Saturday, December 09, 2006

A realdoc writes

About the ever-spiralling decay of an institution we'll only miss when it's too late and it's gone. Still, as long as most tabloids' theme this christmas is 'oh noes, the PCs are taking away our Christmasses!', I'm sure it'll get the attention it deserves.



ALSO:

I'm going to be guilty of the most astonishing bad taste, putting this in the same post as the above link, but there we are, fuck it.

Walking back from the shops today, I found myself walking behind a blind man, tap-tapping carefully along with his white stick. Because my average walking speed is slightly faster than that of a man already running quite fast, it became apparent that I was going to have to overtake him. Now I imagine that if you're blind, having someone swoosh past you with no warning could be a bit scary, so I stepped right out into the road to give him plenty of space.

Of course true irony would have been if I hadn't seen that lorry coming, but I did, so it was fine. I went back on the pavement, and then saw, in the distance, another blind man with a stick, on the same side of the pavement, coming straight towards my one.

So I stood there for a while, and just couldn't work out what to do. As they drew inexorably closer, part of me wanted to shout out 'Hey, blind guys!'. But this seemed somehow rude. Maybe I should run back and stand between them with my arms stretched out, braced for the crash ? Or I could take the arm of one and gently steer him round the other one, but this would require some kind of explanation, and all I could think of to say was 'Come with me if you want to live', which seemed a tad excessive.

I stood, frozen with indecision, and yet I could not look away. And I'll be honest, as I watched two blind men slowly and determinedly head towards each other, both oblivious to the others' existence, a dark and terrible part of me thought: this might end up being very very funny.

What actually happened of course, was they heard each others' sticks tapping on the ground, so one stepped politely aside for the other, and then they continued on their way.

Tch.

17 comments:

Anonymous said...

Not bad taste at all James. Your post reminds me of the signs in Moorfields Eye Hospital which are all in letters about 6 feet tall, always makes me smile when I go there.

james henry said...

Ah, the signpainter's family ate well that day...

Gary James said...

I love the scene in League of Gentlemen (I think), where a bloke finds himself sitting next to a blind man on a bench, and so helpfully yells, "There's a man sitting next to you!"

Spinsterella said...

Hmm.

When they cut us bloggers open and do lots of experiments on us in 2045, I think they might discover the 'fast-walking' gene.

Well, you, me and Wyndham, and probably lots of others...

BiScUiTs said...

Phew I was really worried they were going to have a horrible accident for a minute there. Still I suppose they've got that whole 'heightened senses' thing going on in their favour.

I think I walk quite fast. Well I know I used to but then I slowed down for a bit when I started walking less, and now I think I might have sped up again. Well I just don't know really.

patroclus said...

I reckon I walk quite fast. (And get up quite early.) You could be on to something, Spin.

Anonymous said...

I walk fast. and you shold see me when I'm shopping. No time to dawdle behind old people.

You know, just after I read your post, I went to go shopping, and dad nearly hit a blind man and his dog with the car.

Billy said...

I walk too fast really. Going on the tube or down a shopping street on a Saturday brings out my highly-strung impatient side.

Anonymous said...

"What actually happened of course, was they heard each others' sticks tapping on the ground, so one stepped politely aside for the other, and then they continued on their way."

Now I am going to sound really mean, but the first thought that came to me when I read that was, "Aw MAN!"

I am known to walk fast when I am alone. I am also known to weave when I walk. I think I will always be thought to be a little drunk/tipsy just because I don't seem to have the ability to walk in a straight line.

violetforthemoment said...

I also walk fast, though not as fast as Mr Violet, who makes us look like a very traditional couple by always being a few paces ahead of me. He wears a hat too, which I'm sure adds to the image.

surly girl said...

yeah, and me. walking fast, that is. when i go round tescos it's like i'm on time lapse and everyone else is on normal..

how interesting i am this evening..

Anonymous said...

I walk with strobe motion.

helen said...

I fly...with wings.

Imo said...

you'd think in this time of great technology advances, blind sticks would have sensors built in to them directly linked to a chip in the blind person's ear, so they can have their own personal sat nav communication going on, thus removing the need to tap..... goes off into dream world where I actually invent this, take it onto Dragon's Den and become a multibillionaire.

d'hoffryn'sfavourite said...

well I walk very slowly & am far too busy daydreaming to pay attention to possible blind people nearby.

Which could explain why I'm a lurker and not a blogger...

Angelina said...

I bounce along on a space hopper

(I wish!!)

Anonymous said...

I walk fast, although I have extremely short legs (some would say stumpy), which means that my "fast walk" just ends up being a normal person's "walk". Never mind, at least I try.
-littlered