Clowning Around?

I’ve hardly blogged at all recently (been on twitter lots) – There’s a debate raging about whether twitter kills blogging. We’ve been having the debate using cloudworks which is our very nice home grown system and I intend to give my opinions of that in another post, but suffice to say I love it.

…anyhow back to my point. By far the most traffic to my blog was generated from my post about Why Clowns are Dangerous. This has in fact also spawned a lot of quite vitriolic and IMHO (!) self opinionated comments, these tend to be light on research and factual evidence but heavily packed with personal insults.

From this I summise:-

1. Michael Wesch is spot on in his analysis about behaviours around anonymity and rage. Particularly people  think they know me from what is a very incomplete set of criteria by which to judge….and for the record my sister runs a circus troupe and regularly dresses in a clown costume. There is a recognised condition around clowns and their fear. Stephen Kings “IT” is directly playing on that association.

2. Clowns are not something to make fun of. Clowns take themselves very seriously.

3. My sister runs a circus troupe (performing arts and trapeze and the works) so there is a clown in my family 🙂

4. The more bizarre the blog post the more traffic it generates. My second most popular post is on silent vacuum cleaners. Therefore ridding the world of scary clowns and noisy vacuum cleaners is likely to make someone very popular.

5. Most people don’t get irony. Or humour. Going back to 1, this is probably to do with the other 55% non verbal communication. Or it could be that people only expect blogs to be ‘either’ comical or serious and not a mixture.

6. People make assumptions. All the time. We forget past things that don’t fit those assumptions and concentrate on the latest things that do. Derren Brown would have a field day. Or am I making assumptions?

Why Clowns are Dangerous

Clowning around

Clowning around

clown photo

I have long suspected as much from my many tramatic clown experiences as a child (not me clowning you understand but being emotionally scarred by ugly men in lipstick and makeup dressed rediculously trying desperately to entertain me). Now my own children have confirmed what I always suspected that Disneyworld, CentreParcs and all those places that produce large versions of your ‘favourite animated characters’ using people dressed up in big furry suits is not endearing or enjoyable.

The latest piece of evidence is from my 2 year old daughter Hannah who got hold of one of the other kids Stars Wars annuals this morning and flicking through the photos announced “Why is man dressed in silly costume dad?”, then “There’s another dressed in silly costume “(Jar Jar Binks and C3PO respectively – I hope I’ve got the names right for all you aficionado’s out there!).

Now I don’t know about other families so again extrapolating up from my own, whenever they meet a giant 10 foot tall version of Yogi Bear confronting them in a holiday camp, their first reaction is not to give said bear a lovable hug but either .1 Run away screaming or 2. Say “Why is man dressed in silly costume”. I’m glad that Hannah has now reached stage 2. Surely survival instinct alone means that you should NOT say to kids that it’s OK to hug giant bear, or strange men in funny outfits either.

This is my first post for a while but I intend to get back on that pony and blog again for good or ill. There is some technology focus in this post by the way C3PO is an android and if he were a real one would we treat him in the same way as a man in a silly costume? – I think running away screaming is generally the safest option.