La tristesse durera (scream to a sigh)

posted 21 Mar 2011, 07:02 by James Marshall   [ updated 22 Mar 2011, 03:31 ]

I realised today why babies and small children openly wail and scream and cry in public. It’s because they should. We all would and we all want to. I want to scream and bawl whenever I see someone in the street who I perceive as being bad at maths. Or short but wearing a suit. Maybe someone who’s eating a sandwich and a small, wet crumb is stuck to their lower lip, and they haven’t noticed. Bitter tears could stream down my face if I caught sight of a man leaving Argos with an item too big for his carrier bag. But why don’t we? What could be the reason the capacity to outwardly scream in turmoil in public isn’t carried on into adulthood? Perhaps it’s because our wails of desperation would give away our location to clipboard charity workers.

Just think of all the things that wouldn’t be possible in this world if we couldn’t suppress our desire to yell our discontent. We’d have no libraries, no universities, no air travel and no film. No recorded music, no literature, no theatre, no cinema and no cafés. So how do we adults vent our unsatisfied need to scream at the world? We invented the Internet.