It is a truth almost universally ignored that people need to be careful when choosing their secular saints. Even Uncle Bob got it wrong, apparently, in the case of Rubin Carter, although Hurricane is still a brilliant song.
It is also a truth universally ignored that policemen never learn anything. I mean, why would they? There is no motivation or reward for them to do anything other than to continue to blindly misapply the law as they understand it. What would be the point of looking up the archives and trying to glean some ciall cheannaithe from similar events which happened in the past?
And so, when I watched the PSNI man on the news basically saying that the demonstrations planned for Belfart and Derry Hey today were illegal and effectively banned, I held no great hope that he would continue his spake with, “But as a police force and as a society, we have had quite a bit of bother with banned marches and demonstrations in the past, so I am telling all my officers to take the day off on Saturday and to stay away from the two cities (sic and sick) in our wee country.”
You heard it here first: there will be trouble ahead.
But that there pic up there is not actually a mob of locals waiting for the bus to take them off to act the eejits at a protest in Belfast about a matter that has little or nothing to do with them, so it’s not, so it isn’t. (Please excuse my slipping into Belfast vernacular there; it happens the odd time when I mention the place I was released from after 43 years for good behaviour. So it does.) It is actually the local primary school children waiting for the school bus to pick them up. They do not always dress like that, however, and I did not always take a photograph of them every morning. This is them heading into school for the Hallowe’en party (that apostrophe is for you, beeagain; enjoy!) and annual, eagerly-awaited, (by the teachers) fancy-dress competition – sometimes the teachers put more work into their costumes that the poor, put-upon parents did. Three children (presumably of mine) went through seven years each in that school and we never came close to winning a prize in the competition. Blatant discrimination against blow-ins, if you ask me. Particularly the year Girl decided upon and created her own costume, and went in with a dagger and a Cornflakes box on her head. She was, of course, a Cereal Killer (geddit?), but obviously that level of sophisticated wordplay went straight over the culchie heads of the judges.
There is a Cummings in the picture above. Guesses will be welcomed in the Comments sections down there, prizes will be awarded and terms & conditions will apply.
I may or may not struggle out of my dressing gown today. I did most of my non-essential essential journeys yesterday, but I am looking forward to Monday when I will have to drive the whole length and breadth of County Antrim, according to my understanding of Leo’s latest rules for relaxation of lockdown. Why anyone would want to relax lockdown rules is beyond me. When was the last time you had Mormons knocking on your door trying to sell you Jesus? (For info, Jesus would like to let it be known that He is not for sale, not even for thirty pieces of silver.) Or gypsies offering to colour in your driveway with a black marker? Those two groups will be back out on the streets annoying people if we come out of lockdown, along with the never-ending hordes of GAA ballot-selling con-men and women. Do we really want to put up with riff-raff like that at our doors just so that we can leave our own houses and our own expensive coffee machines to drive to a shopping centre and queue up (there were always queues, even in times PC) to drink expensive coffee in the company of strangers? Think before, not after, taking a decision; you know it makes more sense that way, even if, like the police, you have never tried it in that order.
A drop of relevant poetry to finish youse off this morning – wee Prufrock and his life of coffee spoons.
Now wash your hands. And the dishes. (That last one has just been screamed in my direction by Part-Time Wife.)