4 May 2015

See! It's Benjamin Law!

Okay, so a few weeks ago I was reading the paper and saw an article about the James Turrell exhibition at the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra. You'll have read about it - the tours were conducted with everybody nude and it was a definite case of don't read the comments. 

There was this photo. 
Photo: Christo Crocker/National Gallery of Australia
via The Canberra Times
And I instantly recognised Benjamin Law.  INSTANTLY.

And you want to know something - I had no way of knowing he was even there until I read Monica Tan's article about the retrospective AFTER the event.  And when I discovered the information my brain went "I KNEW IT" like this was the sole reason Ms Tan had for writing the article.

And it's been playing on my mind how it has come to be that I glanced at a photo in a newspaper and instantly recognised a man I don't know at an event I didn't know he was going to in a city he doesn't live in.

No, I'm not a stalker - and I don't know where he lives exactly but I do know that he is a Sydney based journalist and that photo was taken in Canberra. So there! He writes a regular column in the paper I read every weekend.  His articles have been in everything from the The Australian Financial Review to Kill Your Darlings. 

But see, this is not the first time I've recognised Benjamin Law from the back of his head.  I fan-girled him last year after realising I was sitting behind (a fully dressed) him at a Men Of Letters event.  Yep, I INSTANTLY recognised this man I'd never met.

Literally, I have only read his columns and articles - I've not seen him talk, not read his books (mental note: add them to Goodreads) or accidentally stumbled across him on imageboard 4chan in the great 2014 Celebgate.

So this ability to recognise him INSTANTLY is kinda strange.

I mentioned to a friend 'How weird is it that I recognised Benjamin Law from behind in a national newspaper?'.

"Who's Benjamin Law?"


To another friend "Have you ever recognised a man you've never met from behind?"

"Al, um. No."


"Do you know who Benjamin Law is?"

"No. YES I do.  Dated that Sienna Miller"

"That was Jude Law not Benjamin Law."

"Really? Who is Benjamin Law?"

"The journalist??"

"Nope, is he one of your lefty fellows?"

Sigh. No. Well yes. But no.

"Do you know who Benjamin Law is?"

"Yeah, writer chap isn't he?"

"YES! Would you recognise him if you saw him?"

"Hmmmm, should I?"

Sigh.  Sure he's no Kardashian but he writes a lot of stuff.  Interesting stuff. Funny stuff. Yes, I read his stuff regularly.  But you know, in the paper once it's been edited and published and stuff. Not over his shoulder as he taps it out on his laptop the first time.

That would be really weird.

So here I am with a conundrum. My super power as it turns out is recognising 'Benjamin Law - the writer chap' from the back of his head.  That's it.  I can't even begin to work out how they're going to represent me in the next Avengers movie but I don't think it's going to be with the likes of Scarlett Johansson.

I can't be the only person that recognises people I've never met from behind.  My weird ability to pick Benjamin Law from a bunch of brunettes on an escalator or in a darkened bar can not be a stand alone talent.

Is it? Really?  Nope. Surely I have a wolf pack? Hello? Hello? Anybody?

What's your unappreciated super power?

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