Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Fit Three, Pages 20 and 21 as a Spread … a snark in the grass!
Of course, we all know that paranoia is the distilled essence of our postlapsarian times, simply observe this page spread heaped high with its visually corrosive effluvia. We pride ourselves on our supposed ownership of paranoia, the quintessential modernist food additive, the favorite poison of Franz Kafka and Bruce Wayne alike, but such is not the case. We, who live in an era which will eventually be considered the final perfection of the very concept of an ancien regime, must admit that paranoia was also a favorite condiment on Victorian drawing tables.
The Baker, whom we have conclusively demonstrated to be a pistorian doppelganger of Lewis Carroll, has spent these entire two pages wringing his hands in a semi-subjunctive funk over the menace of Boojums. He sees Boojums in his salad, he sees Boojums in his railway carriage, he sees ‘em in his soap dish and he sees ‘em in his sewing kit. Oddly enough, the one place where the Baker never sees Boojums is in the here and now and it is this very suspense which oppresses our souls! Suspense and paranoia, the perfect Victorian bogeymen, nay, Boojums! It was Lewis Carroll’s master stroke to introduce paranoia, dread, fear and loathing into English nonsense verse, into the very inner sanctum of Jolly Olde Escapism but there you have it. Facts are facts, however unpleasant!
I usually pepper my remarks with links to pertinent illustrations and quotations but I dare not this week … I think someone … or something is following me … trying to catch me unawares … mustn’t furnish ‘em with a cybernetic trail to my underground bunker. Remember, trust no one … there are Boojums in the woodpile!