Tuesday, 11 February 2014


With the horrifying pictures and the reports coming out of the Somerset Levels and other waterlogged parts of the UK. It is difficult to imagine what it must be like if you are sitting at home in front of a roaring fire with a nice cup of tea and a Bourbon or two.

Across the various TV channels reporters in wellies are trudging through floodwater bringing us the grim news. Although rather irritatingly are often standing in front of it so we can't actually see the true horror. My genuine heartfelt sympathy if you are suffering terrible privations. I heard the story of a friend of the Dark Lady who's mother has just died and who's house flooded as she was ebbing away in hospital.  How cruel is that?

I know it's a particular bugbear of mine. Television can be a box crammed full of nice and often not so nice scenes. Why do people have to block the view by standing in the way?

I think we should call this the "Hello Mum" shot.

To my mind it serves no useful purpose but gets the reporter on the telly so their parents can be proud.

What other things serve no useful purpose?

(DJs aside that is. Thought I'd get that one in quick before you did.)

I seem to remember a 1977 film "Oh God"! with John Denver who somehow ends up communing with God played by George Burns. At one point when talking about how he created the Earth he's asked if he made any mistakes:

"Avocados. Made the stones too big.....and Ostriches. No use to anybody."

Hmmmm maybe you can help with this one.

Perhaps we could have categories such as:

1) Pointless

2) Useless

3) Ludicrous

4) Dumb

5) All of the above. However without them life would be somehow and unaccountably diminished.

This is not going to be exactly a scientific survey. Nor am I suggesting there should be some terrible witch hunt to track down and exterminate the culprits. Witness the examples I mentioned from the film above.  I like avocados despite spending a romantic Boxing Day in A&E when the Dark Lady managed to lacerate her finger attempting to remove one of the big stones.  Also Ostriches look funny and their feathers somehow set off hats worn by elderly women. Also providing tantalising cover for burlesque dancers.

So maybe they'd fit in category 5.

So, lets give it a go shall we?

1) Leaf Blowers. You spend ages blowing dead leaves into neat piles only for the wind to blow them away again.  Surely a rake would be better? Better still a bad a stiff broom and a pair of those gigantic plastic hands to scoop them up after.  You'd look rather silly but the job would get done.

2) Public phone boxes.  If you forget your mobile you won't remember anyone's number so you can't use them. They probably don't work anyway. They are horribly unhygienic having been used as public conveniences although in London anyway the only purpose they seem to serve is for Tourists to stand next to and be photographed and for Prostitutes to place their calling cards.

3) Sporting mascots and mascots generally.  Grown men in funny suits. This is somehow going to make you feel good about where you live. Your favourite team. Or somehow make you quit smoking?  I speak as someone who earned £3 per day as a green gorilla back in 1974. That was a long summer I can tell you. Friend told me of a guy dressed as a cigarette who was tipped up and rolled down the street by some rough boys.  Football mascots are all bonkers and as has been pointed out. If your team is called upon to observe a minutes silence before the start of a game. It is hard enough for footballers to refrain from rearranging themselves. Spitting. Chewing gum. Emptying their noses onto the pitch one nostril at a time without standing next to a 9ft blue and yellow chicken.

4) This is a category that is wide open. Every nation has its dumb folk. Be it a Neanderthal knuckle dragging attitude to others of a different colour or sexual pursuasion. Or a seeming inability to be self aware enough to realise they are a figure of fun. Reality TV is crammed with them pontificating about stuff they know nothing about. Or celebrities who feel duty bound to refer to themselves in the third person. Rap "stars" are good at this...oh and getting shot.

5) This is very simple and possibly boil down to one thing and one thing alone which fills all of the categories I've outlined:


Now over to you.


Martin Lower said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Martin Lower said...

What's the point of tonsils? And while we're at it, why do men have nipples?

Over to you, Dark Lord...

Is it me? said...

1) Pointless

Overhead gantry signs on motorways telling you to "slow down" - slow down from what speed, does this equally apply to me in the slow lane doing 56 or the lemon in the fast lane in the Audi who is two inches from the bloke in front doing 95.

2) Useless

Weather forecasters. Usually wrong, unless like at present the weather is obvious and more often than not they tell us what the weather was like yesterday.

3) Ludicrous

The simple question asked by every dispenser of fast food no matter what chain "is that a meal", you mean is my burger and fries a meal? No love it's a work of art and I will be selling it at Sothebys tomorrow.

4) Dumb

Banks. Generally a cheating bunch of usurists who then award each other massive bonuses and float hideous TV adverts telling us that we are their favourite person.

5) All of the above. However without them life would be somehow and unaccountably diminished.

Ear hair in older people, of which I am one. Generally horrid and pointless but worth every moment as you stand on the crowded tube (when they are running) and marvel at the displays of ear hair that nature has provided. Everyone display is I suspect like a fingerprint, different.

Sally B said...

Agree with Martin Lower about men's nipples (ornamental?) but for my money the duckbilled platypus beats bunny ears for No 5 any day of the week!