Friday, December 14, 2012

Some Guy Name Geoffrey Raymond

It's fun to Google yourself.  If you ever want to Google me, my advice is to type in "Geoffrey Raymond artist" but without the quotes.  I don't fully understand how the quotes work, but something changes.  The version with quotes is a less satisfying experience.

I hadn't done a full search in quite a while, but I was submitting my name for consideration as part of a public art project in Troy and so I took a look.  I was so impressed with myself it made me want to listen to "Well Respected Man" by The Kinks.  Oddly, they're poorly represented on the MOG.  I had to settle for "Waterloo Sunset."

Dirty old river, must you keep rolling
Flowing into the night
People so busy, makes me feel dizzy
Taxi light shines so bright
But I don't need no friends
As long as I gaze on waterloo sunset
I am in paradise

Every day I look at the world from my window
But chilly, chilly is the evening time
Waterloo sunsets fine

Terry meets julie, waterloo station
Every friday night
But I am so lazy, don't want to wander
I stay at home at night
But I don't feel afraid
As long as I gaze on waterloo sunset
I am in paradise

Every day I look at the world from my window
But chilly, chilly is the evening time
Waterloo sunsets fine

Millions of people swarming like flies round waterloo underground
But terry and julie cross over the river
Where they feel safe and sound
And the don't need no friends
As long as they gaze on waterloo sunset
They are in paradise

Waterloo sunsets fine


I can understand uber-bands like the Beatles, Stones, Led Zeppelin, Metallica playing coy with internet radio.  But The Kinks?  C'mon, man -- put your big-boy pants on.*  I'm listening to Lola now, and it's some raggedy-assed, whiny emo version.  Don't these people realize I'm a busy man?  Frustrated, I'll be switching to The Zombies in a moment.

Anyway, all of this brings us to the guy who painted this:


It was painted in 1959 and can be seen in the Museum of South Somerset.  In England, obviously, although beyond that I haven't a clue.

Titled: "Early Bird, Westland Wagtail, 1918."

Painter:  Geoffrey Raymond.

Me?  I'd like to have this painting, but I don't appreciate the guy clogging up my Google results.  And don't even get me started on the professor at UC Santa Barbara who also shares my name.  That dude is everywhere, with papers with titles like "Navigating Epistemic Landscapes: Acquiescence, Agency and Resistance in Responses to Polar Questions."

Really?  That's the title of the paper?
Really.
That would be an outstanding name for a painting.
A little long, perhaps.
Yeah, but still...

It's a lovely painting, isn't it?  Fast forwarding to the Second World War, I recently stumbled upon a map of London circa 1940/41 with little red dots marking where German bombs hit during the Blitz.

Brief pause while I go back and see if I can find it...

Oh look!  Here it is:

Honestly, can you imagine?

Me?  I sit around and complain about things like why more bars in Troy don't stock normal beers.  I would be ill-suited for handling six months of blanket bombing.   For the record, Troy is the kind of town where you go into a bar and of the twenty beers the bar is offering you've only heard of three of them.  I would describe it as the city's greatest failing.

* The line "put your big-boy pants on" is attributed to Kobe Bryant in recent response to Pau Gasol's complaining about something or other.  Did you happen to see the Knicks slap the Lakers across the mouth last night?  It got exciting late in the game, but only because Carmelo Anthony had to leave the game.  Otherwise it was a total beat down.

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