WHAT IS BEYOND?

May 26, 2022

From: Bettina Heick
Date: 20 January 2022 at 18:25:51 GMT
To: Penkiln Burn
Subject: request for an interview


Dear Penkiln Burn

I’d like to ask Mr. Drummond if he can imagine doing an interview with me.
I am no journalist but only a private person who got that idea in my head of having an interview with him. I know that he usually gives no interviews but sometimes interviews people. If he likes, that would work for me as well.

Kind regards,

Bettina Heick

From: Bill Drummond
Date: 21 January 2022 at 09:06:29 GMT
To: Bettina Heick
Subject: Re: request for an interview

Morning Bettina,

Thank you for your email.

What line of work do you do?
What are your main interests?
What city do you live in?
If you could ask me one question what would it be?

Once I have your response to these four questions I will set four questions for you and that will be the beginning of one of my Forty Minute Interviews.

Yours,

Bill Drummond

Sent from my iPhone

From: Bettina Heick 
Date: 23 January 2022 at 12:11:20 GMT
To: Bill Drummond 
Subject: Aw: Re: request for an interview

Hello Mr. Drummond,

Thank you very much for your positive reply, makes me really happy.

To answer your questions:

I’m working for an engineering office which does environmental surveys and since some years now I am mainly working on bat monitorings in context of planned or already running wind turbines. These monitorings work with detection of the ultrasound calls of the bats, so you could say, I am listening to what the bats say.

I am now for 14 years in the same company.

I started my professional life with something completely different (did a commercial education and worked at a jewellery shop). Got bored of it and went back to school and later university when I was 25 years old.

I always was interested in language. 

And I say language not languages. 

I took English and French at school and later a bit of Italian language, because my first boyfriend was Italian. I soon noticed that every language has some words you can never find proper translation. In English one of these words for me was the word “beyond”. I am fascinated by this word. 

There are many other aspects of language very interesting, I think. 

I want to mention one other thing, I am no good writer but sometimes I do write some short text and then I prefer writing in a foreign language, manly English.

I also like to invent stories. Alone or in co-work with my sister. Unfortunately, we are both no good in writing, so these stories exist only in our heads but is okay for us. We enjoy them ourselves.

Other interests of mine are philosophy, sports, hiking.

I live in a village very close to Hamburg in northern Germany, but I work about 200 km west near the border to the Netherlands. I commute every Monday and Friday.

One question I would like to ask you is:

On the website of Penkiln Burn you wrote in 2019, and I think it’s on page 5, about a work in Aulus-Les-Bains. There is a list about what this work includes. The last item of content is predicting the past.

Some years ago I wrote a little text about a fictitious award ceremony. There I announced a guest speaker giving a speech on the topic…

Why the past is easier to predict than the future.

Can you explain to me what do you mean with
predicting the past?

Maybe I can than better understand what I meant.

I guess that’s it. 

Did I wrote to much or to less? 

Is my English too bad? 

I don’t know but that’s it. 

I hope my English is not too bad.

I really want to say thank you again. 

I already had much fun in writing this.

Yours,

Bettina Heick

From: Bill Drummond
Date: 23 January 2022 at 18:39:47 GMT
To: Bettina Heick
Subject: Re: request for an interview

Good Evening Bettina,

Thank you very much for your very engaging response. 

On beginning to read your email I thought my four questions for you would be on the subject of bats, but then I got to your part about language. 

I have never learnt to speak another language. And for most of my life I naïvely assumed all languages were just mirrors of all other languages but…

Since my now partner for sixteen years and counting have been in partnership, I have learnt more and more from her that her mother tongue – Bangla, is everything but a mirror of English. And from that have learnt the language we use can so influence the way we see the world. The example you give, amplifies this in my imagination. Thus, the four question I would like you to spend no more than forty minutes in answering are…

What is Beyond?

What is Beyond for?

When did you first become aware of Beyond?

When might Beyond disappear from your life?

I very much look forward to receiving your responses to these four questions. 

Yours,

Bill Drummond

From: Bettina Heick
Date: 26 January 2022 at 17:40:01 GMT
To: Bill Drummond
Subject: Aw: Re: request for an interview

Hello and good evening, Mr. Drummond,

Here are my answers to your four questions.
I must warn you.
The following contains the word Beyond in excess.

What is Beyond?

I indeed tried several times to describe my idea of this word. I always failed. Maybe it was because I tried it in German, which perhaps is not possible. And I always tried to explain it to Germans. The dictionary says the German translation for Beyond is the word Jenseits.

It’s similar but in the end not the same (for me). 

Beyond is more. 

