At the time of the Maryhill schools campaign, in Glasgow, when the council threatened to turn off the water to the occupied school building, a water festival of fun was arranged in the playground to highlight the threat to the community.
When the “Vacuum”, a free monthly newspaper, was threatened with withdrawal of funding by the council if they did not apologies to the citizens of Belfast for any offense caused by a few issues of the magazine The Vacuum responded by publishing a special ‘Sorry’ issue and holding a tongue-in-cheek, city-wide ‘Sorry Day’, which was used to create an issue of the newspaper.
A sense of fun and the ability to pick things up along the way and use them spontaneously is very important in community activity. So long as the issue stays in sharp focus and is not lost in the melee, fun can be a powerful tool for change – in proportion to it’s usefulness, as it can also have the reverse effect of detracting from the issue depending on who is creating it.
Many adverse schemes have been inflicted on our communities under the cloak of the “Fun Day”. Fun can be a tool of persuasion, creativity, celebration and mindless activity. The best fun is that which engenders hope in spontaneous and regular outbursts when we most need it in the sometimes stultifying rote tasks of day to day life, much more gratifying usually than the fun we pay for:)