British singer Kate Bush forbids her audiences to use their mobile phones to take photos or make recordings at her concerts. So we can probably guess where the Wuthering Heights chanteuse stands on the selfie stick. While selfie sticks can be handy for the odd group photo, where a spare body to take the pic isn't available, they are really just selfie-esteem sticks: an instrument of vanity for those using them, and of torture for those watching them being used. Perhaps selfie sticks are a crutch for people who need constant reassurance that they have been to interesting places (did I just imagine being at the Great Wall of China?) but on Hong Kong's crowded streets, there is little space for the long arm of the bore. Several times I've been hit with these photo-taking triffids: on the MTR, in a restaurant, hiking on The Peak. Will anthropologists ponder this gadget in the far future, wondering why so many people took pictures of their own nostrils? Might they ask, "Why didn't they just ask someone nearby to take a picture?" I wish a friend hadn't wasted his money on one as a gift for me recently. While trying my best to feign gratitude, I considered its more useful uses: fly swat; window washer; cobweb remover; golf club for a four-year-old; back scratcher … The ultimate problem with selfie sticks is that all the emphasis is on the "self". As I read on Facebook the other day: "When you feel your parents don't love you, remember that Kim Kardashian cropped her own kid out of her selfie."