Thursday, 15 October 2009

Cultural relativism

Last night I felt really low, so I went to the cinema to see “Up”. I wanted some fun, and to be entertained. Tonight I have a concert of lush nineteenth century classical music, which will also suit the way I’m feeling just fine. I couldn’t handle anything too heavy just now. Hormones, you know?

I’m a great believer in the idea that there is a place for pretty much everything, culturally speaking. For some of it (horror movies, the more saccharine end of pop music), that place is not part of my life; but I’m pretty eclectic in my tastes. I listen to Stravinsky in the afternoon and The Icicle Works in the evening, and I love them both. I read Rebecca West, and then Anne Zouroudi, and I am blown away by “Rashomon” only to sit hooting with laughter at a Pixar cartoon the following week. Does this make me a relativist or just lacking in properly defined tastes? Do I care?

I don’t, actually. I like my tastes, and that is enough for me.

“Up” was good fun. A bit of a “switch your brain off and enjoy the ride” movie, but not totally mindless. The animation is superb and the plot although daft is entertaining, and the dog characters are gorgeously, hilariously spot-on doggy. The only problem was that getting up to leave at the end I hit my right leg on the metal drink-holder on the next-door seat so hard I thought I had cut it open. I hadn’t, but I now have one of my characteristic violet-and-rhubarb coloured bruises down my calf muscle; it looks as if I was in a kick boxing match, not out for a peaceful night at the flicks.

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