It turns out that rich people actually are prepared to be very giving indeed. They are incredibly in favour of the idea of getting poor people into accommodation. Just, you know, out of sight. As soon as they will no longer have to look at the unwashed masses, they can about forget their existence altogether and put a stop to their giving. After all, once the poor have been given houses they’re hardly going to need any funding towards the upkeep or anything.
Some have euphemistically dubbed this brand spanking new initiative as an exercise in decluttering. Suddenly sounds a lot nicer doesn’t it? As is so often the way. Might as well go right on the money and call it sweeping the (oh it’s suddenly very tense now. I can’t use the word rubbish because that would be awful and elitist. I could opt for a fancy synonym but that’s no better. And I’ve already mentioned something related to clutter and now I’ve called attention to the sticky situation and everything. How awkward) whole issue under the rug.
But there’s also the argument that you definitely shouldn’t knock something that works. If billionaires are willing to stump up the cash required to put roofs over the heads of the poorest people within our nation then is it really in our power to argue with them when they add the proviso that said roofs must be very far away from their own domicile? Well obviously, but it’s still proved to be a more effective form of fundraising than most efforts to date.
There will always be naysayers who decry the fact that they’re forcing people out of the city they might well have been born in or for whatever reason have tried to make their home. To those we’ll probably have to say something along the lines of ‘life isn’t fair’ or ‘not listening, not listening.’ Mainly because they’ve got a point and we don’t have a leg to stand on.
The all important thing when it comes to successful lying is believability. If it isn’t even halfway to plausible then you’re going to need a hell of a poker face in order to get others to fall for it. And those things are hard to come by. I’ve heard that the best lies are grounded in truth but I really didn’t trust the expression on the face of the giant purple squirrel who told me so.
You may or may not (depending on how effortlessly gullible you are) be willing to fall for the killer salt story. Essentially, when the (no doubt entirely innocent and well meaning) policeman was caught in a very dodgy looking situation and looked around the room in desperation for some divine inspiration. Killer salt was the answer.
So why couldn’t he just tell the truth? Would such a tale be incriminating enough to dip the man in even hotter water? Well, since he’s sworn himself to secrecy for reasons best known to himself I’m afraid that there was simply no opportunity for me to investigate and discover the awful veracity of the situation.
The most important thing for us to do is to figure out what killer salt brings to the world. Is it a potential biohazard? Are people going to misuse and abuse it for some nefarious end? You’re mildly acquainted with the citizens of the world, what do you think? For some reason I can’t quite fathom, the world duh is springing to mind. Such mysteries of the universe.
Anyway, the authorities were having none of the killer salt fable and hauled the man in question off to prison for a very long time (I’m pretty sure there was a trial but there’s no way to be certain). The strange thing is that all he does now is cower in the corner of his cell, staring at some white granules on the ground, rocking back and forth and mumbling something incomprehensible about sodium chloride.
It’s all about hospital waiting times. Or immigration. Or the impact that immigration has on hospital waiting times. And the price of petrol. One or other or none of these things is the most pressing problem facing our modern and entirely unshattered society.
I’m sure you’ve heard that inorganic milk gives you cancer. It’s loaded with pills and potions and hormones that wreak havoc with your system to the point that if you aren’t growing udder shaped tumours you’re very special indeed.
I’m not going to pretend that I know anything whatsoever about the science involved (mainly because I’m a little bit too afraid to find out. I’m a cheapskate and the switch to organic milk might just cost me dear). For all I know, the consumption of toxic milk could be the very reason for our increased rates of breast cancer when compared to Asian countries (it turns out that I did learn something from my expensive degree after all. Check out my epidemiology. Now look away; I’ve gone suddenly shy).
However, for those of you who took the virtuous leap of making the change to organic (it’s a very short step away from sucking your lactose straight from the cow), you might not be quite the paragons of benevolence you initially pictured yourselves as.
It turns out (because of some science) that switching to organic milk can make people wait longer in A&E. Maybe it’s a good thing, the organic nature of the white treat girds your loins and allows your bladder to hang in there and you can meet your doctor with dry knickers. But because we like to moan something tells me that it’s the other thing. Bad.
Down to the fact that organic milk hasn’t been treated with the chemical cocktail synthesised by the government for the good of the nation, those who drink it are in for more broken bones and various wasting illnesses. Thus clogging up the waiting rooms that should be left vacant for people who’ve drunk too much or have inserted inexplicable items into orifices into which the sun does not normally shine.
If I am a very careful saver over the next five or six decades, squirreling my nuts away for the winter, then by the time I’m seventy five or so I might be able to finally put a down payment on an especially shiny and luxurious cardboard box. Not just any cardboard box, my estate agent will be more than keen to tell me.
It has a built in (display) fireplace (you know, in case I’m in a mood to burn the thing down for the insurance money). Also, due to the unique open planned living design, you can squash way more rooms into a fraction of the space. There’s a master bedroom (or two singles should one choose to put a line down the middle), a kitchen and dining room (well, a place to rest my pot noodle. Having the means to heat it would be an incredible indulgence far beyond my means), and a state of the art entertainment system (as long as said cardboard box is placed in a cinema).
