10 August 2008

Different Strokes

After the spectacle of the Opening Ceremony of The Beijing Olympics, I am firmly convinced that the use of French as an official language for the Games is a little passé. (Perhaps anachronism is a better word.) Don't tell L'Académie française, but English is now well established as the lingua franca of planet earth. In 2052, I wonder if we will still hear appellations in French ringing around the stadium. I will have to wait and see.

Lingua franca comes from Italian and translates as 'Frankish tongue.' It is a historical term for the mixed language or jargon used in the Levant, consisting mainly of Italian words deprived of their inflexions. The term now refers to any common form of communication used between people speaking different languages. Suffering is the lingua franca of hell. Light is the lingua franca of heaven. That sort of thing.

Today I did some painting. I haven't done any for years, but I got inspired to pick up some supllies on Friday and it was a very absorbing way to occupy my Sunday afternoon. It was inevitably frustrating to begin with, as there was a yawning gulf between what I imagined and what I was producing.

By playing, I learnt quite a lot, as I decided what I want to do next. I think I am developing a style, it's called fauvism without any pretensions of realism. Alas, I don't think I will ever be one of those people who can faithfully reproduce the physical criteria of their surroundings. I quickly realised that I need to buy some better brushes too.

I am confident that with a complete lack of training, anybody can produce similar results.

1 comment:

Brian Barker said...

Hi Alf

I'm not too certain on your judgement about the fact that everyone fluently, throughout the World, speaks English fluently.

Not even the England soccer manager speaks English.

I've come to the conclusion that a non-national language like Esperanto may be the long-term solution.

I suggest as a native English speaker, by the way.

If you have time you might like to check http://wwww.lernu.net