This is my feeling about Beyond. Maybe a native speaker would say, what does she make a fuss about Beyond. I think the word Beyond is, in case of using, picked out with a specific intention, to make something clear. The talking is about something special, far of reach or even unreachable. It’s never used in ordinary content like this:
The supermarket is beyond the bridge.
In German:
Der Supermarkt ist jenseits der Bruecke.
Jenseits has the meaning of behind in this example. You can say that in German. It’s maybe a bit old-fashioned but possible to say.
(Sounds like a German lesson. Sorry, I found no other way to show the difference between these two words.)
But there is a second translation in the dictionary. Beyond can be translated with darueber hinaus.
But darueber hinaus is more to translate with the word furthermore.
For sure, both German translations can have a deeper meaning too. But this comes only out in the content in which the words are used.
When I hear or read the word Beyond, for me it’s like a pointer to something special if not even magic. It points to something you can’t locate here and now.
The expression, it’s beyond imagination, shows it very well: You can’t reach it.
Some years ago I went to the cinema to watch Star Trek Beyond. I looked forward to this. Wasn’t there promised that we will go beyond?
At the end of the film I was quite disappointed. From my point of view, they just forgot Beyond.


What is Beyond for?

It is for widen the world. Beyond stands in opposite, or makes a difference to words like behind, before, after, in front of. These words describe things can be located on maps or in time.

Things Beyond have no coordinates.



When did you first become aware of Beyond?

Wasn’t there a band Brother Beyond?


Yes, I am quite sure there was. I guess that could have been the first time I heard the word. But at that time, I was a child with no, or only few knowledge of English language. I can’t remember what this band was about. It would be interesting to know, why they had chosen the name. Maybe it was only because it sounded good to them.
I wonder when we learned the vocabulary Beyond in school. As much as I remember it meant nothing to me at that time.

I first thought my interest in this word has to do with Alice in Wonderland. But when I looked up the name of the second book, it is Through the Looking-Glass and not Beyond the Looking-Glass, as I thought. I have a wrong memory here.
Or maybe not. There is another book with the name Beyond the Looking-Glass which got to do with Alice in Wonderland. I had to look this up in the internet, so this is besides the 40 minutes, but I dispensed looking up Brother Beyond.

When might Beyond disappear from your life?

When I first read this question my first thought was, maybe it disappears directly after answering question one to three.
After thinking so much about this word it could have loose its magic. Maybe I figured out that there is nothing special in Beyond, or simply find a translation I haven’t seen all the years.
It did not happen. I described Beyond quite good to myself without getting to the very bottom of it.
I’m very curious what I will tell next time I read or hear the word Beyond. I think of using the word whenever something for me is Beyond.


Additional:

You are the first to read.

I did it this way:
I wanted to give every question about 10 minutes, but the first question took me a bit longer. I wrote the answers by hand first. I wrote in English, except the words I had to look up later. All thinking was done in English (or sometimes kind of fantasy English). I could not prevent thinking of the questions before answering totally, because since I read the questions first on Sunday evening and finally answering them, some time passed away.

I am a synesthete. In my case that means that I see the numbers from 0 to 12 in colours. Every number got it’s own colour. For example, the 2 is red. (This year is a very red year to me) This phenomenon sometimes pops up also with letters or whole words. Beyond is such a word. I see a bright yellow (be), than a colour I can’t even give name (y) and a dark nearly black end (ond).

I am very bad in punctuation. And in English language I simply have no clue in punctuation. For that some sentences, I am sure, are difficult to read. I am sorry for that.

By writing this email I have looked up Brother Beyond, only to make sure they really had exist.

Yours,
Bettina

From: Bill Drummond
Date: 27 January 2022 at 09:36:49 GMT
To: Bettina Heick
Subject: Re: request for an interview

Morning Bettina,

Thank you for your responses. Totally inspiring. Even if the band Brother Beyond were not for me. I was hoping their Wikipedia page would explain why they were called that name. But no luck there. 

But you have given the word for me more value. 

Give my regards to the bats.

Yours,

Bill Drummond 

From: Bettina Heick
Date: 27 January 2022 at 10:49:54 GMT
To: Bill Drummond
Subject: Aw: Re: request for an interview

Hello Mr. Drummond,

Thank you very much for your words and of course for your attention anyway.
You inspired me.
As for the bats, I don’t think they are very much interested in what Humans say, but of course I will send your regards.

Yours,
Bettina

From: Bettina Heick
Date: 27 January 2022 at 12:02:30 GMT
To: Bill Drummond
Subject: Aw: Re: request for an interview

Hi again,

After reading your email again, there is one thing you got me maybe wrong. In relation to Brother Beyond I was only talking of hearing the word for the first time. They played now further role.

Thank you again.

Yours,
Bettina

From: Bill Drummond
Date: 27 January 2022 at 15:39:40 GMT
To: Bettina Heick
Subject: Re: request for an interview

Afternoon Bettina,

Totally understand…

But…

How does this work in German, which I guess it was written in originally:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beyond_Good_and_Evil?wprov=sfti1

?

Yours,

Bill Drummond 

From: Bettina Heick
Date: 28 January 2022 at 08:11:13 GMT
To: Bill Drummond
Subject: Aw: Re: request for an interview

Good Morning Mr. Drummond,

I don’t quite understand what you mean. What do you mean exactly?

