The Nature Of Leonard Cohen's Future

Leonard Cohen’s Future On Heck Of A Guy Discovery Channel

Because of the the following point from Leonard Cohen World Tour Predictions For 2010,

3. To appeal to the younger population – and show off his skills as a ventriloquist, Leonard Cohen will begin using a hand puppet for song introductions and commentary.

… I was taken to task by stalwart Cohen fan  MaryB in her post at LeonardCohenForum:

What’s going on here? Why is the puppet a frog? We need a minkey!!!

Edit – and if you can’t find a minkey ( :oops: ) a monkey will do.

For those not proficient in  the Cohen fan community traditions, conventions, and mores, “monkey” (and, for that matter, “minkey”) here refers to Fred or a reasonable representation of Fred, the Tour mascot1 pictured below in San Diego:2

Monkey SanDiego

Fearing the misunderstanding of my  role  implicit in MaryB‘s note may be widespread, I am repeating the explanation of the restrictions under which I operate, as well as the story behind the monkey’s loss of this prime role despite his popularity as the Tour’s emblematic small animal,  that I originally published in LeonardCohenForum:

Well, I can only portray the future as it is revealed unto me – it’s not as though I can just make up this stuff.

It appears, however, that in the future the monkey goes through a prima donna phase (that happily proves to be transient). Nonetheless, the frog will be chosen when contract negotiations break down between the monkey and Cohen’s organization over “artistic differences” with the monkey refusing to “play some kind of joke character” and insisting on rewrite privileges. After an extended effort, I did manage to envision an image of the monkey’s audition which illustrates the problems.

Later, the monkey explains, in a MOJO interview with Sylvie Simmons, that “I don’t know what happened. It was as if someone was putting words in my mouth.”

Again, I can only see through the mists and report what appears before me.  Attempting to influence future events would be a betrayal of my responsibility.  As the timeless aphorism  notes,

Monkey see
Monkey blog

For the record, I account myself a Friend Of Fred and am saddened to have  foreseen his loss of this future opportunity; I am, however, heartened by the knowledge that this will prove only a temporary setback in Fred’s career path.

  1. Why a monkey? Because of the lyrics from Leonard Cohen’s “First We Take Manhattan””:

    And I thank you for those items that you sent me
    The monkey and the plywood violin
    I practiced every night, now I’m ready
    First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

    Apparently, a plywood violin is a less attractive option on the spectrum of mascots []

  2. The photo of Fred in San Diego was taken by – yep, you got it – The Monkey (apparently with a delayed shutter) and posted at LeonardCohenForum []

2 responses to “The Nature Of Leonard Cohen's Future

  1. MOJO will subsequently apologise for the error. It was meant to read “worms in my mouth”, not “words” and the interviewee was, in fact, a frog.

  2. Minkey brings to mind Peter Sellers’ Inspector Clouseau. At least, after I smoke my peep.