Tuesday, 19 May 2009

The ACADACADEMICS found themselves in hoots yesterday with the news that old pal Kevin Rowbotham had been forcibly expelled from the RCA for going 'beserk' at a crit. I guess it was the laugh of nostalgia, the days of Yosemite Sam (as we used to call him) charging around and ripping drawings off the wall might seem to be over, but I suppose it's a bit like Keef still smoking on stage, it is necessary we retain these images, they are, after all, those the students remember, and if we all turn in to a bunch of carers being kind will it really be any better for the world?
Speaking as somebody who is worried about this caring/animal husbandry role I remember Mike Russum coming to Oxford Brookes for us when Andrew Lane and I were  teaching second year long long ago. He went beserk too, and the crowds (of students) grew and grew. They loved it. Of course there were tears and misery and the rest too, but it was a hell of a spectacle. Unfortunately Her Majesties Inspectorate were in the school on the same day with clipboards and grey shoes. Andrew and I realized it was all going terribly terribly wrong, as the men from the ministry tried to peer through the crowd to note the next 'fucking idiot' and the next 'CUNT!' and the next defacing of drawings from our explosive guest. Luckily the head of school at the time, Chris Cross, a thoroughly urbane man, took the whole thing in his stride and I didn't lose that job until I wrote 'Bollocks!' as a comment on an essay. The essay was 'bollocks' by the way, but the fact I'd been seen taking a drink or two before writing it stood against me. They were good times, and I still see some of those particular students, who still cherish, it seems, as much as anything, our being bad. 

Good names for race horses:

Jeff bin in?
Double Entry

These are the sort of thoughts that can ride us through these unfortunate times. 

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