Yours,
Bettina

From: Bill Drummond
Date: 29 January 2022 at 09:15:12 GMT
To: Bettina Heick
Subject: Re: request for an interview

Morning Bettina,

Not that I have ever read it, but I grew up being very aware of the book Beyond Good & Evil. Which I knew had originally been written in German. And have just noticed the title in German includes the word Jenseits. What does that word mean?

Yours, 

Bill

From: Bettina Heick 
Date: 31 January 2022 at 17:22:50 GMT
To: Bill Drummond
Subject: Aw: Re: request for an interview

Good evening Bill,

The preposition jenseits means ‘on the other side’ or ‘behind’.
In connection with numbers for example, it can have also the meaning of ‘over’ or ‘more than’.
In a figurative use of the word jenseits, it can have the meaning of ‘outside of’.
That is what every dictionary tells us.
Jenseits can be used to express something in a more poetic way. For example:
Jenseits der Alpen. (On the other side of the Alps.) The intention here is to point out the longing for the Mediterranean Sea for those who come from more northern regions.

To Nietzsche.
As far as I can tell, what he meant is described quite good in the wikipedia article you sent me.
I haven’t read Beyond Good and Evil neither nor any other of his writings. But I have read a book in which he played a significant role.
When you say you have been very aware of the book, was it because the book was somewhere very exposed on a shelf for example? Or was it the content of the book, because the book was quoted or mentioned often?

Yours,

Bettina

From: Bettina Heick
Date: 3 February 2022 at 11:43:41 GMT
To: Bill Drummond
Subject: Aw: Re: request for an interview

Good afternoon Bill,

I hope my answer regarding the word jenseits wasn’t too poor. In fact it was. But even now I can’t think of anymore. Either there isn’t anymore or I don’t like the word.

Yours,

Bettina

From: Bill Drummond 

Date: 3 February 2022 at 12:02:20 GMT
To: Bettina Heick
Subject: Re: request for an interview

Afternoon Bettina,

It is all good. 

Thank you for all your response. 

All very much valued. 

Will put it all together and send you back next week. 

Bill Drummond 

YEAR EIGHT

May 6, 2022

CORBY Twinned With BEYOND

25th of March 2022

Dear Reader,

Corby is being twinned with Beyond.

This twinning is happening over the Midsummer period of 2022.

There is nothing you or I can do to prevent this twinning. Or the repercussions it may stir.

The decision has been taken by The Intercontinental Twinning Association.

You may have personal theories why you think this twinning is being done.

The more theories the better, I say. 

Three of my theories are…

One: BEYOND THE HORIZON:

To celebrate the Latvian influence on my life and all those living in Corby, where the Latvian blood has run dark and rich for the past 75 years and counting. And in turn to celebrate the influence of the immigrant in all our lives, be we from Scotland, Latvia or any other distant land beyond the horizon. But if you are not Latvian or been exposed to Latvian culture you might not know that over Līgosvētki and into Jāņi (Midsummer) you will be encouraged to run naked through the fields and forests and build fires on the horizon to light whatever is Beyond.

Two: BEYOND THE BACK SHIFT:

To mark my teenage years spent in Corby between the summer of ’64 and the Winter of ’73. These being years when the skies were wide and blue, the rivers were filled with fish, the hedge rows alive with bird song, my bedroom reeling with music and my head bursting with possibilities that were way beyond the possibilities that were being offered to us by the careers’ advice officer at Kingswood School. 

Three: BEYOND RATIONAL THINKING:

Rational Thinking is the trap we are all tempted towards. 

Rational Thinking’s seduction techniques are well honed but must be resisted at all costs.

The Third Coming travelled through the streets of Corby in the very early months of 1967. The Third Coming took the earthly life form of a female Northern Pike. She was caught and killed on the banks of the River Nene close to the town of Oundle. She travelled on the top deck of a bus back to Corby stuffed up my jumper. She rose back to life in the kitchen sink of our house on the Beanfield Estate. And She was released back into the waters of The River Welland close to the village of Rockingham. To celebrate these memories that are way beyond the traps laid by Rational Thinking, I will carry a bucket of water from The River Nene near Oundle and walk the thirteen miles to The River Welland near Rockingham, where I will tip the water from the bucket into the flowing waters of the Welland.

Once this is done, I will attach CORBY TWINNED WITH BEYOND signs to the posts holding up the Welcome to Corby signs around the town. 

As for the running naked through the fields and forests…  

Yours Sincerely,

The Elderly Gentleman

SEE YOU THERE

26th of March 2022

Dear Reader,

Where should you be? 

I mean…

Where would you rather be?

I mean…

I don’t just mean in Corby today, but in life.

If you hadn’t married that man.

And taken that job.

Had the kids.

Got sacked.

Or moved to Corby in the first place.

Or got old?

I’m not saying you look old, but you are older than you were last month. Even if you still feel 26 inside. But you don’t think like a teenager does today. Or maybe you still are a teenager. Then if so, why are you reading this painting?

