GRAFFITI POETRY, PATTERN STYLE: Bird-Spider-AppleScrap

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Interesting setup.

I do not recognize this motif. Is it a new, modern fable, created by the new collective mind in new, urban – global surroundings of our world (blablabla, etc)?

Is this gang of three a simple predator – prey chain?

Or, they are a group of individuals formed by the same interests?

Maybe author’s intention was to confuse us, or better yet, to get us thinking about what is really important in life? If so, what is that really important thing? Why did he choose to portray a parrot (is it a parrot?? – discuss), not a somewhat more expected symbol, like an eagle or something? But, in the city, have you seen an eagle recently (apart from the zoo or TV)? Maybe that was the point, there are more parrots than eagles in the city?

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Or author did not have such intention; rather, he wanted to show something that looks cool? Does it diminish its value then?

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I AM SOOOO HAPPY WITH A TWIST

I am soooo happy :-)

 

Couple of days ago I was minding my own business, finishing some errands.

 

And a girl walks up to me and says „excuse me“

 

I go „yeeees?“

 

And she goes „thank you“.

 

Strange, I think. Why would she thank me for agreeing to listen to her?

 

And I can see that it is not simple for her, it must be something not like „what’s the time?“, or „do you know where that and that street is?“.

 

„My car broke down in the middle of the street“, she continues.  „I had to push it off the street myself“.  Maybe she actually said „I ran out of fuel in the middle of the street“. She is smoking a cigarette. I think to myself, poor her, it has really disturbed her. She is probably going to ask for money, but hey – as long as she does not make me push the car, I’m fine with that, hahaha.

 

And then she asks for money, I can’t remember how exactly she formulated it. Was it „would you“ ,or „could you“, or what. In an instant, I make a decision –  I will give her some money. I don’t care, she could be a crook, this could be her scheme,  she could be the worst person on the planet, I don’t care. It’s all up to us. We choose to believe or not to, at least on some level. I strongly believe that, sort of.

 

And I say to myself, it does not matter if she is a crook; there is a possibility that she is, and there is a possibility that she isn’t. There are people in situations so ugly and desperate that they have to do this, ask people they’ve never seen before for money. It’s not like she is the first to do it. Try to imagine it – it seems very difficult. To sort of forget everything you’ve been taught in life, that being poor is terrible shame, that you should hide it, never show it to anybody. To go beyond that, and ask a stranger for money. Go ahead and try it, you’ll see that it is almost as if you had to hurt yourself physically.

 

And of course,  there are people who want to take money from you, in dishonest way, yes, there are those people as well.

 

But I choose to give her money.

 

I ask „well how much is the fuel“.

 

She says „it is 160 per liter, and minimum is 3 liters at a nearby station“.

 

I reach for my wallet, and give her 500.

 

„I will give you all my data, my name, my address, my ID card number. Tell me how to find you, to give the money back to you“.

 

I go „no need“, and walk away.

 

Then, of course, I start thinking.

 

What if she really tricked me. I must be really stupid. „Guess I must be dumb.“ I cannot tell it to anyone, I am soooo ashamed. But I did it out of best intention, what if she was really in trouble? But please, her story is sooooo shallow, like it’s so difficult you run out of fuel and that you do not have any money in your pocket, c’mon, these days it happens all the time, even to the best of us. And she made such a drama out of it, like her story was „oooo, I’m dying“. But then again, maybe it was genuine, she overreacted because it has never happened to her before, you know – it’s always stressful if something bad happens to you for the first time.  I mean, she even pushed the car herself, give her a break. And on and on, in that whirlpool, I sink deeper and deeper in the state of self-loathing and despise. And why? Because I wanted to do something good. Something is really wrong with this world.

 

And today, I go out from work to buy me some lunch, and I hear „excuse me“, and I see a familiar face.

 

And my face turns into a big smile, all over my head :-)

 

You see, if I never saw her again, doing the same thing, I would be wondering.

 

Is she, or isn’t she“.

 

And now I am sure.

 

She is.

 

Oh yes, she is.

 

But it doesn’t hurt.

 

In fact, it is liberating.

 

 

Aside

QUESTION OF THE DAY

IF SUPERMAN COULD DIE, WOULD HIS COFFIN BE MADE OF DIAMOND?

If Superman could die[1], would his coffin be made of diamond?

Not diamondS, like a jewelry that one can wear at an award-winning ceremony.

I mean 1 diamond, 1 big, giant, single piece of diamond. You see what I mean?

