There were two reports on the BBC Radio news today that interested me. The first told us that “studies” show – and one day I’d like to find out exactly who does these studies and where they get their subjects because they never ask ME – that the British people are more allergic to all sorts of things than ever before!
This is probably true. I, for example, am allergic to Politicians, Bank Managers, Benefit cheats, People who have lived here for fifty years and STILL can’t speak English, and Diclofenac Sodium. The last one is an anti-inflammatory drug which gave me an allergic reaction and caused me to pass out in the bathroom welding my back to a red-hot radiator a couple of years ago!
The second report – another of those “studies” – stated that the British people are suffering more from anxiety!
WHO GOT FUNDING FOR THAT ONE?!
Now let’s see! We’re in a recession, jobs are disappearing, house prices are crashing, and people with savings and no mortgage (Guess who?) are trying to hunt down elusive accounts offering heady Interest Rates like 1.25%. Oh, and (see above) we now have to worry about being allergic to more things than before! Why shouldn’t we be bloody anxious!!
What this country really needs is (No! Not “a Doctor” – that’s a Harold Saxon quote!) a really good disaster to take our minds off everything. Not, preferably, a disaster in this country but in one with which the British people have strong ties of language and culture and who would welcome our assistance and practical help. One of the old Imperial Dominions such as Canada, India or Australia would be handy as there would be limited language difficulties. On reflection though, it is hard to think of any kind of bad natural occurrence which those nations would not already have the determination and common sense to handle perfectly competently by themselves. I guess we’ll just have to go on worrying then!
Pondering on this subject has carried my thoughts to a series of “docu-dramas” that appeared on TV a couple of years ago. If you needed to be made more anxious these were the boys to watch – covering as they did in dramatised, pseudo-documentary format various horrific disaster scenarios supposedly overdue to inflict themselves on us.
I particularly recall two of these. The first, a subject already covered by Hollywood in films such as “Deep Impact”, concerned the effects on everyday human existence of a “dinosaur killer” sized asteroid hitting us – with, it has to be said, fairly predictable, if horrific, results. Nuclear winter, mass species die-offs, only the USA surviving, that sort of thing!
The second of these dramas, and somewhat more surprising to me because I hadn’t suspected its existence, concerned the “supervolcano” that lives under Jellystone (SORRY! That’s Yellowstone – I’ve always had trouble with that – too many Yogi Bear cartoons when I was a child!) Park in the Mid-Western USA. I have to say that in THAT one the USA does not survive, the whole land mass becoming one enormous lava-lake except for the bit to the left of the San Andreas fault which falls into the sea instead!
Rising above the massive amounts of anxiety that these films caused me, I got to thinking.
What would happen if we combined the two? What if a dinosaur-killer asteroid was to strike the Yellowstone supervolcano just as it started erupting? Would it splatter a large percentage of the planet’s magma over the rest of the world and kill us all off even quicker OR would it simply plug it leaving us nothing worse than a few years of terrible weather and earthquakes?
I like to think that the human race COULD be that lucky but I bet no-one in Hollywood would be prepared to turn THAT scenario into a fake documentary! Unless you know different…..