I want a blue plaque erected in my honour and attached to the wall of a house I’ve lived in or a pub I’ve drunk in or an alleyway I’ve relieved myself in somewhere in my home town.
Because – maybe it’s just Leamington – but there seems to be blue plaques being put up all over the place these days, to all and sundry for a whole raft of endeavours that, at best, often strain the bounds of remarkability and noteworthiness.
Lord Isambard Moolah invented the screw top salt shaker in this garret in 1846. Sir Ivor Permanent Backache invented skiving off from work in this bedsit in 1954. Captain Smartarse created the world’s first time machine in this domicile pod in 2539. Etc. Etc.
Forget Facebook or Twitter (or whatever it is you young un’s are using these days to avoid actually speaking to each other), a blue plaque is what you need if you want people to know who you are, to notice you and – most importantly – to remember you.
‘Cos being remembered is everything. If you die and nobody remembers you, well, that’s like you never existed. You were there but you were like dark matter... just holding the bright stars in their place. But if your name is still on people’s lips, still being bandied around backstreet pubs and used as a gross insult in the playground then you have at least achieved some kind or immortality. Future generations will carry your name forth like some kind of socio-biological seed and who knows? You may yet influence the children of tomorrow in some weirdly perverse manner which will either raise humankind to the heights of enlightenment or (more likely) see it damned to the lowest circle of hell.
But the fate of the species is unimportant compared with having had a hand in bringing that fate into being.
Because it doesn’t matter whether you’re remembered for good things or bad things. Just as long as you’re remembered. Fame doesn’t give a shit about morality. Fame doesn’t differentiate between top ten hit singles or the number of people you stuff into a mass grave. History enshrines Hitler and Michael Jackson both on an equal footing (though I know who I’d trust to babysit).
So all I have to do now is decide how I’m going to get my blue plaque.
Will it be for some kind of Nobel prize winning endeavour? Novel writing? Poetry? Blogging even? It would have to be arts based because I’m completely crap at science (if you’re waiting for me to invent a time machine you’d need a time machine just to cope with the wait).
Or shall I choose the dark path? Become a plague to my fellow man? Visit upon him sores and pestilence and endless irritation?
Blogging it is then.
P.S. Just make sure they spell my name right.