But pipe dreams aside, housing is a depressing prospect for people of my generation. The ones who aren’t descended from billionaires and the like at least. Of course we don’t need to buy, it’s a frivolous luxury that we’re entirely wrong to want. Flushing money down the toilet with no hope of a return on your investment is really fun when you don’t earn all that much.
It’s fine though. Our grand lords from on high have promised that by the time we come to retire we’ll be able to afford to make that first step up the property ladder. We might shatter an ankle or fracture a hip but no ascent will feel sweeter. Then of course our adult children will evict us straight into nursing home but for one brief and shining moment or two we shall have experienced home ownership.
Ah, music to my ears. I’m not saying it’s a vote winner or anything but it is at the very least a refreshing change of pace. Politicians with common sense. I know, who could have possibly seen it coming?
They’ll still be there as an amusing side show. What adventurous tourist wouldn’t be interested in landing on our verdant shores in the hopes of observing former royalty? It’s hardly as if the castles and trapping of monarchy are going to evaporate overnight. But we can finally claim to be a properly democratic nation as we’re at long last no longer clinging to hereditary supremacy.
Sorry, I promised myself (I didn’t but I do recognise that this sort of thing begins to get a bit preachy after I’ve wheeled it out eight or nine times. So I have to do something to make it appear as if I’m a tiny bit remorseful regarding my slightly sanctimonious scribblings) that I’d stop spouting my republican manifesto quite so often. Still, I’m on board.
But this was supposed to put people off voting for the reds. The intention was for the majority of us to freak the hell out. We’re well known for not being the biggest fans of change after all. Clinging to outmoded traditions that haven’t got the slightest bit of grounding in modern life is kind of sort of our wheelhouse. It’s something of our international call card.
What this really boils down to is pretty simple. There are people out there who want to influence your vote. Rather than making sure that they’re the best qualified person for the job of representing you it’s a lot easier to demonise their opposition. Frankly, it makes them appear that little bit more insecure about their position. Whatever, cast your ballot for whoever you want and sit back and watch the carnage. There aren’t exactly a great deal of more appealing options open to you.
Don’t look at me as if you don’t know what I’m talking about. It must have violated your nostrils by now. Oh, the old ‘she who smelt it dealt it’ routine. How highly mature, witty and imaginative. Really, my sides are splitting. I’m entirely sure I can stand to continue this conversation with you if you’re going to be so deeply hilarious.
Anyway, the stink. The grisly and rank odour hovering over the country like… well normally the analogy is a bad smell but I’m sure you get the picture here. It’s as if a thousand skunks have loaded up on particularly powerful Indian takeaways and gone to town.
Maybe it’s a metaphor come to life. The country is broken and festering and now there’s a palpable way of communicating this sad fact to the unwashed masses. Or perhaps someone’s trying to let everyone know that some soap wouldn’t go amiss to fix the situation (I don’t know. I smell like a delightful strawberry that’s been dipped in vanilla and coconut. If that doesn’t take your fancy, imagine that I smell simply delicious. This is the internet, there’s no way for you to tell whether or not I’m leading you down the garden path and into misinformation).
Anyway anyway, top odourologists (or is that people with advanced degrees from whiffington?) have been hard at work to identify the source of the smell. They’ve realised that, as with so many problems in our shattered excuse for a civilisation, the fault lies with the fat cats in the city.
It’s probably their expensive important cigars or the mounds of caviar they insist on bathing in (with plenty of champagne if the liquid quotient needs topping up at all). Or it’s a powerfully bad waft coming off their numerous lies. Who knows? We don’t even know if the angry mob currently heading to city elite heartland is going to be able to sort it out. However, I don’t know about you but I can’t live much longer with this peg clamped over my nose.
Commercial travel in this day and age is essentially one massive game of rock paper scissors. Speedboats beat buses. Passenger planes are stronger than quadbikes. And surprisingly enough trams knock the hell out of ferries. I know, you’d think those massive ships would be somewhat more robust than that.
Commuter trains are something of a special case. They’re full of angry and caffeine deprived people either anticipating a long hard day at the office or pleasantly drunk as a way of coping for not powering through their workload in the brief nine or ten hours they spent at the office. This juggernaut of potential energy imbues the train with a quality not entirely unlike magic.
On the other hand, trafficker boats are another kettle of fish altogether (though it might be worth noting that they are sadly lacking in seafood treats). They’re a rather shiftier beast. That’s not particularly surprising when you think about it, given that they have to sneak past the authorities and other nefarious activities of that ilk. Nobody is in anyway endorsing such behaviour but you can hardly tell the world that it isn’t happening either.
So when I tell you that commuter trains simply plough through the trafficker boats I can’t imagine that you’ll be overly shocked. Well you might be as it’s probable that you previously thought of the two as separate entities that never the twain shall meet. But life’s full of new ideas and experiences and it’s time you hopped aboard the heaving bandwagon.
For example, I have now ever so kindly introduced you to the battleground of transport top trumps. You’ll need to figure out for yourselves though as to which mode will emerge victorious. I mean, in rock paper scissors is there ever an out and out winner? Precisely, now that’s philosophy. Or something.