It was something of a shock to be asked to front a new show on the ethology of our larger cities. Attenborough is usually trotted out for anything involving animals. I’m more of a pond life specialist, though now I know more about the subject of this series of programmes, I am perhaps not surprised my expertise was deemed relevant. The great bonus is that we have finally identified the cause of the UK’s massive budget deficit and debt problems.
I have not come across a species of pond life as crassly gluttonous as the Acpos. Their diet is highly specialised, typically consisting of chocolate-dipped strawberries and champagne in the early morning, filet-au-point in early afternoon and pan fried sea bass with asparagus helped down with Puilly de Fume before they take their overnight naps, or retreat to assignations with females clearly not their mates in both hetero and homo sexual relations. In later episodes we follow them to an elephants’ graveyard equivalent, during which they drink gin in large quantities before trying to fly by throwing themselves at the ground. They die before the very rescue squads they organised arrive, having failed to dress themselves appropriately for the conditions.
Today, we find them deeply involved in their main environmental function, which is to create massive debt and budget blackholes in their country’s economy. At first sight, it seems their diet and uniform fetish alone would account for this, but as one absorbs their form of life one realises the acpos are the merely pinnacle of the hive. A much larger sub-species does all the work and in turn is a much bigger debt-former for the country as a whole. Later programmes will cover the government cull in which over 30,000 of the sub-species (which can be identified by inferior uniforms and smaller numbers of sexual encounters, usually with stranded Norwegian tourists) will be slaughtered to allow the country to recover from the excess consumption of their alphas.
However, now we press on as the Acpos congregate to hear the Orde Indoors deliver his annual address on the chocolate-dipped strawberry economy, before splitting into work groups with code names such as ‘Santa Claus Butt-Fucks Rudolph’, which as yet we do not fully understand, but involve a dark room, video player and a box of tissues. The Orde is totally incomprehensible, except to viewers in Northern Ireland.
Mmmmmmmmm!!! Muy interesantes!
I almost bought a box of eggs in the City centre this morning Dickie, in case a target of opportunity sprang up. Hoggie has just compared these ‘pigeons’ to a bunch of travellers. I’ve had the odd crumb from the gravy-train myself, but how they have the gall to pull this stunt now I just can’t believe.
Am I right in thinking, from the gist of your post Neil, that it is the Acpo pondlife species who have maintained their salary and gold plated pension levels….because they used smoke and mirrors on Theresa May, and convinced her to reduce troop numbers, to make financial savings. That’s what you are saying, in a rather posh manner, isn’t it Neil? Is that the “stunt” you refer to above?
If so….. naughty self serving Acpo!
Spot on Mrs Magoo. I’m only doing this blog to learn the ropes. You hit on a number of my central concerns with this short comment. The first is that “bureaucracy” (which we need to personalise somehow)is a parasite out of control. The characters in this play are merely relating to each other in their own interests in this. Posh language on this can be found in ‘public choice theories’ (my mate Leon has a site on this);but this leads to my second concern that ‘posh’ and particularly academic language are all wrapped up in this (I could direct here to Veblen – but isn’t that sort of wrapped up in the posh or me sort of bragging I’m erudite?
You cut to the chase. There’s good, intermittent blog ‘complaining about police’in which a woman suffering anti-social crimes let’s rip on the farce of it all, dropping her professional language to express the frustrations. She makes me cry. I wonder whether we end up in complicated language just because of the frustrations of trying to grasp the jelly of bureaucracy.
In science fiction mode, I wonder about a society that has a means of knowledge transfer that elides the mannered bull (everyone can access knowledge) and what that would mean for what we could do and want to do, and how we would look back on ‘Acpo pondlife’ from there.
I agree that bureaucracy is out of control, but I see it as more of a “monster”, which I suppose could also be a parasite too.
I have never heard of “Veblen” which just shows that I’m not as erudite as your good self Doc! I even had to get the dictionary to find out what the word meant. ;-(
I suspect that the use of complicated language developed within numerous professions, [authorities] so that those outside of the elite group had difficulty in understanding what the hell they were on about. Perhaps it’s a spin off from the judiciary and all their legal jargon, which Joe and Jane Public often find baffling.
I haven’t had a look at the blog you mention, and I don’t especially want to be reduced to any more tears right now. I’ve recently had news of the sudden and unexpected death of someone I was very close to in my childhood. So I’ll look at it when I’m not feeling so down in the dumps.
You mention that you are doing this blog to learn the ropes. I imagine that you are also teaching your readers a thing or two upon the harsh realities that the government like to pretend don’t exist. Thank you Neil.
You have also taught me the meaning of some rather obscure words on this rather unusual blog.
Thanks Mrs Magoo. Veblen was much odder than I. One of my students actually read some of his stuff whilst sheltering from the world in my office. She discovered his instruction that citation was an elite invention, quoted him and then refused to cite anyone else. Good ploy -made me smile so I gave her a first for the essay. She picked up a lot from that point.
