Welcome back, readers. Or perhaps it is you who should be welcoming me back.
You see, I’ve just returned from a bank-balance defying two week vacation in Amsterdam and Paris, where I gorged myself on wine, food, wine, culture, wine, art, wine and wine.
Without boring the ever-loving shit out of you with intricate details about the museums and sites I visited, or sharing my hideously overexposed holiday snaps, I’ll get straight to the bit where I run my mouth and complain about the worst part of all of those beautiful places:
People who take pictures of pictures.
If you’ve ever been a tourist in a foreign land, you’ll know that keen yearning to be perceived as anything other than a tourist, an illusion instantly shattered when you open your stupid trap to say something, anything, and proceed to orally rape your host’s language.
There are some members of this visiting horde who embrace their ‘otherness’, who travel atop open-topped buses, keep their foreign monies in genital-brushing fanny packs, and follow the raised umbrellas of fatigued tour guides from attraction to attraction. But I have no quibble with these discordantly-dressed, sun-cap bedecked twats.
Even though I just called them ‘twats’.
It’s nothing personal.
My fresh, hot hatred is aimed solely at those dick-licking shit gibbons that stand in line for hours to enter acclaimed museums, walls laden with the efforts of hundreds of artists over sometimes thousands of years, so that they can take a fucking photo and then quickly move on. They walk, from ground-breaking masterpiece, to era-defining opus snapping each one in turn with their cellphones like it was nothing more than a QR code at a Coca Cola event.
And you know what else? It’s not just the smartphone dummies. The Nikon and Canon DSL ‘pro-sumers’ are even worse, because they do it with a special sense of entitlement.
They see, but they don’t look.
So what’s the big deal? What is my problem?
Surely by now, I should have accepted the nature of such horticulture (you can take a whore to culture, but you can’t make her think. Budum tish).
Even if you live in Paris, Amsterdam, Barcelona or London, it’s unlikely you’ll be able to really see and absorb every piece of art available. I get that. There’s just too much to see to spend time ‘appreciating’ every piece. You have other stuff to do… you know… your job, the latest season of GOT, hard drugs… that kind of thing.
But the one question I want to ask all these happy snappers, who force their way to the front of a crowd, frame up, hit ‘shoot’ and then piss off, is this:
“What are you going to do with all of these pictures of pictures?”
Do you really intend to inflict them on your nearest and dearest? All 600 of them?
Are you really going to pore over them one rainy Sunday afternoon and take in the subtle nuances of shading, brush stroke and composition that you didn’t pay attention to when you were actually in front of the real work?
Or are you just going to whack them all onto an external and then never look at them again?
In which case, was it worth it? To spend your precious time off standing in line for hours? To spend your precious cash on paying admission? To deal with the claustrophobic crowds of douche-monkeys, just so that you could show all of your Insta-lemmings that you were there, that you did see the handful of famous paintings you recall from your high school art lessons?
Even if, in seeing them, you didn’t really look?
Wouldn’t your time have been better spent in these vibrant, varied, incredible places doing stuff you actually like doing?
Did you know you could see better quality photos of these paintings by just Googling them?
Okay fine, so that was more like nine questions.
But you don’t see me going to any maths museums to take a lots of crappy photos of famous equations.