I used to identify as a middle-aged man called Bill Drummond but… 

A couple of years ago someone offered me their seat on the bus. 

And then later that day I was in a café. 

And the new waitress asked the bloke in the kitchen who the cheese omelette, chips and beans were for. 

And he said, “the elderly gentleman by the window.” 

And I looked around and I couldn’t see any old bloke by the window. 

But I knew I had ordered a cheese omelette, chips and beans. 

And then the waitress brought the plate over to me. 

And that was that, from then on, I was The Elderly Gentleman. 

Or that is what I identified as, when it comes to painting these paintings to you.

As for where I should be, I was supposed to be travelling up the Nile, as in heading south down Africa, like Sammy in that film*, but with The 25 Paintings, as in my 25 paintings. All part of my twelve year world tour. But then I had my first brain seizure, and Covid happened, and I became The Elderly Gentleman, and I saw the world, or at least my place in the world in a different way. The globe was no longer this place for a white heterosexual male like me to stomp around thinking you might be impressed. So here I am back in Corby. And I have got this thing happening up in the Rooftop Arts Centre for most of June. The 25 Paintings will be there. And I will be doing the usual baking of cakes. And sweeping the streets. And building a bed for the Ghost of Gentleman Jim Reeves. And shining shoes. And going for a shave. And making soup. And having knit & natter session, while knitting the Million Stitch Blanket. And maybe even doing a couple of Tenzing Scott Brown’s plays even though I pushed him under a bus. And maybe screening the film BEST BEFORE DEATH. As in all, or at least some of, the stuff that I have been doing on The 25 Paintings world tour since it started in 2014. But this year The 25 Paintings have been repainted into Latvian – did I tell you that I repaint them every year into the language of whatever culture I’m attempting to celebrate that year?

So, if you want to answer the questions I asked you at the beginning of this painting, or just give me some advice about getting old, or being a teenager, or life in general, come up and tell me when my thing opens in the Rooftop place on the 11th of June.

See you there.

Yours Sincerely,

The Elderly Gentleman

*Sammy Going South (1963)

FURTHER INFORMATION TO FOLLOW

FOUR MINI TAGS

March 29, 2022

TWA FLAGS

March 14, 2022
TWA Flags on the back of one of The 25 Paintings

The world premier of the play Twa Flags by Tenzing Scott Brown was staged in Nick Anderson’s front room in Inverness, Scotland on the morning of Monday the 14th of March 2022.

It was performed by the back of one of The 25 Paintings. And narrated by Nick Anderson and The Elderly Gentleman. And filmed by Gimpo.

Twa Flags was written to be performed in Leith, Scotland in 2021. Covid prevented that from happening.


Bed made and waiting for The Ghost of Elvis

March 13, 2022
Bed made and waiting for The Ghost of Elvis
Bed made and waiting for The Ghost of Elvis

ELVIS WAS HERE

March 10, 2022
Elvis in Orkney

SPECK

November 30, 2021

The Unheard Narrator:

Speck is Act One from the three-act play Speck Of Dust by Tenzing Scott Brown. Each act is played out in real time, on a blue skied, sun shined morning, towards the close of a year, between this morning in 2021 and a morning at the close of 2023. 

Each of the three acts of this play might involve The Elderly Gentleman making his way along a pavement looking at the ground and considering things. The only vocal dialogue of this play might be the under-his-breath mutterings of The Elderly Gentleman.

As for me, I am The Unheard Narrator, closely related to, but not, The Unseen Narrator.

The Elderly Gentleman:

Remain, Remains, Remaining, Remainders
Remain, Remains, Remaining, Remainders
Remain, Remains, Remaining, Remainders
Remain, Remains, Remaining, Remainders…

The Unheard Narrator:

Not every morning…
But most mornings, over these past few months, The Elderly Gentleman walks up Oak Dale and along Chase Side towards the Southgate Tube Station.
On his way he passes a family of Ragworts.
He has watched them from May to almost December.
They are always there growing up through a crack in the pavement by the railings at the side of the road.
They have remained.
They have survived.
He always greets them.
They always nod back.
He celebrated them in the final Ragwort Week.
He often took out his handheld device to record them…
For no reason other than he could.

As the days and weeks and months pass us by.
As the traffic on one side and the school runners on the other side, have passed them by…
They have stayed.
They have continued.


Yesterday, as the rain poured and the wind blew, The Elderly Gentleman noticed their heads were hung low and they had almost lost every petal.
It was nearly their time
The final whistle about to blow
It was almost December. 

This morning The Elderly Gentleman made his way up Oak Dale to Chase Side to visit this family of Ragworts. 


  This could be the last time 
  Maybe the last time 
  I don’t know

And under his breath he kept muttering the words…

“Remain, Remains, Remaining, Remainders…”

Over and over.

He did not know why.
Maybe he was thinking about the family of Ragworts that may no longer remain.
Or maybe he was wondering how long he will go on being angry at Brexit.
Or maybe he was thinking about the two books in his pocket.

