Statues – thoughts, what d’you think?

tall statue of white man against a blue sky

This morning my colleague was accused by an irate French woman of staging a protest against one of our statues. This lady must have had a very low opinion of London protests, since the event consisted of my colleague attaching a laminated sign to the railings next to the statue. (The sign announced some renovations about to take place.)

At a few of the gardens I work at, there are lots of statues. Some are, like I showed the other day, mythical white women. Others are historically famous white men in blackened  bronze, often on horses. Most of them are generals. One is a president of an allied country from the war. They are just like the statues that have annoyed so many over the last few months, and they’ve always annoyed me too. They are dull and completely removed from what matters to most of the people who walk past and most of the people who have ever walked past.

There are so many interesting and inspiring things we could celebrate: inventions, individual acts of heroism, creativity (I know statues to these things to exist, but they are rare.) Instead we celebrate the men who led others into battle, to their deaths. Men who were already celebrated in their lifetimes. And women who have never existed – these at least have interesting myths behind them, but still don’t mean much to people now.

I’ve seen a few arguments against changing statues. Here are two:

‘Ah, but it’s history! You can’t destroy history!’ people say. And of course I, and almost everyone else, agree. But statues aren’t about history, because nobody learns anything from a statue, except maybe the name and how the person died (it’s all in how the horse is standing, apparently). If you want history, then put the statues in a museum, where people can see them properly and read about them.

‘Ah, but we should keep them because these were often bad people. We should have statues up to remind people of the bad things that happened.’ Ok, so would you put up a statue of Hitler then? Or would that be disturbing? Of course it would be, because a statue is a celebration. These people are so important that they are looking down on us from their pedestals. Which is why it matters that these people did bad things and why it matters that they’re all rich, white men looking down on all of us, who mostly aren’t those things. (And to be clear, there is nothing inherently wrong with being rich or white or a man, just a problem if those are the only celebrated characteristics.)

When people get upset about statues being changed, I don’t think it’s about history. In fact, I think the huge BLM protests that happened around the world were historic, and in the UK they led to a statue being thrown into the sea, which will probably go down in history. So if you like history, then you should be excited by these events. I think the upset is partly about change, which tends to freak people out. But without change we wouldn’t have cures and inventions and events. And secondly it’s about dominance, it is Why do THESE people get to take down OUR statues? Which doesn’t make sense either, because why don’t they?

Personally, I would like to see something in Postman’s Park style. Statues of ordinary people being heroic. Or maybe some of the nurses who’ve died during Covid – who gave their lives fighting the virus for us. (here’s a list with info about them, and unsurprisingly, they are a number of different races and lots of women. They look more like the London I know than the statues do. Picture below.)

heroes

Or Aztec statues! How fantastic would they be?

So what do you think? What statues would you like to see?

 

I am a numpty! Please write again

peering smile

So I just realised that for my last two blogs I have put in the wrong damn email address! Anyone who has tried to contact me from one of those

I’m not ignoring you, I’m just an idiot and didn’t get your message! I’m very sorry!

I’d like to say these things don’t often happen to me, but really I’m the bane of my life!

I’ve corrected those blogs now. But if you want to read Supernice, (first nine chapters now released) here is my address again, with the underscore bit I missed out before.

petra_jacob  @outlook.com (minus the space)

xxx

 

 

 

 

Trundling through time

 

IMG_20190915_104752

Word of the day: Emberlucock – to confuse; to bewilder

“Prime numbers are what is left when you have taken all the patterns away. I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them.”
― Mark Haddon, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

I’ve enjoyed my bubble today. I did a YouTube workout. I thought I was fairly fit, but I nearly died. Felt smug though. I ate a garlic bread baguette that has been clogging up the freezer for a while. I tried to learn some new insults, and discovered that neek is a cross between a nerd and a geek.

Now to those (like me earlier today) who don’t know what the difference is between a geek and a nerd. A geek is more of a collector and consumer, excited by things such as movies, music and the memorabilia that comes with them. A nerd is more academic, obsessed with accumulating knowledge in their specialist field. Both tend to be obsessive. nerd

Here’s a graph from Slackprop, here (the whole blog on the subject is worth looking at too) showing words collected from tweets with orange words showing geeky subjects and words, while the blue shows the nerdy.

The picture at the top is from my work, because I miss it, such beautiful plants. What have you all been up to? As productive as me?

 

Peddling Doomsday by Petra Jacob

The Shameful Narcissist Speaks

Title: Peddling Doomsday
Author: Petra Jacob
Date Added: June 6, 2018
Date Started: June 18, 2018
Date Finished: July 3, 2018
Reading Duration: 32 Days
Genre: Fiction, Drama, Psychological Thriller

Peddling DoomsdayPages: 345
Publisher: Self
Publication Date: May 31, 2018
Media: eBook/Kindle


No matter where she is, Deirdre feels out of place. So when a cult known as the Center contacts her, wanting her join up, she’s intrigued. They say a terrible war is coming, humanity is in danger and without explaining why, say she’s needed for the fight. Suddenly the chance to be spectacular is within her grasp. With the charismatic Myra as the cult leader, and talk of prophecies and psychic abilities, Deirdre is soon seduced and ditches her humdrum life to join up. 

Once inside, her understanding of the world shifts. She learns the truth about the elite, a secret organisation that has meddled with humanity since the…

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