It's that time of the year again, where Daily Mail journalists build up a froth of anger over the absurdities of the latest winners of the Turner Prize. "It's not art!" they scream red-faced, as they futilely attempt to define what art actually is.
Regardless of whether you consider it art or not, one thing is beyond doubt. Every piece ever entered into that competition is utterly shit. But why?
Artists are a peculiar bunch. Most are work-shy vagrants who can barely scrape enough money together to feed themselves. "I'm an artist!" they would wail, if you tried to force them to get a job in McDonalds. Artists think they are special, and this arrogant self-belief goes so far that most artists believe their own excretions to be worth millions.
Art collectors on the other hand are completely different. Extremely wealthy, but having lived a sheltered life, and full of the naivete that boarding school has buggered into them, they are always on the lookout for the latest gritty trend in art.
It is this combination of the artists' talentless egomania and the collector's clueless extravagance and willingness to please which is crucial. Any artist with genuine talent would long ago have applied their skills to a more useful medium. Any collector with taste would not waste their money on such manure. Only in the field of modern art can such a bizarre symbiotic relationship exist, rather like that bird which picks the decaying meat from between a hippo's teeth.
So next time you see the latest exhibit of "My toaster's excretia" featuring hundreds of slices of toast in varying degrees of burntness; or perhaps "Pubic Wars", a recreation of the Normandy landings sculpted entirely out of an artist's bodily hair, try to think for a while, and pity the poor bastards who are trapped in the asylum that is the modern art world.