When is it a complete waste of time?

Some years ago I thought it might be a good idea to do a series of cartoons on a ‘A complete waste of time’ . I can only remember one, which needs no drawing was titled: “Walking down an up escalator”. I had this habit of trying to think of series of cartoons, some happened, others, like this one did not. I did one on men’s haircuts, the only known print of it, is in my friend Robin’s downstairs loo. I did another about the weather, even less of a hit: null point. One theme: Green and Pleasant, done many years ago, and about the environment, generated a lot of drawings, many in colour, it never really took off but it’s one I’m proud of. I still have most of the drawings, which as they were on acetate have lasted well. Daughter has one in California in their house,and it’s not even in the loo, so that’s a hit in my eyes.

A better use of a brolly.

I’ve just spent a day taking the wet sand out of a couple of large plastic vessels which are intended to weigh down the foundations of a sun shade umbrella. One fills these things with kiln dried sand and then fill up with water. A job for a sunny day. Having filled them with the sand and the water making them so heavy that I was tempted to call in the help of a local power lifter, I then had various ingenious methods of moving them and getting them ready to put in place. One of the large tanks started leaking from a shoddy bit of plastic welding. Now this is supposed to be brand new.

I asked customer services for a replacement tank, they said they’d send on my request but it could be up to 4 days before I’d get a response. I went back to the tank and considered repairing it. Then the screw cap started to leak.

Here I am with a piece of equipment that is not out of the box ( the umbrella ) and here am I labouring over lumps of plastic that I can hardly move. My second opinion arrives home to view the scene and simply says: “ I’d send it back and we’ll think of something else”. Agreed. I call customer service and say that I’d like to send it back. “No problem Sir” someone will call you in a day or so to arrange to collect.

Then I have to empty 4 tanks of sand. I had mentioned to customer service that I’d spent 30 quid on this stuff and that it should be factored into the retail price without response. Getting wet sand out of a large plastic tank is tricky and time consuming.

I’ve woken up this morning after dreaming about wet sand. Not good. Yesterday was almost a complete waste of time. Unworthy of celebrating in any way at all, least of all a cartoon.

If you want shade in your garden get a tree.

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