Tuesday, 16 September 2014

His feet are the right size for his shoes

I just came across a blog post that reminded me of a bit from the Hitchhikers' guide to the Galaxy. Not from the first, perfectly-formed radio series, but from one of its later radio incarnations, where the narrative arc* was less powerful, but most of the whimsical digressions were still the right side of being annoying** and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop was still building a bigger universe inside your head than movie makers with a squillion-dollar cutting-edge CGI budget can manage to this day.

The episode, which contained moderate peril and mild language, found our heroes on the planet Brontitall, being pursued by Hig Hurtenflurst, the risingest young executive in a monopolistic, pan-galactic shoe corporation and his poorly-shod foot warriors:

FOOT WARRIOR:Er, yes sir. Awh, ohh!
[FOOT WARRIOR falls over again]
HIG HURTENFLIRST:You two! Carry him to the projector scope.
ARTHUR:What’s the matter with him?
HIG HURTENFLIRST:His feet are the wrong size for his shoes.

Honestly, you just can't get the staff these days. As every micromanager since Procrustes could have told you, everything would be perfect, if it wasn't for maladjusted people failing to fit in. Fortunately, you can always stretch your human resources to breaking point, or chop them off at the knees for fun and profit:
Capital makes the worker ill, and then multinational pharmaceutical companies sell them drugs to make them better. The social and political causation of distress is neatly sidestepped at the same time as discontent is individualised and interiorised.
(Mark Fisher)
Having adapted or conformed suitably to new conditions, the well-adjusted go confidently about their business...
From the 'The Well-Adjusted' an awesomely good blogpost at Bat, Bean, Beam. Go to the related post 'You and Mark Aren't Friends' to see how a state of perfect well-adjustedness can be attained through the magic of a well-curated social media profile, without any of that tedious mucking about that goes with medicalising dissent.

*'Narrative circle' would be a better description of series one, since the story's a time-travel loop.

**As opposed to not entirely sucking.