Archives for the month of: September, 2012

an actual bona-fide piece of piss to use, honest.

There is something that happens on a daily basis on every road in the country that annoys me to the bottom of the irritable grumpy old man I try and bury deep inside me. I shouldn’t let it get to me; it is such a seemingly small thing. But I cannot help it.

It is not something that people do; it is something that they DON’T do.

How many times, when you are driving your car, do you use your indicators? Think about it; is it every time you turn or begin a manoeuvre? Or only if there is someone else about? Or never?

Whether I am walking or driving; the misuse, or non-use, of indicators winds me up. It makes me want to shout and wave my arms in frustration and not only if it directly affects me.

Picture the scene. You are sat in the driving seat of your car, a clear road ahead of you. Your left hand turn is approaching. Do you a) drive along until the last minute then violently swing into the turn regardless of anyone else present like a thoughtless twat, or b) USE YOU FUCKING INDICATORS like a proper sensible driver who has taken a test and got a licence not bought on eBay?

The choice is yours, of course. We live in a wonderful free country with free will and the ability to make our own decisions. But please, if you are a non-indicator just consider for a second the poor bloke who spent his time fixing the fiddly little bastard things to your car in the first place. He didn’t do it without good cause.

Do you want to know why it annoys me so much? Well, here it is; it takes absolutely zero effort to actually indicate. It takes no time, isn’t in any way inconvenient and can actually make life a whole lot easier.

On another note entirely, I nearly got hit by a car the other day because I failed to fully realise he was turning left at a junction. All my own fault, obviously.

And don’t even get me started on the buggers who use their mobile goddam phones whilst driving. (I’d like to freeze time, remove and dismantle the mobile phone, replace it in their hand with a scorpion and place the bits of ex-phone on the passenger seat. Then restart time, obviously.)

And hazard warning light misuse…

And seat belt non-use…

Speeding…

Red lights…

…*walks off mumbling and kicks a stone*

It has always in the past been something of an annoyance for me when a celebrity dies. That’s not to say that I find the passing away of a famous man or woman a personal inconvenience, but it is more the reaction of huge swathes of the general public that grates on my nerves.
There is nearly always a huge outpouring of grief, as if these people knew the celebrity in question on some personal level. I have never understood how the death of someone you do not know can have any affect on you, other than a small feeling of “oh, that is a shame”, and possibly a feeling of sorrow for the loss the family has suffered. To try to hijack some of this grief is, to me, a little crass and selfish.
I’m not saying we shouldn’t feel anything when people who have been on our TV screens, magazine and newspaper covers and billboards – effectively crow-bared into our everyday lives – get ill or die and the very nature of humanity is to grieve at the passing of a loved one. But that is my point, really. These are not loved ones in the true sense of the word, however much we think we might know them.
I was sad recently when Neil Armstrong died. He was, in my opinion, a man who achieved massive things for science and the human race. He SET FOOT ON THE MOON! This is huge. He didn’t just stand on the moon, he was the first to do it; a pioneer. He certainly wasn’t alone in making this glorious achievement, but he was instrumental in it.
However he always shunned celebrity life. He was never one for the lime light and he seemed to be a quite family man.
When he died his family released a wonderful statement saying in part “when you look up at the moon, wink and think of Neil”. I have tried to do this as often as I can, just not in public when people might think I am odd(er).
I am also touched and saddened by the fact that one of my favourite authors, Sir Terry Pratchett, has got Alzheimer’s. He has, since being diagnosed, championed the fight for a cure, along with the right to take his own life. He was quoted, shortly after diagnosis, as saying he would make the disease regret catching him. It is a wonderfully Pratchett turn of phrase.
He will, when the moment arrives, leave a gap not only in my bookshelf (or kindle memory) but in my life. He has been with me since I was about ten.
But I won’t grieve for him. I couldn’t. I’ll be sad but true grief, to me, is a deeply personal thing. It is put aside for those I truly love. For anyone else it will be sorrow possibly but I’ll move on pretty quickly. Maybe I’m a bit cold hearted, but I don’t think so.
The thing is I think that I like, or would have liked, these two people in particular. In the same way I admire Stephen Fry, and many other people whether famous or not, and think he’d be okay to meet. But you know what? Maybe they are/were arseholes. Maybe I would detest them once I’d met them. Maybe they would have the same low opinion of me if we met that I had of them. Maybe not, but you never know. They are just people after all with opinions and likes and dislikes. You can’t get on with everyone.
So when the queen dies, or the next actor/singer/TV presenter gets found in a heap in the kitchen/bathroom with a note/gun/drugs I’ll shrug my shoulders and turn the page and read about sport or the state of the roads or something else and I’ll wait for the outpouring of “oh he/she was so wonderful” “he/she meant so much to me” and so on and so forth with gritted teeth.
I’m not saying people are wrong to grieve, I just wish I could avoid it. Social media don’t help in this with every other person fawning distress and affection for the latest to pass. It’ll happen to all of us one day, y’know… I suppose I could switch of the computer, radio and TV next time.
And don’t get me started on Princess Diana…(I’m sure she was lovely, by the way).

Anyway, whilst we are on the subject I’d like this played at my funeral, thanks.