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Mid-Week Antics

Posted by | Posted in Society | Posted on 17-09-2008

Speak now, or forever hold your… beep!

It’s Wednesday – slap bang in the middle of the working week. The time of the week when people are (supposed to be) well and truly stuck into the weeks work; where they’ve had a couple of days to get started and should be making progress; but where they know they’ve still got a couple of days to go until the weekend. But as it happens, that’s not the case for me this week. Oh no. Today is my last day at work this week, as I’ll be travelling to Bristol to attend a friend’s wedding.

It still seems slightly alien to me that there are people I used to go to school with who are now getting married and having children. It makes me think I’m a little behind the times. Still, I’ll be in Bristol until Saturday so it’s unlikely that I’ll be able to post on the website until I get back. I’m sure you wont mind.

On the subject of marriage, a few people have recently told me that they “don’t see the point” in marriage these days. Some of them point out that the divorce rate is at an all time high, and that people shouldn’t bother getting married when clearly nobody regards it as highly as they should do. Others have said that marriage is primarily a religious ceremony, and given that there are currently record lows in the number of people attending church each Sunday, it seems unlikely that anyone getting married in a church today is in any way religious.

Both points are valid, but in my opinion neither of them justify the thought that people simply shouldn’t bother with marriage these days. Call me old-fashioned, but I’d love to get married some day, and I’ve never been a religious person, nor have I stepped foot in a church since the days of primary school, where we were forced into celebrating the Harvest Festival once a year. To me, marriage is personal, and not religious or legal in nature. Maybe some people dont like the idea of settling down and spending most of their lives with the same person, but after messing about while you’re young, I don’t see anything wrong with that. And if marriage is a sign of commitment to that idea, then I also don’t see anything wrong with getting married. That’s not to say everyone should, but it certainly shouldn’t be frowned upon by those who don’t want to get married.

So I wish my life-long friend all the best with her new husband-to-be. She’s not a religious person as far as I know, and quite fittingly, she’s not getting married in a church. But would the marriage still be a religious celebration? Not in my eyes, and I don’t suppose anyone else would be thinking about the Big Man upstairs as the happy couple recite their vows. I suppose it all comes down to tradition, which isn’t something we have a lot of here in the UK, but it’s something that people seem to stick to like glue when they do have them.

I didn’t sleep too well a couple of nights ago. I’m not sure why; perhaps it was the fact that I was sleeping under a wide open window with gale force winds blowing through the bedroom. And living half a mile down wind from an abattoir isn’t exactly a pleasant experience either. Thinking about it, though, I may well have been woken up by one of our smoke detectors. In our household, we’ve got those fancy smoke detectors that are plugged directly into the light fittings, before the bulb is put in. Then the lightbulb is placed into the socket as normal. This has the advantage that the smoke detectors don’t have any batteries that need replacing, and so we know that we wont forget to change the battery every year or so (despite endless adverts about the subject being shown on TV) and have to escape a burning house.

The downside to these little marvels is that they still need to retain charge in order to work, and they gain charge when the light to which they are fitted is turned on. Which leads to the problem that if you dont turn your lights on for a few weeks, the detectors lose most of their power. Helpfully, they start to beep every minute or so to let us know that they need charging with the simple flick of a lightswitch. Not so helpfully, however, is that they do so at any time of the day (or more often than not, night). Also, having a few of them scattered over the house leads you on a smoke detector treasure hunt once one of them goes off, as you never can tell exactly which one is beeping. And as they give off a small, single beep every 60 seconds or so, it can take quite some time to find the bugger. And a treasure hunt at 4am around your pitch-black house isn’t a good idea at the best of times.

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