What he did know was that…
He was supposed to be taking photographs of these two books.
Photographs that can then be used on a Penkiln Burn Newsletter to announce that the remaining copies of these books are now for sale via the Alimentation website.

One of those books was printed in an edition of one thousand and only ever available after a performance of the play WHITE SAVIOUR COMPLEX. This was back in 2019, when the world was a different place.

And the other of those books was printed in an edition of four hundred and was only ever available after a performance of the play WHITE MALE GAZE. 

Is the world a different place?

But there were never more than eight (or so) performances of the first of these plays before Covid saw to things. 

And only ever one performance of the second play. There was only ever supposed to be one performance of this play.

And neither of these plays will ever be performed again. 

Their time has come and gone.

But… 

Now there are some of these books left to be sold to those out there that might want to have them, and will have never seen either play. And for whatever reason people might want to have a book of a play that is no longer relevant in these remaining days of this fallen year.

On his way up Oak Dale, The Elderly Gentleman placed the two books side by side on the un-swept Autumn leaves on the pavement and took a photograph of them.

Maybe Autumn leaves are more powerful than dying Ragworts.
Maybe more people can relate to Autumn leaves.
The Elderly Gentleman walked on.
He turned right at the top of Oak Dale onto Chase Side.
He passed the entrance of Osidge Primary School 
The school where Amy went.
Long before things went back to black.
And he passed Délisino, from where he sometimes got a coffee.
And he passed the Puff Dad E vape shop.
And he arrived at the family of Ragworts.
And he placed the two books beside the Ragworts with their heads held low and their last petals about to fall.
And he crouched down – handheld device in hand – and he touched the button.
And the photograph was taken.
And he wondered how the power of photographs had changed in these past few years – not for the better, not for the worse – just shifted. 
And wondered if one photograph will ever define a moment in history again…
Like the photograph of Jackie attempting to put Jack’s brain back into his head in Dallas. 
Like the photograph of the naked girl running down the road in Vietnam.
Or the man holding his shopping bags while standing in front of a tank in Tiananmen Square.
Or the plane about to fly into the World Trade Centre.
Or any of those other photographs we remember from another time.
A time before several million photographs could be taken and uploaded between you starting to read this sentence and now. Each of those photographs like the specks of dust that I can see dancing in the shaft of sunlight to the left of a note book on my knee as I write this sentence. We all love specks of dust dancing in a shaft of sunlight.

The Elderly Gentleman is not happy with the photographs he took of WHITE SAVIOUR COMPLEX and WHITE MALE GAZE, even though for a moment it reminded him of a photograph of Little Weed standing between Bill & Ben.

On his way back he wondered if anyone that reads Tenzing Scott Brown’s words would have memories of Bill & Ben and Little Weed.

And…

And he wondered if he should have used the words he chose to use on the back cover of WHITE MALE GAZE. 

The Elderly Gentleman:

Too late now…
Too late now…
Too late now…

The End

Post Script:
Click here if you want to consider the possibilities of purchasing a copy of either 

WHITE SAVIOUR COMPLEX 

or 

WHITE MALE GAZE

Hurry before every thought they contain is called to account by The Justice of January.

And cancelled by The First Snowdrop of Spring.


SILENT OPERA

November 21, 2021

NO MUSIC DAY was a five year plan instigated by Bill Drummond in 2003.

NO MUSIC DAY was celebrated on each of the five 21st of Novembers between 2003 and 2008.

SILENT OPERA is an opera by the Austrian artist and composer Scharmien Zandi.

Republic of Užupis is an independent republic for artists within the state of Lithuania.

SILENT OPERA is to be performed on the 21st of November 2021 for the citizenS of the Republic of Užupis by Scharmien Zandi and S.Myselle.

This performance is, in part, to mark the legacy of NO MUSIC DAY.

OUR TIME IS RIGHT NOW

October 23, 2021
“I don’t believe you”

IT IS THE EVENING

Monday the 18th of October 2021

The Narrator:

For the sixty years, three months, two weeks and five days (roughly) leading up to the time I took a first sip from the mug of tea (black no sugar) that I am about to take the second sip now, I had always assumed the vocal hook of The Lion Sleeps Tonight by The Tokens was “whim away”. Thus I also assumed the song was an anthem to celebrate acting on one’s whims.
 
But…
 
Between taking that first sip and considering taking my second sip, I thought I should check the exact date when I first heard the song but… 
There was nothing there in my brain to recall that memory – hence the ‘roughly’.
 
And what the actual lyrics of the song were? – as I always had my suspicion that Lions did not sleep in jungles.
 
Firstly I put “Lion” into Wikipedia, and there my suspicions were confirmed. 
 
I felt smug about this. 
 
So all that In the jungle, the mighty jungle – The Lion sleeps tonight was just made up stuff by “couldn’t give a shit about the facts, as long as it was catchy”, type songwriters in Tin Pan Alley, New York, with no idea what was going on with the real wildlife in Africa, or wherever they were imagining this “mighty jungle” to be. Just like there were never Bluebirds Over The White Cliffs of Dover.
 
