In case you don’t know, ShprixieLand is the elaborate little art home I share with my partner Victoria in Boswell. It’s here that we spend most of our time making fancy-schmancy pottery. While our livelihood consists mainly of metamorphosing mud into money, we do consider ourselves citizen scientists - spending our free time measuring and recording the effects of the atmospheric anthropomorphism that circulates above Kootenay Lake.
Now, we’ve only lived here for 20 years, so we only have the two decades of our own observations to fall back on, but more and more, we’re noticing a rise in localized anthropomorphism (non-humans behaving like humans). When we shared our findings with our cat Nisha, she just scowled up over her newspaper at us and said, “That sounds like a bunch of bullshit to me.” Then she snapped the paper straight again and went haughtily back to her horoscope.
We just looked at each other.
Our late dog Kuboosz would have laughed good-naturedly and said something profound about how, as we learn to let go of our attachments, the reality around us clarifies. Kuboosz was part Lhasa Apso, and he claimed to be a Buddhist. He was always full of wisdom and insights like this.
And then there are our chickens. They’re like a parliament of 13 hens with one cocksure but mostly ineffectual rooster as the figurehead monarch. When presented with our findings, they bickered about it for weeks and then finally returned to us to ask how, if this was true, we could be sure we ourselves weren’t animals that had already been transformed by this effect, which is a really good point. Since then, we have spent a lot more time in front of the bathroom mirror scrutinizing our faces for any zoological clues.
Despite our cat’s insistence, anthropomorphism does appear to be occurring at an ever-increasing rate. We’re just not sure what’s causing it. Perhaps it’s related to the magical realism that percolates up through the bedrock around here. Or maybe its origins are cosmic, morphic-rays from the Gamma Cygni Nebula. Or perhaps it’s just a distortion caused by the warped lenses of artists’ eyes.
No matter what is causing it, we’re keen to observe it and report on it for you. If anthropomorphism is on the rise, we all need to be aware of it. No one wants to get mugged on a lonely logging road by a gang of miscreant cedars, or to suffer salesman skunks at their door, or to get up in the morning and be startled by the coffee pot wearing your robe and slippers and making ITSELF a coffee.
Know the signs of anthropomorphism. Keep an eye on your pets. Monitor your home appliances and record any changes in their character or any suspicious new limbs. Scrutinize your loved ones and revisit old photo albums. Perhaps you’ve forgotten that your grandparents were ladybugs, or lupines, or lawn tractors, or something. But mostly, tune in to our ShprixieLand social media, Instagram and Facedbook, or even these website blogs where we share reflections and introspections, and we puzzle over the day to day lives with the lake and the forest and our chickens. Follow us as we come to terms with a continually anthropomorphizing world. When we’re not prestidigitating pottery, we’ll be writing about all of the absurdity alive in our art making lives.
ShprixieLand: the potentially real people that you can trust.