Hauling Like A Brooligan

Stephen Gallagher

Of Prams and Hallways

In today’s Guardian Frank Cottrell Boyce takes on Cyril Connolly’s much-quoted assertion that “there is no more sombre enemy of good art than the pram in the hallway”.

The piece is accompanied by a picture of J G Ballard and his three small children, raised single-handedly after the death of his wife at a young age. The image is rebuttal enough on its own. Although I suppose, in a spirit of cruelty, you could further counterpoint it with a list of Connolly’s literary achievements.

(But that’s an easy shot. I wouldn’t want to see mine set against Ballard’s, either.)

The pram in the hallway is merely a handy excuse for mediocrity. Your children, on the other hand, are a wonderful source of startling ideas and unexpected insights, and they can’t sue when you steal.


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