For those of you who aren't in my town, it's like Chicago, without the size, the glamour or.... any of the good stuff. We've got the crime though. The guy who runs the Motor Museum is currently facing extradition because the American DEA found he was using his chemistry supply company to help make crystal meth. Yay us.
Anyway, this week is the local High School's annual musical, one week before our Town Fair. As part of the local operatic society, I can lend my skills to them if needed. Hardly saying much as I only run a spotlight, but they appreciate it anyway.
The end of this year's show comes with a brilliant dance number, the end of which seems to lend itself to the lighting/effects department's favourite toy, the Pyrotechnics.
Now, the Pyro we used to use was a small one, that we always took precautions to use. However, the chief told me why we can't use them, the reason for yet another long and incoherent rant.
Health and Safety.
Or, to give it the "proper" title, as their victims use, HAFS (Health and Fucking Safety).
Okay, so I might be a little unfair here. A lot of HAFS regulations make sense, mainly the ones that involve manual labour and such. However, from what I see, there's three types of HAFS regulations. There's the reasonable, the ones you don't know why they made them, and then there's the pants-on-head retarded. I mean, the type of stupidity that just makes you feel the need to take a blunt object and cram it up the nearest covered orifice.
Guess what one I mean?
There's the anecdote about them wanting kids to wear goggles while playing conkers "just in case", which is silly, but then I thought of one that I know actually happened:
About two years ago, the HAFS people of the local council decided that the balcony of our town hall was dangerous to kids, who might fall off it, or to people who trip on the stairs on the balcony seating area, so they had a "safety" rail installed.
Now, I wasn't sure if I should mention the railing, so I asked my Mum, who this year got her 35 Year medal from the operatic society. From what she tells me, they've never had any kind of accident like that.
I'd say this is a "just in case" measure, but then I saw them install the railing in the middle of the Society's last rehearsal before that week's performance. They had months before that to put it up. So, despite the fact that it might interfere with a few angles of our lighting, I thought it might be a good idea.
Then I saw it. The fucking thing is way too big. There's a space between the railing and the actual balcony large enough for a kid or even someone falling just right, to go through without pausing. Hell, I can fit through it and I'm a lardarse.
I can see where both arguments come from (railing and pyros), but given the safety measures taken using the pyro, not to mention the ill-planned railing, makes me think that a number of HAFS regulations are made just because they think that it makes a sensible idea. As the Brady Campaign constantly shows us however, one person's sensible idea is a majority's idea of bullshit.
Anyway, rant over, just thought I'd rag on a few show-related things that I had to get off my chest.