Friday, November 21, 2008

I can't explain

I've come to the conclusion that most of the world's troubles and most everyday troubles are down to one thing, the failure to provide a proper explanation. This revelation came to me as I dozed on a flight from Exeter to Edinburgh during the week. When I look back upon my life (not always with a sense of shame) I've always been the one to fail to explain and to mumble and therefore blame. Maybe it's all in the question being asked and not the answer. I was asking someone about the tidal range on a site and he told about me the depth of the water, then I asked about the maintenance arrangements for a piece of equipment and instead he told me how it worked, then I asked him about the working pressure of the equipment and he quoted figures nothing to do with that. I smiled and nodded politely and wondered about my accent and tone and general demeanor, then got back in the car. So I've got a feeling inside but I can't explain...

In Exeter airport I had the joyful experience of sitting next to a Paris Hilton clone in the coffee shop. She was shouting in an American accent into her pink phone using phrases like "And he's like.." "And I'm like..." "And we're like..." then just when I thought the dialogue couldn't get any worse up popped a Nicole Richie clone to add a third thread to the shrill and clearly pointless conversation. Now I am an expert on the lives of some dance troupe from Wales and their creative tensions and group dynamics. Nice enough girls really but you wish they could reduce their levels of hysteria to something close to inaudible when out in public. I suppose they were just trying to explain...

Peggy the pig got a nice big carrot to chew this afternoon as we shopped in a farm shop, a place I'd normally avoid but not today. My grandson poked the carrot through the fence and Peggy didn't quite take his fingers off but certainly enjoyed the carrot. I was on a log buying mission and filled the boot of the car with logs, kindling sticks and various home baked pies and West Lothian vegetables, all designed to see us through this cold snap. My grandson managed the quip of the day, he picked up a turnip and said: "My mummy says these make you pump!" Good explanation for an eternal problem.

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