Thursday, 21 February 2008

Dry rivers and sweaty backs

I read in the paper yesterday that Venice is high and dry on a low tide, the gondolas sitting on silt. Well it seems like Cambridge has come out in sympathy because the river at Mill Lane is down to a trickle and the punts are all perched on a huge bank of mud that has built up in front of the sluice gate. The serpentine part of the river on Coe Fen is almost dry. It is all very strange.

I went to my studio after joining the gym. I hate gyms. The rows of treadmills, cross-trainers and sweaty backs fill me with horror. It is not that I object to excercise. I like excercise. It is the mind-numbing boredom that I hate and the constant feeling that there are any number of things I could be doing instead. Nice things. Important things. But though I hate the gym, I hate flab even more. Flab on a skinny man is a sorry sight.

I worked on my paintings a little. I tried to be bold. You need to be prepared to destroy a painting I think; to ruin it completely. It should be able to go anywhere. Actually, I think that is true of a novel as well, though when I paint I do not have a contract or an agent or publisher expecting results. Which is probably just as well.

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