Diamond of that volume is probably very rare. Maybe it does not even exist on this planet, so it is even rarer. Superman’s friends would have to be very resourceful, but I’m sure if anyone can do it, it has to be them. They’d have to ask around, pull their strings, send informants to all the corners of the galaxy. How do you communicate with those contacts? Telephone? Radio? Skype maybe? Beats me. Imagine those phone (or appropriate type of communication) bills, they must be huge, man.

What color would the coffin be? I have an image of a pale pink diamond in my head. I don’t mean to disrespect Superman’s masculinity, god forbid. I find pale colors very sad, maybe just because they seem like old, worn-out, time-stained versions of the bright, vivid ones, I don’t know. And pale pink leads in that group. Pale pink looks like aging depressive person that is slowly fading away. Sadness encolored. Sadness – embodied coffin embodying Superman. Not in technicolor, but in pale pink version, for extra – solemn feel. Also fairly rare to find, so there you have it, suitable for Superman’s coffin.

Transparent diamond[2] wouldn’t do – there has to be a little something to blur Superman’s dead body a bit. We don’t want people to see Superman’s wrinkled face, or body tortured by sickness, or just old body. Remember what happened with his ratings when he was evil? No, thank you. Somebody’s dead body being exposed to others falls into category „indecent“ (even in clothes, not naked). I mean, he should be recognizable, we should be able to say it’s him, but not entirely openly dead in front of us.

Maybe it’s just my culture-induced fear of dying speaking. We are educated in that way, mothers cover our eyes when there are scenes of bodies on TV. When we pass by car accidents, they tell us not to look in that direction. Death, dying, it is something not pretty and should be avoided at any cost. And what’s up with those open coffins at funerals anyway? Let the dead have their solemnity, and stay in our memory, where it is nice and warm. Don’t show them like some chef d’oeuvre on a plate at some fancy Marina Abramović type of „event“. Besides, there has to be a touch of mystery in death of Superman, even though his boat fare is the same as the next guy’s.

Speaking of boat fares, would he be paying it to Earth’s deities? Or some cosmic ones? Or it is a stupid, obsolete question, because Earth’s deities = cosmic deities? If not, maybe we should pay respect to his Krypton deities? Um, that is a very touchy subject. I believe all of Earth’s governments should work on that. Everybody should declare a truce until that question is resolved. We should work in unison, cooperate, invest the best human potential there is, lock them in a room until they come up with a solution.

Unless otherwise requested by the man himself, I think he should be buried here, on Earth. After all, he did so much for us, and I think he did it because he loved us, so I guess he wouldn’t mind being buried here. Would he leave a testament, last will in written? Or, he leaves us with all his possessions, material and moral, that we live on his principles? And where do you think should be his grave? Maybe in the city center, in some square in the middle of everything. On the other hand, maybe in the Himalaya – you know, he’s Superman, he always felt a bit lonely on Earth, with humans, who are totally different from him. Everybody says it is surreal in the Himalaya, so, it could be the right place for him.

And how about his funeral shoes? Should they be made of carton, as proper dead body’s shoes? Imagine that request to the cobbler, “Listen: we need red boots, that look like socks a bit, but they’re boots, red, like the fires of Avalon, for a deceased dignitary, size 56… pronto!!!”

Ai, so many questions, so little time…


[1] Like really die; let’s not count kryptonite, that would be cheating. On the other hand, let’s not forget it completely, because that is the proof that Superman can die.

[2] Transparent as in „diamond of no colour“. Yes, I know, even coloured diamonds are transparent, but at least they have sort of a blur, created by the colour.

Business Man and his 500 RSD Profit Potential

Couple of weeks ago, I went to the green market. It was weekend, I was minding my own business, thinking whether to buy potato at this stand, or maybe at that stand, and how about that other stand? I couldn’t yet decide, so, I went to find something else, taking a shortcut behind some counters, at the back of the green market. There is like a sidewalk, not particularly frequent, but still, there are passersby. And I witnessed a scene: a man, Gipsy, Tzigane, Roma, took some boots from the dumpster.  The boots were I think just thrown away, a moment before (otherwise, someone else would have already taken them). From what I could tell, they were in pretty good shape for thrown away boots; knee-high, wedges type of heels, leathery modern female boots. I think he even saw when their previous owner threw them away, he was walking along this sidewalk, saw somebody throw them away, and immediately saw his opportunity. His experienced eye caught this potential for business. I saw him in the moment he was taking them from the dumpster; he picked them up, continued walking his way, at the same time checking them out.  I heard some of his acquaintances mocking him for the boots, I couldn’t quite make out what exactly they said, but the tone was determining enough, they were making fun, but not of him, they were just fooling around (they cannot make fun of him, as I’m sure they’d do the same thing, if only they had the same chance). He replied to them something like “why not, they are good boots”. As he was already behind me, I heard somebody else asking him “how much are they?”, and immediately he answered “500 RSD[1]”. Just like that, without wasting too much time, on the go. That is a business man: quick scan, forming the price based on experience, immediate response, seizing the opportunity on both ends of the process, taking risks. Entrepreneur, smooth operator, he knows the market like the back of his pocket.


