The Meerkat Muse – 24/3/21

Yes my ‘kats, it is time for the Meerkat Muse!

So, what have the last two weeks delivered? There is a light at the end of the lockdown tunnel (which I nearly misspelled in a most alarming way), though at the time of writing, we still have a few weeks to go before the showroom can reopen and lots of other places can reopen and we can begin to safely ease back into some vague form of a normal life. I for one am craving a haircut. I am ready and willing to go all out on the traditional wet shave experience, so I can feel smooth and tidy. Yes, I could technically cut my own hair, but I want the experience.

Speaking of experience, I have recently gotten back into the experience of drawing again. Both efforts are to be considered ‘works in progress’.

This fella is Bendy, from the game Bendy and the Ink Machine, a game my daughter has fallen in love with for its art style and macabre plot. It’s not a bad game, though not really my thing, but she loves it and it’s inspired some artwork of her own…

Whereas my drawing is one I copied from the game’s artwork, my daughter can draw from memory, something I find very hard to do. She is naturally gifted with drawing in a way I never was!

Next up is the first part of a little project, a project on a show I love and one that I feel ended before its time. The DuckTales 2017 reboot has been full of wit, charm and clever humour, delivering numerous laugh-out-loud moments in my house, along with some heartfelt and touching moments too. I wanted to pay homage to the show, as well as its predecessor. The legacy of DuckTales is irrepressible!

On the left is Huey Duck, as per the original DuckTales, and on the right, the new version. Whilst I enjoyed the original show, the new version gave each of the triplets their own distinct personalities and voices, unlike the original. The new show also gave us a modern version of Webby, who is easily the show’s best character. ‘I am the Angel of Death’ is not a line I can imagine the original character ever saying!

The reboot honoured the original whilst giving it a refreshing makeover. It poked fun at the reboot trope within itself, and also delivered some satisfying nods to other 90s-era Disney TV shows (Darkwing Duck, Chip ‘n’ Dale Rescue Rangers, Tailspin and, surprisingly, Gargoyles all got such treatment). I can only hope that Disney see sense and give us more of this fantastic show.

Oh, here’s some more art inspired by DuckTales

Some more Bendy artwork…

Tuesday the 23rd of March marked the first anniversary of the first lockdown. Nearly 150,000 people in the UK have died as a result of the pandemic, and as far as I am concerned, many of those deaths are the responsibility of Boris Johnson and a Tory government that has failed us throughout this crisis. Sadly I can see much of what has happened here being white-washed, but I for one will not forget their incompetence and failures, and I won’t forget how they sought to profit off this situation. They’ve been shambolic and that cannot be forgotten.

The Tory failures extend well beyond their record in the pandemic. They have delivered a disastrous version of Brexit (which was not a surprise), they have insisted they cannot fund either free school meals for any length of time or a decent wage rise for nurses (whilst funding huge sums of money to waste on private contracts for their track and trace program, and on needless nuclear weapons). The Tories want to make it virtually impossible to protest anything, so they’re pushing through draconian measures to do just that – they are a shockingly bad government, and I wish more people would wake up and see them for what they truly are.

The tragic case of Sarah Everard has been a reminder of how women are still treated in this country, even in the 21st Century. For having the audacity to do normal things like walk down the street, Sarah was murdered, and the prime suspect is a police officer – so the government’s response? Do nothing whilst police engage in heavy-handed tactics at a safe, socially distant vigil, and then suggest that undercover cops be on duty at clubs to help prevent sexual assault – but said cops will apparently be all but immune from prosecution for any untoward behaviour of their own! If that is true, it is typical of how women are still viewed, even now, in society. Yet people tell me misogyny isn’t a thing…

I feel tired. At times I have felt quite anxious. The pandemic is altering well… everything. It’s exerting a toll, one often hidden from view. It’s insidious and painful and I hate it. However, as much as lockdowns and lone working and all the disruptive measures are challenging, the alternative does not bear thinking about. Lately I’ve read stuff that feeds into the idea Covid-19 is a falsehood, that it’s a mechanism of control. I don’t buy into that conspiracy crap. It places far too much confidence in the ability of the government to pull off something like that, when they’re clearly not up to the task, and it encourages people to flout the rules at a time when flouting can cost lives. It’s reckless and it’s stupid.

Aaaaaaaand breathe. Relax. If I can. I find it different to not feel… nervous? Jittery? That’s about the only way I can describe it. Also, my dreams are weird. I saw a Staples-liveried lorry the other day and dreamed I was putting out stock of paper there once more. That’s not something I’m in any rush to get back to. What I would like is for the showroom to be open and to tell customers when they phone ‘yes, come in!’ At least that day is fast approaching. Until then I have to face a few more days of lone working – but it will be bearable, for I know the end of it is in sight. I also know that soon, a proper, thorough, decent haircut will happen, and it will feel cleansing!

Back to the Muse

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