DON’T LOOK BACK

If someone shouts, ‘don’t look’ or ‘don’t look back,’ the natural instinct is to turn and have a good look. When the Sea God Poseidon caught a glimpse of Medusa, it was a disaster. She was a beautiful young priestess with golden curls falling over her pretty shoulders and served in the temple of Athena […]

Message From a Cactus

The other night we received a message from a cactus and I laid in bed unable to sleep thinking about it. The cactus stands in the narrow passage at the back of our house in Cadaqués in an old pot among several plants we don’t always remember to water. Who do they belong to? They […]

The First Movie Ever Made

The first movie ever made was Le Voyage Dans la Lune (A Trip to the Moon) by the French pioneer Georges Méliès in 1902. He had shot more than 100 short films to prepare himself for the 14-minute one-reeler and left audiences aghast with a rocket voyaging into space, circling planets and alien life forms […]

THE TIMES THEY ARE A-CHANGIN’

In 1964 I was sixteen. I bought a black rollneck sweater and a pair of Cuban heeled boots from Anello & Davide in Coven Garden. I read The Outsider (L’Étranger) by Albert Camus. I learned how to talk with a cigarette balanced in the corner of my mouth and heard The Times They Are A-Changin’ […]

SALVADOR DALÍ AND RAQUEL WELCH

Salvador Dalí and Raquel Welch had absolutely nothing in common. He admired beautiful women without wishing to own them and saw nothing in their curves and charms to excite his surreal and original mind. Still, Dalí and Raquel were put together in 1965 as a publicity stunt by film director Richard Fleischer when he was […]

SHE BELONGS TO ME

When Paul McCartney was asked in HMV’s ‘My Inspiration’ campaign to name the songwriter who had most inspired him, he chose Bob Dylan and said his favourite track was She Belongs To Me. It was an incisive choice. As young guys – before they were famous – they must have had similar experiences with those […]

THE INCURIOUS EYE

The incurious eye misses the obvious, the subtle, the subtext. The incurious eye is glazed in a cataract of ignorance and indifference. The incurious eye is neither blind nor myopic. It is empty. If there were a God his great gift to mankind would have been curiosity. Curiosity invented fire, tools, hunting and gathering. Nuclear […]

WHAT IS CAPITALISM?

What is capitalism? The corner shop baker selling his bread is capitalism. The rock singer uploading music to Spotify is capitalism. The taxi driver with his own car taking fares is capitalism. I write books. A book that sells for £10 costs £2 to print; the publisher takes £3 and the bookshop £4. That leaves […]

THE TRAGIC MYTH OF THE ANGELUS OF MILLET

In his essay The Tragic Myth of The Angelus of Millet, Salvador Dalí interprets Jean-Francois Millet’s 1859 painting of a farmer in the fields with his wife as a depiction of male castration in the shadow of female sexuality and death. Was this Dalí being playful? Surreal? Provocative? Or was there more to Millet’s work than […]

DALÍ AND PICASSO

In the land of small minds and minor talent, Dalí and Picasso were giants. They were men with visions wider than the horizon and the stamp they left on the 20th century remains indelible. Twenty years older and already the toast of Paris, Picasso one spring morning in 1928 opened the door to his studio in […]

TORY WAR ON HUMAN RIGHTS

The Tory war on human rights will be raging across the tabloid press in the build up to the next general election. The Daily Mail and its partners in false news will be convincing voters that Britain is hostage to the European Convention on Human Rights and hope they fall for the deceit. What is […]

BOB DYLAN AND BRIGITTE BARDOT

Bob Dylan and Brigitte Bardot were outriders, rule breakers, iconoclasts who became icons of the sixties revolution. When Dylan in 1965 played Like a Rolling Stone at the Newport Folk Festival, this electric tidal wave was a manifesto, his resolve to take folk, country and jazz out of their boxes and meld them into the […]

THE ANTI-TAX AVOIDANCE DIRECTIVE

The Anti-Tax Avoidance Directive adopted by the European Union on 20 June 2016 sent a cold chill up the spines of the rich, elite and powerful who own and run Britain. The directive setting out rules against tax avoidance within the internal market went further on 25 October 2016 by adding an anti-abuse measure to […]

JEREMY HUNT HAS BLOOD ON HIS HANDS

Jeremy Hunt has blood on his hands that will never come off and a look of anguish in his eyes as his lifetime goal slips into the abyss.  Like the Apostles with the gospel of Jesus, he set out to fulfil Thatcher’s vision to destroy the NHS while those other self-serving heretics – May, Johnson, Truss and […]

WHY THE RICH ALWAYS WANT MORE

There is a good reason why the rich always want more. Money provides status and connections. Big money makes you feel big, bigger than you are. The rich open doors for each other. Rich people don’t know and don’t want to know about the lives of poor people, their bills, their empty fridges and pockets, […]

LIVING IN A PARALLEL UNIVERSE

People in the United States are living in a parallel universe. Half the population believes the last presidential election was stolen from Donald Trump through massive voter fraud organised by a Deep State cabal of Antifa (anti-fascists), BLM (Black Lives Matter), communists and extremist Democrats led by Hillary Clinton who runs a paedophile ring from the […]

THE DAY GEORGE HARRISON CLIMBED THE WALL

  The day George Harrison climbed the wall at Salvador Dalí’s surreal summer house didn’t take place for another week and during those seven days a large number of red roses crossed the village. It began one sultry afternoon in 1971 when Dalí returned to Cadaqués with Carlos Lozano after inspecting the geodesic dome being […]

WE DON’T KNOW WHO WE ARE

You. Me. Your neighbour. The postman. We don’t know who we are. You will never hear a Scotsman say he is British. Nor a Welshman. Catholics from Northern Ireland say they are Irish. Protestants say they are Loyal British Unionists to avoid saying what they are, Irish. We are not sure where we live. Great […]

JUST BE YOURSELF

People may tell you to just be yourself, but what they usually mean is ‘just be like me.’   It is human nature to believe we have made good choices and our children should set off down the same path. The reverse is also true – clever sons rue the errors of their fathers and […]