[1] 500 RSD = ca 5 €

The Omen

Speaking of omens:

On an ordinary day, I received an envelope, from across the ocean, with a greeting card inside. The card said "Happy, Happy N.Y.". It had an interesting stamp that I wanted to keep. So I started carefully opening the envelope...

 

...and then, a terrible, terrible accident.

 

And now, super cool Gregory Peck ain't that cool anymore.

 

Honestly, I do believe in coincidence. But this is such a wonderful story though.

Remnants of Reminiscence

Today is Wednesday, and on Monday morning, I was on my way here and there, and I saw an unusual sight:

 

Remnants of Reminiscence

Leaves have fallen from the trees to the pavement. They were pressed on it by walking feet. Then, there was some rain, and the pavement was dirty. Rain stopped, pavement dried, wind blew the leaves away. The only thing that remained is the outline of the leaves, made by a strange chemical reaction, which I cannot explain.

 

They are not there, but I see them. So they must be there. But they are not. Where are they? Does it matter, because in theory they were already dead before they touched the ground? So it is not them. It is, but not quite, it is just their shape, imprinted into pavement, probably next rain will wash it away. But they exist, in the form of the shape. But does it matter? Yes, of course it matters. It is such a beautiful sight.  All my life I have longed for my very own wabi-sabi. I even pretended I had it. Then, time has passed, I was doing some other things, and I forgot about it. And on Monday morning, it was there.  

  

Remnants of Reminiscence: Instant Spirit Fossils.

I passed by that spot this morning, and of course they weren’t there (there was some rain between then and now). I thought of taking a picture, but of what? Empty pavement? The place where once was a drawing of a leaf? No, don’t be silly.

Vienna and Vienna

To Vienna!!

The way I see it, there are 2 cities. No, there is one city that is wearing a mask and a costume, and another one that is real but hiding.  I change my statement from first sentence – there is only 1 city with 2 faces (like ancient gods).

The face in mask and costume is ready for carnival: carnival of tourists. Carnival of people ready to spend more or less money: either fancy hand bag to be worn across the arm, while the arm is being crooked in the elbow area, almost as if it were broken; or in cheap retail chains, so that when they go back to their poor countries, they can pretend they went “shopping” (count me in that second category).

It is this crowded all the time.

They all are in their best clothes, because Vienna demands it. It is such a place. It feels like going to formal family lunch to part of your family that is rich and lives in an old building, that smells of old money (you know the smell that old buildings have, you enter and immediately you feel a gush of cold air from the cellar area, that brings that specific smell, is it mould or something?). So you never feel quite comfortable when you go to visit them. You are used to the building where you live, with many many buildings around it that look exactly the same, huge, tall buildings made of concrete and steel, and sometimes even asbestos. Your mother makes you wash your hair especially for that occasion, you have to wear a white shirt with navy blue skirt or pants, or stuff like that. You have to behave very solemnly, if there is such a word; if not, it should be invented for this occasion. Vienna: lots and lots of tourists. Oh, I keep forgetting, I’m one of them.  Or should I say:  one of us.  We are like city invaders. We go to tourist places, in Vienna it is Hofburg palace, Naturhistorisches Museum, Prater Park, Kärntner Strasse, Stephansdom, Schönbrunn Park  (actually, we don’t  have time nor enough money to go inside all of those; we just go in front, and maybe around it). Beautiful places. Travel guides drag us around because we want to see. We think we’re interested. If we go to restaurants we ask for Wiener Schnitzel, what else. Apfel Strudel. We try not to think about how much money we spend on coffees and fast food. We buy souvenirs like key chains, fridge magnets and coffee cups (“made in omnipresent  china”). We try to find out which Mozart kugeln are the real Mozart kuglen (the ones with green filling or the ones with brown filling?? I still do not know.).

