I like to imagine that GofaDM offers reasonable value for money – it may not be up to much, but it is free. For this statement to be true, it is clearly important to ignore the additional burden on the mental health infrastructure of the world caused by consumption of this nonsense. I don’t even try to sell you anything (though cannot say the same for WordPress) except (perhaps) the hope that you will share at least a few of my (many) enthusiasms. I suppose there is the not terribly well hidden sub-text that I should be in charge (the natural successor to Charles) as a malign dictator and that, at the agreed signal, you will all rise up, seize the reins of power (which suggests we still measure political influence in horsepower, rather than Watts – the correct SI unit) and install me as world leader. However, for once this post will not be about my megalomania.
No, it struck me that after the last post (no bugles were harmed), readers may be concerned that I have abandoned the principles of thrift and good husbandry which have previously been the watchword of GofaDM and made it essential reading for all right-thinking folk. Good as Superbob proved to be – and it was excellent, recalling it is still making my smile two days later – how could I justify the cost of a One Day Travelcard for a trip to the flicks? (I hadn’t even seen a review, just a note that it was occurring in The Grauniad and had a feeling that it might appeal – or at least deserved my support.)
Fear not, gentle reader, I too worried about the value-for-money issue and so packed further cultural excursions into my day in town. I realised that I had an invite to a preview of the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition for the day in question – and as this was free (having already paid to be a Friend, always a slightly worrying transaction that smacks of loneliness) this could be added to my itinerary. The exhibition was very enjoyable – a few works I wouldn’t mind having at home, a few I’d object to taking up space in the wheelie bin and most that I could be fairly neutral about. If readers would like to gauge my taste, my favourite room had been hung my Jock MacFadyen RA (and if you can deduce anything useful from that, I may be willing to offer a small prize). I was also rather impressed by Tom Phillips’ Humament – clearly a man with time on his hands and a rather better idea as to what to do with it than yours truly (though I have just discovered that he’s been working on it for as long as I’ve been alive! That is impressive commitment).
Even with the RA in the mix, I still wasn’t convinced that I could justify the rail fare – but luckily, and rare among theatres, the Finborough has a Sunday matinée. As I have, once again, paid them to be my friend this was also free – so I spent the afternoon watching The One Day in the Year by Alan Seymour. I think this may be my first Australian play and jolly good it was (or should I have gone with bonzer?). Oddly, despite being set in 1960 in working-class Australia, it did contain a worrying number of elements which reminded me of my own childhood a generation later on the opposite side of the planet (not least, it used the same Bush radio with which I shared most of my formative years). As is now the case for all plays involving generational conflict, I also found myself drawing parallels with The Glass Menagerie – Tennessee Williams seems to have acquired a strange hold over some areas of my imagination since our Playdate together.
With a hat-trick of cultural events, I felt my duty to household economy was satisfied and so my day out could go ahead (as anyone reading GofaDM in sequence will already be aware). Given that this is how I relax, it is perhaps no surprise that I often find myself feeling a trifle enervated.