A little while ago I posted some sketches of a cheetah getting fit. I felt there was a poem in him somewhere, but didn't know what. This is it...
Peter the cheetah was flabby and old
And grey was mixed into his fur with the gold.
Rita the cheetah was sassy and young;
When Peter saw Rita he acted unstrung.
He stared in the mirror and started to fret;
He rushed to the gym where he worked up a sweat.
He got onto Twitter and posted a tweet:
"Peter the cheetah thinks Rita is sweet."
Maturer Alita, a cheetah of charm
Was gracious and witty and clever and calm.
She watched from a distance and secretly laughed
To see an old cheetah behaving so daft.
Rita said, "Peter, you've gotta be told.
Stop tweetin'. You're beaten, moth-eaten, and old.
Your tweet is unsuitable. Act more inscrutable.
I'll never want you - the fact is immutable."
Peter went down to the river to lie
In the mud on the bank and wished he could die.
A shadow fell over him. It was Alita's.
He looked up and saw her - a queen among cheetahs.
"Peter," she said with a hint of a purr,
"I love the particular shade of your fur.
If you'd care to address me, don't bother with Twitter -
A hand-written letter is better and fitter."
What happened next? It's easy to guess.
Peter said something - Alita said "yes".
Flaming with passion, their whiskers a-tingle
They went to the altar. Rita's still single.
- Gay McKinnon
- It don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing. Welcome to my blog about children's book illustration, poetry, animals, vegetables ... OK, maybe I should stop there. I’m an artist in Hobart, Tasmania. I've just illustrated 'The Smallest Carbon Footprint in the Land' by Anne Morgan, and am currently illustrating two picture books about traditional life in Sudan. If you'd like to see more, please visit my linked folio page, view my profile at The Australian Society of Authors, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you!
Thursday, May 12, 2011
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
Sunday, May 1, 2011
I was preparing a little rant about this latest apparent manifestation of political correctness when I decided to do some fact checking on Wikipedia, and discovered that the term ‘Common Era’ has been in use for centuries. In the past it was used interchangeably with the terms ‘Christian Era’ and ‘Vulgar Era’, both of which designated the same dating system. I also discovered that any clever remarks I’d been planning to make, such as: “Why don’t we also get rid of all the names of months and days that refer to Roman, Greek, and Germanic deities?” and “Why stop there – why not pivot history around an entirely different date?” have already been made by others. And was reminded that the world is and will always be a glorious mess, wherein no rule can or ever will be applied consistently, there will never be full consensus on any topic, and those who are locked in a bitter struggle over this one will probably look back in years to come and wonder whether it was worth all the angst.
So if you’ll excuse me, I think we should all stop fighting and come up with our own dating systems, and hereby present my own which is based on an event very close to my heart. I mean the dramatic switch in Australian cafes from drip filter coffee, which was common during the years BCE (Before Cappuccino Era) to that range of fancy milk-laden barista coffees that overwhelms us in the current era (ADSL, After Decaf Soy Latte, sometimes known as ADSL2+ or After Decaf Soy Latte with two sugars).
Do you ever yearn for the days when it didn’t take twenty minutes to get a cup of coffee? When coffee cost a dollar, instead of nearly five? When coffee sat in a pot on a hot plate and you could refill your cup as many times as you liked, at your leisure, without paying any more as you sat in a bakery, munching and studying and scribbling in the margins of your book? I was reminded of the terrible price we’ve paid for becoming a barista coffee society when I went to the Byron Bay Bluesfest over Easter (aka the Four-Day Break In March Or April, Or May Depending On Where You Live). There were no queues at the bar. Those who wanted booze bought tickets for beer or spirits, which they exchanged instantly for cans. But the coffee queues were interminable – and the product mostly air.
There is still a place where coffee is cheap, hot, immediate, strong and bottomless. It’s called the United States of America. Please, USA, don’t ever, ever change that.