wee bit
of intelligent

Very hard, given the current cultural hegemonies to come to that critical reflection so often on show on this site.

The tattoo on the woman's leg; what does it mean?

TC said...

Duncan, I wish I could honestly report that I believe the tattoo simply signifies something along the lines of "fealty to anything outside or other than the State of Texas, its myths and values, is treason".

However, the slogan also seems to have a more... how to say this... complicated history.

As, for example, an advert for "The National Beer of Texas" ("Anything else is Treason").

It's all a matter of something called Texas Pride, you see.

There is also its use by the "White Civil Rights" (read: White Supremacist) "movement"... about which the less said the better.

And to those impatiently awaiting the Rapture, the phrase may carry other connotations as well.

There is the New Salvationist petition.

"May God in such days of the falling world enable us to step forward and renew our allegiance. May there be a faithfulness, a loyalty, a fidelity, a constancy, a duty, and an obligation -- to Christ and His Scriptures."

Anything else is treason.

The text commonly invoked by such folk: Matt. 7.21.23, in which the faithless -- those "Anything Else" people -- are fenced-out of the Big Hydroponic Garden and condemned to settle for the Bitter Fruit of their Iniquity.

The interwoven anchor-with-florets motif in the tattoo detailing would suggest the calf in the present photograph might be that of some proverbial sailor's girl in every port, were it not that Austin (the Bohemia of Texas by the way) is at least as far from any known seacoast as is (or for that matter was) Bohemia.

A student in a class held at our home, way back when, left us with an amusing lonestar-state bumpersticker, which commanded, in no uncertain terms, "Don't Mess With Texas".

But we have no bumper alas (though I have indeed been made into a hood ornament, but at least not, and thank the gods for small favours, a "Hook'em Horns" hood ornament).

And too, there are the horrific tales of those who have been foolhardy enough to dare to Mess with Texas.

I have just now been dithering about unsuccessfully amid the cobwebs these two hours in search of that Don't Mess With Texas bumpersticker. The place where I had thought to find it is now occupied by a lovely scale model West Midlands Bus. I think this is what that Brendan Rodgers may have meant by parking the bus. Anything else would be treason.

But, to get back to the useless Information... research yields the curious factoid that there are more tattoo parlours in Austin than bulletholes in the calcified remains of all the Texas Rangers who ever shot up a defenseless cow skull, in the perceived line of duty, over the several, paralytically-tiresome, unfenced-in, shot-up cow-skull centuries.

Star of Texas Tattoo Arts Revival, Austin, Texas, 2010

Note the Texas iconography on the kid's left shoulder.

Another entry in the same competition reminds that sometimes the Lone Star iconography may be artfully concealed from prying eyes.

(Or should the proper adverb be "mercifully"?)

And boy Howdy if that gal hasn't taken home the handsome Texas-longhorn-themed ashtray prize!