Wednesday 23 August 2017

Blue Words Under Autumn Skies

Blue Words Under Autumn Skies

Reflective musings by Casey Douglass

Before I say anything else, yes, I wrote “Autumn Skies” even though it’s still August. Autumn feels very much like it is wafting this way, and I’ll defend my right to say so via fisticuffs at the venue of your choosing if you disagree. Hazar!

The blue words element of the title refers to swears, curses and language that would generally get you a telling off from your mum if you said it in her presence. During the last few days, there have been a couple of occasions where I have heard such language, and both times was tickled by some element of the context. If you don’t like bad language, turn back now.

The first incident was while in town. A homeless man was sat near a wall, people dropping spare change into the hat on the ground in front of him. It’s a scene that is sadly all too common, no-one should have to be homeless, not in a country as wealthy as ours. It was then that I heard someone calling him a cunt, which moved my focus somewhat.

A man was pacing backwards and forwards looking agitated and annoyed. He was sputtering and muttering to the people he was with, saying things like “That cunt gets more money than we do!” and “In my day, we didn’t beg, we had the dignity to just die!”. Okay, not that last one, but you get the sentiment I’m sure. What amused me was that this was all seemingly said just out of earshot of the “millionaire” with his little cardboard sign and blanket, because, god forbid the person might hear him saying such bollocks. I’d imagine this was just the kind of guy that goes home and calls people “faggots” when playing online video games. Take away his keyboard and put him face to face with someone and, well, let's just hope his underwear has a good water-tight seal.

The other event happened a day or so later, when I was watering my friend’s garden. I had already found my groove with regards to the order in which to water things: when to use the watering-can, when to use the hose or move it to another tap, stuff like that. I will add that my knowledge of plants is very low. I can spot a pansy at ten yards, but the elements of most plants fall into three categories for me: petals, leaves and stalks/stems. Basically, I was watering a pot of green things that happened to have splashes of colour attached when I heard “For fuck sake!” shouted in the church car-park nearby.

I sniggered. There are few places more inappropriate for swearing than church ground. About the worst I can think of would be an audience member watching a snooker match, and as the ball slowly makes its way up the table towards the pocket, jumps to their feet and shouts “Get in you cunt!”. That would be worse. This was just shy of that benchmark. The expletives continued, something got called a cunt. It was glorious. I think the free-range language belonged to a builder, a van was parked there with names on the side. It wasn’t the A-team at least, their van is noticeably different, and I doubt Hannibal would go for the phrase "I love it when a plan fucking comes together!"

Getting back to the church, on one level, it’s nice that god helps the local economy by getting mortals to fix his churches. I’m sure he could so easily wave a hand and have it self-repair. Another thought occurred to me, related to the swearing once more. What if the vicar was having tea and biscuits with a group of elderly women, a group that had been horrified at the new graffiti on the community center wall. They didn’t even know what a “twat” was until that day. I imagined him calming them, saying it likely wouldn’t happen again, just as the word “cunt!” is shouted through the stained-glass window, much to the ladies’ horror. This is the kind of thought that keeps me warm at night, and the kind that nestles comfortably in my mind, amongst the pornographic fantasies, TV plot-lines and dark spaces that fill out the edges.

Thank you for fucking reading. 

Oh shit, it's contagious!