* 200 articles. Two years. Whelk. The best of Upsideclown. Might be reprinted.

Three is the magic number

13 February 2003
George isn't really a third wheel

As you walk into the gallery, the object in your hand is sending out waves of information to the one, two, and three monitors around the walls of the museum. You move forward; the beams of numbers intersect and communicate, following your steps towards the large red and rose canvas which dominates the room on the left-hand wall. You stand in front of the painting. Your position has been triangulated by wireless technology.

This, the object in your palm tells you, is the Rothko.

Running around the burnt-out moors, sporting a large and sprouty beard, Christian Bale did a similar thing with dragons in Reign of Fire. Three positioning satellites locked position to track the she-dragons terrorising the post-apocalyptic survivors of Northumberland. Three was the exact and perfect amount for the operation. One sees nothing; two is too few and could result in parallel beams, spinning the desired object off into a limbo of parallels. Four is too many, because once you have three you can triangulate and track. Three is the magic number.

Three used to be the number for a family - one plus one makes one - but in these perspex cloning days of Dolly the sheep and cc the kitten, the magical three has been reduced down to the binary, dualistic, black/white, good/evil two. Out of one comes one. This does not bode well.

On the subject of dualism: even the faiths which we would presuppose to divide down the middle into good and bad, right and wrong, heaven and hell; even they utilise three, giving depth and mystical choice to the spread of the faith. Father, son and holy ghost. Maiden, mother and crone. Privatisation, public ownership and the "third way". Three splits the choice and shows the dimensions. Two is the text and the paper; three is the book and the screed.

Also: colours. No duality here- the entire fantastic spectrum comes from the holy three of red, blue and yellow. [disclaimer for art students and physicists: for white, spin 'em, for black, blend 'em]. All of sight's creation coming from the magic three. But also nothing - nothing that we can predict or control. Put two variables into a system and it is possible to predict and even control the causes and effects of both. Add a magic third, and it all goes to fuck - it is impossible to know what or where or how is going on, except that there's paint everywhere and the wallpaper's crooked and there are rubber ducks on the lawn.

Give it up - three is truly the magic number. Sex between you and another can be dull as plastic; threesomes are fun, fun, fun. Twins are kind of over - triplets are the future. The only reason that humanity relies so much on binary systems is from our gross physical make-up - two eyes, two ears, two arms, two legs, two kidneys. The second provides the back-up. The third provides the fun.

I went to Trinity College. Does it show?


This is the fucking archive

Current clown:

18 December 2003. George writes: This List

Most recent ten:

15 December 2003. Jamie writes: Seven Songs
11 December 2003. Dan writes: Spinning Jenny
8 December 2003. Victor writes: Rock Opera
4 December 2003. Matt writes: The Mirrored Spheres of Patagonia
1 December 2003. George writes: Charm
27 November 2003. James writes: On Boxing
24 November 2003. Jamie writes: El Matador del Amor; Or, the Man who Killed Love
20 November 2003. Dan writes: Rights Management
17 November 2003. Victor writes: Walking on Yellow
13 November 2003. Matt writes: Disintermediation
(And alas we lost Neil, who last wrote Cockfosters)

Also by this clown:

1 December 2003. George writes: Charm
10 November 2003. George writes: Dead beat
20 October 2003. George writes: Shortening
29 September 2003. George writes: Manhattanites are Cleavage-Starved
11 September 2003. George writes: How to Bring Us in Line With the Future
18 August 2003. George writes: Slashtastic
28 July 2003. George writes: Underground Independent Small Press Comic Fight Club
7 July 2003. George writes: Careering
16 June 2003. George writes: Choose your own adventure
26 May 2003. George writes: Revelations
8 May 2003. George writes: Picture Perfect
14 April 2003. George writes: MetaPirate
24 March 2003. George writes: Preparation X
3 March 2003. George writes: F of x
13 February 2003. George writes: Three is the magic number
23 January 2003. George writes: Recorded Delivery
30 December 2002. George writes: Meat Bingo or Death
12 December 2002. George writes: Royal Inquisitor
21 November 2002. George writes: This Clown is Cancelled
28 October 2002. George writes: Shopping with God
3 October 2002. George writes: SaferSpoony
16 September 2002. George writes: Supercalanthropomorphicexpealidocious
26 August 2002. George writes: The deformed animal menagerie
5 August 2002. George writes: Plaice that Funky Music, Whitebait
15 July 2002. George writes: Safe as Houses
24 June 2002. George writes: Two Lions (DB/DS)
30 May 2002. George writes: Series 8
9 May 2002. George writes: Market Stall
11 April 2002. George writes: I, the Enlargened, Crunchy Product
18 March 2002. George writes: Cakexterminator
21 February 2002. George writes: Fiction Suit
28 January 2002. George writes: Spunk Gunk
31 December 2001. George writes: Fairytale of New Pork
10 December 2001. George writes: Circular
15 November 2001. George writes: A Man With No Ass Is No Man At All
22 October 2001. George writes: One Night in Heaven
27 September 2001. George writes: Uncut
3 September 2001. George writes: Porn Pants
9 August 2001. George writes: Names of the Roses
19 July 2001. George writes: No Fun Here
21 June 2001. George writes: All Your Elections are Belong to Us
28 May 2001. George writes: Pierced as Fuck
3 May 2001. George writes: My Lovely Horse
9 April 2001. George writes: Eight Hundred and Forty-Three
12 March 2001. George writes: Kill 'Em All
19 February 2001. George writes: Formal
25 January 2001. George writes: Sticks and stones
11 January 2001. George writes: A Thought on Morality
11 December 2000. George writes: You can't put that into a soufflé
13 November 2000. George writes: Lyrical Genius
19 October 2000. George writes: Wet wet wet wet wet
25 September 2000. George writes: Built on an Indian burial ground
31 August 2000. George writes: This Way
31 July 2000. George writes: Runt of the Litter

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