Ripping up bits of paper


There are good tings and bad tings about having a slightly wacky name. Some of my favourite people have got in touch after finding this site while googlin’ around, which is good, but I haven’t saved myself as much money by not paying bills as maybe I should’ve. Sometimes, inevitably, people spell it wrong (occasionally very wrong, of course), like on my new contract, which isn’t much of a problem as I can just rip it up if I want. Although I have the feeling that this new job will increase exponentially the number of pieces of paper that pass through my hands, thereby increasing the confusion of what pieces of paper I’m allowed to or should rip up, and which ones I should treat with care. And it should allow me, here’s hoping, to get rid of the occasional tenner.

The thing is, I think I quite like ripping things up. I’d be sorely tempted to lie my way into any job which just involved ripping up bits of paper all day long. Or, even better (a bit of a dream job, this) burning flags.

Is that simply an-authoritarian streak, or something more meglomaniaquesue? I’m sure Chairman Mao, leading philanthropost Bill Gates, and fuck it, Hitler while we’re at it, ripped up a fair few pieces in their time. Ripping up bits of paper can be a gesture of pure authority or a unambiguous sign of a determination to replace that authority. Or an act of mind-blowing drunkenness, fury, contempt or fear.

Ahem.

Letters, bills, deals, treaties, holy texts, agreements, promises, money…I wonder were the most influential pieces of paper to have been ripped out throughout history? Or the ones that should have been? Which ones have I ripped up, and forgotten about, or opted to keep forgotten? And what pieces of paper would I, or you, put back together if I, or you, could?

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