Frightening The Horse’s*


One of the most damning statements regarding public behaviour used to be that it would frighten the horses. This was an excuse used to repress sex, violence, politics, and bright clothing. Considering the fact that I’ve seen a horse shy from a weed growing on the side of the road, it doesn’t really leave much leeway in anything. Perhaps a more interesting topic would be to find something that DIDN’T frighten 800 Kg of animal with giant hooves and big teeth…

Of course this worry has now been supplanted by admonitions not to cause offence or micro-aggressions. The horses are safe from these as they rarely engage in left/right politics, but there are plenty of humans who have pricked their ears up and whinnied encouragingly – it presents a wonderful chance for them to be poor injured creatures who get to complain loudly. As a power base it is wonderful – the solid fulcrum about which you can lever a university, school, business office, or local council.

You do need several things, though, to make it work well. I mean besides whining…

You need a set of ears in which to pour the complaints and a channel in print or over the air through which to berate your oppressors. While your voice may be monotonous, the vocabulary of complaint is a wide-ranging one so no matter who you are you will be able to select a series of words that trigger off angst and outrage. If it does not do so in the ears of authority or the general public, at least it will get noticed by your fellow whiners, and you can advance steadily in the ranks. Many a career has been made in the complaints industry and successful practitioners have been able to stay gainfully employed well past retirement age.

One thing, though – you need to be careful about yelling while protesting the micro-aggressions of the establishment. It frightens the horses

* No, it’s not a punctuation error. It’s perfectly in order. I just didn’t specify which part of the horse…delicacy…



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