But…
 
My smugness was soon swept away when I put “The Lion Sleeps Tonight – lyrics” into Google and learnt that it had never been “whim away” but “aweem away”.
 
I have just taken a second sip of tea from the mug and then copied and pasted the first verse of the song right here.
 
In the jungle, the mighty jungle
The lion sleeps tonight
In the jungle the quiet jungle
The lion sleeps tonight

Wee heeheehee weeoh aweem away
Wee heeheehee weeoh aweem away

 
For the past three days I have had The Tokens version of The Lion Sleeps Tonight going around and around in my head. The reason for this is that one of the co-hosts of my head, who goes by the name The Elderly Gentleman, has been celebrating the fact that he is not only going to embrace his whims but act upon them. And in doing so he might document some of these embracings and enactments using words. 
 
Words that can then be published by Penkiln Burn Books in the form of a slim volume entitled Whim Away.
 
It seems that The Elderly Gentleman has grown tired of the real Bill Drummond overtly considering the consequences of his actions before embarking upon them.
 
It seems that The Elderly Gentleman wants to start acting upon his whims without considering the consequences of his actions.
 
This, embracing whims whatever the consequences, all started last week, sometime between Tenzing Scott Brown writing his Forty Second Play Twa Tins O’ Grey and him attempting to write the plays called Unhalfbricking and Head Butt.
 
What Tenzing Scott Brown was writing in the Twa Tins O’ Grey play was all poetic enough, but what he was writing in the Unhalfbricking and Head Butt ones, was just lumpen and wooden. It was then The Elderly Gentleman stepped in with his “Well fuck all that… I’m going to do it anyway. And anyway it was me that had the whim in the first place. If you get to this time in life and you have not learned to act upon your whims before rationality gets in the way, then what is the point?”
 
So The Elderly Gentleman got the train up to Birmingham, New Street Station and then headed down under the Junction, as he has a tendency to do.
And then poured out over four thousand words.
And he then cried and cried.
And then The Elderly Gentleman got the train up to Great Yarmouth. 
And then headed to PRIMEYARC 
And with Tam Dean Burn 
And Tracey Moberly, acted out two of these whims. 
But admittedly he did use the titles that Tenzing Scott Brown had come up with, as in Unhalfbricking and Head Butt.
 
That was the night before last.
 
This afternoon, The Elderly Gentleman, has gone and bought himself a tin of grey paint from a branch of Willko’s, which is in the shopping centre next door to PRIMEYARC. Thus this tin of grey paint has nothing to do with Drummond’s International Grey as featured so poetically in the play Twa Tins O’ Grey.
 
And tonight The Elderly Gentleman is going to ignore all that stuff the two remaining tins of Drummond’s International Grey were going on about in their play.
 
And The Elderly Gentleman is going to go and paint the words IT’S A MONEY THING on a billboard advertising the HALIFAX (the bank not the town). This billboard can be seen today if you are on the train pulling into the station at Great Yarmouth, right now – as in right now as I write these words in a boarding house in a backstreet of Yarmouth waiting for the darkness to come.
 
But seeing as there are two of these HALIFAX billboards there, The Elderly Gentleman plans to paint on the other one, the words… 
 
OUR TIME IS RIGHT NOW…
 
As in words from the Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers song The Morning of Your Lives, because… 
 
The Elderly Gentleman will whim away, because… 
His time is right now… 
And not just because Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers have told him…
But because… 
Right now… 
Right now… 
Here in the morning of The Elderly Gentleman’s life… 
He believes… 
He should do anything… 
He really believes in… 
Even it is all based on a whim…
 
In your heart, your mighty heart
The Lions roars tonight.
In my heart, my beating heart
The Lion reigns tonight
Whim Away
Whim Away
Whim Away
Whim Away
 
But…
 
Later that same night back in his room at the boarding house in a backstreet of Great Yarmouth. The Elderly Gentleman opened his Black n’ Red notebook and starts to write…

The Elderly Gentleman:

Well I guess some whims just don’t pay off…
However old or gentle you are.
An artist can always attempt to blame his tools.
And I might blame the quality of the cheap grey paint from Wilko’s.
And I guess the two tins of Drummond’s International Grey back in PRIMEYARC must be laughing at me.
The thing is, it was pissing down – which I am fine with but…
You know, an artist has to suffer but…
It’s one thing cutting the end of your thumb and your blood goes into the vegan soup proclaiming to be vegan, turning forty unsuspecting folk into part time cannibals but…
When the rain washes your paint off the billboards as soon as you attempt to proclaim your rage against the way that the international banking system attempts to lure the actual real people, you know no-one is going to notice whatever it is you have done in the morning and…
Even though my colleague Tracey was hovering at a safe distance with camera in hand, there was very little for her to document.
But like Greta almost said…
“You are never too old to make a difference.”
Thus I am not going to worry about one failure of this elderly gentleman’s raging against the advertising campaigns of international banking.
As for raging against the dying of the light, I will leave that to the poets that throw in their towel before they even get to 40…
 

Photographs by Tracey Moberly

IT IS THE MORNING

Tuesday the 19th of October 2021

The Real Bill Drummond:

I have just walked from the boarding house in a back street of Great Yarmouth heading for the railway station with Tracey Moberly. She aims to be catch her first of four trains home to her Valley in South Wales.
 
