Sometimes we all feel like ruddy screaming. Things just get on your nerves. Nothing is ever simple, and there are so many things that you want to do, and so many things that other people want to do that stop you from doing the things that you want to do. And that’s not even mentioning the things that other people want you to do when you would much rather be doing something yourself.
Whenever I wanted to vacuum the front room, my Raymond would be in there mending his ruddy bike or sorting out nuts and bolts and screws into different containers or something. And he wouldn’t budge out, he would come up with something that I could be getting on with instead, like mending his ruddy trousers. But if I ever did want to mend his trousers, he would be wearing the ruddy things and wondering why I didn’t want to vacuum the front room or something.
Its hard living with people. Sometimes you just want to get out of the house, go for a walk on your own and scream, like the character in Munch’s painting. I know just how he felt.
I actually had quite a bit in common with Edvard Munch. Apart from the fact that he was a Norwegian, who was forty odd years older than me. He had a sister who went a bit doolalley, like my sister Pearl, and his father was a religious fanatic, like mine was.
“My father was temperamentally nervous and obsessively religious” Munch wrote, “to the point of psychoneurosis” whatever that ruddy means. I know that mine ended up in the local mental hospital after being caught nipping young lasses’ legs. I wonder if his father did something similar. If he had have done, no wonder Munch went doolalley and painted weird stuff like the scream.
I always wonder about the two people walking along behind the screamer in the painting. What they must be thinking. Maybe it wasn’t the only time it had happened (Munch did the same picture a few times) and they were thinking “Hey up, we’re off again…” Or maybe they are keeping their distance because they noticed that he looked a bit weird. One thing is for certain, they aren’t hurrying over to see what all the fuss is about and offer any help. That makes the whole thing a bit sadder for me, it sort of emphasises the fact that nobody cares.
Maybe that’s what old Munch was thinking when he first painted it. “I could go mad here, and nobody would care” The poor bloke’s mother died when he was a little lad and he never got married, Perhaps he just needed a cuddle and someone to show that they cared, someone to try and understand him. The Lord knows, we all do. Preferably not someone who is always messing up the front room an’all.
Any road, he lived to the ripe old age of 80, and did loads of other paintings and things. But it’s the Scream that he will always be remembered for. It touches a nerve with people, I suppose.