You’re looking at the wrong photo
About a week ago – in an ideal world – two young men stood in the aisles of an American sporting goods store, posing for a photo. The shorter of the pair, Nick D’Arcy, held two pistols in his hands and wore a smirk that pushed the smackability of his face up to 11. The taller, younger member of the little posse, Kenrick Monk, grasped two shotguns across his chest in a manner that only served to highlight the size of his ridiculous shoulders.
A store attendant, or some other unwitting American, readied a mobile phone to take the shot.
In this ideal world, D’Arcy suddenly lowers his weapons and gestures towards the photographer.
“Hang on a second, mate.” he says
He turns towards his companion. “Hey Kenrick, I was just thinking. A few years ago, do you remember how I caved-in Simon Cowley’s face, pleaded guilty, declared bankruptcy to avoid paying civil damages, and was then suspended from swimming for a time?”
Kenrick screws up his face, deep in thought. “Aw yeah, sort of. I remember you cut your hair. Why do you mention that?”
“Well it just occurred to me,” says D’Arcy, “that if we were to take this photo and publish it via social media, it might cause a bit of a stir. The public might respond in a manner grossly disproportional to the act, seeing that we are both lucky to have been given a second chance at representing our country.”
“What do you mean ‘we’?” asks Monk quizzically.
“Mate,” replies D’Arcy patiently. “You fell off your skateboard a little while ago and broke your elbow, remember? You were scared you would get in trouble off Swimming Australia, so you claimed you had been in a hit-and-run accident. This triggered a police investigation and wasted precious resources.”
“Aw, yeah” says Monk, lowering the two shotguns. “You’re probably right. Given how fortunate we have been, the sage decision would be to stay out of trouble and away from the limelight, lest we be seen as ungrateful by an Australian public notorious for demanding humility.”
“Exactly.” replies D’Arcy. The pair return the guns to the shelves and kindly thank the store attendant.
“You know, it’s both ironic and unfortunate.” says Nick D’Arcy as they wander out of the store. “Because my main motivation for taking the photo was to subtly highlight the frightening availability of firearms in the United States and the absurdity that we, as Australians, feel at being able to even take such a photo in a local sporting goods store.”
“To be honest mate,” replies Kenrick Monk, “I only held the shotguns across my chest because it served to highlight the size of my ridiculous shoulders. Hey Nick, do you want to get some ice cream?”
In an ideal world…
Of course, in a truly ideal world, America wouldn’t be so in love with guns, Nick D’Arcy wouldn’t have smashed the face of Simon Cowley and Facebook and Twitter would never have been invented (or rather, they would have been invented solely by this author, with the website “Facebuckets” being offered to the public at a far less inflated price, when it was initially floated on the stock market).
Our own world – here and now – is far from ideal, yet it does have some benefits. Because every time somebody looks at the photo above – a tame and silly image, really – they get a little bit closer to seeing the image below :
We should not forget that a man has been selected to represent our country at the 2012 Olympics who shattered the face of a teammate by throwing an elbow. Simon Cowley experienced multiple facial fractures and requires titanium plates to hold his jaw and teeth in place.
We should not forget the actions of Nick D’Arcy, and thanks to smartphones, social media and a unique type of arrogance, the very man himself seems happy to remind us. So yes, whilst the recent public fervour surrounding two stupid posers holding guns is over the top, you’re looking at the wrong photo.