Damned memory. On Friday I hastily scribbled this line down: "He hops around like an acid-fuelled flea with ADHD". A funny-ish line, and when I wrote it down I knew that I'd remember what it was that sparked the line, and who it was that I was nreferring to.
Nope. Blank. Mind completely empty. I will learn, one day, to write complete notes.
Yesterday's earthquake in Christchurch was a doozy. 500 buildings severely knocked about, many destroyed completely. And not one fatality. Absolutely astonishing. It's a real reminder, however, that Wellington is long overdue for a big one. And I wouldn't be at all sanguine about the chances of getting away with no deaths.
A fellow blogger (who is a female, so therefore possibly not a "fellow") is involved in a bit of a discussion with her brother about the death penalty. She, an agnostic, is against it, while he - being a fundamentalist christian - would cheerfully stand in the audience while someone was hacked to death in front of him. I, being a bleeding heart liberal, am torn between the two. There are evil people amongst us, people who delight in doing unspeakable things. They're using up my grand-daughter's fresh air, and I wouldn't mind at all if they were put down - but gently.
The big question, however, is deciding who deserves to die. And as that's an almost insurmountable question, I think we're better off simply keeping these people right out of society. If they reject society's mores, then society shoulod reject them.
Meanwhile, on the much easier topic of eutheasia - I am wholeheartedly in favour of it. I'm firmly of the opinion that I should be free to choose the time and place of my own death. Yes, counselling should be available. But I have seen so many old people who spend their days in absolute misery and fear that the very thought of my body letting me down like that is abhorrent.
Reading: David Wiltse, "Thye Edge of Sleep". This guy is good. The bad guys are so much more realistic then Hannibal the Cannibal. And the lead good guy is someone tormented by his understanding of his own potential evil-ness. Excellent. Take that, Clarice Starling!
Listening to: The radio. Radio New Zealand National. I have found that I can't listen to commercial radio at all: and yet commercial radio fed,clothed, and sheltered me for 30 odd years...
More "Paper Heroes":
Crayne turned away from Charles, looked at Sean Whistler, and bared his teeth.
“Christ,” said Whistler. “There’s not many’d scare me, but I’d hate to be meeting that man in a dark lane.” And the memory of the dark lane at Waterloo flashed into his mind again, and he paled.
Blunt stood, and went to the buffet table. Bill trotted along behind him, looking up expectantly. “Cream, Boss. Remember?”
“I remember,” growled Blunt. He crooked a finger at Adam, who came over. “I want bacon, and I want eggs. Three eggs, fried. Some toast and honey. Then you can bring me a pot of tea, and bill her4e wants some meat, real meat. And a bowl of cream. Bring it. Now. No delays.” He turned back to join his table.
Adam’s voice squeaked with indignation. “I’m sorry, Colonel, but that’s not why I’m here. If you want to talk –“ his words were cut off as Blunt whirled, and turned on him. He took the three steps necessary to bring his face just two inches from the younger man’s. Blunt’s voice crackled with menace. A pair of lungs that could project a voice across a battleground inflated. The words swept the boy against the wall in a torrent of shock and surprise.
“You’re not what? You’ll find that you’re what I say you are, laddy, and nothing else! And right now you are to bring me my breakfast, and some food for the cat. All the cats! Right now you’re a butler, boy, and you will be until I say otherwise. Start buttling! Do you hear me?” Blunt was stupefied. He had done what he needed to do, but there had been no rage in his words. Merely volume. He had played a part, and played it badly. His hands shook, and he stuffed them into his pockets.
Everyone in the room had heard him. Adam, nearly fainting, stammered a hasty “Yes, Sir,’ and fled to get what Blunt had ordered. Hanno laughed and swept his cat up. “There, Hrothgar! That’s the way to treat these little people! Get me what the Colonel wanted, too, boy!” he shouted at Adam.
Charles, watching the display, sighed, and shook his head. These people must know there were better ways of earning respect, surely? Maybe not. Maybe this is what made them heroes. His way may lead to a different destination.