Random Play by Graham Reid


All Apologies

An apology means nothing if you do it on Facebook or You Tube.

Or Twitter or e-mail or txt. Or a talk show.

An apology by an actor who cries probably doesn’t mean much. These people are actors, they are trained to fake sincerity.

An apology by a politician who appears contrite probably doesn’t mean much. These people are politicians, they are trained to fake sincerity.

An apology means nothing if it is made on your behalf by your coach, captain, manager or trainer. It means less than nothing if you aren’t there when it is being made.

An apology means nothing if you are reading it from a script prepared by your coach, captain, manager or trainer. Or PR person, press secretary or media coach. It means less than nothing if it has taken many days of negotiation to prepare.

An apology to your victim’s family means nothing if you have waited 15 months then changed your plea to guilty on the day of the trial.

An apology probably means nothing if your lawyer has to say “my client is genuinely remorseful, your honour”.

An apology means nothing if you are sorry “that people took offence” when you should have said you were sorry you offended people by your offensive behaviour or words.

An apology to investors who have lost their life savings means nothing if you are a declared bankrupt living in a mansion which is in your partner or spouse’s name. And you are still flying first class to a friend’s wedding in Europe.

An apology means nothing if you drag in your wife, husband, partner, family or pets by way of gaining sympathy.

An apology means nothing if, by way of diversion, you use the occasion to point the finger at others who have done something similar. Or use any other diversionary tactic, like making another outrageous or offensive statement or claim to shift attention away from your original action.

An apology made while holding a Bible or any other holy text doesn’t mean anything if you haven’t read the thing.

An apology which includes the words “but most of all I have let myself down” is highly suspect. If you had such high moral standards people are allowed to wonder even more how you managed to “let yourself down”.

An apology means nothing if you are only making it because you got caught out.

An apology because it was a “youthful indiscretion” means nothing if you are over 23.

“Sorry” means nothing if your mum or dad or family make you say it and don’t have any idea why you are apologising. But if you are kid we can forgive you.

The word “sorry” is so debased it is down there with “awesome” so it should be used sparingly. As in, only if you really mean it.

Sorry is . . . actually, it probably isn’t worth much these days. But it is still a great song by the Easybeats.

And speaking of music: New noises now at Music From Elsewhere includes Yoko Ono, Tami Neilson, BLK JKS, Sarah Blasko and many others. At Absolute Elsewhere is an interview with a Decemberist (coming for the Big Day Out) and many, many articles, overviews and interviews; at Essential Elsewhere is another CD/DVD you might need in your collection; and at Cultural Elsewhere are two DVDs pertaining to one of the most volatile regions of the world.
And much more. Feel free to comment, Twitter about it and so on.

Shameless self-promotion, Part the Deux: My new travel book The Idiot Boy Who Flew (see below) received a nice notice in the Herald this week . . . and no, I cannot pull strings there and did not write this myself. In fact I was pleasantly surprised it was reviewed at all.

These are not “selective quotes” because the review was entirely favourable, but this is what was said: "as delightful as you'd expect from such a skilled storyteller . . . trademark anecdotes about fascinating characters . . . the title story about a simple saint whose faith allowed him to fly, demonstrate[s] the treasures to be found as a result of doing a bit of research and exploring off the beaten tourist track . . . marvellously accurate snapshots of people and places from elsewhere; pictures in words which amuse and inspire, entertain and inform".

It also mentioned I drink in bars a lot (that ain’t actually a negative, folks).

My book does not challenge the careers of any literary giants, it is of modest ambition and good humour in places, and I (of course) think would make an excellent Christmas present, ideal holiday reading for the beach or bach or tent. Or the dunny as one friend has said, in a good way!

I make no apologies for it. But if anyone does take offence then . . .

Graham Reid is the author of the book 'The Idiot Boy Who Flew'.

(Click here to find out more)

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