Thursday, December 30, 2010

Angel Delight

When I was a kid, I was very fond of Mr Spock and Sherlock Holmes and any unemotional champions of logical deductive reasoning.
How silly the muscle-bound roarers and screamers of other stories seemed in comparison to these fantastic characters. Of course then, y’get a bit older and then you realise that there’s something silly about these guys too, when you think about it.

A pair of right Weirdoes them two.

As a matter of fact, the pointy eared bowl-headed alien with the painted on eyebrows is probably the less ridiculous of the two.
Sherlock Holmes’s deductions claim to come from a simple logical progression of deductive reasoning, but of course the level of accuracy he extrapolates from the smallest of ‘clues’ is neither realistic nor logical (makes for a great character and some cracking stories though).

Although Holmes’s ability to reason seemed to provide him with supernatural powers, he didn’t have any, all his amazing insights are always explained, (usually to a particularly impressed Watson) by a method of deduction.

So, how could Arthur Conan Doyle write stories with a champion of logic as their protagonist and also believe in fairies? Hard to fathom, but then again Tom Cruise reckons we’re all aliens.

I’m old enough to remember a Late Late Show where banshees and little people were discussed with zealous earnestness by the audience. Come to think of it, wasn’t a discussion, people simply recited their leprechaun anecdotes in a tone that left the listener in no doubt that if they were to question one word these statements, then they would be making an enemy for life.

Nowadays, in the yankee culture that we’re so keen to emulate, there’s a lot of folk who believe in ‘angels’ and there’s been telly programmes about them and they pop up here and they pop up there and aren’t they great? There is even a shop in Limerick in Thomas Street called ‘Angel Times’ where, I presume you can buy them,- like a slave auction: maybe that, or they sell some load of meaningless tat with wings on.

The fact that people believe in fairies or leprecauns or scientology is something that might depress you in this day and age. If that is the case, I feel your pain; but I hates them Angel-heads worst of all.

Yesterday on the bus on the way home, I got to thinking why that what might be, and this is what I came up with:

How fundamentally cynical must you be if you regard altruistic behavior, by transients without hope of recompense, as clear evidence of the supernatural?

You'd have to think mortal humans incapable of good wouldn't you?

That's what I reckon.

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