Don’t read this, it could be dangerous, writes Shirley Tart . How? I have no idea really.
But it’s as good a guess as anything, especially if the folk at Edmundsbury Borough Council should happen to be involved. Happily, we are not within their very silly reach.
But they met their match taking on old soldier Doug Speller.
As he had done countless times over the years, the former gunner was preparing to stand to attention for the national anthem at a Path to Peace concert when a council official told him to sit down in case he fell over or knocked into another concert-goer who might also be on his feet.
To say Doug was shocked is an understatement. He was furious. “How dare they tell me I can’t stand for the national anthem,” he said “It’s what this country is all about, what people fought for so that we could be free.”
Good for him. And I’d wager that almost every old soldier (doubtlessly backed by every young one too) would be there standing alongside him. I would be as well, come to that.
While we all know the need for health and safety awareness, the debate is as out of control as a bout of measles at a toddlers’ nursery.
And even when somebody realises that maybe, just maybe, they went a bit over the top; they are not good at standing up to be counted as one of the daft.
Doug and colleagues have indeed had a sort of apology since the incident (and the publicity) which went: “We apologise for the misapplication of health and safety principles that has led to unnecessary upset for this customer.”
Sorry, but what exactly does that mean? Misapplication may be a word but is it used in the course of daily life? Rarely, except by an over zealous council.
And you must pay attention to the final word from the spokesman: “It was meant to stop people from dancing dangerously and raucously rather than standing in respect.”
Hear that, Doug? No dancing in the aisles, no out-of-control, boisterous behaviour and definitely no falling over on to your neighbour.
Laugh or despair? You choose.