Friday, September 30, 2011
Today, it's pharmacies.
Thinks: Deep breath, lad. Here we go. Says: "Good morning, paracetamol, please. Capsules, if you have them."
"Are they for yourself?"
Thinks: No, they're for my pet alligator, he's got toothache. Says:"Yes."
"Have you taken them before?"
Thinks: No, I have always paid for them, but you've given me an idea. . Says:"Yes."
"Are you on any other medication?"
Thinks: Only bromide in my tea to counter my raging sex-drive. Says: "No."
"Don't take them for more than three days."
Thinks: What if the pain lasts more than three days? Says: "Of course."
By this time, I am spitting, and the fact that the salesgirl at the counter is as pretty as Jane Fonda does not diminish my irritation. I am not irritated at her, nor would I be even if she was as ugly as Peter Mandelson. No, I am irritated at the nannies in authority who no longer trust us to do anything right - if they ever did. Any day now, I expect an edict from the Ministry of Dowhatnannysays with instructions on how to hold one's member during an act of micturition. In my day, the advice was simple "Shake it more than twice and you're playing with it."
Common sense, you say. Ah yes, there's the rub. We don't do "common sense" any more; we do regulatory overkill. If you don't believe me, look at the little leaflet that comes with your medication - it's so full of portents and warnings and exhortations and, indeed, THREATS, that you are almost persuaded it would be better to die than to take the stuff. The only consolation is that this rigmarole is printed in several languages, so you should avoid the English and read the version in, say, Latvian or Finnish, languages that were obviously made for spouting gobbledygook.
Makes a lot more sense.