Sunday, May 13, 2007
Archetypical male stupidity
The camera often lies. What are we seeing here? And why is it interesting?
For instance, looking at this astonishing picture, my first thought is not to ask myself whether the photographer put the doggy equivalent of Spanish fly on the dog's belly. Or hamburger.
To be honest, when I looked at this photo, I laughed to think of the shock he seems to be about to inflict upon himself. How nasty of me! Why do I think that is funny?
Would I find it equally funny if the contortionist in question was not a dog but a man? (Not as much! I wouldn't believe that he was going to follow through). Suppose it was a tom cat? Do I like cats better than dogs? Having read excerpts from Josh's clever and amusing book PET HATES, I'm not sure I want to admit to any animal preferences.
Dogs --and cats-- chase their tails for fun, don't they? They even catch their tails. Why do they do that? Doesn't it hurt when the triumphant jaws snap shut on a tail?
In real life and in art (or in our literary endeavours) do we all do the equivalent of chasing our tails? Do we repeatedly set out to bite ourselves in the butt (metaphorically speaking) even after we've done it once, and ought to have learned not to make the same painful mistake again?