This story takes place in another world and in another time.
Copyright © 2006 by Arthur H. Lavigne. All rights reserved No part may be reproduced in any form or by any electronic or mechanical means including information and retrieval systems without prior permission from the author in writing.
Pablo Picasso and Thomas Edison were very good friends and despite all the pressures of being a famous Artist and a well renowned inventor both took the time to meet over a cup off coffee and a game of chess when ever they could.
“My friend it is good to see you!”
“Yes, it has been too long!”
The coffee was brewed and poured the chess board with its ivory carved back and white pieces was already set on a table near the inventors workbench. So they could get right to the game. Both sat and as in custom white moved first.
“Ah yes you are so predictable.”
“What do you mean?”
“You always open with moving your queen’s pawn.”
“Look at all the other possibility another opening move can give you; you can move your rooks pawn and attack from the side; you can lead with a knight and throw your opponent off guard. Think! Try to capture the moment in your mind my friend and mold it to your liking. When you look at the thousand of opportunities limiting yourself to the same move time and again is just mind-boggling to me.”
“My friend, it is all the way you look at it. I open that way because it opens up the middle of the board for me; the pieces seem to dance across the battle field making shapes on the board much more appealing to the eye!”
“Ah, esthetics again, no wonder I always win.”
“The point is not to win but to enjoy the company, a cup of coffee and good conversation”
“I can’t argue with that my friend”
The game continued and as usual the outcome was the same.
“You win again,”
“Yes I figured a new way of using my castle to pin you into a corner, and it worked! Hope you are not upset about my ruthlessness.”
“Not at all my friend the point was the play not the win and besides the light through the window on the board and the shadows produced by the pieces was very interesting and enjoyable.”
The winner placed his hand on his head and scratched it perplexed by his friends answer.
The two shared another cup of coffee and sat and talked. Hours ticket away and soon it was night.
“My goodness I must go, They are unveiling my newest work at the National Museum of Fine Art tomorrow morning…damn what a bother, they are giving me some sort of award too…naming a wing of the stupid building after me. And for what I ask you? Spilling paint on a canvas? Drawing funny shapes and people who look like a bad road accident.?”
“Are you kidding? Your works are striking…wondrous…amazing. They make people stop and think and ponder the meaning of them, they are not just a flower but they are what makes the beauty inside the flower.”
“Thank you for your kind words, but the only reason my art looks beautiful is because you invented a way of lighting the gallery; a way of keeping the people cool when it is so terribly hot outside, a way to hear an opera without even being in the theatre. I wish… never mind”
“No, what do you wish my friend?”
“I wish I could be doing what you are doing?”
“What I am doing? This is not enjoyable work! You know I sometime spend 20 hours or more and my laboratory trying new things failing more times then succeeding! Spilling acid on my shirt, ripping my coat on the equipment? For what? To come up with something the candle has been doing for thousands of years to a public that cares just for a few days and then is constantly asking you when the next invention is coming out? You don’t want my life believe me!”
“How can you say that? At least what you make people can use, it makes there life better and easier. Everything that I do just sits on a wall, collecting dust.”
“Please, don’t say that, your works bring beauty and give people something better than a comfortable life, it brings them happiness.
“So we finish this meeting with the same argument we always have.”
“Who has the better life? I guess we both have it good and shouldn’t complain, yet sometimes…”
“Don’t start again.”
“Next time try at least try to win?”
“Ah we will see, oh well I have work I need to get to.”
“Get to? But it is nearly midnight!”
“An inventors work is never done, well please enjoy yourself tomorrow at the unveiling.”
“Good lord, I still can’t believe there will be a Thomas Edison wing on the museum.”
“You deserve it Thomas.”
“No I don’t!” said Edison with a laugh, “but it is kind of you to say so my friend. And you, don’t you stay up fiddling around with those gadgets of yours too long or Mrs. Picasso may invent a new use for your electric light bulb!”
Thomas Edison the Artist and Pablo Picasso the inventor meet many more times but, at least in this world, felt there was something missing in the path life they each chosen.