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The collected opinions of an august and aristocratic personage who, despite her body having succumbed to the ravages of time, yet retains the keen intellect, mordant wit and utter want of tact for which she was so universally lauded in her younger days. Being of a generation unequal to the mysterious demands of the computing device, Lady Bracknell relies on the good offices of her Editor for assistance with the technological aspects of her journal.

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Location: Bracknell Towers

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Whatte The Swyve?*

Fond though Lady Bracknell generally is of decorative objets fashioned from turned wood, and dedicated though she is to sourcing imaginative and unusual gifts for her nearest and dearest, she cannot help but agree with her younger brother's description of this as being, "a horrible, horrible idea".

An American gentleman, on seeing the ultrasound picture of his unborn child, felt driven to devise a non-photographic method of recording the little mite's facial delineaments. Did he turn to artist's oils? Create a likeness out of milk bottle tops? Break out the modelling clay? He did not. He decided that it would be a rather charming idea to reproduce the silhouette of the infant's profile in a turned wood thingummyjig which his wife - for reasons which are not explained on his website - christened, a pirolette. (A word which, although it may sound French, Lady Bracknell is willing to wager is not.)

And thus was created, "a solid artefact of space we forget to look at".

From which Lady Bracknell is forced to deduce that her own preference for actually looking at people's faces, rather than at the space which surrounds them, is now considered to be on a par with finding onself at the top of a staircase with a jug of milk in one's hand, and having no memory of how one got there.

Lady Bracknell, who is getting on in years, and who therefore is perhaps not the best person to be passing judgement on what is or is not le dernier cri in interior design, really has no desire whatsoever to possess an ornament which she can fit snugly against her face to the astonishment of her visitors should conversation be starting to flag during afternoon tea.

Still, one man's meat is another aristocrat's poison, and the desirability of any decorative object will always be a matter of personal taste. Just because Lady Bracknell would not give one of these things house room herself is no reason to heap coals on the head of their creator, or to sneer at what would appear to be a successful business venture. (Although Lady Bracknell suspects that any edition of Dragons' Den on which the pirolette was featured would make for more than ordinarily entertaining viewing.)

* With grateful thanks to Mr Chaucer for unwittingly providing an extraordinarily apposite title for this entry.


Anonymous Nicky said...

I regretably know of certain persons who would find a pirolette a prize and a treasure. There is simply no accounting for taste - or rather, lack thereof.

5:15 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm not sure I see the undesirable point? I would think that something like this would be good to get of grandchildren, or dare I say...a keepsake of someone who has passed. I'm not sure you can deny, that at the very least, it's a very "unique" idea.

10:16 pm  
Blogger Lady Bracknell said...

Lady Bracknell would not dream of denying that the idea is unique.

But she would not give one house room.

11:50 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I myself am inclined to agree with Lady Bracknell (whom I thank for her earlier welcome). To my mind the thing smacks of the same exaggerated sentimentality touted by sellers of collectable plates, Hummel figurines, and "Bears in Chairs"; I hesitate to call it "art." I should not be pleased to receive one as a gift, nor for that matter to discover the ghostly, inanimate profile of-- say-- my dearly departed grandfather affixed atop the newel post at the bottom of the stairs. Heaven help me, but it looks the sort of thing one might find there.

9:19 pm  
Anonymous Dude said...


"I don't know much about art, bu I know what I like!"

Actually I do rather like this and would indeed afford houseroom to one or more of these artefacts. Although I suspect it is closer to craftsmanship than art in the accepted sense.

Either way, I consider it more "artistic" than a live performance by a naked lady dancing with a dead pig, towards which I would most definitely not direct a second glance (or indeed a first, given the chance).


8:51 am  
Anonymous Dame Honoria Glossop said...

Is this some form of death mask? Next they'll be offering them as urns for the ashes, mark my words.

4:24 pm  
Blogger Lady Bracknell said...

Lady Bracknell would kindly ask Dame Honoria not to give the creator of these monstrosities ideas!

11:13 am  

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