Giles was a cartoonist best known for his work for the British newspaper the Daily Express.
He drew mainly single but highly detailed panel, about British life.
I bought dozens of books in UK on ebay for nothing : he’s absolutely unknown outside of Great Britain because his “jokes” were often linked with British events. It’s now outdated, but what remains is so gorgeous that… I had to write about it. I’m thankful, in a way!
I admire him for his sense of space, light and scenery. There are often plenty of funny little details to look for. This gives you a special smile.
He invented a British family, and the star is “Grandma”.
I chose here three panels linked to bad weather. I love the three characters trying to hide from the cold wind in 1, the perspective and the wet road in 2, and the contrast of the guy sleeping and the rain outside in 3.
In a single drawing, you have a whole British mood. You will find plenty on Pinterest. Really, give it a try, watch his sense of image. This guy always knew where to put his camera…
Bloody rain! By Jove!
Le Baleinié is a French little book, a dictionnary of 454 INVENTED WORDS about “les tracas”, concerns and bothers and fusses. I offer some examples for you pleasure.
Azog : your right shoe laced up tighter than the left
Bahan : a simple word you always forget
Chouir : to act as if you didn’t get the splutter
Dadu : impolite noise the chair does when you sit on it
Miasliquer : to sit on your cat
Flomper : to gain pounds when after you stop smoking, and then keep the weight once you’re back on smoking
Grucinelle : space between you sock and the bottom of your trousers, in which an icy wind can blow
Igourie : the gift you have to “search first in the wrong pocket”
See? We have a whole book of these little concerns, in France.
C’est son chapeau!
Yeaaah we’ve all been there, right? You’re in church, at a funeral. You noticed a really ridiculous hat on some old aunt’s head, then you eye-contact with your sister who saw that you saw. You’re done : you get the giggles (is this the correct way to say it?), you can not stop laughing. Go outside and burst, you silly both!
Beware, because it could happen to you in an important meeting!
Attack of the giggles has a purpose : it’s an urgent need to end solemnity.
It’s a dial, and the giggleneedle touches a red slice of it, you’re done. Dring!
It’s a tool :
You are maybe also a ridicule feathered hat owner, you know? Who could be giggling out about what you do, and why? Where are you arrogant, intensely solemn or ridiculous? Examine your so strong recent decisions… Mmhhh?
Thanks for reading!
Almost all of these “Self Help” books tell the same thing : be strong, wake up early, don’t look in the past, find new goals, move forward, be mindful, accept the reality, be happy, smile, be positive, have hope, succeed, quit toxic people, surround with good energy friends, build very high expectations and reach your goals, love yourself, you’re perfect…
L’injonction au bonheur / Injunction to be happy, mhh?
I noticed, though, that the most interesting books tells us something else :
- It’s always more complex
- You are not perfect and you will never be and the path is complicated
- The contrary of these “injunctions” is probably true too
Voilà. It’s a game you can activate by yourself. Find the Opposite Course books. Or borrow the typical ones, and, just for fun, try to fight them.
- Being weak is useful and slows you down from grey or wrong goals
- Being positive “on demand” is just impossible because you have no cursor for that.
- Quitting “toxic people” is not easy, and they are not as-toxic-as-that, it’s maybe a wrong opinion, and maybe they can help you in an oblique way.
- If you expect too high you may just don’t reach it, and you’ll despair…
Can you REALLY wake up and smile? Every single morning? Don’t you look like a freaky frog?
Allez! Have a nice splendid day!
The only thing you can count on, it’s the change
Small talks at work, we all do that. At least we try : mini-gossips, weather complains, anecdotes, little booboos and week-end failures, right? It’s friendly!
But are you lucky enough to know a colleague who could do “smaller talks”, which are like wordwinks? I do. And that’s delightful.
She passes by and says to me very seriously, without any sight of slowing down :
Then she’s gone.
Yeahhhh. You’ve been there, I hope! I often open my mouth, as expected, like very scandalized. That’s all. That’s enough.
One pleasure is to notice the slight wtf-embarrassment of other people.
And one another is to prepare a strict, mean revenge, for her appreciation. I could go beside her one hour later, and say with a strong belief :
“How did you dare??”
So there. Bim.
She’d frown and answer : “Because!”, then will push the cork : “HA!”. That’s all. After lunch, in the stairs, she’d add : “You had it coming!”. Ohhhh!
Well, you sometimes have to find your mate!
Thanks for reading! Bonne journée!
In the fifties, a sound engineer recorded the sound of a screaming man and put it into the film he was working on. In a scene from the film, soldiers are lost in a swamp in the Everglades, and one of them is bitten and dragged underwater by an alligator.
“Aaaahhh!”. Well, here it is :
The guy filed the tape under the name : “Man getting bit by an alligator, and he screamed”. So there.
Years after, a sound designer called Ben Burtt put the sound into a Star Wars movie (on a falling Stormtrooper), in Indiana Jones also. Since then, other sound designers began to put it in movies, and it became a joke.
If you want to know more, Google “Wilhelm Scream”. You’ll find another scream, and some YouTube clips with the best use of it. Ain’t it perfect?
Thanks for reading!
Who were Les Précieuses? A few ladies in some salons, in the 17th Century, under the reign of Louis XIV, king of France.
What is it all about? A very affected way of using words, with some quirky metaphors and periphrasis, banishment of “bad words”, a strong will to be original and precious. An overstatement of elegance and exquisiteness…
Of course it sounded pretentious (Molière satirized the Précieuses in his play Les Précieuses ridicules.), but it’s funny to watch it today. And it can be tool to work with.
- A hand : “moving beauty”
- Teeth : “mouth furniture”
- Of course the eyes became “the mirrors of the soul”
There’s a French Dictionary of preciousity here : http://www.miscellanees.com/s/somaize.htm
Some idioms, in France, come from this period. We say “un billet doux” (“a sweet note”) for a love letter, and “perdre son sérieux” (“to lose one’s seriousness”) when you begin to laugh!
What are the territories, today, which will maybe considered as “Précieuse” in the future?
It can be a very little but useful tool in a brainstorming session. Stop everything. Gather what you already got, and make it Précieuse.
A common sense says that “less is beautiful”. So what if “more is beautiful… in another way”?
What can you MAKE précieuse? Words, of course. Design? Objects? Art? Poetry?
Thanks for reading!
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