Jimmy didn't have the wit to do Allan's rationalisation. Dragged up through the Protestant thorn-bush myself, I always tried not to hate him - the shame for me, still residual, is I wasn't able to help. I still have occasional replays in bad dreams. There was a big cover-up over 'The Burner' - in regard of his known history and who knew what about him as a danger to himself and the public - in fact there was a long history of social workers and cops unable to do anything for him and a long report presented to a previous court. The nickname arose on the estate he lived on, suggesting everyone knew. There was an incident in his cell when I was getting him to sign his confession. I got the charge office PC (Jailer) to slop some disinfectant under his cot, offered Jimmy a fag and lit my Zippo. Jimmy's 'interpretation' of this was that I was about to consign him to the fires of hell. It was honestly all about the smell. The charge office PC, known only as 'Nobbo' in appreciation of his predilection for head butting prisoners, was highly impressed with my "interrogation technique" and regarded me with new respect thereafter. I sometimes wish myself capable of such cunning, but surely, if I had meant to inspire Jimmy's reaction, I'd have got him to cough to the Corned Beef Robbery that was a royal pain in the nether regions of CID at the time.--
On Tuesday, December 30, 2014 11:49:28 PM UTC, facilitator wrote:
In terms of Pol's 'words in the head', I fortunately don't have these words in conscious view, other than in trauma (blessedly occasional), unless my attention is attracted to recall. We might wonder on their form in boxes of generally unopened memory. In ethnomethodology there is always more to recall, though once we start there are issues concerning whether anyone else has the attention span to turn the page.
I have an image of me coming out of that cell 'clutching' Jimmy's confession. In fact, I carried it between finger and thumb and at arm's length, leaving it near an open window as I typed up various proformas, before sticking it in the brown case-file and dumping that in the DI's in-tray. Even this recall leaves out my hope never to hear another jot about Jimmy, later sight of the DI spraying the file with air freshener and whether Jimmy could ever commit a crime - unlike other scuzz bags like Ugli Ray Terret whose rape career must have been marginally curtailed when he was locked up for theft (and other hopes on like for like retribution in gaol) - and loads more before one brings in potential reactions, like slipping further into Gabby's approbation as a Big Brother minion. Recall, it seems is endless even before one considers reception and such as why a serial paedophile rapist could be convicted 35 years on and not at the time when evidence was fresh.
Nobbo was so impressed with my supra-Gestapo methods he had two of his even bigger mates drag me to the pub at end of watch. These guys were leftovers from the days when height and granite foreheads had been the main recruitment criteria. It was a boiler-maker day, though there was none of that American nonsense of wasting good whiskey by tossing the spirit glass into the bottom of the beer, spoiling the taste and evading what made you a real man, namely a burning oesophagus and a personality driven by gastric ulcers. There's probably a novel in Nobbo's reasoning on why he and his mates could be seen associating with a Jock dwarf who had passed the promotion exams. I must be all right if I'd burned a confession out of an arsonist and there was that fight I'd had with a tiger that had come off second best. I held the record for police brutality complaints (seven chummies in a row in one morning in Magistrates' Court). What a guy!
Nobbo's stories had occasional threads of truth. There had been a tiger, though it was stuffed, and the armed burglar I pushed it on top of had had the fight with it and lost. The fire had all been in Jimmy's "mind". The brutality complaints were all untrue and made by the same solicitor giving his clients, doomed on actual evidence, a run for their money. He'd had the decency to take me out for dinner on his proceeds from Legal Aid. We'd played in the same university rugby team and he was a little guilty that our private joke had added several months to his clients' sentences.
