The Torch

maglite

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“The Somebody Else’s Problem field is much simpler and more effective, and what’s more can be run for over a hundred years on a single torch battery. This is because it relies on people’s natural disposition not to see anything they don’t want to, weren’t expecting, or can’t explain.”
― Douglas Adams

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Can someone please explain to me,

why it is that when you need a torch…

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LB - fresh out of light

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a) the torch can’t be found, and you need a torch to find the torch.

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As you stumble around in the darkness,

trying to feel your way using the light of memory,

to all those places where you could have sworn you’d left the torch,

in case of an emergency blackout,

your eyes adjust and if you do eventually find the torch,

you don’t actually need it anymore, and turning it on blinds you.

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“Life is no brief candle to me. It is a sort of splendid torch which I have got a hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.”
― George Bernard Shaw

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Cake

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b) the batteries always seem to run out seconds after you’ve turned it on.

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As you sigh with relief,

at your own cleverness for leaving the torch exactly where it is supposed to be in an emergency blackout,

for having Promethean fire when you need it the most,

the light flickers then fades,

even though the batteries were brand new when you put them in seven years ago,

and you haven’t used it at all since then so… why me, why now?

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“Burn, burn tree and fern!
Shrivel and scorch! A fizzling torch
To light the night for our delight,
Ya hey!”
― J.R.R. Tolkien

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Flaming shot

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c) the light is never as bright as it promised it would be, and actually seems to make things darker than they were before you turned it on.

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You spent a lot of money on this dazzling searchlight,

which claimed to have the brightness of a billion candles,

and the first time you turned it on there was a moth apocalypse,

but now that you need it to work,

it’s a pathetic puddle of hazy dullness.

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“I admit that reason is a small and feeble flame, a flickering torch by stumblers carried in the star-less night, — blown and flared by passion’s storm, — and yet, it is the only light. Extinguish that, and nought remains.”
― Robert G. Ingersoll

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Rings of flame

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The torch we’re using for our Objectivity challenge,

came with the added ability to be used as a cosh (it said so in the blurb which came with it),

just in case you happen upon your own reflection in a mirror,

which you forgot was there (the mirror, not the reflection),

and need to knock out such a terrifying and monstrous assailant.

The torchlight may cease to function when used in this way,

but please keep bashing away at the dark with it.

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“Whatever torch we kindle, and whatever space it may illuminate, our horizon will always remain encircled by the depth of night.”
― Arthur Schopenhauer

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If your torch fails,

use a candle,

if that fails,

use the bright spark of inspiration…

… and all was well with the world.

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UV skull

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“Sun gives light; torch gives light, candle gives light; smiling gives light.”
― Mehmet Murat ildan

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