In my brief blogging career I have encountered several references to things that the average person, blogger and Joe public alike seems to assume, all too foolishly, everyone else takes for granted. They are things about which I know very little or have never experienced. Now, I’m not sure whether that makes me above or below average or indicates a sheltered upbringing or indeed, an insufficient education. I feel none of these reasons to be adequate.
I have never run with the pack. If I share opinions it’s because I’ve arrived at them of my own volition and reasoning, not because others have them. Clubs make me feel uneasy, even the ones that I belong to. I’m not a fanatic although I have been and still am a fan of things, people and stuff. Bring forward the five sacred cows for slaughter, just like that bit in Apocalypse Now that made you turn to your girlfriend and say it was a special effect. Definitely.
I’m 45 yet I have never owned a single track by the Fab Four
. My Mum and Dad had “Twist and Shout” on a 45 but it was never played until they finally purchased a working gramophone in 1971. My Grandma had “With the Beatles” though. She liked them. I appreciate their immense influence on popular music but had I been 15 in 1963 I think I may well have been listening to some of the Lomax
recordings instead. Their influence was even greater. As for their solo careers, George’s and Ringo’s were the most interesting. Lennon’s career seemed to be a triumph of marketing over mediocrity and that dreadful dirge “Imagine” is the most awful piece of fourth form poetry one could ever hope to read. Thank heavens they have never allowed their stuff to be included on compilations and that Ray Davies
I have never seen a single full length screening of any of the Star Wars
motion pictures on any medium. Realise I this gap in my education is. You see, I can do the jokes and I more or less know the characters because I’ve been unable to bloody escape them for 30 sodding years, despite my best efforts. My supervisor in the Civil Service a few years back was 12 years my junior but dressed up as Obi Wan Kenobi and waved a fluorescent tube about at weekends. Why? I always meant to go and see the first one and I will admit to seeing 10 minute bits of it here and there, but my patience was severely taxed when I realised I was going to have to sit through 5 or 6 hours of the stuff to get up to speed. At least Sir Alec had the right idea and screwed Lucas for a percentage of the gross. The same goes for Red Dwarf. Not funny. Just not funny.
You gotta have faith
? I have never read the Bible, The Koran, The Talmud or any other sacred philosophical text and nor do I ever intend to do so. I was made to memorise The Lord’s Prayer when I was 4 and never understood what it was about. Then I went to Sunday school and learned all this stuff about a higher power who bossed everything about for reasons we were only meant to guess at. These turned out to be its own reasons and we couldn't question them. Then whenever anything or anyone I loved and valued died I was told they were with Jesus. What in great big buggering hell did a dead bloke want with Sooty and Gingey? Couldn’t he have got his own cats instead of taking my ones? I thought stealing was against his own rules anyway. I know this is a bit of a cliché but any philosophy that can be twisted and turned to suit any interpretation because it has a built in get-out clause in absolution, is a con and evil. Having said all that and doubtlessly insulted those to whom faith is a necessary part of their life, my atheism is worn inconspicuously under my sleeve. To be honest, my lack of faith isn’t important to me in that I am quite content to bumble along not asking the kind of questions that end up upsetting half the world. I don’t need to believe in something neither do I need not to believe in anything. Therefore, as I have nothing to preach about, I shan’t.
I am a bloke who likes football
yet I have only ever been to two professional football matches in my entire life. A school trip to Crystal Palace v Leeds Utd (2-2 and you could hear me shouting at Brian Moore on the commentary because we were behind the gantry) in November 1972 and Ashford Town v Walsall (1-3) in the 3rd round of the cup in 1975. That was because proper football had come to Ashford at last. Being from the south I have “followed” Manchester United ever since I knew what they were, largely I think because they played in red, my favourite colour, and George
played for them. But even though I now live only 30 miles from Old Trafford, Only a large team of the wildest dogs would be able to drag me there on match day. Football crowds scare me and after all, it’s only a game. On the other hand, point me at a cricket
match and I’m the proverbial smelly pig because, as everyone knows, football is for life cricket is for eternity.
I was born in London
. Both of my parents have strong connections with the city, Dad especially, and I spent a lot of time there. I lived there from the age of 19 until 41 and my children still live there. Nothing on this planet would ever entice me to ever want to live there again. It’s a well full of arrogant wankers. They are the nearest we have to flat earthers with seemingly no concept of the outside world unless it can be packaged up and presented on the life pages of what used to be broadsheet newspapers and able to be read between 10 tube stops. Has everyone forgotten the Guardian was a provincial paper? Evacuate all the decent people (my kids, Sharon’s mum and Geoff and Betty and drop a dirty bomb on it so we can still look at the architecture). Eastenders? Yuravinallarrf, incha? What an absolute load of toss. Only one family on the take and without being divisive, an Englishman runs the chippy AND the caff? Where’s the Somali grocery selling bushmeat and khat? And the litter? And the white kids trying to be Jamaicans? And the flytipping on every bit of open space? Here’s some advice for Londoners: don’t believe all you read in the papers. Property prices everywhere in the provinces are approximately 5 times what they are in Edgware. You can’t buy any kind of cheese anywhere except Kraft Dairylea and the salads you get in gastro-pubs contain hard boiled eggs, rolled up slices of ham and yesterday’s cold potatoes covered in Heinz salad cream and we like it like that. Frisé? Haircut. Better stay where you are then.