Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Cacophobia - Cacophilia

It can be argued that we've been genetically programmed through evolution to like certain things like lush fertile landscapes, babies, sugar, and sunshine. And to despise others: vermin, dead things, things that want to eat us, poisonous things, and things that resemble things that are dead, hungry, poisonous, etc. But then again we're not genetically programmed to love shoes, pet goldfish, vintage alarm clocks, jello, and very very small dogs. Or to detest power lines, pigeons, soap scum and wearing sandals with socks. So as incredibly adaptable creatures it should come as no surprise to find some of us showing warm fuzzy affection towards that which might at first seem ugly. And maybe even end up feeling a growing sense of fuzziness in ourselves without too much effort.



This really brings me back to my childhood when I wore a sweater I had hand-painted with sea creatures. Oh how I wish I still had that sweater to post here! I was completely obsessed with being a marine biologist and my young mind could not comprehend how much I would be made fun wearing my hand-drawn, plastic jewel bedecked sweater to school. How I would have killed to have this sea horse sweater:
Did I mention it has shoulder pads?

Small warm fuzzy social animals
 Rattus norvegicus 'Jimmy'

Despite their tendency to spread diseases through the carrying of parasites and nibbling on tender extremities,
rats were first kept as pets nearly 200 years ago when someone discovered they had the temperament of very very small dogs. Bred into domestication they are now just as clueless to survival outside human habitation as a retarded poodle. The above specimen is my very own pet vermin. Despite being a dirty snowball white, smelly, greasy, having devil red eyes and testicles the size of his head, he's pretty much family.
Oh and we have two pet rats and he's by far the prettier one.

Wonders of nature

Poor ugly fish. If it weren't for visually prejudiced humans and their big lights shinning in the ocean depths no one would've known how grotesque these fish are. A very young man recently referred to them as mean, apparently because they trap and feed on other animals. So a message to all you creatures out there: if you hunt to survive make sure you are really really pretty or you will be hated by small children everywhere.
But to all nerdy folk out there, present company included, all that is needed to make the grotesque into something beauty is the awe of discovering an organism so unique, unimaginably weird and just plain f#cked up! That and the fact that something that is an extreme of anything, even hideousness, has a tendency to have something of a cult following.

Art and Creation

From the listing: "We refer to these primitive pottery pieces which are probably school projects as "uglies". We love them for their uniqueness and can never understand how a mother could part with them."
I thought it would be totally inappropriate to label anyone's handmade art as ugly, even though God knows it's out there, but this vintage pottery piece is a perfect example of what most artists have experienced: being blinded by the power of creation. I've been drawing since I could hold a pen in my hand and have luckily kept a lot of it so I can attest to the atrocious stuff we hold on to. As much as we're crack whores for anything beautiful we are even more influenced by our small acts of influence on the material world. 

"Beauty is in the eye of the beholder" -Margaret Wolfe Hungerford, author of über corny Victorian romance novels.

1 comment:

  1. Love that mouse i have 2 ferrets! That fish is also pretty nifty! .... and creepy lol.... i can see a deep sea diver running into one ... ewwww