I have a theory that English people might be a bit reserved. As far as I’m aware no one else has ever come up with this theory.
I believe that they talk about the weather too often and for far too long because they feel too inhibited to have meaningful and personal discussions with strangers, associates or even family and friends. But I also believe they would dearly like to have more intimate discussions.
In England this week a weatherman was caught sticking his finger up at the news presenter. This was after a joke from the presenter about how accurate the weather prediction was going to be. The BBC have had to apologise.
The event has led once again to more analysis of the accuracy of weather predictions and just a lot more weather talk in general.
It reminded me of an artwork I did 18months ago when I was still ironing out the nuts and bolts of News Art (this took a while because ironing nuts and bolts is a very slow process).
I had only been in England for six months and was finding the overly polite and sometimes stiff conversations with people I met slightly depressing. I felt restrained by the formal and superficial weather analysis dominating the majority of conversations.
On the eve of Groundhog Day (a day synonymous with weather and analysis of weather) I laid fake snow down to demonstrate the ‘suffocating blanket of cold, icy reserve’ that weather discussion represents to me. I hoped this ARTicle would wake London up to the need to talk about SOMETHING other than weather for once and connect with one another.
Unfortunately I overdid the snow. I continued my work all night until London woke up the next day to what they believed was ‘the heaviest snowfall in 20 years’. This meant that news bulletins, radio DJs, people on the street, people in bars, people at bus stops, EVERYONE talked about NOTHING but weather for the next two weeks! Whoops!
On the plus side, snow is amazing! Look at this one…
Plus I met this guy who seemed comfortable with more chatty discussion. Though the witch’s hat suggested he might have been drunk and returning from a stag do.