Friday, 16 November 2012


A research study that is just about to be published by The Journal of Applied Social Psychology  would seem to indicate an obstinate streak in our natures.

It appears that physical signs that instruct us to do something, such as EAT HEALTHILY, actually can provoke an opposing response.
Bryan Earp, a researcher in applied ethics at Oxford University stated that:
"For unconscious or automatic processing, 'not good' is often taken as 'good' and 'not bad' as bad".

NO PARKING is a classic example as is DO NOT TOUCH on a museum exhibit; they are just 'green lights' for people to either park unlawfully or to reach out and finger that 4,000 year old papyrus scroll.

So it seems eminently sensible to me that we should reverse the message and request people to KEEP ON THE GRASS in order to achieve the opposite.

In which case please print off the following message and pin it on your local parish notice board....


There are even rumours that the powers that be in the Vatican are taking a fresh look at the Ten Commandments - "Thou shall covet thy neighbour's goods" could be the new order of the day.

1 comment:

  1. Scene setting :
    I remember In Franco's Spain , when , post factum knowledge, Franco had four years to go before shuffling off this mortal coil, in Asturias, a relatively distinctly wealthy celtic mining and industrial area, far off the touristtrails, , with a very "bolshy" reputation in Spain itself (advantage: The 50% + of the population who were mass-going were so in spite of, NOT because of, the regime, with few not all dis-honorable exceptions)
    The local council, FINALLY , got round to putting quite a few trees and flowerbeds on the streets. As a photo-op (even when unelected, politicians worldwide are cut from the same mould, as twere,)all on all streets was surrounded with crash barriers and canvas sacking until the dawn of opening day.Every few yrds was a sign : "Do Not walk on the grass " "Do Not touch the flowerS, by order," Do not, Do not, Do NOT, wholesale.
    Getting up early ( to swim before work)that day I was privelidged to see one of the first "vandals" on a welltodo faily central street.He exited a fancy block of bougeois flats (fancy staircase and lobby, porter,wrought iron lacework by the square metre, marble, the works)middle- aged, conservatively dressed to the nines, threepiece suit etc, the stereotype of a solid citizen,supporter of the regime and social conservative,he saw the new flower beds with all these "Do not "signs on the other pavement, checked his northward progress, crossed the road through the traffic oblivious to three near deaths at least from cars Walked ONTO the grass , trampled up and down hard for about five minutes until, with a swing in his stride and a satisfied air, he walked off to wherever he was the boss,or one of the bosses.
    He was, evidently, not alone. Within days the new flowerbeds were a muddy mess- and that despite you wouldn't believe the degree of police presence and vigilance Spanish industrial city streets had in Franco's day, and night, come to that.
    The Council removed all the DO NOT signs, replanted grass, replacing them by fewer, discreter, signs saying things like"This is YOURS, please respect it"
    Which , mostly, the locals did - for a few years.
    I am far from sure that , like many things in human nature, withal fallen, the explanation is causally so much in brain chemistry as such;I beleieve, rather, Brain chemistry, as when we are in love, REFLECTS who and what we are and do , created beings, with free will, fallen, but nonetheless responsive to our creator, divine providence, our guardian angels, and of course the desires of the flesh and the snares of the devil.
    Much more could be said re, eg marriage, falling in love etc. (Ie Dawkins and his myriads of followers) are up the pole)
    Or is a chicken an egg's way of making another egg?
    Horse n cart is both there!