Aware it was Friday – surprisingly, in this Groundhog world – somehow, I just couldn’t bring myself to sit down and write. I had been awake in the early hours of the morning with all sorts swirling around in my head – ideas, quotes, I would just rattle off my thoughts but, come light of day, the enthusiasm was gone. What is it about the still of the night? The muse of creativity … before reality.
Well, suffice to say, nothing. It was all gone! This past week has not been good and I can’t quite put my finger on it. I suppose I feel a bit like a visitor to the planet, or perhaps a Coelodonta (a woolly rhinoceros), a prehistoric creature from the land before time. Whatever, it would appear I am out of step with the masses. Most are content to listen and await instruction. Why expend energy on an informed decision for oneself when it is so much easier to believe, without question, and obey? A year has come and gone since the world came to a standstill. The miracle vaccine is being pushed constantly, the vaccine which promised the now elusive freedom. To date, more than 31 million in the UK have been injected with the first dose – in effect, those at most risk – but the reluctance to remove the bars is tangible. Rules. Dates for rules. Six people and a maximum of two households outside – with their legs crossed! Who knows? Who is listening as opposed to using common sense? Plenty, if the media is to be believed. Plenty still taking their pills, adorning the frilly aprons and adhering. Those are the ones, too, who are programmed to listen to the next portent of doom – the inevitable third wave courtesy of mutant strains requiring, who’d have thought, booster vaccinations! Is there no end to the chemicals one can pump into one’s body?
As the vaccine continues to be pushed, day and night, world without end, amen, all else, supposedly, pales into insignificance. Masks are still to be worn, though, possibly for evermore and, then, there’s the arm-twister – COVID passports. The trump card co-ercing the questioning, the hesitant, those outwith the crowd. ‘Mandatory’ in not so invisible ink.
Addictions, of course, are hard to break but this week has taught me that, for my own sanity, I must stop watching the news, listening to Jeremy Vine, watching Question Time or any other daily programme promoting the government propaganda. Repetition has never had the desired effect on me, serving only to make me angry or suspicious. Sedation? No, nothing! Enforced relaxation such as in ante-natal classes? Waste of time. Massages? Not for me. My brain does not switch off when instructed. Never will. Thus, I question and prefer to make up my own mind; make my own decisions. Don’t get me wrong, I have never been one to disregard authority for the sake of it. No rebel. On the other hand, to merely follow the crowd is not in my DNA – nor in that of my children. Do I wish it was? No, never. Yes, it would make life easier but that’s not living; rather, it’s being tube fed!
I’m not sure I am, successfully, conveying the reason for my thoughts – and mood. I think, this week in particular, I have been faced to accept human nature as it, now, is: a metamorphosis of its former self. The lack of vitality which abounds; the sloth-like acceptance. It is, both, depressing and scary. Funnily enough, I happened to be listening to Jeremy Vine on Wednesday – no more – and one of his guests was Lord Andrew Phillips of Sudbury OBE. Now aged 82, a solicitor and Lib Dem politician before being made a life peer in 1998. How lovely to hear an educated voice! The subject matter was not the vaccine, for once, but the future of the British High Street. Interesting as its downfall perfectly mirrors that of life today. In summary, Lord Phillips equated our present scenario to the greatest danger we have faced, nationally, since WWII. He wasn’t referencing the virus, itself, but rather the state of the country and the attitude of those who are responsible. Once there was community, common spirit, common land. There was give and take. No more. Now, it is just take, take, take. How right, he is. How sad. What happened to make it so? Where, once, there were independent, local shops offering human interaction, the personal touch, now there is Amazon. Online, impersonal. No human contact. Believe me, I’ve tried phoning them. There is no getting past that robot! More to the point, though, these massive companies pay minimal taxes. How can that be? Naivety, thy name is mine! Of course, the blind eye disregards the clandestine deep pockets when it comes to ‘donations’ … and, therein, lies my answer. Money. Or Greed. They made it so.
Nature. Its vitality, its power, invoking humility and calm. The circle of life. Demanding of respect … Or maybe not. Who can have failed to see the scenes? Mass gatherings on green spaces, released! Picnics galore, alcohol in abundance, social interaction and a semblance of normality. That’s the thing, though. One forgets that normality, today, is – in the words of Lord Andrew Phillips of Sudbury – take, take, take. One need only look at the aftermath, strewn everywhere, testament to a crowd which doesn’t care.
This week, the Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities – created by Boris Johnson in the wake of Black Lives Matter – published its findings. Interesting? Yes. Revealing? Perhaps. In short, it concluded that factors such as social class and family structures often explain differences in outcome for ethnic groups rather than discrimination. Family. Home. The school of life. No charge. On the curriculum: kindness, consideration, manners, respect. Now, that’s a qualification worth having. Once a given, today? Sadly missed. Those in possession, however, should continue to be proud, no matter how isolated.
A little downbeat, perhaps. Or, a lot! Honest, nonetheless. Today, Manny put it in a nutshell. In conversation, I suggested – mockingly – I should apply for some job, to which, he replied: ‘You wouldn’t fit in. They, all, use ‘auto-correct’!’ So funny, if it weren’t so true!
In need of a quote – or a lyric – with which to end, let me go with Marti Pellow, he who has the best smile ever!
‘No-one ever thought that we would change
20,000 dreams fallen off the page …’
Marti Pellow, These Are The Days.
If it’s alright with you, I’ll just hang on in there …
This is Trish, signing off.