My Pal Edvard

21 Oct

Edvard Munch. I think if we got to know each other he would call me Billy and I would call him Edvardy, or maybe Eddie. Or judging from some of his paintings there’s a good chance that Mr. Munch (there’s got to be some kind of pretzel, cheese stick, faux chex combo with that name) would be a lot like most of the contestants on Jerry Springer’s Baggage. So maybe we wouldn’t be friends after all.  Unless he lived on my block.  Or I didn’t have a car and I was just his friend, so I could double-date with him.

Munch, the twentieth century genius. Yeah, yeah, Darwin is great. (Except in Missouri where I think they still have a fatwa out on him.) And Edison.  Heck, without Thomas A., I’d be writing this in cursive and handing it out on street corners.

But Edvard, way back in 1893, could see the anguish of the new century and beyond.  All the big horrors of world wars and systematic genocides.  But also the little, sweat-the-small-stuff, daily frustrations. The people, places, and DMV offices that make you just want to squeeze your head and scream because there is nothing else you can do.

Can’t you just see the horrible people you come in daily contact with in the horrible miasma that’s about to envelop our poor little pisher?  Sure, you could try to solve your problems by killing one of them – but then you’d just end up screaming in a cell and hugging your skull for the rest of your life.

So be grateful to Edvard the next time you find yourself in this situation.  Let out a loud, bloodcurdling, life-affirming scream. It’s not overreacting. It’s performance art.

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