Wednesday, January 21, 2009

C'mon Eyeore - give it a rest!

I mentioned recently my predeliction for talking to complete strangers. This evening, as my train was about to pull into the station, a man waiting beside me in the vestibule was yawning widely and frequently. In my typical way, I said, "Like that, is it?" He told me he can't sleep at the moment for worrying that someone is going to assassinate President Obama. I guess I would have been more surprised if he were not the third person today to mention that possibility in my hearing. One person said, "I give him a week before someone offs him."

Is pessimism so inculcated into the British culture that we can't conceive of anything positive happening without being convinced that someone is just waiting to take it away?

I have previously mentioned that I have concerns at the weight of expectation on this young man's shoulders, but I hope that is seen as tempering optimism with a measure of realistic caution. To be so worried as to be losing sleep over the possible assassination of the President of a country in which you don't even live is surely going a bit far?


Andy Roberts said...

I wouldn't call it going too far.... it's pathalogoical. You do pick em!

Karyn Romeis said...

@Andy, if there was any picking involved, I'd agree, but the random sampling must indicate that it's fairly universal. Perhaps it is pathological, as you indicate... or at least compulsive!

Blogger In Middle-earth said...

Kia ora Karyn

How wonderful that someone should, perhaps, recognise how precious and special Obama is - to the world, not just USA. And he is.

I guess it's all according to sensitivity. But though such thoughts would not keep me from sleeping, the likelihood of it (in my mind) is so small that I'd just as soon worry about Obama having a serious illness or perhaps being in a road accident or aircraft mishap.

But as one who is even remoter than the person you met in the train, I can tell you that I am proud and relieved that Obama is USA President today - and I'm not an American.

I would certainly be very sad if any of these unlikely occurrences you glibly post, came to pass.

But when it comes to the pathological, one has to ask, who has the disease?

Catchy later
from Middle-earth