Jasper Smith

Commentary on politics, economics, culture and sports.

Leaving well enough alone

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Michael Gove gives voice to thoughts quite similar to those I’ve often had:

The ability to leave well alone is probably the least admired, but most required, virtue of our time. Just as we’d be well advised to leave the essential of evening dress well alone, instead of pointlessly elaborating, so there is a host of other areas of British life that would be far better if only inertia were allowed to rule.

From pizzas (why do we need cheese-filled crusts? Since the first pineapple appeared on the innocent margherita it’s been all downhill) to the liturgy (the more elaboration, over time, the fewer in the congregation); from mobile telephones (if I want to watch streaming video footage I’ll go to the cinema, thank you) to razors (what was wrong with just one blade?), we’d all be better off if people had simply left well alone.

I’ve never been able to see why resting on one’s laurels was such a bad thing. Invent a decent idea, or product, then sit back to enjoy the benefits, would be my advice to anyone. Try to elaborate on the breakthrough and it will lead only to frustration. Or scorn.

From the atomic bomb (quite enough megatons really, all things considered) to the cappuccino (what was Mr Starbucks doing when he thought coffee could be improved by the creation of the eggnog latte?), the original really was the best.

What was wrong with just one blade indeed.

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Written by Jasper

February 15, 2007 at 9:14 pm

Posted in Culture, Miscellania

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