From the grounds of the beautiful and majestic Malvern Abbey, cloaked in an imperceptible gossamer laminate, Autumnal and warm, a slight whispy mist flitters past in fits and starts as I make my way back to the car, my daughter has come home for the weekend and its her birthday next week. I’ve got another temple of worship to visit on Saturday. The unsubtle, in your face, neon, angular, boisterous, noisy temple of the Bullring in Birmingham.
You’d be forgiven for thinking you may have hallucinated the last 12 months; the crashing of the £, the increase in energy and interest rates, a cost of living crisis far worse than we ever imagined, a war in Europe, a really nasty ruling dictatorship hell bent on drowning innocents in the “moat” surrounding our little country. Recession? What Recession? We’re not even past my Birthday and already folk are spunking their wages on eye lashes and boob jobs, track suits and sportswear. Fucking hell I’m showing my age but why does everyone wear tracksuits, cheap nasty looking clothing, and so expensive in greys, browns and blacks, North Face and the rest of it. I really despise it all, but i’m going to be 51 in a few days so thats probably why. I get the comfort side of things, but I don’t get the wearing of these suits for best, thats a boundary i’m not willing to step over, I’ll stay here in my muddy jeans rather than stun my daughter by wearing an overcoat and sweatshirt underneath. I look just as smart as the people who piss all over the floor of the gentlemen’s toilets in the Bullring next to JD Sports, one of the many epicentres of the tracksuit sports wear quake.
People really are fucking horrible, many don’t wash their hands and walk out traipsing pissy trails out from the toilets into the shopping centre, its a dire state of affairs and all the worlds worst are here to see today. However outside the unsanitised environs of the shopping centre, spilling out into the streets into and amongst the festive German street markets weaving through the chunky anti terrorist blocks which prevent rogue van drivers from ploughing into folk, we find ourselves in the damp air, the streets full of people, the recession a dark shadow which mirrors every financial transaction, every raising of phone to pay for goods. This is England, Filth and Tracksuits; this is what we protect, and yet we let people die in the channel, in their freezing houses, in street doorways. God help us all, we’ve got some serious waking up to do, unless we die before the dawn.
Serious waking up, for sure. (We, too, in the US.)
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