My good intentions amounted to nothing, yesterday. I was, smugly, organised too – or so I thought. Morning beach walk followed by supply shop, then … the whole thing went pear-shaped. Family interruptions and outings. Long prone to a touch of the OCDs – which I like to deny, profusely – age has brought with it a degree of flexibility.
For much of my life, I have written a diary. Given a little five-year one, aged about twelve, I was quickly on the road to ruin as a page per day followed. University saw me spending hours laboriously ‘catching up’, sometimes a week at a time, because I had to document my days. No blanks, it became compulsive. Similarly, with my blog posts, there are days when it is the last thing I want to do but something in my head tells me I must. Who needs that? I start each day with a list in my head of the tasks I must complete and the frustration which ensues when I fail! Not good. As I mentioned, though, I have become less hard on myself with the passing years, yesterday being an example. I ran out of time. So what? It wasn’t the end of the world but … it’s Saturday and I am paying the price!
One would think I disliked documenting my inner thoughts for public consumption. Far from it. It is my therapy and, once started, very much a relaxant. I would go as far as to say it is a form of escapism but, then, I do tend to focus on subjects which irritate – hugely! I suppose the process of sharing is cathartic, then.
I have wasted the last God knows how long googling why my laptop, now, insists on inserting two spaces between words. A complete technophobe – I know, who would have guessed? – I am now adept at negotiating ‘System Preferences’, although, excited as that makes me, it brought me no solution. So, to the YouTube video with the predictable American computer geek. Too harsh? Actually, his end solution only involves pressing the power button twice to reset the SMC – or something like that – but I am scared to do it. In the interim, I have tipped my laptop up and blown, strongly, into the space bar. Success? It is playing with me, sometimes one, then two, just as I am lulled into a false sense of security. What’s more, there is further humour to be gleaned in the fact that my backspace button has now become noticeably stiff. Oh, well … and breathe. Just think, things could be worse. I could be Boris Becker!
Honestly, I cannot remove the image from my mind – the prison van leaving Southwark Crown Court, yesterday afternoon, with the fallen hero inside en route to HMP Wandsworth to begin his two-and-a-half year sentence for bankruptcy fraud. A mere 2.4 miles from the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club – Wimbledon – the scene of his greatest glory in 1985 when, as an unseeded 17-year-old, he beat South African Kevin Curren in the Final to become the youngest-ever men’s champion. He still holds that record to this day, little comfort as he languishes in a cell in a spectacular fall from grace. A tragic end to the fairy tale.
‘Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
As I foretold you, were all spirits and
Are melted into air; into thin air:
And like the baseless fabric of this vision
The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces,
The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve,
And like this insubstantial pageant faded,
Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.’
William Shakespeare, The Tempest.
A play within a play. A metaphor for life. For each one of us plays a part; a fleeting part and that which appears real is nothing more than an illusion; all the gilding, meaningless in the shadow of life’s fragility.
Boris Becker had it all – and lost it all. Human nature remains unchanged since Adam and Eve. Greed, the lust for more, its constant weakness. Becker was little more than a child when he won Wimbledon and, showered with millions, he lost his way. Blindly trusting those who fed on his naivety, he convinced himself that he was infallible – and, then, it was too late. In too deep, he panicked and did everything wrong. The Judge, yesterday – a female Judge – issued the ultimate punishment: jail. It doesn’t sit well with me. Yes, he is guilty of fraud but he is not a murderer! He is not violent. He harmed no-one. Boris Becker is, by all accounts, a good person; a nice guy. Why put him behind bars? In this cesspit of a world, he is not deserving of that.
While the rich, now, wear targets on their backs, there to be brought down, it seems others are deemed protected by their lot. Take the Colston Four who, during a Black Lives Matter protest in Bristol in June 2020, were responsible for pulling down the statue of Edward Colston, a 17th Century slave merchant and throwing it into the harbour. An indisputable act of vandalism – causing an estimated £3,750 worth of damage to the statue – the four were cleared and walked free. Their legal teams argued that the presence of the statue was, itself, a hate crime and, therefore, it was not an offence to remove it. Wow! Another triumph for the left courtesy of the new term for legal immunity – ‘woke’.
Pick and choose. The justice system the world over. Meanwhile, the Cambridge English Dictionary’s definition of ‘justice’ is ‘the condition of being morally correct or fair’. Is there a system which exists anymore which even recognises ‘morally correct or fair’? Anne Sacoolas, the wife of an American Intelligence Officer based in Croughton, Northamptonshire, was driving on the wrong side of the road in August, 2019 when she killed 19-year-old motorcyclist, Harry Dunn. She, promptly, fled to the US where she was granted diplomatic immunity. So far, the only form of justice lies with her conscience. Morally correct or fair?
Putin, the embodiment of evil. He, who is responsible for the deaths of thousands; all innocent; to him, meaningless casualties in his quest for world domination. Fearful of his erratic mindset, devoid of a conscience, he is still breathing as we, merely, supply weapons and ammunition to Ukraine which falls outwith the protection of NATO. As mass graves are discovered, schools, hospitals and apartment buildings have been targeted and even a theatre in Mariupol with the word ‘children’ written in giant letters outside the building. The man is a monster and, yet, nobody is stopping him! The death toll of the innocent continues. Where is the justice in that?
Tonight, Boris Becker is languishing in a cell in an overcrowded prison filled with real criminals; violent criminals; murderers and paedophiles among them. A once rich celebrity, he is a scapegoat. In a world which turned a blind eye to Jimmy Savile until after his death, the same world which continues to permit settlements out of court for the guilty, the fallen tennis icon was ill-equipped. For where prejudice and bias abound, there can be no justice. Objectivity and perspective have lost their value as ‘white privilege’ becomes commonplace in our vocabulary. Victim culture is what matters and those who have – undeserving, without question – must stand aside. Merit? Redundant, now. So, while Boris Becker may be guilty of bankruptcy fraud, the severity of his punishment – imprisonment – is little to do with justice.
‘Nobody gets justice. People only get good luck or bad luck.’
Oh, the cynicism …
This is Trish, signing off.