Vuvuzela time……..that idiocracy of football………an irritation that denies spontaneous roar of the crowd, removing recognition of outstanding play, be it in Timbuktu or Dundee. That’s the World Cup in 2010…..ruined by cacophony at its most monotonous……destroyed by a piece of plastic that they dare call a horn, that 0ne-note “thing” that is used for one purpose only….to create NOISE.
So just imagine what must go through the mind of one of its users……….. and here he is, a young Scottish copycat, just bought it, thinking to himself, “OK, noo am seated. Phew! I’ve got ma new thingemibob. Wish a could spell what’s-its-name. Better blow into it now it’s here. M’gosh, you gotta blow hard just to ge’ a wee note. Oh! They’re playing God Save the Queen. Maybe a could join in! Them bods are no standin’. They gotta stand when playin’ oor Anthem! Hey youze ains, stan up! Show yer respect! Ye dinna play The Queen when sittin”!
And later, that same Scot, having watched England lose its first match, thinks of what might have been. “Them English wir just lucky t’ ge’ here fer the Cup. Oor team widda beat the pants affa them. A wish a had had the thingemejig back hame. Coulda spoil’ their chances. Oor team are used tae the NOISE. We play the pipes! We’re gooood at the noise! Be’er at the noise than at fitba’ anyway!”
We do hear of course that the NOISE does interrupt concentration with both players and fans being affected to a degree. For my own part I can understand the importance of verbal communication on the field itself and can only see the vuvu’ as being a deliberate intent to upset intelligent play between the teams. There is no other purpose. To blow into the “thing” requires a conscious decision by the perpretator to create noise, unlike the traditional roar of the crowd, that is an immediate audible gut reaction to a play, whether outstanding or otherwise.
Some other idiot compared the vuvu to the bagpipes and naturally great offence was taken by most of the Scots in the world. To suggest for one minute that bagpipes, capable of multi-note function should be in the same sentence as a one-note vuvu’ is beyond stupidity. A much more appropriate comparison would be that of vuvu’ versus leaf-blower, snow-blower or power lawn-mower.
Maybe those vuvu’ enthusiasts should form a band. Can you imagine?………………. I can!
We had concluded one whole year of basic and officer training and were now readying ourselves for the commissioning parade in Chatham, England. Our route took us from the Regimental Barracks along a short road to the parade square, being a large court surrounded on three sides by 4-storey buildings in the Georgian style, with the fourth side of high wrought iron railings and one stone-built gateway of Admiralty Arch proportions…..and that’s where the problem lay!
We had the pipe band in front, the new officers and officer cadets in the middle, and the brass band to the rear, and we were all going left, right, left, right, all together as one cohesive unit, marching towards the square in all our splendor. It was when the pipe band began entering through the Arch that things went awry. We had been marching to the beat of the pipeband drums, a beat that was constant and easy to follow, but the entry through the Arch quickly changed that, with an echo that was disconcerting at first, and chaotic in its final effects, as the beat became irregular to the deterioration of good military discipline! Our magnificence as a smart fighting unit had ceased to exist. We had become a rabble………..an unsophisticated mob that couldn’t tell left from right.
We got Hell of course. The Sergeant Major roared his disapproval using language of the most foul nature….and naturally, we listened. Of course we did. We had to!
Eventually some smart cookie came up with one answer. It wasn’t perfect of course. WE knew that! Rearranging the bands, with the pipes at the rear only reversed the problem, turning us into a rabble just a few minutes later than with the status quo. But we were the elite! We were British! We could think logically….that’s what we were trained to do……and we did.
It was either get rid of the Arch or get rid of the drums……..and guess who won?
And if we’d had the vuvu’s would the answer have been any different?……………I wonder.
There are other troubling NOISES in our world that make for a less than a perfect existence. The raucous CAWING of the crow is one of Nature’s worst, whereas the constant YAPPING of a small dog is worse, if for no other reason than it being a preventable one provided its idiotic owner would take some lessons. No! Not lessons for the dog. It’s the owner who needs them. But a constant yapper is indeed a menace to society. I found the comic’s gig on yapping to be hilarious, when he substituted a man for a dog, and the said man, standing on his porch, yapped at all who passed, using the word “Hey!” as the substitute for “arf”. I wonder if they ever go hoarse….get laryngitis……….mumps…….anything in fact to just shut up?!!!! And I’m talking this time about the dog!
Reversing beep vehicles also provide angst. It’s beep beep beep beep until you ever so slowly go either totally bonkers or die…………wondering why the driver doesn’t get a stiff neck for all the reversing……and why for heaven’s sake didn’t they invent a nice wee tune instead? But what I’ve never understood is that they put these alarms on vehicles that constantly go back and forward……..vehicles like earth diggers and snow removers……vehicles that supposeddly move forward as much as they move backward……and on a regular basis! And by the way…..I was only kidding about the TUNE!
My last NOISE at this time is the train whistle and we have a beauty in Newmarket, Ontario…..and yet, oddly enough it’s not one that bothers me unduly. OK, it wakes me up at 6:30 am when I could sleep longer, but it’s a great alarm, although perhaps not a priority need for a retired guy like me???? What bothers me more is the fact that it’s required at all…….at all the lever crossings (railway tracks) in the entire North American continent, those crossings that are responsible for so many deaths each and every year.
Maybe, just maybe…..in the next century sometime, they’ll spend the money to vertically separate the crossings………save the people….that sorta thing!
And whilst I’m on vertical separation, let’s get rid of the surface car parks! Let’s not let the automobile dictate! Put them out of sight……….underground……….on top, but NOT at pedestrian level where they intrude in so many ways. But that is another subject, to be dealt with later.