Now They’re Just Getting Stupid

Members of the Congregation of Perpetual Outrage now suggest that having a barbecue in a park is anti-social behavior. Some people don’t like the smell of searing flesh, while others object to the smoke. So for some of these folks, even grilling veggies is an anti-social annoyance.71456596030073741240473

It’s an interesting conundrum; on the one hand, having a house with a yard and a grill is bad, because they want you to live in stacked lab-rat cages. Yet on the other hand, if you live in lab-rat bunkers, you have no place to barbecue unless you adjourn to a nearby park.  And now that, too, is being condemned by the Pertutually Outraged:

You might recognise the scene on a large patch of public grassland. The odour of inexpertly-charred meat. The babble of drunk people congregating. The spectacle of adults in shorts, arms folded, cheeks flushed with indignation, shouting at each other.

Barbecues are a precarious enough social occasion when they occur in the privacy of a back garden, with smoke and chatter billowing across fences, potentially inciting the ire of neighbours.

In communal spaces like parks – where one ratepayer’s carefree al fresco culinary get-together is another’s smoke-belching, grass-scorching, noisy, litter-strewn, anti-social nuisance – the capacity for confrontation and awkwardness is even greater.

Around the world this summer, civic leaders are grappling with a shared dilemma. In the New York borough of Brooklyn, there are calls to ban grilling in Prospect Park in an effort to rid it of “toxic fumes”.

Give me a few burritos, and I’ll introduce those Brooklyn hipsters to some real toxic fumes. I don’t even need a grill!

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About maxredlines

experience: biology, zoology, psychology. authored/co-authored papers appearing in peer-reviewed scientific journals, as well as numerous professional proceedings. authored articles appearing in computer-oriented publications. featured in publications ranging from books to New Yorker magazine to television.
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2 Responses to Now They’re Just Getting Stupid

  1. lectorconstans says:

    Formerly Great Britain is getting to be a caricature of what it used to be 10 years ago, which was a tragical shadow of what it once was.

    And it looks like Brooklyn is following. From the story: “…A small but vocal group…” The tyranny of the vocal minority.

    • maxredlines says:

      Britain’s been going downhill for years; they’ve got some really weird laws: “inspectors” can enter your home at any time to ensure that your appliances are suitably energy efficient, and they can show up with a tape measure to ensure that your hedges aren’t too tall – tall hedges can get you slapped with an ASBO citation (Anti-Social Behavior Ordinance).

      The Brooklyn hipsters seem to think that the Brits are on the right track. And they are, if you believe that the right track involves a downward spiral.

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