I can get very miserable at times. It takes a certain combination of unnecessary lumps in my life to achieve the state, but on occasions, a little like an obscure alignment of planets, things come together and I feel heaped upon!
The first one is tiredness. This I get in random amounts with no basis on the amount that I have had in sleep the night before. It is very computer orientated – or should I type “oriented” as lazy people do these days? Back in earlier eras, the quill was a very important form of communication. It had a certain method about it that brought the mind in line with the paper, or papyrus if you are that old, long before the need arose to start with the words.
First one picked ones feather – not too fresh, unless you enjoy being chased by next door’s prize goose. Next involved a gentle settling into ones favoured writing chair. Now, out with the knife, and a thoroughly therapeutic trimming of the above feather. Lay down the cut and split quill at the neat groove at the top of the lectern, and take from within blotter, ink and paper – always in alphabetical order!
Pour a little ink, not too much, into the ink well (expertly polished by the man, or course) straighten the paper, lift the quill, ink it and begin.
To be honest, by the time that rigmarole had been completed one had more or less written the piece in your head and the process of writing might as well have been copying.
Today however, I pressed the W on my computer and empty and hungry page leapt before my eyes. The machine might as well have yelled WRITE at me as it did so. Oh, the pressure of having to be so immediate is quite exhausting!
The next planet in my unhappy constellation is Europe. It is that time again. That yearly ritual when we bang heads in Brussels trying to make the Great European Experiment finally work, while trying not to remember that the real reason for this is to stop us Euros from shooting each other. Don’t mention the war, is the mantra. Someone forgot to tell the Poles, however, and they wanted to pilfer some votes from the Germans in return for having so many of their population killed in 1939 onwards. Well, that brought on winter a little more rapidly than expected!
This outing they are trying to get Europe to work with the efficiency of a single country without it actually looking like a single country. Because if it does look like a single country no one will want it.
It is like a family. Aunts, Uncles, Cousins – they all get a lot nicer when they go back to their OWN homes on boxing day, don’t you think?
Trouble is, Europe is one big country really, and always has been – at least since we out-bred, or wiped out, the Neanderthals, or whatever we did to them. You can tell we are – we like beating each other up way too much to be just occasional friends. We just have to be related!
A miserable alignment, I find needs a minimum of three sad planets. In reality, if it has any more one would rarely notice: after the first three one is far too busy being miserable.
Third on my list is Michael “Twinkle Toes” Portillo. (Pron: Poor Tee Yo, or not, as the case may be)
Twinkle Toes, named for his ability to gently hop from one position to another, gives us the outpourings of his mind on a regular basis in the London Times. Being a foreigner really, his take on anything European can be more educated that most – well, at least until he tries to assimilate that into British Politics.
He should know that us Foreigners are genetically incapable of understanding the Anglo Saxon version of how to get on with their European Brothers. Therefore it is almost completely pointless to try.
But try, Twinkle Toes does.
I include this little offering:
“Most voters care little about Europe. They do not like it much and they do not want Britain to be drawn in deeper. They might once have been scared into accepting the euro, but Britain has held aloof since it was created and they can see that we have prospered. If the new constitutional treaty - whatever it contains - were put to the vote, it would probably perish.
“Voters are not obsessive. Obsession is a condition that affects politicians only. Obsession creates a gulf between politicians and their public because it reveals them to be other-worldly. Cameron needs to keep his obsessive’s under wraps.”
Oh, Michael, dearest Michael! It is not that they don’t care, or understand, they have just been told what to think for so long that they have forgotten to think for themselves!
Hurumph! Do I believe that? No. But Borosso, the President of the wretched European Commission does – and he has the influence of a falling elephant, so that means something.
So, I am miserable. And I am hot. And I really want to compose something meaningful, but I can’t even get through chopsticks without reading the score. How useless am I this day?
I think I shall go into a corner and chew on the end of my tale.
Nobody (And feeling like it)