Monday, 4 May 2015

The Tent

It’s the May Day bank holiday, the first really warm sunny bank holiday of the year, and I was woken, naturally, about 8am by the neighbours screaming at each other in the garden.

‘I can’t hit it! It’s made of rubber!’

It hasn’t stopped all day.

‘You’ve put it upside down, stupid woman!’

They’ve been putting up a tent.

‘It won’t go in!’ screams the Her.

‘Well bloody push it!’ shouts the He.

There have also been grand children complimenting the tableau. The kids have been sceaming at them and they have been screaming at the kids. They’re one of those strange families who never seem to have been anything other than ‘grandparents’, even though they’re relatively young. Give it ten years and they’ll be great grandparents and won’t have been long past sixty years. Another fourteen to sixteen years, they’ll be great great grandparents. If you ever wonder why our species is doomed, you need only look over our garden fence. The planet will be destroyed by copulating lovers of ornamental wind chimes.

The row was expected. In fact, the whole thing is so predicatble that I haven’t the energy to throw my verbal weight into another 1000 anti-spring bank holiday piece so I’ll merely direct you to the one I wrote earlier. Besides, I don’t think I could write a better one. While I'm about it, here's a very old cartoon.

Listening to Mrs and Mrs Homebase arging amid their cherubs and native American dreamcatchers, I began to contemplate the looming election. I fail to wonder why people don’t seem to hate Cameron as much as I do and then I think of the neighbours. I’ve just stormed out the room because DC was standing on another building site in his luminous yellows and hard hat. I think perhaps that people see that as being engaged with the ‘project’. I just see it as another example of how to avoid meeting people. Yesterday he pulled out of the Citizen UK debate, apparently the first PM to do so in living memory.

The sad reality about this is that too few people really care. Mr and Mrs Homebase have their tent to erect. If they vote (and I assume that they do) it’s probably out of some latent sense of duty. Most people are like them and I can never be entirely sure that it’s a bad thing. It’s the same argument as I keep making about ‘hardworking people’. People are motivated by things which are personal to them and rightly so. Without some selfishness in our lives, we would have a bee mentality, working for the hive.

Hell. Is this beginning to sound almost Ayn Randian? Is this proto-Tory thinking at its slackest? Have I just argued myself into believing that I have enlightened neighbours, who express everything you could wish to express about personal liberty each and every time they have a screaming row about tent flaps?

I need to go lie down.

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