After writing yesterday of the “bliss to sit in a smoky pub with a beer and a cigarette and a few friends”, today I saw the expulsion of smokers from pubs and cafes as the expulsion of Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden. Here’s Michelangelo’s depiction of that event on the walls of the Sistine Chapel:
The story is essentially the same. But this time, the original sin of Adam and Eve has not been to eat an apple, but to smoke a cigarette.
I think Michelangelo’s painting depicts the scenes before and after, with the left hand side showing them in flagrante as they plucked the apple from the tree, and the right hand side their expulsion.
A contemporary variant of the picture might have the left hand side as the cosy interior of a pub, with the boulders becoming a bar with glistening bottles and glasses behind it, and Adam and Eve seated on stools in front of it, both fully dressed. The centre of the picture would be the door of the pub, outside which they would be seen trooping sadly away together, naked in the wind and snow and pouring rain. I’m not sure where the serpent might appear, but perhaps he might be the bartender who offers them a cigarette. And the nasty angel with the sword could become Deborah Arnott depicted as (H/T Tony) an Abhorrent Toad?
Perhaps I might fire up Manga Studio 5, and trace the outlines of Michelangelo’s masterpiece, adding bar, bottles, glasses, carpets, and so on.
For as far as I am concerned, 1 July 2007 was an event on the scale of The Fall, when millions of Adams and Eves were evicted from their cosy, friendly pubs, and “exiled to the outdoors”. And it will have consequences that flow from it on an equivalent scale.
Oddly enough, for many years, I had a local pub a few yards from where I lived called the Adam and Eve. It’s quite a common name for an English pub. I wonder how many people were standing outside it on 1 July 2007, and how many of them saw themselves as re-enacting a scene from Genesis?
I spent 3 or 4 hours with Manga Studio 5 creating The Fall (after Michelangelo). It’s got the same figures in the same places (I traced them), but the background has completely changed. The perspective is completely different. On the left, Adam and Eve are sitting on barstools at a bar, and the Serpent is handing Eve a packet of cigarettes that she’s just got down from the top shelf behind the bar, where Adam has been pointing to show her where they are. On the right, Adam and Eve are shown exiled naked by an Abhorrent Toad to the outdoors, where it’s raining of course.
Could have done with a bit more work on it, I suppose.