Black holes dear?…

But first…
Dulltown, Europe: Today’s Sir Arthur Conan Doyle quote is from The Sign of Four:
Holmes: ‘I have a curious constitution. I never remember feeling tired by work, though idleness exhausts me completely. I am going to smoke and to think over this queer business to which my fair client has introduced us… Wooden-legged men are not so common, but the other man must, I should think, be absolutely unique.’

‘Yes dear?’
‘I think people are like stars.’
‘Do you dear? Hollywood stars, pop stars?…’
‘No, no, proper stars, stars in the sky!’
‘Oh? Why do you think that?’
‘Well, there are lots and lots of them, just like people, and most of them shine a bit, but one or two stars, and people, shine noticeably more brightly.’
‘Hm, that’s very nice, but…’
‘But what, Mum?’
‘But, what about black holes dear?’
‘Oh… Gosh… Right then – these are people who absorb everything around them, they suck in ideas and culture… science, music, art, films, books, but they don’t produce anything, and they don’t ever give anything out to their fellow humans.’
‘Oh, that’s very good dear. I know one or two of those, and they always seem to be overly critical, and they don’t have much in the way of warmth and generosity.’
‘Mum, what happens to these people in the end?’
‘Oh, they usually end up as lonely old hermits, with no friends, living in small scruffy rooms full of books, recorded music, films, and big piles of old magazines and newspapers.’
‘…and if these people are black holes, as I say – when they finally evaporate away… nobody notices that they have gone…’
‘I suppose so…’
‘Yes dear?’
‘Let’s do some drawing.’
‘Yes, that’s a very good idea!…’

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
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