It's almost that time of year again when I should at least try to pull a list together of places I'll be heading out to... I could swear I used to have a Road Trip calendar online here somewhere but I seem to have hidden it from public view. I didn't mean to, so I'll drag that back out shortly from whatever hole I swept it into.
I'm back in Florence in three weeks or so to do some work out there - I'm also getting tattooed over the weekend which is neat - but there's also some time available to investigate some new things. I'm wondering what I should do other than sit around eating pizza and wonder where all the genius-like people went.
Coincidentally, we all took an evening off last week and went to see Inferno. I like Dan Brown. He does what he's supposed to with his books. It's not his best book by any means and neither is the film. The thing everybody was most impressed with - despite a reasonably arty jaunt around Florence - was the scene in which Langdon and Sienna are able to hire a car by tapping a credit card against the windscreen. Go figure.
I could do that I guess but somehow, it seems to miss the point.
Digging around a little however, I find that if I talk to someone nicely, it's entirely possible to gain access to a secret room under the Medici Chapel in which Michelangelo hid himself away for three months to avoid being torn apart by horses (or some equally gruesome fate) during a rebel uprising. With nothing to do but sit it out, he apparently took to rustling up some 'sketches' for the walls. The usual kind of thing really: Christ... a self portrait or two... some copies of his own stuff that he did on something called the Sistine Chapel. Nothing too out of the ordinary.
I'm pretty intrigued by this because nobody found the room until 1976, so not that many people are likely to have been in there, Certainly not as many as if it had been public knowledge for the last 500 years. Here's a few samples of things I could find online - if I can add more to the collection, I will.
You should have put that in your book, Mr Brown.
On the subject of which... the whole world seems to have been so wrapped up in Inferno being released at the movies that it's missed a new novel coming out. It should be out already but appears to have been delayed. It's called Origin and was due out on 26 September, I'm saying nothing. I know as well as anybody how your stuff can get derailed no matter how well you plan it. A quick look at his site doesn't even hint what it's about either - and I like that.
The critics will no doubt come for you with hammers and lead pipes, But We Love You Dan Brown!
Would you look at that! One lousy dollar in exchange for so much life. If you pressed me on which of these three people had given me the most pleasure across my time on earth so far, I would have to say that Mr Schultz said everything the other two had to say and a whole lot more besides.
If he had hidden in a secret room for three months and knocked up a fresco or two down there, we'd really be onto a winner.