Not a Community-Spirited Story

I believe I’m right in saying (and I’m not an economist, so take this with a pinch of salt) that posts by the side of the street like this one are a public good: however much you ‘use’ such a post – walking safely by the light cast from it or holding a telephone conversation over the wires mounted on top – your actions don’t somehow use the post up, and you can’t exclude particular people from its benefits. (Compare Taiga’s cookies. It’s easy to control access to them. Furthermore, eating one reduces the total number available and prevents anyone else from eating that particular cookie.)

It’s rather mean to damage such a post. Ostensibly a victimless crime, it nevertheless creates hassle for some minor local government employee and perhaps uses up some small shred of government money. Not that this is a concern to the tiger or the dragon, as I’m guessing they don’t personally pay any taxes.

15 responses to “Not a Community-Spirited Story

  1. Nothing was damaged per se, so the community shouldn’t care or even notice (in the anime, of course, they are not chased after by the police).
    At least that poor post was used for a noble act. Think of it as a scapegoat.

    Venting anger can often be detrimental to people’s properties (my expensive car!!! noooo), or even bystanders (in b4 hospital), and damage to these objects would cause even more work and trouble, and above all, cost more as well.

    My sympathies to the injured post.

  2. If it comes down to choosing between the post and Taiga I’d rather lose a post than become her target of frustration and anger.

  3. In the novel, I believe they ran away when they saw a policeman, or something along those lines.

    Now if we’re talking about the light poles which turn off when they notice a human who isn’t “chipped” (RFID cyborg’d) into being a member of the “neighborhood” or vice-versa…. then >_>

  4. kids today. No respect for hard working posts.

  5. @ natsuneko: It’s true that the post wasn’t badly damaged (though it did start to lean a bit). On the other hand, they were also shouting in an evidently quiet residential neighbourhood during the evening, which is pretty antisocial. Fair point that it could’ve been someone’s car, though.

    @ Setsuna-san: That makes Ryuuji’s (sp?) actions more understandable, but doesn’t justify Taiga’s.

    @ Ryan A: Chipped lampposts are pretty much dystopia in microcosm.

    @ otou-san: I blame the parents.

  6. I took till the end of this to realize what kind of ‘post’ you were talking about >_<

  7. Taiga’s responses to rejection or things NOT going her way are rather limited – she lashes out at people, things, and events automatically, whether it be verbally or physically. Ryuuji joining in shows he understands her feelings, and accepts her as she is – something that she doesn’t get from anyone else, not even Minorin, who is her best friend.

    The difference between someone like her and say, Louise, is that the latter ONLY knows physical violence as a ‘solution’… and has no restraint. The fun thing here is that Taiga already shot down Kitamura last year… so her tsundere-ness cost her the chance she wanted with the guy she was after. Oops.

    And who says tsunderes win every time? ;)

  8. It should also be noted that the pole was NOT tilted – not in the manga, not in the anime, not even in the novels – but Ryuuji said it was and that Taiga, of all people, could do so. That made her feel better about herself, that she wasn’t helpless against the rest of the world which was, in her eyes, totally against her and unwilling to really see who she was. Those things are designed to withstand CAR crashes to a degree, after all.

    The whole point of the scene was this; Taiga feels nobody understands or accepts her, which is why she’s so surprised to see Ryuuji joining in, and then telling her that ‘yes, the pole is tilted – you bashed it good’. It’s a bonding moment between two people who are constantly misunderstood by others, and for a girl who’s always been very lonely is some comfort. As she herself noted, Takasu’s house seemed ‘cozy’; homelike and comfortable, even if it was a small hovel, compared to her large and sterile apartment which was little improvement over the cold and impersonal surroundings of her original home which she was used to.

    Ryuuji accepts Taiga as she is, wholeheartedly and unreservedly. He doesn’t unintentionally or deliberately misunderstand her – when she says something, he knows she’s pissed or upset or angry and takes it as it is. He’s also unwilling to be completely pushed around and aside, which is why he gave her the “If you’re a Tiger, then I’m a Dragon, because according to legend only a dragon could face a tiger on equal footing” speech.

    In the end, the twist to this tsundere story is so – Taiga’s trying for a guy she’s already rejected and who doesn’t really know her, while Ryuuji is going for a girl who completely misunderstands him AND her best friend (Taiga), but both of those other people accept Taiga and Ryuuji as friends… which puts them above most people in their school. Only Taiga and Ryuuji understand each other’s moods and feelings… and that’s why they’re allies in their quest to win the girl/guy of their dreams, and why Ryuuji supports her openly (with Taiga’s support of Ryuuji being more covert) when she does something.

    Then you throw in Kawashima, who’s like Taiga but more of a hypocrite…

  9. @ 21stcenturydigitalboy: The pun reigns supreme here, even when it isn’t funny.

    @ Haesslich: Not tilted? I suppose my inner beaurocrat was too busy fuming to pay proper attention. (The rest is duly noted.)

  10. Well while it was vandalism and destruction of public property (paint scratches, loss of service life through micro-fractures, and the like), I am sure that Taiga’s parents have to pay taxes and they probably get bilked a good deal for leasing an underused apartment. It would be reassuring if those rich bastards bought Taiga a home as well that way the government of the people by the people can get a good amount of property tax in recompense.

    As for Ryuuji as long as the bastard stays near the poverty line and off social services like public health, welfare, child services, and the like the general public can take heart in their financial superiority to the cretin, besides we all know it was the strength of Taiga that was the deciding factor, other wise the poost would have kicked the “Dragon’s” ass back to last Thursday.

    Regardless of their youthful indiscretions they shall be paying dearly once the baby boomer population retires and they end up having to pay more taxes to help out the elderly.

    Taxes and juvenile delinquency aside, I am sure that we will be enjoying the legend of Taiga and Ryuuji.

  11. What an interesting post. They are delinquents after all.

    But AHA, what if that “minor local government employee” never sees the damage to the post?

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  13. Crusader is so in the tank for Taiga. :P

    What I wonder if it the post’s functions have been decreased in anyway by this, and as Haesslich pointed out it’s durability, I don’t think so. No “harm”, no foul?


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