Skip to main content


Showing posts from March, 2021

Performative Patriotism

I think we've now hit the point where we can safely say that this whole flag business is getting out of hand. Yesterday's brouhaha over the size of Robert Jenrick's flag is merely the latest example of increasingly hysterical cloth-based discourse, it's been rumbling for a while, and I find it all a little baffling. It's caught me  quite off-guard. Growing up in the seventies, eighties and nineties,the flag wasn't something you thought about very much. It was a fact of life,but you didn't wrap yourself in it. Overt patriotism was nothing to be proud of, in fact, it was a touch embarrassing. We used to mock Americans for their loudly proclaimed allegiance to their country, it's just not the sort of thing that's done, dear boy. The only time you saw flags being waved was the last night of the Proms, or news footage of some perfectly pleasant European town being comprehensively smashed up by football hooligans. Even when there was a Britpop led revival,

Hanging out with myself

 Uh-oh. Solipsism alert. This one, I warn you in advance, is likely to be be a trifle disparate, disassociated and rambling.* I'm putting it down in part to lockdown fatigue; as I wrote  recently , when the end's in sight, the tight grip that you've had on yourself can start to loosen, and it seems reasonable to assume that that's a factor here. Also in the mix is the looming re-opening of the pub, at times like this, there's so much to sort out that it can, at times, seem impossible to know where to start. Lists help. Another reason for my head being in bits, without wishing to get too far into it, is my horror at the events of the last week or so: the disappearance and murder of Sarah Everard casting a harsh glare on the inalienable fact of male violence, the aftermath and the Met's crushing response at the vigil. But they are worthy of blogs in themselves, which I'll probably get round to when I can concentrate on anything for more than minutes at a stret

The bell-end equilibrium

 So farewell then, Nigel Farage. With the fishing industry in ruins, the Union at its shakiest in 300 years  and the country an international joke there are no more worlds left to conquer, the golf club bar bore ne plus ultra is, for the eighty-fifth time this century, retiring. No longer for Nige the thrill of talking bollocks to aggrieved old men, instead he'll be concentrating on his side gig, hawking "investment advice" to the sort of people who think that shouting "Gordon Brown sold our gold" is an argument-clincher on Twitter. And, to be completely honest, good luck to him. A spiv who's spent his entire life fleecing the gullible, it's only fitting that that's how he continues. Anyone whose grasp of economics is so shaky that they're prepared to take advice from a man who deliberately tanked an entire economy for the sake of his own enrichment pretty much deserves what's coming to them. His legacy is only really worth covering in passin