Taxed Beyond Their Powers

I know, I know, it’s not a zombie…but it is pretty hilarious nonetheless.  Besides, aliens could totally bring about the end of the world too!  And they’re almost as awesome as zombies…

149 Days left until the Zombie Apocalypse…

After writing about my favorite epic paint war yesterday, it seemed only fitting to continue on in that vein today.  So for today’s entry on the “30 Things I’ve Done Before the Age of 30” list, I figured I’d talk about the greatest painting I’ve ever seen.  Those are important images to keep in your head if the world is going to end.  We have all seen The Day After Tomorrow and that book-burning scene in the library was pretty much gut-wrenching to me.  It’s a completely believable scenario too.  Most people would totally burn every book in the world if it meant that they wouldn’t have to freeze to death.  Never mind that I don’t think I could even burn a copy of Romeo and Juliet or One Hundred Years of Solitude.  I utterly despise both of them, but it still seems blasphemous somehow to so carelessly destroy the painstaking physical manifestations of someone else’s insanity.  Maybe it’s because I am delusional and conceited enough to fancy myself a novelist regardless of the fact that my novel is apparently forever in the editing stage.  I would hate for someone to burn my book for something as simple as warmth.  Maybe if they were driven to it by passionate loathing or something.  I think I could deal with that.  But warmth?  Not hardly…

Sadly, when facing the post-apocalyptic world, most people won’t be quite so rational about everything.  I foresee a bleak world where books are seen as little more than fuel for campfires.  They won’t be the only casualties either.  Do you honestly think that a Da Vinci or a Van Gogh will be spared either?  Pfft!! As if.

Nope, they’ll all be cast upon the pyre before long too.  The point is that we have to enjoy them while we have them.  Before you know it, if you want to see a Starry Night, you’ll have to look up at the stars.  And if you want to see a Mona Lisa, you’ll have to…no, wait.  It’ll probably actually be way easier to see a woman who can’t smile because her teeth are bad in a world where all of the dentists have become undead.  Whatever.  But I’m getting off track here.  So, what’s the greatest painting that you have ever seen?  I’ve never really seen a famous painting up close and personal.  That’s kind of sad and I’ll have to rectify that someday–you know, if the world doesn’t actually end.  For the time being though, I can honestly say that I have seen something better…and it can’t be burned in a little campfire either.  Want to guess what it is?…The greatest painting I have ever seen is…

…wait for it…

…wait for it…

No really.  Stop being impatient.

…okay, I’ll tell you…

The greatest painting I have ever seen is the Grand Canyon.

Stop scratching your head like that!  You don’t have lice; you’re just confused.  Besides, I fully intend to enlighten you.  To clue you in, stop being so literal.  Haven’t you ever heard of a metaphor before?! Sheesh.

It’s incredible how trees manage to grow out of the edge like this!

In all seriousness, the Grand Canyon is truly a phenomenal sight to see.  I’ve only been there once–and it wasn’t for very long.  We stopped on the way for like an hour when we moved from California to Mississippi.  However short out visit, it was still definitely long enough to leave a permanent impression painted in my mind.  That’s exactly what it is too.  It’s the greatest painting ever made.  That’s really the only way I know to describe it.  It’s so surreal.  The sheer size makes it impossible to truly see it “up close”.  I honestly think that if you stood in the canyon or took one of those really neat looking boat trips down the Colorado River that you STILL couldn’t see it “up close”.  You can only see it from afar.  It’s almost like nature’s way of telling us that we aren’t good enough to approach that kind of majesty.  Even the colors seem beyond our comprehension.  There are a thousand shades of every color imaginable.  Yet somehow, none of them really stand out.  They are all muted…beyond the scope of human vision perhaps?

If I had to pick a favorite, this would be it. I never even spoke to these people, but I had to take their photograph. I love how small and insignificant it makes humanity seem.

Even pictures do not do it justice.  I took well over a hundred shots while we were there.  Each one only served to make me more and more frustrated.  I used three different cameras and changed lenses back and forth countless times–all to no avail.  I couldn’t get them to illustrate the true nature of the landscape before me.  It has driven me insane every single time that I think about my trip to the Grand Canyon.  Then today, I stumbled across this quote by John Wesley Powell, “The wonders of the Grand Canyon cannot be adequately represented in symbols of speech, nor by speech itself.  The resources of the graphic art are taxed beyond their powers in attempting to portray its features.  Language and illustration combined must fail.”  It’s kind of a relief to know I’m not alone in my inability to truly do justice to the grand, epicness that is the Grand Canyon.  I guess, all I can say about it that you have to see it to understand…

Sincerely Yours,

The Butcher of the Bard

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This entry was posted in 30 Things I've Done Before the Age of 30, Countdown to the Zombie Apocalypse, Day to Day Circumstances, Down the Rabbit Hole, My Bucket List, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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