I know you can argue that if the NHS was funded properly, such heroic acts of charity wouldn’t be necessary, but in honour of Captain Tom Moore’s hundredth birthday, playing a bit of this would seem appropriate (Note: it isn’t You’ll Never Walk Alone, but something more cinematic).
For the last few nights now, I’ve been waking up from the most disturbing dreams: Dreams about other people or myself being killed, executed or even crucified. It has never happened before, and while I’m not especially bothered by it, I can’t help wondering why they keep recurring. They’re usually quite horrific. What would old Ziggy Freud have to say?
If there is anything which I agree with the government on, it is that our current restrictions must continue. Lifting lockdown right now would be completely irresponsible, as it would obviously risk a second wave of infections. To be safe, I daresay this current state of affairs for at least four or five weeks more. We are all fed up right now, and I want things to return to normal as much as anyone, yet I know the importance of being patient.
The problem is, others can’t see that. Online, more and more I come across people demanding lockdown is lifted, spouting stupid things such as calling lockdown a form of house arrest. I mean, how stupid can you get? It frankly frustrates me that some people have seemingly been so privileged and spoiled that they are willing to risk their lives and others just so that they can return to normal. Making such melodramatic, provocative statements just makes them look naive.
Instead I again take inspiration from people like Anne Macdonald, my school friends, as well as, now, Lyn: They all showed a type of perseverance and stoicism I think we can all learn from. As I said here, the strongest people I have ever known had most to complain about, yet never pitied theirselves. Just as they put up with whatever came their way, I can manage pottering about the house for a few more weeks.
One of the biggest problems I have with this lockdown lark is finding things to write about on here. Normally of course, I either pick something online or in the news to draw everyone’s attention to, or I describe what I’ve been up to. I think I need to inform people what life is like for me, as a guy with CP living more-or-less independently in South London. These days, though, that is less of an option: apart from my daily powerchair roams – usually short affairs to one of the nearby parks or up to Eltham – I haven’t been anywhere in months. There have been no epic nights out, visits to pubs or adventures up into London. That just leaves me to blog about the bits and bobs I come across online, or whatever is going on in the news, and we all know how cheerful that is right now.
From time to time these days, I come across people suggesting that we should stop criticising the government. They insist that, given the pandemic is global, now is not the time to pile the usual scrutiny on the government, or at least we should tone it down. The Tories are doing their best, they say, so the usual political adversarialism ought to be suspended.
Would someone please explain to me how that is not the very epitome of naiveté. Hell, it could even be it’s definition. Now more than ever we need to hold the government to account. Yes, the crisis is a global one, but different countries’ governments have responded to it in different ways; you only need to look at the vastly differing mortality figures to see the results of that. Those figures show that, due to the UK government’s slow reaction and belligerence, we are one of the worst hit countries in Europe (although not as bad as the land of Detol-drinking numpties across the Atlantic). Surely someone must be held to account for that, and the buck stops with the Tories.
Now is not the time to be taken in by the cult of personality the Tory p’tahks are trying to create around Bojo – just the opposite. I get very frustrated when I see people trying to defend these idiots from criticism, dotingly likening Johnson to Churchill or whatever. So many people have now died as a direct result of the decisions that arsehole and his government have made, they need to be brought to book. Not to do so, to turn a blind eye to their gross failings and sickening incompetence, would mean giving them free rain to do as they please: pushing forward their right-wing, neoliberal agenda, wearing away at state funded institutions like the NHS while some of the most vulnerable people in society are left to die.
I for one refuse to do that: I refuse to stop calling the government out as the embarrassing deplorable mess it is.
We’ve had 007 escorting the Queen to the olympics and Stephen Hawking singing The Galaxy Song, and last night we saw Prince William Skyping Lord Melchett. Mind you, although it’s the sort of fiction-meets-reality stunt which usually gets my juices flowing, there isn’t much to get my analytical teeth into. After all, it’s essentially just Prince Will bantering for a few minutes with Stephen Fry over the web with a few contemporary references thrown in. Having said that, I like the way Fry took the piss out of William, and how Wills rather played the fool. Above all, it was cool to see Melchett brought back to life after all this time – there’s clearly life in the old dog yet, and who knows, this could lead to the return of Blackadder himself.
I’m afraid to say I got some more sad news today: my yaiya (mum’s mum) passed away this morning at the age of 95. She was becoming increasingly frail, but it’s still quite a blow for the family. Yaiya had such a strong spirit and keen sense of humour, but most of all I’ll remember the delicious cypriot food she cooked for the whole family, as we all sat round the kitchen table at the old family house up in Harlesden.
Goodbye Yaiya – we’ll miss you.
To be honest, when I heard that the government had refused the EU’s offer of more PPE, my gut reaction was that the bastards should be hanged. Refusing vital supplies of medical equipment simply because it would mean participating in an EU scheme, thereby contradicting Brexit making the tories look bad, is utterly beyond the grail. If it is true that they have jeopardised peoples’ lives for the sake of politics, because it would show brexit to be the stupidity thinking people always knew it to be, then as far as I am concerned they can never be forgiven.
Of course, executing anyone is as grotesque as it is absurd: to pile death upon death is folly. Yet refusing this equipment, putting party political priorities over the wellbeing of citizens they’re meant to be representing, is just about the most disgusting thing I have ever heard. Surely it is nothing short of criminal given that it jeopardises people’s lives just because the tories want to save face. My heart burns with rage at the fucked-up inhumanity of it.
Lyn was a huge fan of Radio Caroline, and I have fond memories of listening to Bob Lawrence’s show on Friday evenings. It makes me very sad, then, to have to report that Radio Caroline’s founder, Ronan O’Rahilly also died this afternoon. The guy was a true legend whose impact on both popular music and broadcasting are still felt today.
What dark, dark days we find ourselves living through.