I know we can all be fed up with petty rules which seem to serve no purpose other than to irritate us but there are rules which need to exist.
My suggestions are:-
1. Whenever there is a grim news story, there should be three other stories to cheer us up.
I accept that at the moment, whatever your views on Brexit, Trump etc., this rule would make the news bulletins go on all night. Having said that, they seem to do so anyway, and we may as well have something cheerful in amongst the grim stuff.
Confession time: I’m finding more refuge in classical music than I ever have. Even the two minute bulletins on Classic FM can be trying and I’m sure that can’t just be me. I know we all have to face reality but it’s the ramming it into your face and focusing on the grim that gets my proverbial goat. (I also suspect this may well encourage more divisiveness, which frankly nobody needs. And that’s about as political as I get…).
Incidentally, I still cannot hear Grieg’s Piano Concerto without thinking of Morecambe and Wise and Andrew Preview (aka Andre Previn) and that thought always cheers me up.
2. Drivers of certain makes of car will automatically be enrolled into an Indicator Awareness Programme.
This enrolment will happen within a week of owners taking their car home unless they have witnesses to show they do not need this. That is, they have been out on the road with their new pride and joy and people can testify they’ve seen them use an indicator at least three times. Oh and I can think of one driver of a certain car model who does indicate (I’m the witness) and who I know won’t need this so she can relax.
Drivers of these vehicles, who do need the programme, will be indoctrinated until it is absolutely certain they know without any doubt whatsoever indicators do exist and the flaming things will not break if they are used regularly.
Come on. I know you can think of examples of those who never indicate and which car models seem to be the most frequent offenders (though of course it is the driver at fault). I do wonder if they’re worried the battery will run out or something but it is particularly annoying at roundabouts (and especially the Asda one. We have literally all been there, haven’t we?!).
3. Books will be appreciated more by adults
Now I wonder why I put this one in! I do find it odd that people can think £9.99 can be a high price for a book when going to the cinema or a concert costs far more than that and they think nothing of that. Books can be re-read and kept after all. There is at least one book to suit every mood and everybody.
I have heard people say they “don’t read” and seem almost proud of that. I find that very sad. Is it a lack of confidence in reading? Or do people need to see more adults reading in public? Comments welcome. I don’t want society to become less literate.
Children’s fiction, I think, does better here. Most people accept the importance of kids reading. So why does that not carry on into adulthood? Whoever finds the solution to that one will be the answer to many an author’s and publisher’s prayer.
4. Cyclists and Drivers will treat each other with respect because they’ve both earned that respect.
I know I’m putting my head above the parapet with this one. I also know there are many responsible cyclists. I know there are many responsible drivers (including me and the rest of us who also indicate properly). But I also know there are idiots on two wheels and four, who embarrass the rest of us.
Richard Hardie and I once watched a cyclist go through red traffic lights at the Hursley Road/Hiltingbury Road junction as traffic was beginning to come from the other direction. We were dumb struck.
My sister drives lorries and, as with any trucker, has issues with cyclists who will try to ride through on her left side. What doesn’t seem to be getting home is she really cannot see them. They are riding in her blind spot. I once drove behind a lorry which had Suicide Lane on its left side with a picture of a bike beneath it. Please, please, please, folks, whether you use two wheels or four, be more careful.
As for drivers, it is a regular occurrence at the Hiltingbury Road lights for some to go through on red and, worse, when the other side is on green. It always worries me accidents will happen here especially as we go into autumn and then winter with falling light levels. I don’t understand why people do this. If you’re running late, you’re running late. Better that than be late or cause someone else to be.
5. Tailgating will no longer be possible
What I would love to see happen here is the moment someone tries to tailgate you, an enormous crane lifts the offending car up (as would happen in a Looney Tunes cartoon) and dumps it on a lonely road several miles away.
Given where we live, I suspect the offender might have to be dumped well outside the county boundaries before a lonely road could be found to dump them on. On the plus side, I don’t think there would be any repeat offenders and clips of the crane in action, filmed by the crane operator, could be shared for all to see and laugh at on TV and social media. I can dream…
(Oh and yes, I know – there would never be enough cranes, at least not to start with. Where would they park? How would they know where to be? There are all sorts of impracticalities here but I wouldn’t be the only one laughing to see some tailgater being dumped like this, would I?)
6. Good Ideas Will Always Come at a Convenient Time
Instead of when I’m in the shower, on the loo, driving etc when I can’t possibly write them down. Yes, yes, I do write them down as soon as I can once out of the shower, off the loo, parked etc, but it is annoying. Why does the brain work like that? I suspect this doesn’t just apply to writers either.
On a more serious note, this is one reason why having a writing routine works for me. My brain gets used to the idea that at about the same time each day, I will be writing. It is a train your brain idea and it does work, but I still find I get ideas for stories and blog posts which I have to write down at a more convenient time – arggh! Oh and the keep a notebook by your bed idea doesn’t work for me either. I sleep heavily. Any dreams I have are extremely daft and confused. Trust me, there are no story ideas there!).
Interestingly, as I finished drafting this piece, the actor Tom Hanks came out with the thought that “cynicism has become the default” as he was talking about his forthcoming film. I agree with him. I strongly think this contributes to the grimness out there and while the realities of life can not and should not be avoided (it’s impossible anyway), I do think there should be a better balance.
7. Calories will be taken out of chocolate
I don’t think I need to expand on this one, though until such time as the calories are taken out of chocolate, expanding is exactly what you’ll do if you eat too much of the stuff.
Time for you to have a go then. What rules would you bring into existence and why?
Oh and I hope you enjoy the cartoons courtesy of Youtube. Classic material here!
Read blog posts by Allison Symes published on Chandler’s Ford Today.
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