I’ve stopped laughing at ‘funny’ 999 calls

I’l admit, I used to find them funny.

The person who rings 999 because they’ve spotted a mystery object in the sky (aka The Moon).

The person who rings 999 because they couldn’t reach their TV remote control.

The person who rings 999 because they’ve got a hangover.

And so on.

So why have I stopped?

I first lost some of the chuckles when realising not all the stories are quite what they seem. Get the full version and it doesn’t seem quite so funny. (Witness today’s ‘stuck in a clothes horse’ story.)

But what made me stop laughing was the realisation that some – an unknown number but I’m sure not none – are from people with mental health issues. Yes, it may appear funny because someone has done something odd. But if they have done that because they are paranoid, depressed, confused or struggle with a myriad of other health-induced problems? Laughing at someone who is different because of their health isn’t funny. It’s cruel.

So sure, many of the cases are risible. But there’s more than enough other things to laugh at without just hoping that the emergency call you are laughing at is one that isn’t a case where you’re being the cruel finger-pointer.

Take the gamble if you want to, but count me out.

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