The Rejection Collection

melancholic patriotism at Munich’s Amerikahaus

Went to a show of support for Munich’s Amerikahaus, which was a last minute attempt to save this organisation that’s been at this location for more than fifty-five years. Perhaps it’ll continue in some form, but the American-Bavarian cultural centre will never be the same. It’s a sad moment in the history of the city.

But one of the nicest aspects of this place’s existence (did I mention it probably won’t exist much longer? I did, didn’t I?) is that you’re never quite sure what you’ll find there. Today was a perfect example of this. As I was leaving the event, I saw some posters for an exhibit.

Turns out the show was upstairs and I was there during opening hours. I had time before the football was to start. Why not take a look? Am so glad I did, and I think you will be similarly pleased.

What was it called? ‘The Rejection Collection: The Best Cartoons the New Yorker Never Published‘. I am here to tell you, this was much better than you might expect. They were not kept from publication due to lack of hilarity. There was some pronounced hilarity. Some of it was dark and a tad depraved. Am I going to shield you from that part? No. No, I am not.


I don’t know how to tell you this, but I’ve found someone new


Those perverts from National Geographic are filming us again


A whorehouse? Tomorrow? I wanted for us to go to the Guggenheim


I came as soon as I heard


Zen litter box


(Wonder why they didn’t see fit to publish this one)


I’m looking for the necktie that says, “I don’t wear underpants.“‘


(I’m crying with laughter at this one. It’s sick and twisted and dark. And I love it.)


Grandpa, what’s going on here? Didn’t they have colour film at Auschwitz?’


Hand over the sandwich, or I’ll shit on your parents


(Some of these cartoonists have some potential aggression when it comes to cats)


Perhaps my biggest influence was Pollock

I’ve known quite a few percussionists. Some of whom played in an orchestra. I assure you several of them can sympathise with the fellow holding a pistol to his head. Enjoy:


money and beauty

'The Calumny' by Sandro Botticelli

Don’t want to dwell on this, because hypocrisy can be such a tired topic. Nevertheless, it’s a very succinct description of how a letter of exchange wasn’t officially seen as usury. Here, give it a gander:

‘The Church’s ban on usury and the images of usurers burning in hell troubled lenders and borrowers alike. But people needed loans and there was no point in lending without a return. It was important to find a solution that wasn’t just “a way around” the ban, but that really did not seem to be usury at all. The letter of exchange was a “most delicate invention” and “a most subtle activity,” wrote Benedetto Cotrugli in 1458 and what’s more “impossible for a theologian to understand.”

For more than two hundred years, it allowed bankers to make a profit on loans without feeling they were usurers. Foreign currencies weren’t usually held in quantity in any one town, so if someone wanted to change florins into, say, English pounds, the florins were handed over in Florence and the pounds picked up in London. Officially, travel to London took ninety days, so someone kept the florins a while before repaying since the exchange rate was always more favourable for the local currency. In London, a similar exchange deal could be made to turn the pounds back into florins, so that after ninety days in Florence again, there might be a profit of 10 to 20%.’

(source: Money and Beauty exhibit at Palazzo Strozzi in Florence)

Did you catch all of that? Today, most of the non-Muslim world doesn’t give the subject of usury a second thought, but we certainly have plenty more examples of this sort of double standard in our societies.

I doubt I’ve fully explored all the things I thought about during my short stay in Florence. Might write about other things and then come back to Money and Beauty. Who knows where this lahikmajoe blog is going anyway.

Am I the only one enjoying it so far?