Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Pairs and Patterns.

Three things I noticed on tonight’s walk:

A plane approaching me low coming from East Midlands Airport. Green light to the left, red light to the right.

Orion looking resplendent, even though the sky wasn’t quite fully dark, flanked by the two brightest stars:  Sirius to the left, Jupiter to the right.

A young woman applying underarm deodorant; two sweeps to the left, two sweeps to the right.

It’s odd how sometimes the things we observe follow the same pattern.


Anonymous said...

am i the only one on here that is concerned about your behaviour,, miss sarah,, mill lane , late night walks, woman applying deodorant which would mean she was probably in her underwear ???????????

JJ Beazley said...

Since you comment anonymously, I don’t know who you are and can’t judge whether you intend these remarks to be taken light heartedly or seriously. I hope it’s the former, since the alternative would indicate misconstruction of both my character and the nature of this blog. Just in case it’s the latter, however, perhaps I should attempt a comprehensive reply.

The reason I go for walks after dark should be well known by now. Put briefly, I enjoy the atmosphere and the sight of phenomena which are not apparent during the day. I usually take those walks between 8-10pm, depending on the time of year. Does that warrant the phrase ‘late night’ with its veiled and entirely unreasonable implication of furtive behaviour?

I only ever walk on public roads; I never trespass on anyone’s property. Neither do I ever linger in the vicinity of any property, except, maybe, the public house if I’m curious to see what’s going on publicly, or a particularly fine farmhouse which I like to study and which happens to be unoccupied at the moment. My night walks might seem irregular to those operating firmly between the tram lines, but there is nothing illegal, improper, or in any way menacing about them.

If I happen to be passing a private property and my eye is caught by movement, of course I glance briefly in that direction. That’s perfectly normal.

With regard to the woman applying deodorant, I included it simply to complete the pattern of pairs. I don’t know whether she was in her underwear or not, since all I saw was the back of her head and two upraised arms. And I doubt I saw even those for longer than three seconds. Had I seen more, I would of course have averted my gaze immediately. It should be well known to readers of this blog that I have great respect for the principles of privacy and modesty, and to have seen those principles being subverted would have been injurious to my spirit. In spite of my oddness and working class upbringing, I am a gentleman of principle at heart. And is it really necessary to state an obvious fact here? Any person concerned for their modesty and privacy surely holds the onus for closing the curtains if they’re in a state of undress and the window is adjacent to a public road.

The occasional habit of mentioning Miss Sarah has a historical basis: readers of long standing ‘know’ her. Several people from ‘the Shire’ have been mentioned by name on this blog. They’re characters in a factual account that has quasi-fictional undertones, and the principle one was Miss Sarah in the guise of various pseudonyms. That’s because she was the loveliest and most interesting of the residents. I liked her; she was the only one I would have gone out of my to talk to. We don’t talk now, which is why she receives only cursory mentions in such phrases as ‘between Miss Sarah’s house and the pub’ or ‘I passed Miss Sarah’s mama on the road.’ Mention of her in this way merely adds colour and variety to the blog, and is in no way perverse or threatening. And I have no reason to believe it might trouble her, since I have no reason to think she still reads the blog. If she does read it, and if she is consequently troubled, she only has to ask me to stop and I will obviously respect her wishes. I am, as I said, a gentleman.

Mill Lane gets mentioned when it’s relevant. It happens to be where the oddest noises occur, and it’s also the place from which the most comprehensive view of the night sky can be had. I’m curious to know why my references to that particular road should be deemed an issue.

So, if your comment was meant to be taken seriously, I hope my reply is adequate. If it wasn’t, the response can stand anyway as a general pointer to anybody else who might be similarly troubled. They may rest assured that I am perfectly safe.