Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Trigger Warning

OK, It seems that I officially have a 'Trigger'

I think that's the right word - I've been seeing the phrase 'Trigger Warning' used to label blogs and suchlike that have things like traumatic scenes or violence towards animals, children, women, the dispossessed, the poor, the huddled masses, immigrants - Any sort of 'group' really being portrayed as a victim for one reason or another that can cause feelings of anger or trauma in the reader. Maybe it's because of something you yourself went through, or someone close to you, or someone you've read about... Even if it's someone that doesn't exist and you've made them up in your head just so you can hang your righteous indignation on them like the last coathook at choir practice, doesn't matter, they're all valid: trigger.

Seems simple enough - You read something that gets your goat - you don't like it - you sound off about it and feel much better. It doesn't matter who you upset, you feel better and that's all that matters.

Except, no, it's actually not. It's not OK to spazz out and direct some stream of vilifying bollocks at someone who was simply voicing their opinion just because they used a word that you didn't like (Yes I'm oversimplifying it intentionally, I do that, do try and keep up) They didn't know... And to a point, it's not their problem. Maybe they've had a really crappy day, maybe something's happened to them recently and everything fell into place and it became obvious to them that it was [insert thing that happens to be your trigger]'s fault.

Who's fault is it?

Well, no-one's actually - maybe at the outside it could be argued that it's yours for being 'triggerable' I don't know, that seems unkind when you think about it - But life's often like that isn't it? We all like to think that we're special little snowflakes, all touched by the hand of the maker, in action how like an angel, in apprehension how like a god. But we're really not - We're each about 2lbs (1Kg) of pinky-grey snot in a bone-box being carried around in a meat-suit controlled by a frankly unbelievable set of low-voltage electrical impulses that has no reason or right to work at all.

And yet we're still upset by The Daily Mail?

Before this veers off into the long, dry grass of existentialism, let's steer it back on the road towards something much more interesting and valid:


Because it was me that we were talking about - And this is still my Blog. What is my trigger you ask? Well, you probably don't ask, you've probably wandered off to catch a Pokemon and walked into a tree by now, but let's imagine someone is still listening.. reading... whatever... My trigger is 'Men'

Not 'men', the male of the species, owners of 'outie' reproductive organs, hunters, gatherers, wearers of polished shoes and tight, white, briefs and beard growers. But 'Men' with the horns and the pitchforks and the having everything that they do given to them on a platter, the ones who are threateningly tall, or scarily muscled or malevolently tattooed or in positions of power that have been provided solely so that they can look down upon everyone that isn't them and laugh and laugh and laugh, the obvious pedophiles, the members of 'clubs' that have ties.

You know, the ones that are usually stuck at the end of a sentence like, 'But that wouldn't have happened if I was a man. You get me?'

Men are the root of a lot of the world's evils, I'm not denying that in the slightest, significantly more rapists and murderers and despots and pedophiles and terrorists are men than are women in this day and age - I'm totally fine with that... Wait, no, I'm not totally fine with that in the slightest, it's a terrible thing to have to say about your own gender - But I'm fine with people saying it - because, ostensibly, it's true. If you dig deep enough into 99% of the worlds problems, you'll find an overweight middle-aged bloke pointing and saying 'I did that, comrade.'

I'll pause here to mention that's it's dead easy to say 'But what about Angela Merkel?' or 'I think you're forgetting Magdalena Solis!' but try and bear in mind that I said 'More', and not 'All'... 

And that brings me back around to my actual trigger - It's where the word 'Men' is taken to convey 'All men', whether it's meant that way or not. You can infer from what is said that the speaker, or the writer or whatever means that Men are murderers, Men are pedophiles, Men surf through their lives on a magical silver serving dish being permanently fellated by innumerable slaves whilst ignoring the more widespread female burden.

And I'm sure that some are, and I'm sure that some do...

But not all.

It's never all.

