tail wagging the dog

November 11, 2007


Any case where something of greater significance is driven by something lesser.Wikipedia says:

“…is taken from the joke: “Why does a dog wag its tail? Because a dog is smarter than its tail. If the tail was smarter, the tail would wag the dog.” Interpretations differ as to the meaning of this metaphor. Some suggest the dog is public opinion, and the tail represents the media; the dog is the media, and the tail is political campaigns; or the dog is the people, and the tail is the government…”

I had intended to go on and on about this particular expression, but we rushed off to see a concert at the Wiltern in Hollywood this evening, and I didn’t get the chance.

However, I must say, if you ever get a chance to see “Swell Season” you absolutely must! Their music is magical, evocative, whimsical and so beautiful it almost hurts.

Tom and I had the good fortune to hear “Swell Season” at the Orpheum last year, as they opened for Damien Rice. Damien Rice was phenomenal, but we couldn’t believe what a gem we had found in the opening act.

Glen Hansard, lead vocal/guitar of “The Frames” and Marketa Irglova are the leads in Swell Season and also starred in the film “Once”. I haven’t seen the film, but I’ll tell you, if those two have half the chemistry in the film as they have onstage, it can’t miss. When they sing a duet, there is an intimacy between them that is so sweet and intense, it makes you feel a bit like a voyeur, like you’re intruding on a private moment.

Take my advice and go hear them live. Do it, not only to experience their energy, the purity of their sound and their beautiful lyrics. Do it, not only because Glen on acoustic guitar and Marketa on piano sing with the strong, clear, sweet voices of angels. Do it, also to hear Glen go on and on unaffectedly, revealing the underpinnings of each song, with Irish wit and charm. Do it, because this is not just a performance, you are truly sharing a moment with these talented artists. Do this and see the film. I know I’m going to see it as soon as I can. I hear it is really good!

While your at it, rent “Wag the Dog” with Robert Dinero and Dustin Hoffman again, or for the first time. It was a pretty good movie if memory serves. More importantly, it ties in with the theme of this post.

Hmmmm, is it my imagination, or was that just tail wagging the dog?


4 Responses to “tail wagging the dog”

  1. This is great – I love that he looks sickened but also a little put out. Brilliant idea for a series – you could go on with these sayings for a very long time.

    Thank you for the Swell Season mention, I had no idea they were touring together. Once is one of the most incredible movies I have seen in a very long time, mostly because it is so low-key and un-incredible, if that makes any sense. Their chemistry is palpable in the film too, and the way the story plays out is just perfect. The comment you make about feeling like a voyeur intruding on a private moment is precisely the feeling you get seeing the film. You won’t be disappointed.

  2. AnneW Says:

    I just love your sketches. Your animals are fantastic and I always notice the posture of their feet.
    Enjoy reading your blog 🙂

  3. sketched out Says:

    Thanks so much for your nice comments. I’m really enjoying the animal theme too.

    And animal feets are one of my favorite things! Love to draw them.

  4. […] posted this sketch about a year ago. Seemed great for the theme, so I colorized it in Photoshop and threw it back in […]

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