Mud On the Road

we're about to go shopping in Salisbury...

High Vizzers, Gearless Couriers

A Bank Holiday weekend and that means the High Vizzers  are out and about in Stockbridge, in force, grouped in their familial clumps along the High Street all the way from The Strawberry Fox at this end to Robjent's and The Owl & The Pussycat at the other.

     From a distance the High Vizzers resemble a specimen of gigantic insect, a new life form  in which human legs and human arms and human heads have become enmeshed and wholly amalgamated with handlebars and spoked bicycle wheels and pedals.

     These new life forms, with their hard bug-heads and big, black, plastic eyes have multi-coloured Lycra legs and shorts and, in common with their city, brethren,  they wear the high visibility jacket. *Hence ‘High Vizzer.’

   The rural varieties most common to Stockbridge differ markedly from the more aggressive urban sub-species in both their calls and mercifully, the absence of antennae.

     Because the majority of the urban species is plugged, via  white antennae, or 'headphones,' into a sound-scape, usually delivered via an  iphone,  which has nothing whatsoever to do with the  real-world dimension through which they are travelling, usually at alarming speeds, and effectively disconnects their brains and receptors from that real-world.

     The confusion of data input to the central nervous system of the High Vizzer can, as has been discovered in urban habitats like central London, transform  the High Vizzer into a lethal weapon. It’s simply not possible if you’re being  assailed by e.g. Barry Manilow at volume 20,  to register any other aural information,  e.g. cars, buses, horns, sirens  or simply cries of pain from other, more gentle and law-abiding High Vizzers.

     The recourse to headphones has resulted in such a marked impairment of reaction that a sight now common to London is of that very particular breed, the 'Gearless Courier,' crossing traffic lights at speed on red, or ploughing ruthlessly though a zebra crossing filled with human beings,  all the while emitting the harsh and strangulated war cry: 'Out Of My ***king Way.

     Happily for Stockbridge, the rural High Vizzer and his or her family and friends,are more evolved than the 'Gearless Courier.'

     The rural High Vizzers have more finely honed survival instincts and well-developed social skills. They are notable not for aggression but affability, often expressed  on passing a bi-ped as a cheery, 'Morning-Coming-Through-Nice Day,' or, if the bi-ped happens to be in motion, i.e. jogging not walking, a sort of all-purpose, well intentioned, if slightly patronising, 'Keep up the good work.'

     This is a Good Thing because it is vital as summer gets underway and we jostle for space on our  increasingly congested roads, lanes and High Streets of So20, that we do all get along: pedestrians, motorists - bikers, scooters, tractors,  horses and High Vizzers.

     Not least because the High Vizzers,  spearheaded by the Great Progenitors of their species – Sir Chris Hoy, Victoria Pendleton, Bradley Wiggins,  Mayor Boris Johnson -  are proving to be prolific breeders and their numbers are multiplying fast.

     Even I have resurrected my bike from the shed and am taking once more to the road.

     And it seems increasingly likely that, in the future,  the human will fully morph with the bicycle and babies will be born with their own helmet, handlebars, wheels, and stabilisers, front and rear lights, bar code  and insurance policy attached.

     Hopefully, by then, the Gearless Couriers will also have evolved and Baby-Bike's first utterances will not be war-like in tone but a cheery, 'Morning-Coming-Through-Nice Day.'


Green Mud
Dear Councillor Gibson 
Poor, kind Mrs Harris
Working From Home
Tail of the swarm on the bird box
Day of the Bee,  Part I
Rescuing the swarm
Day of the Bee,  Part 2

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