On Sunday, after returning to my car with L and the very funny Tom Webb, we discovered, lying by the side of the car park, a shit in a bag. The afternoon, up until that point, had been rather nice. A brilliant Comedy Club 4 Kids gig in the North Pier theatre in Blackpool, a mosey along the beach front and a nice drive there. Yet all of this became quite quickly marred by this display of contained faeces. Sure, it was contained, so you might think that that is ten times better than a crap on the pavement, but the disturbing thing about the offending article was that it was very neatly placed in a bag and left in the middle of a walk way, meaning some thought had seemingly gone into its placement and many questions instantly arose. Was it a dog or a human turd? If human, had they shat into a bag and turned it inside out or merely had someone hold the bag underneath them in a team effort? More importantly than all of this, why? Why oh why oh why had someone decided that this was a reasonable thing to do? The road into Blackpool is filled with signs trying to promote the sadly now rather dilapidated area, asking you to ‘see it’, ‘feel it’, ‘love it’, before stating a number of exciting things you might be able to do whilst there. None of these for warn you of an unwanted encounter with a pre-wrapped gift boom.
I find myself more and more on a daily basis simply asking out loud ‘Why? Why would you do that?’ about members of the human race. I’m not sure if its my waning tolerance for such things, or perhaps I’ve become more perceptive to such horror since growing out of assuming everything is sunny and lovely, and skipping about in a delusional haze of joy. Or maybe, just maybe, its that people have become even more horrendous. The other night I saw Chris Packham on Room 101 say his least favourite animal was ‘The Human Race’ which Frank Skinner quickly dismissed by saying how wonderful we all are. Thing is, I often think the same as Chris. Lions won’t cut in front of you at 100mph on a motorway without indicting. Snakes won’t, like the maid did on Saturday morning at my hotel in Mayrhofen, burst in at 6.30 demanding to know ‘when are you leaving?’ despite knowing full well check out is at 10am. And while dogs may have their shits put in bags by others, I can’t see them ever willingly doing it by themselves. It us. Animals don’t vote for terrible governments, they don’t pollute the Earth and they don’t racially abuse and then attack teenagers. Ok, they sometimes attack teenagers. But they are stupid teenagers who step into their territory with food, rather than those who are in their own territory minding their own beeswax. So, fair I reckon.
I should have expected Shitbaggate. I had spent the entire previous week at the excellent Altitude Festival mingling with some incredibly nice people – comics and audience alike – and only ever feeling sad about humanity’s existence when speaking to 8 out of 10 Austrians who seem to have innate hatred of everyone. But even then, I’d see a mountain behind them and be able to imagine throwing them casually off it, and it was all better. So really, I had a whole week of amazing gigs, much drinking and lovely company, so it had to crash down somewhere. Blackpool – a place where the idea of a ‘Pleasure Beach’ is realised using run down casinos, a giant Poundland and ‘The Conspiracy Theory Experience’ – was the obvious place for it to happen. Fair play to it too. Just when I might remotely think about enjoying life, just when it might seem like the world is actually a brilliant place, the seaside resort brought me humbly back to Earth with a shit in a bag. Cheers humans. Cheers loads.