Review: The Rating of an Individual as ‘a Human Bollard’

Note: a human effect bollard, not a bollard human

What’s being tested?

The realisation that you have judged an individual pedestrian based on their speed and progress directly relative to your own velocity in a built up area, and subsequently found them to be of no greater value than a concrete traffic calming measure.

What we found

Pros: A few of our testers felt that such an attitude would become increasingly necessary as our species draws closer to living in an age where we are forced to fight for material advantages, namely in resources like coal, gems and wood. As such, a small proportion of our staff suggested that they would even consider teaching their genetic successors that such instincts should not be resisted, and that a cool and unsympathetic attitude to those who could not maintain a serviceable communal pace in the wild was the only way to ensure our continued survival as the dominant species on this planet. Those who disliked the attitude still hoped that complaining about people who refused to walk fast enough would at least replace the embarrassing self defeating argument about ‘people from abroad taking all the jobs and lounging around on benefits’ as the number one rent-an-opinion opinion for the not very bright.

Cons: A great deal of our testers felt that it wasn’t very nice to label people human bollards, and it was found that there were often perfectly good reasons for individuals not walking as fast as other individuals. The notion of a standardised rate of pace was generally considered to be a terrifying idea, as much as that the initial rate of pace would almost certainly mutate over time, until no one would be allowed to travel anywhere on foot, what with the minimum pedestrian velocity eventually becoming entirely unattainable.


We found that, while the instinct itself was, on balance, horrifying, it was important that we acknowledged that instinct, and attempted to understand where it came from, why it came from there, and what we could do about it. Our testers felt that, while resolution to this internal conflict may never come, it was the quest to find this resolution that would ultimately make us more human, and the challenging of said instinct( as opposed to simply obeying it) would be the saviour of our species as we move into a more troubled age. Suppressing it and pretending it didn’t exist while judging others on their own failings was also posited as a probable alternative.


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