Purveyor of Bollocks to the Crowned Heads of Europe
Wednesday, 14 November 2012
Someone gave me some good advice many years ago, and that was to always remember that any official you may have to deal with (government or police or whoever) is only human, and is subject to all the hopes and fears that the rest of us are, which will undoubtably affect any decisions they make - no matter how inhuman they may appear from the outside.
The person giving me this advice was extremely good at manipulating others, and almost always got her own way by the simple use of flattery. For a few years, I marvelled at the way she got herself jobs in areas in which she had no previous experience (my area, in fact), then before long, I began to get in her way and become a potential threat to her - she worried that I might blow her cover.
I don't know how much damage she did to me by pouring poison into the ears of others, but - for the sake of this post - I'll just say that the whole process over a period of a year or two was so sickening to me, that I now only ever flatter anyone if I really think they deserve it, and that is not what you would call flattery. I expect the same from others myself, and am deeply suspicious when someone does compliment me for any reason.
The above, coupled with the fact that I have inherited my mother's extreme lack of tact when pointing out the obvious as perceived by her, means that I can be - under certain circumstances - either crass in the extreme, or just downright stupid, and consequently something of a scary liability at some social gatherings.
I often forget that most people are as sensitive as I am, and that everyone is in the same boat in their private lives, rarely letting the mask slip for fear of boring others. We all have aspirations to aim for, and those aspirations should never be used as the butt of 'humour', even if we don't aspire to them ourselves.
This sounds like a lecture, but really it is a reminder to myself, wrapped up in an apology to the rest of you. Now I am going to move on, but feel free to remind me I have said this if you need to in the future.
They turned the Christmas lights on here in Bath last night. Thanks to the austerity drive, they are - unusually - quite tasteful!