Today on Twitter, one of the people I follow (let’s call her AN) told the story of an old woman she was walking behind near London Bridge station. The old woman dropped a Tube ticket. AN immediately bent down, picked it up and politely taped the old woman on the shoulder. The old woman looked around. AN told her that she’d dropped her ticket.

The old woman looked at AN then down at the ticket then back at AN.

That’s rubbish,” She said.

AN countered by telling her that ‘rubbish’ goes into bins rather than scattered all over the footpath.

This made me wonder about other excuses people make for doing things which impact on other people.

Parking half on footpaths half on the road springs to mind. I’ve never asked anyone why they do this which, in effect, tends to hold up both pedestrians and traffic but I assume it’s a signal that the driver isn’t parking but dropping off/picking up and, therefore won’t be very long.

I can only further assume that the excuses made by the wheelchair users who scratch the side of their cars when trying to get by them on the footpath, also have splendid excuses.

And violence. What is the excuse for being violent? “She made me do it!” is not really good enough if you ask me. Violence is the last defence of the stupid.

Another excuse that I see every morning now I’ve changed gyms, is what is (slowly) happening with the Marlborough Head pub. It’s supposed to be a part of the retail properties of the new development. The idea was to gut it and put a shop in it rather than pull it down. I’m not sure why it’s worth keeping but I’m no archaeological architect or authority on old building merit.

Anyway, there’s been a few problems and so, bit by bit, the building has been whittled away. First up was the roof – no joke intended. The task was to replace broken or missing tiles but the original clay tiles were hard to source and so it remained tile-less for ages.

Then it was the roofing beams which were causing delays. More had to be removed than at first thought. And so the top floor has been open to the sky for much longer than first envisioned.

And now, with walls only held up by a series of angled scaffold poles and high tension acro props, we were told the hold up was because of nesting birds. I’m assuming the nesting birds are there as a result of the previous delays.

I’m not dismissing the veracity of the excuses but it seems to me it may have been a lot quicker and easier had they just pulled it down then built something the same with modern materials. I assume they have kept it in order to appease some of the people completely opposed to the new development.

Defying gravity

Perhaps it indicates that not all excuses are valid and, as AN discovered, some excuses are just plain rubbish.

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