Sunday, August 07, 2005

The Spider and Me

Here's Mr. Monkey visiting the giant spider sculpture at the Tate Modern gallery in London. Imagine my horror when the National Gallery in Ottawa decided it too must display one of these monstrous insects, not inside but smack-dab on the piazza out front, visually assaulting innocent passersby.

My initial reaction? The Spider must go. It is large, hideous and, well, a spider.

Now some of my associates, and one in particular whose views I respect, have defended this $3.2-million behemoth with comments like, "It's the coolest thing in Ottawa" and "The Spider rocks!" The Spider, you see, speaks to them. While I am simply creeped out by its spindly legs, bulbous black body and chilling egg sac, they appreciate this eight-legged interloper on another level. They see power, grace and even beauty. The space underneath the Spider is not a hellish prison, but a vista from which to behold the majesty of the bronze arachnoid.

They have not changed my mind. But I am open to persuasion. I will co-exist with the Spider, and may even learn to like it. I shall embrace my inner spider.