Friday, 1 July 2016

The Ministry

In the year of Our Lord nineteen hundred and sixty, Ernest Marples, the then Transport Minister, took it upon himself to unilaterally introduce a new law upon the nation…

It didst go something like this: ‘If you, as a member of the great unwashed, dare to drive your second or third hand heap of crap car on the Queen’s highway, at least the bloody trafficators should work. And you should yearly pay at least £2 for the privilege.’

Of course, I’m talking about the MOT test. The test which causes annual panic attacks in saner men than me.  The Dandymobile went in for her ‘Yearlies’ last Saturday and she failed miserably.  Well, I say miserably, there were lots of silly little things wrong with her that I’d been living with for the prior six months with no real problems.  Things like none of the brakes working (Including the handbrake) one headlight pointing directly upwards and the other backwards. And as it turns out, it’s also an automatic fail if your bonnet if welded shut – who knew? (It stops the pixies scampering off with all my Horse-Powers, don’t judge me.)

Anywho, it seems there weren’t enough grease monkeys available to re-align my flanges on the day, so I had to reconvene on the following Wednesday to have my tyres rotated (Which I thought was kind of the whole ‘raison d’etre’ with tyres – But I’m not an automotive professional.)  The day came, I delivered the Dandymobile to the garage and gave strict instructions to the owner about the care and maintenance of the currently incumbent boot-panther (And not to poke him with sticks, I’ve found that Wilberforce doesn’t like it when you poke him with sticks)

As an aside, many people have recently asked me how I initially came across the MKII Dandymobile. Firstly, I thank them for downloading my video from PornHub, then I relate the snatches of story that I can remember… All I shall say here is that it involved a heated game of full-contact Spillikins, with a Nepalese gentleman called ‘H’rum’ and a scar to my inner thigh in the shape of a seven place setting Chinoiserie dinner service, which I still have to this day (the scar, not the dinner service). It itches loudly during meteor showers.

But back to our story, I had dropped off the Dandymobile, and had been offered my choice of courtesy cars. My choice was simple – Amongst the plethora of Porsches and BMWs and the single beige Humber Scepter, there stood, glistening in the early morning sun, my Nemesis, my High-archdeacon of hell, my own personal Eleanor… The Audi Quattro.

This is her, look upon her and tremble

I’ve driven cars that would curdle a nun’s milk, I’ve driven cars that would make a strong man see in black and white, I’ve driven cars that would make popular BBC Radio2 DJ and alleged Top Gear presenter Chris Evans vomit in excitement – And they’ve never affected me.  But the Quattro, the Quattro shook itself like a wet Alsatian as I walked up to it.  The handle of the driver’s door was unusually warm, and the windscreen wiper arms seemed to pulse with an unearthly vigour all their own. As I mounted it, and performed the complicated series of button pushes and lever… erm… lever… whatever it is that the current participle action of levers is, I felt the slightly too snug seat below me constrict, as if readying itself to bind me steadily as it propelled me forward with the voracity of a rabid SCUD missile.  I’d be a liar if I said that I didn’t seriously consider walking the 60 miles to work.

The Quattro however, had other ideas.  It was four miles from the garage to the petrol station, I arrived there some nine seconds after initially leaving the garage. I regained consciousness lying on the back seat in a pool of my own tears with my trousers around my ankles. £20 worth of petrol was all I was willing to give to the beast as tribute. It turned out that that single amount was only just sufficient for the round trip that day.  The Quattro showed her displeasure on the way home by making me do seventeen circuits of the dual-carriageway island near my house, faster and faster we drove, until finally the back end of the car broke traction and we left the road, plummeting into a nearby hedgerow and viciously squashing a family of crested newts.

The message on the answering machine from the garage saying that the work on the Dandymobile would take another day filled me with panic. I freely admitted that I cried like a natural soprano on the verge of becoming a castrato. Down on the gravel drive, the Quattro belched loudly as it spat out a broken flurry of peacock feathers.