Saturday, 9 August 2008

My sister, London and The Pathetic Fallacy

Abi is happiest when she is on or near the sea, preferably in it. When she was little she wore her goggles and swimming cap at mealtimes and spent hours in the bath, timing how long she could stay under (ages). Because of this she rarely comes to London and her impression of the city is primarily based on what is reported on the 6 O'clock news (stabbings, bombings, abductions general carnage). Every time she takes the train to London for a meeting I reassure her that London is a friendly and vibrant global village and yet, every time her reluctant foot steps onto the platform at Waterloo the Universe seems to sense that she has arrived in the City and unleashes hell.

Everything that I tell her only happens 'once in a blue moon' or 'only on the other side of town' seems to arrive on our doorstep: choppers circle overhead, joyriders career onto the pavement and handbags are blown up by the cops in controlled explosions. Could this be the pathetic fallacy that Mrs Conroy was talking about in fifth form English [See 'You Cannot Be Serious'] Could Abi actually be manifesting the chaos around her through the power of thought? I considered putting my theory to her, to try and find out if we could harness her powers to influence our customers' buying behaviour and boost porridge sales. After some consideration I decided that to draw attention to her dark powers could trigger an anxiety response similar to Sissy Spacek in 'Carrie' inadvertently putting the whole City at risk. So I decided to say nothing and distract her, instead, with a packet of winegums.

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