Syntagma Digital
Editor, John Evans

Saturday Ramble: Hilarity is dangerous; Cam fights back … sort of

LionsManic comedian Russell Brand has an interesting observation in The Guardian. Referring to the death of fellow funny man Robin Williams he writes of “the all-encompassing sadness of the world.”

It’s undoubtedly a law of life or, at the very least, a truism, that too much of anything, whether it be mood or activity, triggers its opposite in the human mind.

Nature has an instinct towards balance, compensating for any excess by reaching for the contrary. Thus an endless diet of comedy shows on television is sure to reduce us to misery in the end.

I only have to listen to a minute or two of the raucous canned laughter that often accompanies them to sink into a welcome gloom.

We are not built for too much of anything, however compelling or interesting at first. Nothing induces laughter more than several back-to-back renditions of Pagliacci’s despairing aria.

The long face of the clown is not a stereotype for nothing.

It follows that Russell Brand’s “all-encompassing sadness of the world” will, in time, reappear as hilarity.

And sure enough …

* * * * *

I’ve just had an email from David Cameron. Well … not precisely from the PM, but Conservative Central Office promoting the Tory party.

I’m sure you are terribly interested so here’s how it begins:

I’m passionate about the United Kingdom.

Working together, our family of nations has achieved so much over the years. Our armed forces have defeated dictators and defended freedom, our inventions have shaped the modern world, and our businesses export to every corner of the globe while creating jobs at home. And if we keep working together, even brighter days lie ahead for all of us.

Dear oh dear, who writes this stuff?

It is, of course, a plea for Scotland not to vote for independence.

But, hold on! If it’s so viscerally important, why did he grant a referendum in the first place? I must say, the decision left me speechless.

The Scots are nothing if not rebellious. Give them half a chance at biffing the English and the conclusion is foregone.

There’s only one consolation in a Yes vote. We could at last ditch that unspeakably awful name, “United Kingdom” (Youkay) and return to the glories of “Great Britain”.

You know, it might be worth encouraging our northern neighbours to think positive and vote Yes!

John Evans

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