We crossed the bridge over the River Bure to where the two Halifax billboards were that Tracey photographed in the darkness and rain last night.
 
I was fully expecting that the rain would have totally washed away The Elderly Gentleman’s efforts from the evening before, thus failing to tip the ‘people friendly’ branding of global banking, into a quagmire of its own making. 
 
But no…
 
The Global Bankers had got there first and totally replaced the billboard posters with equally cynical attempts at “getting down with the people” branding. This time it is LLOYDS, and not HALIFAX, but as you probably know, they are both owned by the same Global Bankers.
 
The first of the billboards is one of a wholesome looking farmer with his friendly looking milk cows. And a field of solar panels, thus ‘they’ are hoping their billboard ticks both the Green box and the Brexit box at the same time.
 
The second of the billboards features a fellow Elderly Gentleman as my other self. But this one is of the Windrush Generation, In the background is a subtly positioned Jamaican flag. In the foreground The Windrush Elderly Gentleman, offers us a tray of his freshly baked patties that he is in the business of selling. Thus an advert riddled with a patronizing racism attempting to pander to the urban, be they elite or diverse.
 
More work for The Elderly Gentleman beckons.    

Photographs by Tracey Moberly

The End

MY BLOOD FOR YOUR BLOOD

October 22, 2021
Photograph by Tracey Moberly

MY BLOOD…

The 17th of October 2021

Sunday morning, rain is falling
Steal some covers, share some skin
Clouds are shrouding us in moments unforgettable
You twist to fit the mould that I am in…

The Real Bill Drummond:

These days I go for a blood test once a year.
They need to know if my cholesterol levels are going up or down.
Or any of the other things that blood tests show,
I’m on Statins.
Many men of my age are on Statins.
Not my drug of choice but…
The blood tests show no other issues as yet.
 
Yesterday afternoon Tam sung Unhalfbricking…
And I sat there with my eyes closed… 
And held the tears at bay… 
And I painted my head… 
While Tracey told me where and when… 
And forty folk listened and watched.
 
But…
 
Yesterday morning, I bought vegetables from the market in Great Yarmouth.
And tins of various types of beans from Farm Fresh Foods.
This was all for making the Soup for the no more but no less than forty folk that had got tickets to hear Tam sing and watch me paint my head while Tracey told me what to do.
 
After getting the ingredients I went into Wilko’s and bought a new knife for peeling and chopping the vegetables for the soup.
The Soup was to be Vegan.
It was proclaimed to be Vegan.
I am not Vegan but…
Others are Vegan.
 
Back in PRIMEYARC, I started to peel and chop the vegetables.
The knife from Wilko’s was sharp…
Very sharp.
And it was not long before I had sliced the top of my left thumb.
Jules from originalprojects; provided a tissue and plaster but…
The plaster did not stick but…
The vegetables needed to be chopped.
The Soup needed to be made but…
My blood with its high cholesterol flowed and…
It flowed into the Soup.
Maybe not more than a thimble full but…
That Soup was no longer Vegan but…
It was too late now to start making a fresh vat of Soup.
 
Before Tam sung Unhalfbricking, I asked the audience, of no more and no less than forty, if any of them had ever heard the album Unhalfbricking by Fairport Convention. 
Only one person put up their hand. 
That one person being Karl, his real surname will remain anonymous to protect the guilty…
Thus, from here on in he will be known as Karl Anon.
 
Karl Anon runs a print shop with the celebrated poet Lotte L. S. – but not that sort of high street print shop. 
 
Karl Anon makes prints of iconic figures and sells them to whoever wants to buy them. 
Prints from Alice Coltrane to Angela Davis. 
From Edie Sedgwick to Poly Styrene. 
And every other tragic heroine inbetween.
With the odd Richie Edwards and Ian Curtis thrown in for good measure. 
You know the ones… 
The ones with a status, waiting to be spray-paint stenciled on posters and sold from Great Yarmouth to the would-be self-harming elite of the World.
 
Is that why Great Yarmouth chose itself to be twinned with The Edge of The World?
 
I like what Karl Anon does, even though we and me and he knows, that they are knowingly part of a world that can never get enough of a tragic heroine. A world that will pay Karl Anon money so they can have a hand stenciled spray-painted poster of their tragic heroine of choice, framed and hung on their wall. Even if Alice Coltrane is only tragic by association and Angela Davies is still very much alive and never has been and never will be tragic.
 
