A lack of foresight in lizard caper left me like Goliath...

THIS unforeseen consequences business they talk of these days is a bit confusing. The implication is that whatever s happened would not have, if only whoever had paused for thought beforehand. That smacks of being wise post event. There s hardly a record

THIS unforeseen consequences business they talk of these days is a bit confusing.

The implication is that whatever's happened would not have, if only whoever had paused for thought beforehand.

That smacks of being wise post event.

There's hardly a recorded moment when matters might have turned out differently if thought through in advance. It's something few of us admit to not doing. Politicians, never.


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Classic instance has to be David and Goliath. If big stiff Goliath hadn't been so busy posturing, he might have pondered hard on why shrimp Dave's pals were gleefully getting all they could on their mate, before the bookies called no bets on what has become known as history's biggest mis-match.

Probably a bright lights, booze and birds townie, old Goli patently wasn't aware that, as to this very day, any self-respecting shepherd in those parts can run-of-the-mill do things that make William Tell look a poor shot. It goes with the job.

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After all, you've got nothing to do sat watching sheep graze all day, pinging stones about beats the boredom a treat. By Dave's time it was long a fiercely competitive art among his fraternity. They likely had a league.

City slicker Goli was still a thicko not to ask himself why herding seemed a good number? Why flocks thrived so well and why the slain wolves he ran across at times all had an egg-size bump between severely-crossed eyes and a surprised expression?

Baam! Sling-shotted stone dead first go, at 100 paces. It would surprise anyone.

Had Goli's corner men been clued-up on that, it would have been smart for him to advance with shield-covered bonce, not exposed-chin swagger.

Dave's camp must have hugged themselves, too, over how successfully they put about what a wimp their man was.

Those familiar at the time with the real plot saw nothing at all unforeseen about the outcome.

They knew while Goli showboated, Dave was computing ammo size and shape, angles of discharge, atmospheric conditions, wind direction and required arm revs - all out of spear range.

A mismatch all right, but the other way round from how it's always told.

We can't blame the day's newshounds for making that story out of it. No joy filing a dull, old line like "as widely forecast, Goliath felled without a fight".

But I've no room to decry Goli's lack of forethought, having myself suffered an unforeseen.

Dimension-wise it's similar to Goli's set-to.

For months we've been on nodding terms with a lizard who lives behind our wardrobe.

When we first met in the spring he shrewdly made minds up by expertly picking off a fly that was buzzing Madam all morning.

She was impressed, despite a history elsewhere with another lizard.

She had argued with that one before one evening, easing it out into the passage where I could trap it unhurt under a glass.

Ordered to release it a long way away, I did so in the summer bar, then shuttered-up for winter.

Night security passed in time to catch me lent on the unlit bar, upturned empty glass in hand, a la boozy Brit.

An unforeseen consequence, if you like?

Wardrobe lizard got further into Madam's good books with some devastating snacking on a plaque of tiny, infuriating fruit flies. Note, I say he.

I'd dubbed him a non-gender geck, short for gecko, regardless of whether he was that kind of lizard.

Yet now it seems he might be her. Another, weenier one has appeared, clearly an infant.

My big worry is how many siblings it has, and where are they? Do lizards have umpteen, like snakes?

Him, or her, is beside the point. Geck living behind the wardrobe, obliging us over flies, is one thing. A whole family another. There'd not be flies enough to go round.

They'd start on our grub and before long we'd be known as a good pull-up for lizards from all over. So it's glass at the ready.

None of this would have arisen had I foreseen whatever Geck is, that sooner or later it would hanker after one of the opposite make, with predictable consequences, sure as eggs are eggs. If that's how lizards do it.

Make a right good pair, me and that Goliath.

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