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I can’t stand practical jokes, as a general rule. The vast majority seem to be the equivalent of telling someone that their house has burned down and then saying, no, actually, it hasn’t. Ha ha! Having said that, I saw this on the Internet and literally gasped aloud at its cruel beauty.

*GASP*

This, according to the so-called ‘experts’, is a portrait of Pope Innocent X painted by the Spanish master Diego Velázquez c. 1650. It isn’t. It’s clearly a portrait of Gene Hackman. I don’t know how Velázquez – if that was his real name – managed to pull it off but I couldn’t rule out the assistance of time-travelling aliens. Please tell me I’m not the only one who sees it.

'I want to scratch my nose. Can I scratch my nose?'

This sign is on display in a Dublin city centre car park. I love it. It’s like a little lost puppy that has so much wrong with it – bleary eyes, matted fur, hideous funk – that you want to take it home and fix it up. Just look at it. Quotation marks have been added, mysteriously, but the concluding question mark has been excised. This odd combination lends the whole thing the air of a Zen koan. But it’s the lack of a proper sales pitch that really tickles me. What if my answer is yes, now that you mention it, my car is filthy? What am I supposed to do? OK, I admit that the car cleaning service isn’t far from this location, but still. The effect is downright unsettling. I half suspect that if you peered very closely at the bottom of the sign you would see, in tiny letters, ‘DIRECTED BY DAVID LYNCH’.

Hauntingly beautiful.

I spotted this in the Ilac Centre in Dublin today. I’m really worried now. What if it’s true? I’m not ready to be judged! I’ve got nothing to wear, for a start. I mean, you’d have to dress up for something like that, wouldn’t you? On the plus side, God seems to be represented here by a termite mound, which makes him seem slightly less awe-inspiring.

Aw, crap.

The picture blog Awkward Family Photos is a source of daily joy to me and this single image should demonstrate why. You can see at a glance that this man loves his chainsaw way, way more than he loves his wife. He could have ruined the whole thing by smiling, as he was no doubt instructed to do, but he resolutely stuck by his first choice, the steely grimace. His mysteriously ginger moustache is just icing on the cake. I feel sure that this shot was Exhibit A in a trial at some point and can only hope that it was of the divorce variety, and not murder.

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