We need to find a way back to language. The powerful colonise trough it. In my youth, people like Labov made big points on how mediocre university-educated language was. We have gone backwards.
Take care of yourself. Loss is more difficult than we realise. I’ll cheer you up with the nachtraglichkeit and equafinality ;ater!
Thanks for your kind consideration Neil. You have already made me laugh with the words nachtraglichkeit and equafinality and ;ater??? Did you mean “later”?
Never heard of Labov either…..you clever boffin!
A typo indeed. The nachtraglichkeit concerns the temporal location of trauma and whether such lie in ‘real’ incidents at all. “;ater” might say it all!
My guess is that ignorance rules and we can’t even communicate this. I want to find a way to write that can be read or translated to visual media. Yet to make a living I need to write what is already intelligible to people who already know and unintelligible to those who don’t. Argh!
I think that you are blagging my head Neil!!! 😉
I think we are thrown into that condition at birth Mrs Magoo! Once we open up thinking we enter something called the Kantian sublime where anything is possible in thought, but we know differently from biology.
Helping people to think for themselves is my bag,
I think that often I can find myself “thinking” too much and going around in circles trying to find a way to deal with some tricky issues. I also believe that anyone who has suffered an upsetting traumatic experience knows full well that it was real. I found that it was others, the ignorant, who “thought” that it was just too outrageous and too awful to be true. Perhaps because they didn’t want to “think” about the harsh reality and the truth of the matter, or take steps to help those who had been hurt.
Their denial of the problems, and the suffering of the victims just added to their traumatic experiences.
Often the counsel given was “best forgotten” and to think happy thoughts. That appeared to work until the memories of the traumatic experience return in later life, like a boomerang. I do believe that our thoughts [and words] can shape our reality and our future, in that if we expect the worst to happen we can draw that to ourselves like a magnet. The “blue sky thinkers” do have a good and valid point, when they try to see the positive side to everything. So I am going to do my best to expect the very best to happen in my life by counting my blessings and being grateful for what is already good in my life.
Your blog certainly does make one “think”!
There are a lot of elements of Freud in what you say Mrs Magoo. We ‘push away’ much to the unconscious – and as you say it returns to bite us.
I guess what I really want to be able to do is surface the real problems, yet the problem is partly that this is a problem in needing to linger in the negative in order to ‘get positive’ (otherwise we’replaying ‘misery loves company’). Often “the positive” is the very block to new actions for a better world. It’s a bit like being stuck in the mud, but thinking it’s honey and trying to lick our way out! The word for this in the old soviets was ‘kitsch’.
I met up with an ex-student last night who is giving up teaching after 15 years and it was clear after meeting his colleagues they are all experiencing life as horribly bureaucratic (the Lizzielove blog almost). The blessing being they are very nice people we’d want to teach our kids. There’s a rather sweet book called ‘Sophie’s World’ that approaches philosophy in a meaningful way that would help us be more positive about thinking. I’ve just got a secondhand copy to read before I go into writing retreat.
All power to your elbow with the writing Neil.
It’s a very muddled world right now and anything that can shed some light and truth on the mess that has been created, will be a breakthrough….and a blessing too.
I think I might go into a “sleep” retreat!
Very tempting. My guess on the muddle is our core understandings have broken down. When this happens in science we re-adjust the core of the programme to better fit the evidence, which changes itself as we rethink. We are not so good at this socially.
I think you may be right there. Human beings are complex creatures, or have made life complicated perhaps.
I did have a look at the “Complaining about GMP” blog.
Very sad indeed. Poor woman. Is she still around, alive and kicking? Hopefully not another tragedy there.
What made me feel very sad about the situation she was/is in, was the comment about the femal police officer who visited her and who tried to be positive by pointing out the value and benefits of having faith in Angels.
The victim was/is too bogged down in the stress and the nightmare of her daily life, to take on board what was being said to her by the officer, no doubt in a genuine attempt to provide the victim with daily unseen spiritual protection. But many people are like that, living a hellish life, having rejected the notion of unseen spiritual forces of light and good. They require “proof” before they will believe that a higher power exists.
My eldest daughter had a few difficulties years ago and had to go into a refuge. She was handed a book called “Strong At The Broken Places”….I cannot recall who wrote it, but it was about “victims” of abuse and how many tend to cope with it. Drugs and alcohol abuse are a common factor, and oddly also an “addiction” to work!
The workaholic will keep themselves busy to the point of exhaustion and burn out, rather than have the time to dwell upon, or deal with the upset they feel inside.
The book suggested that to heal the scars, the “bad stuff” had to be got out of the system, cleared out, even if painful initially, to enable healing and recovery from the injury, stronger than before. The author likened it to the skin which forms after a cut has healed. It is stronger than the skin on the body prior to the injury.
It made a great deal of sense, like the concept of the soul being tested and strengthened, like steel that is refined in a furnace.
I hope that your writing “retreat” will not mean your absence from the blogosphere Neil, as you would be missed.