I didn’t go to the Gemeentemuseum in the Hague on Saturday to see the Mondriaan exhibition; I went to see the paintings by Isaac Israel and his friend George Breitner. But to get to this exhibition I had to go through the Mondriaan exhibition and it stopped me in my tracks. The exhibition is entitled, “De Ontdekking Van Mondriaan” or ‘Discover Mondrian‘.
It is the middle of the night and all is quiet. Routine on a naval ship is the normality; the routine in the small hours of the night is even more crucial, because that’s the time when people are at their least aware. It’s nature: humans are better asleep in the depths of the night. Standing around in the dark is simply not as interesting as standing around during the daytime. Even at sea, there are things to see in the daylight, like a seagull. At least there is something; when it’s dark, it’s just one fug of nothingness. The blackness becomes boring for the rating standing lookout on the bridge of the USS Porter.
This was originally written in June, 2014, but never published. Until today! Read on, and enjoy…
What actually happened…
It was the morning of the parade. Not unbeknown to the famed Parachute regiment of the British Army was their spectacular manner of arriving on the parade ground. That is to say, they arrive by parachute.
Now this did take some practice, even for those well experienced in the use of parachutes. Because for an elite regiment to arrive one step out of beat was unheard of. So landing had to be perfect: all the soldiers would land exactly in parade ground formation, and in perfect time. The Regimental band also arrived by parachute, although the kettle drummer had to have his equipment tied to a separate parachute. Nevertheless, they arrived on the ground within the space of a semi-quaver.
Bolly, my new cat, was a cat that my friend Hendrik couldn’t really look after. Bolly kept pestering his younger cat, Timmy, and Hendrik couldn’t bear the fights – such as they weren’t. It is the nature of a mature cat to be territorial, they need this because they have to ensure their supply of food. Their territorial instincts are drawn from this reality and maintain the cat’s future.
This does have downsides for the cat, in that they have to be constantly on the alert which means they get very little sleep. Indeed, Hendrik mentioned that he could only get any sleep when the two cats were in different rooms. It wasn’t so much that fur flew or that blood was drawn; the occasional hiss was enough to keep him awake.
Germany is well known for its ability to organize; its bureaucracy is legendary. There are downsides to this, though, and it is the German mind applied to colour that I wish to examine in this post. Standardization in German industry led it to be more effective at producing things, and one of the things needed to produce something is the need to paint it. It is the “Imperial [read centralized] Commission for Consistency and Quality Assurance”; the Reichs-Ausschuß für Lieferbedingungen und Gütesicherung.
Life is everywhere, it is the metaphor for our earth. It is there that things might live. I want to take a generalized look at the various kinds of life that exist on earth, and take a rational look at what this implies about these forms of life.
In the world around us, the simplest class of life that we can see is the plant. I will leave aside the microscopic organisms as we cannot see them; indeed, I have dealt with these on my private blog, for the misunderstandings about them are legion and it takes some seriously clear thinking to wade through the various illusions.