Tuesday, 15 November 2011

"I cannot tell a lie....

....but the place is full of chavs."

It's come as something of a surprise to find out that I made it through to the next round of auditions to participate in the opening ceremony of the Olympics. Worryingly the next audition is 'role specific'. That would be fine, but I suspect I'm auditioning to rollerblade. Now some five to ten years ago I used to rollerblade a lot. Friday nights. Wednesday nights. 15 miles a time. I even did a rollerblade marathon. Truth be told I'm not sure I can even stand up in my 'blades now. Damn. The question is, should I duck out now with my dignity intact or should I go along for the ride, enjoy myself and leave with a painful arse?

Whilst it has hardly come as a surprise, it is a reflection on the true value of democracy and freedom of speech in the US that the 'Occupy Wall Street' camp has been cleared overnight. I think it is little different here - if The City had had its way the London protesters would also have gone by now. Occupy Wall St have made a fair point that 1% of Americans own the majority of the country's wealth. I'm not close enough to know what else they've said, other than they are inspired by the Arab Spring and they believe there is no morality amongst financiers. The authorities have used concerns about health and safety as the excuse to remove them. It's a poor excuse. Peaceful protest of any sort should be allowed in any free democracy...minor inconvenience and embarrassment should not be a reason to stop the proper expression of firmly held views.

Woodford Green is just about as middle-class as you can get. Lot's of lovely detached and semi-detached inter-war and post war mock Tudor houses. Disney would be proud. Cricket is played on The Green, and ducks swim in the pond. Until the recent arrival of a Tesco Express, the only supermarket was a Waitrose. The local garage sells sparkly new Jaguars and Range Rovers. Lovely. So it will cause some real soul searching to understand why in the space of 48 hours there have been two shootings in the area. At the local branch of 'Cakes and Shakes' (of which the headline quote was a description by The Boy's best friend). No one dead. Hardly a ripple on the news media. The only conclusion can be that this sort of thing is happening all the time. Scary.

Meanwhile, if you believe apartheid is wrong, sign here