20 April 2006

The French and Pandas. And Cages.

A French playwright, Norbert Aboudarham, has spent a week inside a cage at the zoo to gain an insight into how pandas live for a theatre project he is developing.

He stated that it was "about the universe, you have to put yourself in a cage smaller than the universe." Well, that's hardly bastard well difficult is it?
A zoo employee stated that the experiment was a way of "questioning man about his belonging to nature". And all the time that Mr Aboudarham was communing with nature and learning to become one with the cosmos so that he could make a small bundle of money with which to pay the rent and stock up on unfiltered cigarettes, what was he actually doing? Using his laptop.
I shit you not. He broke up the boredom of contemplating the Universe by checking his e-mails, doing a bit of e-Baying and getting to the next level on Doom. Twat.
To most people, all of this will seem like a) a rather silly, yet lucrative, publicity stunt, b) a heartfelt attempt to discover the reality of the plight of caged pandas, c) pretentiousness of the highest calibre, d) a Frenchman taking the wrong things far too seriously, as usual, or e) a lot of old wank.

I'm withholding judgement until I see the actual theatre project itself. You can all sit and scoff, but I shall be able to self-righteously recline and nod intellectually as I watch a group of poorly paid actors cavort childishly around the stage earnestly attempting to communicate the spiritual decline of big, stupid Chinese bears that would rather eat sticks than fuck.

However, I think the cage thing is an excellent idea for two quite distinct reasons:

1) I am going to establish 'Le Zoo Humain'. Effectively, this will be an international chain of Human Zoo's in which people from across the world can see the French, safely behind bars, living in total seclusion from the rest of humanity.

"Look, Timmy! There's a Frenchman swilling back cheap red wine*, half naked, whilst disinterestedly mauling the disappointing breasts of his tawdry, lipstick-smeared girlfriend!"

"Oh, Daddy, can we come back and see the French people again next week? They make me giggle in my tummy!"

I have nothing against the French, but for some reason I just feel that they should be segregated from the rest of society. Like midgets. And Northerners.

2) Rule one in 'How to be an author' is - write what you know. Mr Aboudarham wants to write about Pandas, therefore he sits in a panda cage for a week. So simple, so obvious.

Taking that idea on board, and bearing in mind my current scriptwriting project which is about social isolation and the spreading phenomenon of Hikikomori, I have decided to radically alter my lifestyle and spend the next six months indoors, with no-one to talk to, listlessly trawling the internet in an unceasing quest to find some small flicker of human contact, recognition or love, whilst...


*Those wine glasses that you can buy which hold an entire bottle; they were invented by the French. For children. To drink at breakfast time.

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