The latest Phil Evans column from the South Wales Evening Post
The latest Phil Evans column from the South Wales Evening Post.
Comedian Phil Evans is from Ammanford. He is known as the man who puts the ‘cwtsh’ into comedy.
Last week, I walked into a supermarket in Cross Hands just as a young man was walking out. As we passed, he nonchalantly spat out a huge, nasty-looking mass of phlegm onto the pavement and walked on, not giving a second thought to what he’d just done.
Spitting was as natural to him as breathing.
Normally, I’d have said something, though in retrospect I’m not sure what.
Maybe, “Excuse me young sir! I think you dropped something!”
No, that wouldn’t have worked.
But his repulsive action made me feel so ill, I nearly retched.
Had I followed through, it would have made an even bigger mess on the pavement...and someone might have written an article about my anti-social behaviour.
There used to be signs in ‘buses that made no bones about how you were expected to behave on public transport...
“No Swearing And No Spitting”
The dark font of the sign looked so menacing, almost daring you to defy it, everyone took notice.
Back then it was rumoured that spitting could spread TB - although it could have been a ruse to prevent male passengers on the top deck of the five am ‘works’ bus from depositing mouthfuls of tobacco-flavoured phlegm on the floor as they coughed-up their lungs, while enjoying their first Woodbine of the morning.
(By the way, I hope you’re not eating at the moment...)
At some point in the last 40 years, those signs were removed on the orders of someone who obviously has never travelled by public transport.
I believe they should be reintroduced immediately - not just on ‘buses but in pubs, parks, shops, bus stations, railway stations, banks, cafes, your street, my street and up every high street.
To make the message clear to the ‘Spitterati’ and the loud-mouthed oiks whose vocabulary is mainly limited to four-letter words, the signs should be in flashing red neon, 20 feet high.
Apart from warning people not to swear and spit, the signs should also say:
Drop Your Chewing Gum In A Bin – Not On The Pavement.
Don’t Ride Your Bike Or Skateboard Through Pedestrianised Areas.
Don’t Sneeze And Wipe It On Your Sleeve – Use A Tissue.
Don’t Shout Into Your Mobile Phone.
Don’t Walk And Text.
And Do Not Scratch Your Doo-Dahs In Public.
With the additional wording:
“Ignore This Sign And You Will Be Hung, Drawn And Quartered!”
If you think I’m being harsh, you should catch me when I’m in a really bad mood...
I read somewhere that the more songs and photos you put on your mobile phone, the heavier it gets.
Only by a trillion billionth of the tiniest fraction of an ounce mind, but at the airport check in, that weight may make all the difference.
Now isn't that a useless bit of information?
I seem to attract useless bits of information, and even worse, I have a strong urge to store them up and inflict them on other people.
After one such little gem, a friend suggested that I jot them down in a book and that would get them out of my system without annoying everyone around me.
So, I have bought myself a book and have duly written all the little nuggets of useless information in it. I didn't realise how much of this stuff is out there, and who is it that comes up with it?
I'm not going to repeat any more, well, not after this last one: annoying your friends can shorten your life – well only by a trillion billionth of the tiniest fraction mind….. I'll get my coat….
A true hero:
The highlight of my week was being included in the 80th birthday celebrations at the Gradon Country Pub, Crynant, of one extremely special lady, Eiry Shopland of Aberdulais.
It was evident from the start of the evening that this lady is one of Wales’ most respected unsung heroes, a shining star who has for most of her life been the backbone to so many worthy causes and organisations.
Let’s face it; Wales is just so good at providing such wonderfully caring, warm people in the community. True local heroes.
Eiry is currently musical director and conductor of Cantorion Bro Nedd and started her teaching career in Ammanford Secondary Modern School in 1958, teaching Welsh.
For 20 years, she was treasurer of Neath Council of Churches and continues to play a huge part in the local community.
Not often do I find myself in a room full of people, from all walks of life, who demonstrate such clear evidence of love and respect for one person.
Without doubt, if they ever bring back the TV show ‘This is your Life’, Eiry would be the ideal candidate, I guarantee it. Penblwydd Hapus!
You can follow Phil Evans on Twitter @philevanswales and www.philevans.co.uk