jonathan pearlman

jonathan pearlman

FINE ART Photography


A new word entered my lexicon today. Listicles.

Thank you, online Guardian.

I get bored reading lists; not mine, you understand. Other people's: lists of best films, best books, best dream job, best destinations (yechh), best celebrities, best albums of all time (some I've never even heard of), oscar winners (care factor - zero plus infinity).  I hate thinking about them. I hate looking at them.

My mind wanders and I get listless.

My listicles, on the other hand, entertain me. I enjoy reading my own lists almost as much as I do writing them. You could call this behaviour narcissistic; or self-indulgent. Egocentric, vainglorious, self-loving, pompous, big-headed or conceited.

When I'm also being sanctimonious and feel the need to fire off emails to anyone who deserves to receive my wrath, I write things in lists. It's rather like handing down a number of commandments from up high; I act like I'm some sort of legal demi-god and I love it. Numbered, not bulleted. Lists don't make sense with bullet points.

Other note-worthy listicles of mine include a dictionary of legal puns I once prepared for a handful of judges. I got as far as 'C' before I was finally brought to heel and ordered to stop wasting tax-payer funded emails.

For your reading pleasure and amusement, here are but a few examples:

  1. APPELLANT: a pest. Destroys fruit crops at harvest.
  2. ASIC: one piece of vomit
  3. AFFIRMATION: a collection of thin trees lined up in neat rows
  4. AGREEMENT: something people disagree about thereby causing litigation
  5. ARBITER: a lover of beer
  6. BAIL: holiday destination for dyslexics


On a recent trip to northern NSW, Mrs P and me could be found exploring Nimbin - erstwhile hippy capital of Australia. And god bless its little hemp socks.

Whilst Mrs P had once made this pilgrimage way back in the 1970's, I had not. I missed the Aquarius Festival by a few months and was settled back in London after a brief but disastrous visit to Oz in 1972.

This visit, however, was made in honour of the cheese that I love so much and I wanted pay homage to the fromage at  the Nimbin Cheese Factory. Apparently Nimbin Cheese is owned by Noreco and the factory is actually not in Nimbim but located in Lismore.

No matter, Nimbin itself was an interesting enough little town; plenty to keep us entertained for 15 minutes or so. Cliched photo opportunities abounded which i ignored, but having the Hasselbladski on hand I did manage to fire off some decent shots here and there. This included an amazing shot inside the incredible hardware shop; the shop assistants happily posed for me, surrounded as they were by all nature of dusty, musty stock and six or seven jars of some of the biggest snakes I'd ever seen. Pickled.

I dreamed of glory. The defining photo that would see me crowned photographer of the year was inside the camera. A black and white masterpiece that will stun the world; the adulation, the applause, the awards, the glittering prizes. I made a list in my head.

I processed the film last night. I processed the film I exposed to the Nimbin light with a developer that was not only expired, but was also from a bad batch I had bought and inadvertently forgotten to throw out. It stripped the film of all its emulsion and gave me back half a metre of nothing but clear acetate.

Serves me right for not writing these things down.  



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