The Corned Beef lorry-hyjack-robbery robbery began to be cleared up in the pub. Nobbo's particularly large mate, Geoff 'the badger' Betts, so called after an incident in which he had recovered a missing child alive by digging her out of a foul dungeon with his bare hands (truth more interesting - he used a JCB, was bald and far too big for anyone to risk calling him as bald as a badger) - question: what words do we focus out of mind into speech or text? - anyway Badger pulled me over to the bar during the after-hours lock in, telling me there was something I should see. Vision wasn't on form, though I had noticed all the designated drivers were drunk. I could see the landlord's Jack Russell eating greedily. Badger separated the beast from its food dish, waving both in turn too close to my nose. The dog was eating corned beef. The landlord's wife had bought a ton of the stuff, the same brand as the blagg. Ten grand's worth of corned beef might not seem much to worry about and Fray Bentos was about to cease being a brand in the UK, given Thatcher's coming and convenient war with Argentina over an obsolete sheep farm. But the lorry driver had just died in hospital, conveniently not adding to murder statistics by lasting more than 385 days after the brutal assault. Fray Bentos was manufacturing in Brazil by then, but most Brits favoured nuking Rio in retaliation for the occupation of South Georgia by Argentinian scrap merchants. A book later and you'd know who nicked the corned beef and the story is a 'film noir'.
None of this is true, of course. It can't be as we all told very different stories in court. So what are words, even if exchanged between people not typing on broken Enigma machines? Are the words in Pol's head or mine (anyone's) already focused on what we dare to say to others, or the context of a system of evidence or the frozen morality of mannered political correctness and entertainment?
Draw us a picture Tony. I guess we could soon exceed the 1000-word limit imposed on one of them, quickly ensuring all but the brave focused their attention on the wine waiter before realising they have to buy a sculpture to get out of the gallery, past Nobbo and Badger at the entrance! My favourite sculpture is by Steve Bell, a caricature of Thatcher, 'carved from the living guano' with the inscription 'she snatched a bloody war from the jaws of a peaceful settlement'.
I've not had Allan's warm experience. At our age we might share a joke about what old men have just done when they get one. My version concerns a 4 billion year old civilisation - the Nool on Boolis beyond the Bootes void - tired of the search for god and soul they built their own only to discover the technological life was neither, though made them all much happier. Several chapters later, they are at Earth, one of the paradise planet-failures once assumed a part of their merely mythical past. I kiss one. They are arthropod of arachnid origin, so don't accuse me of getting too close to my ants Toe Knee (we say 'a-bumps-e-daisy' after that here).
What are words? Allan's warm thingy I wish I'd had? Why like someone who seems to feed on rejection? Why did Tony get that representational skill I'm both jealous of and somewhat joyous is in the world he has shared some of with us? How do I know the Nool when it would take our technology a million years to get to them? What role do future memories have in evaluating the present - 'work ethic' looks particularly stupid once robots can do more or less anything - and when most of our efforts go to the one percent for that matter ...
Brave New Year to all
Love to Gabbs for tolerating me treating her like the Big Sister I always miss - always my greatest critic and never absent from any rugby match I played in unless there was a hockey match she could display her county-level killing skills in.
On Tuesday, December 30, 2014 11:49:28 PM UTC, facilitator wrote:
There was a time when "Jimmy The Burner" had the blessing of the Church.
On Tuesday, December 30, 2014 3:44:15 PM UTC-5, archytas wrote:You know I have no qualms on effects on you. At about the same time, I was discovering something about what was going on in the brains of people no one would want to meet - my first involved listening to an arsonist who had just killed two children. A smelly, grubby little man with a smell I still remember, he was racked with guilt and protesting he had been acting on god's instructions, including his not guilty plea. I had him bang to rights, but the court bailed him. He burned his wife to death a couple of days later, only managing to scorch his hands, having doused himself with disinfectant, mistaking it for petrol. He didn't interest me much, though the system's failure to protect those who should have mattered did. I haven't gone much on internally justified epistemology since The system has probably gone further down the pan too. My chief constable at the time was a prophet of god. I went off religion. How do you know its going to turn you into an admirable old silver-basher or Jimmy-the-Burner?
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