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Matters of taste

Perfection is a state of mind. But you can find a picnic spot almost anywhere

By Will Self   June 2011

“A Jug of Wine, a Loaf of Bread /and Thou Beside me singing in the Wilderness…” My father, so far as I know, was not much given to quoting from the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, but whenever a picnic was proposed this hackneyed line would issue from his lips—with the inexorability of night following day, or ants converging on scattered crumbs. Frankly, if I were my dad I’d have avoided romanticising the al fresco eating experience. I suspect he saw himself, in his mind’s eye, as one of the sitters for Manet’s Le dejeuner sur l’herbe—obviously not the seated nude,…

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