THESE kinds of buildings.

Maybe it’s because everything looks totally different from where I grew up.  In Vienna, as you walk around and enter into buildings, everything seems to be… for the lack of better word I have to say very old. Very old, but very well maintained. And that is strange to me, because, where I come from, nothing is very well maintained (everything is just mended, not to fall apart, that’s it). Even intercom buzzers are shiny and polished. And then, all the stores are closed after 18/19h.Rarely locals are out, so most of people you see are your kind, tourist kind. We glide trough streets in search of something we cannot name, we think we will find it just around next corner, or if not there, then after first next corner. Maybe that elusive thing is what they call “unique tourist experience”.

This kind of little scene is to be found around every corner in Vienna.

See those 2 little men made of metal in this window? Adorable.

So we change tactics and go to a museum.

A Lady we met at a museum :-)

I find 8, or was it 12 Euros, and give it to the good guy behind the museum counter. There, I see stuffed animals and minerals from all over the old Empire. I see old crowns of kings and queens, the robes they wore at crowning ceremonies, their jewelry, and swords. I see parts of the Holy Cross. I see their residencies, dining tables, salons where they had meetings, or where they were just sitting, contemplating about ordinary aristocracy things. Then I see the famous “Kiss”. I see other works of the same author, and works of authors from the same period (and older periods). Portraits. Portraits are looking at me. Painted eyes of dead people are looking at me. I imagine them, portraitist and portrayed, in the studio. They are freezing (you know how artists never had money for heating and stuff, it is 19th century). Models are shivering. They are sick with flu, tuberculosis, malnutrition. Then, artists, they were popular with the ladies. They have sex with many of them, so they pass STD from one to another. You know, it is Vienna at the turn of the centuries. Hip times, times of milk and honey of fun, „divine decadence“, lalala. People with many health problems. They die, sometimes leaving their work unfinished. I see couple of that type of portraits. They all have white faces, with make-up red cheeks and lips. That way they look even worse.  They look like corpses with make-up.  That kind of faces look at me. Did I say “haunt me”? I meant look at me. Add glass eyes of stuffed animals to that. A bear, an owl, there’s even a dinosaur made of metal.

Beautiful, spooky places.

From the room of the hotel I am staying in, I hear little birdies sing. I cannot see them, but I hear them. Now, Vienna is the place where you are not sure if you are not the only one who hears them. So I’m thinking, “maybe I’m the only one who hears them, really, maybe the real Vienna is showing itself, only to me”. I’m thinking “I must be special”. And I feel very special.  But then I walk out of the hotel and there isn’t a single bird in sight. So I tell myself that I must be imagining stuff. Yeah, that must be it. „Silly me“.

"I'll have your local beer, please."

I walk around. I stop at traffic light, wait for my light to go green. I look around. Again, something is strange, even though I cannot quite put my finger on it. And a minute later, I realize that the inscription on the tramway is in my native language, which is totally different from Vienna’s native language. The inscription is to remind you of some very important medical check-ups, otherwise you will die stupidly/in vain. It is said that around 14% of Vienna citizens are of the same origin as me. And, as they come to this country in search of better life, they just work, they sometimes do not learn host language at all. So Vienna is caring about them, and provides important information in their own native language.  But I can read it too, so I feel like Vienna is caring about me too! Again, I feel very important!

I said I was shocked with that tramway, I didn't manage to take it's picture. Don't be sad, here, have a picture of another means of transport around downtown Vienna area.

To be honest, we did stumble upon less fancy neighborhoods, with no tourists, we didn’t go just around museums and stuff. Those parts of town are also OK. In parts where we wandered, you could see small restaurants/cafes, and inside men with big mustache, listening to music from the old country, either theirs or their parents’, hopefully not thinking how the move to Vienna was the wrong thing to do. I can relate to that, as I have already said, I too am from the country of gastarbeiters, and I too had relatives in this beautiful city, thanks to which I had endless supplies of chocolate (and their warn, thorn, stained wardrobe and broken electrical appliances; but the chocolates were new).

I think this must be some kind of time machine.

Vienna keeps looking at you secretly, like somebody stalking you, and when you turn to see if it is really somebody stalking you, you just see a movement, like somebody hid quickly behind the wall, so you never see this somebody, and you can never be sure if it is a real somebody, or just a nobody.

A keyhole in the middle of the wall?? Mystery, I tell you, only in Vienna.

All in all, it was a wonderful experience, and we’d gladly do it all over again.

A 360° to bring you back home.