You know me, I like maps, and I like people (in the appropriate doses). And more often than not I carry a map with me when I’m walking somewhere. And as I also meander through the interwebs I often find myself downloading images of people and maps, and how the two relate to each other.
Fact is, people carrying and consulting maps can signal all kinds of different things. Sometimes it indicates being lost: if you weren’t lost why would you need a map? You don’t have to answer that.
People look at maps and scratch their heads look frustrated, look like losers.
But then again consulting a map may indicate that you’re footloose, happy to explore new places, happy not to know exactly where you are, happy to light out to new territories, just so long as they’ve got a map.
Which may be similar to an interest in and engagement with the world, much loved by politicians of many stripes.
And pointing at a map is always an indication that you mean business.
Because yes, sometimes maps are very serious business indeed. Guys (I'm sorry, it does tend to be mostly guys) study them, lean across them. There may well be some frowning and chin scratching “We got us a problem to solve here boys.”
And sometimes they’re not serious at all. Of course weather forecasters stand in front of maps all the time, and often hilarity ensues.
And of course map hilarity may ensue for all kinds of different reasons.
A lot of people like to use maps as a backdrop: as though a map itself delivers gravitas. Sometimes it does.
Sometimes less so.
Sometimes scarcely at all.