Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Good Intentions

In the streets around my house someone has been scrawling this slogan on every flat surface they can find:

My first reaction when I read it was, 'How cheering - yes, I draw renewed courage from this to continue my valiant fight against the steady march of couch grass  through my garden;  yes, I will not let temporary defeat deter me from my quest to get the grim woman I have to work for to show a fractional amount of warmth to a fellow human being - or even, (dream the impossible dream) to smile.'

But then I thought a bit more about it and realised that, like most woolly-minded attempts to spread good cheer via the medium of half-baked homily, this one might not be purely a force for good. I mean imagine if, for example, Colonel Gaddafi (and, as my brother pointed out the other day, the really interesting question about him is why, given his self-aggrandising costumes and general carry on, has he been content for so long to remain a mere colonel?) came around the corner and read those encouraging words, just when he was on the point of surrendering to the rebels? Where would we all be then?

And it's no good saying that that's never going to happen. How do you know? Gaddafi is, after all, just about the most erratic character to stride the world stage, at least in living memory. Almost anything's possible with him - including a surprise visit to the People's Republic of Ainslie.

So, after a moment's wavering, I was able to return to the comfort of my usual narrow-minded beliefs. Graffiti  (the tattoo's distant and even more hideous cousin) is, indeed, an excrescence, (although I thank it for giving me the opportunity to use the word 'excrescence'), that is visited on the urban face of the nation in an undemocratic, self-important and arrogant way.

1 comment:

  1. Well I did warn you but you took no notice and so now you're stuck with them, Smiler. What you say may be right; I've had less opportunity to contemplate tattoos than you.