Love hurts

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I was rudely awoken this morning by a nagging pain on the left side of my mouth. A rogue brazil nut (apparently encased in a jacket of steel) caused part of my tooth to break off last night. I always knew this healthy eating lark was bad news - chocolate's much safer and ice cream has certainly never led to me losing a body part. Needless to say I was feeling pretty sorry for myself on the way to work, that is until I heard about poor Nissim the elephant. Nissim, a resident at Knowsley Safari Park, suffered damage to his tusks that was so severe a top London dentist had to be drafted in to operate on him. Nissim lost a large part of his tusk trying his luck with some older female elephants (Dumbo springs to mind). As I was reading the story I couldn't help picturing the scene as some kind of elephantine Samson and Delilah, young Nissims strength ripped away from him by his ruthless mistress and as I walked past Solomon J Soloman's depiction of Samson at the top of the stairs at the Walker Art Gallery this morning I almost had to wipe the tear from my eye … or maybe it was just the effects of that darn brazil nut.

The warrior Samson being held back from Delilah

Did you know that Knowsley Safari Park was founded by the 13th Earl of Derby - whose collections formed the origins of what is now World Museum Liverpool - and there was an exhibition dedicated to him at the Walker a few years ago.