Ye Mighty… and Despair: A Slice of Heaven and Arnie’s Ego

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What’s getting me going and what’s got my goat this week.

Mighty! The Village Green Tea Rooms, Rivington

The walls haven’t been painted for a couple of decades, you might end up on a table next to the exposed fuse box, and the piano player slipped a power ballad in amongst the Broadway classics but my recent visit to The Village Green Tea Rooms in Rivington was a total joy. Everything is homemade and tastes all the better for it. You can either stick to a cup of tea with a large slice of one of the many delicious and wonderfully lob-sided cakes or, if you’re feeling really peckish, try one of the hot meals. The portions are enormous but you will be loath to leave a single forkful on your plate.

If you are a regular visitor to Lever Park then you will know that there are two ‘barns’ that provide a selection of food and drinks on-site. My advice is to make the short detour to the Village Green Tea Rooms where the standard of what’s on offer blows the barns out of the water.

Despair! Schwarzenegger’s Statues

There is a scene in the 2004 film version of ‘Around the World in 80 Days‘ where Phileas Fogg (Steve Coogan) and Passepartout (Jackie Chan) are attempting to escape from the palace of the staggeringly vain Prince Hapi. The prince, played by Arnold Schwarzenegger, only agrees to let them leave if they do not harm a huge statue in his likeness. Much hilarity does not ensue when the vulgar artwork is accidentally smashed. Schwarzenegger plays his cameo role broadly for laughs. ‘Look at that self-absorbed prick wasting his vast wealth on crap like that‘ the audience is invited to think.

Well we can all think that again this week as it was revealed that Arnie has commissioned three large bronze statues (some reports say seven!) of himself as a young man to be erected in places of significance to the former Governor of California – his birth place, the venue for his annual fitness weekend, and his current home. More than life imitating art this is a case of shit art imitating shit art in shit art.

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