But…
 
Karl Anon sells other stuff.
Just for the fun of selling stuff.
Just to see if anyone will buy it.
Just to pay the rent.
I mean we have to pay the rent.
Fuck! 
I have forgotten to pay this month’s rent on my dark industrial unit on a light industrial estate near Sizewell B.
Make a note to myself to pay the rent on Monday morning.
Anyway…
 
After Tam had sung…
And I had painted my head…
And we had listened to the recording of Jonathan Richman & The Modern Lovers singing The Morning of Our Life.
And we had partaken in the Soup that was not Vegan, as it contained my blood…
Unbeknown to me Jules of originalprojects; handed to Karl Anon the tissue that I had used to wipe my blood from my thumb before attempting to put a plaster on it.
She thought…
And he thought…
That maybe he should attempt to sell this tissue with my blood on eBay.
 
Now it may not be the ear of Vincent Van Gogh but…
It is my blood and…
I did bleed for my art…
Maybe not like Ritchie Edwards did or…
Edie Sedgwick did but…
I did bleed and…
In so doing turned maybe something less than forty folk – not everyone partook of the Soup – into Cannibals…
Just like the folk who ate my uncle.
It seems the circle will remain unbroken.
 
So, I said yes to Karl Anon.
My art might not have a price but…
It seems my blood will.

But things just get so crazy
Living life gets hard to do
And I would gladly hit the road, get up and go if I knew
That someday it would lead me back to you
That someday it would lead me back to you

 

FOR YOUR BLOOD

The 18th of October 2021

The Real Bill Drummond:

But…
But whenever Monday comes…
I love Mondays.
I always see things fresh on Mondays.
And this Monday is no different.
I’m sitting in the Central Café on Regent Road, Great Yarmouth.
It’s pack-up-and-move-on day.
Moving on is always good.
I’m just re-reading what I wrote about Karl Anon selling my blood.
And thinking about how Karl Anon told me he would sell anything and everything.
Whatever he had got, whatever he was wearing…
The passing cloud
The wind in the morning
Yesterday’s news
Tomorrow’s heartbreak
Any of it
All of it
But not from greed
Not from aspiration.
But…
Because nothing is permanent
Nothing lasts forever.
And don’t invest emotion in the physical things you have.
None of it is worth it.
Or it was something like that Karl Anon was telling me.
 
And I’m fine with Karl Anon selling my blood on eBay for whatever he can get for it and he can keep whatever he can get for it, but I tell him I don’t expect him to get any more than a tenner and he tells me about his line that he wants to use – WHO ATE BILL DRUMMOND? and I was fine with that but now that I am sitting in the Central Café watching the passing world something else strikes me, a very Monday morning thing and this is it…
 
 But first some context…
 
I said earlier how I have high cholesterol which means I am now on Statins.
I used to give blood regularly but…
Now that I’m on Statins I’m advised not to.
Being a blood donor made me feel that at least I was giving something back.
 
So, this is the deal…
 
If you buy the tissue with some of my dried blood on it on eBay from Karl Anon for ten quid, you have to promise me you will give one pint of your blood.
 
If you buy the tissue with some of my dried blood on it on eBay from Karl Anon for twenty quid, you have to promise me you will donate two pints of your blood.
 
And up it goes…
 
Obviously, I only expect you to donate one pint at a time.
Thus, if someone ends up paying a hundred quid for my blood, they have to donate ten pints of their blood over ten years.
 
Okay maybe that will be half a litre (500ml) instead of a pint in this day and age, but whatever, you get the idea?
 
This is the link to eBay – it’s live as of now until 7pm on Sunday the 31st of October 2021 when the bidding will stop.

Book NOW to donate your blood

 

POST SCRIPT:

The Narrator:

The above text was emailed to Karl Anon for verification of facts and feelings. He was fine with it all but…
 
He informed me that when he was living in Baton Rouge, Louisiana  back in ’87, he would sell his blood to keep him off the street. 

… I’m gonna leave Texarkana
I’m goin’ down to Louisiana
I’m gonna try my luck in Baton Rouge
I’m gonna follow ol red river down
Till I see the lights of town I ain’t gonna get no sleep in Baton Rouge

The End

WARNINGS:
1: The Real Bill Drummond has been reliably informed that being on Statins is no reason for not giving blood.
2: The Real Bill Drummond does not consider a piece lf tissue paper containing his blood to be a work of art by himself. Even if Who Ate Bill Drummond? is a work of art by Karl Anon.

But…

The Real Bill Drummond will consider MY BLOOD FOR YOUR BLOOD to be a complete work of art once he has received selfies from the winner of the eBay bid for Who Ate Bill Drummond? These selfies to be taken by the winner as they give each pint of blood over the coming years. Once The Real Bill Drummond has received all the selfies he (if he is still alive) will return, to the winner of the bid, an A1 sized framed print of the photograph of the blood stained tissue, taken by Tracey Moberly and an A1 sized frame containing mounted prints of all the selfies.

Selfies received via admin@penkilnburn.com

The art is in the blood of the beholder.