Out is out

A friend wrote a short story which I found amusing and thought you might too:

“Okay, right. A few weeks ago, listening to an item on Radio 4 about the reaction to that High Court ruling on Article 50, a very short, simple story wrote itself in my head as I pulled up at work, in the space of about a minute. I’d assumed it would slip away from my mind with the day’s news, but, annoyingly, the story is still relevant now, and it replays itself every time I hear, for instance, Jacob Rees-Mogg (other equally frustrating politicians are available) sharing his opinions with people who, unaccountably, keep asking him for them, as though expecting something different, or reasoned.

Perhaps you’d like a simple allegory to play in your head as a distraction from the wearisome noise of politicians who apparently set their vocal cords to ‘Repeat’ back in June. Here it is:

Day trip

‘Hey, kids,’ said mum and dad, ‘it’s a day’s holiday. What do you want to do? Stay at home or go out somewhere?’

The kids took only a second to glance at each other and decide. ‘Go out!’

‘Let’s go!’

The family piled into the car and headed out into the country and, an hour later, they arrived at their destination. Mum and dad shepherded their eager offspring into a large, metal building with a faintly agricultural smell.

After a couple of hours of watching farmyard animals complete their industrial transformation into meat, the kids turned, stunned and tearful, to their parents to ask: why have we come here?

‘You said you wanted to go out!’ mum and dad explained, with a note of artificial confusion, as though they were just slightly annoyed at being asked such a pointless question.

‘But why here?’

‘Out is out. You said out. We came out. It was a very clear decision.’ Mum and Dad were beginning to sound slightly accusational and defensive, and rather exasperated.

‘But couldn’t we have gone to the park? Or the swimming pool? Or a fair?’

‘You said “out”! You chose “out” – both of you! Don’t whinge now! You didn’t want to spend all day mithering about where to go and how to get there, did you? What would be the point in that? We went out, like you chose. It’s what *you* wanted! If you didn’t *want* to go out, you shouldn’t have chosen it!’

And that’s how they came to spend their family holiday at the abattoir.”

Credit: Jonathan Higgs

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