Tuesday, 14 December 2010


The ghost of Christmas past stared at me gloomily, a Woodbine in one hand and glass of brown ale in the other. He was referring to the student riots, “them revolting students” he said coughing noisily “reminds me of the good times.”

Yes, it was a plus ├ža change week…

Charles and Camilla having a charge of the light brigade moment as they encountered some young people; Mr. Plod being wrong footed (again); students breaking the windows of….Top Shop – Top Shop? Makes you weep about their sense of irony; the Australian response to losing a test match – “we fielded like a bunch of Clydesdales” and that James Naughtie on-air spoonerism of the Culture Secretary’s name …and I bet Jeremy Hunt’s glad his parents didn’t call him Mike.

Good old times; it was a Private Eye kind of week.

But the ghost of Christmas future lives in the words of the 14 year old who solemnly told me “one day everything will be much better.” Thus, dreadful old pubs become super-gastro-zones (like a local bar in Brighton previously nicknamed the “Stabber"); WikiLeaks tries to make things better by causing a stir, telling us things we knew but about which we previously didn’t speak– “Prince Charles asked where the lavatory was and was gone a while” – A Chas-Bog-Shock story? No. Nothing new - just a leak.

Get used to it. Turmoil; even ambiguity and change but…life goes on….and it does usually get better.

The immortal comforts in life over this week? A warming Spaghetti Bolognese with a double jar of a rich tomato sauce, the impact of which reaches your knees, a glass of claret, a hardback novel, a few great carols (and I love it that “most highly favoured lady” has been transcribed by choirs everywhere to “most highly flavoured gravy”) and a prospect of a must-get-better-future despite, or even because of, student riots.

Most of all I love to see these students revolting …over “whatever”…. as they always have.  The bankers of tomorrow behaving like bankers today (that is – I think – a counter spoonerism.)

Happy days, says the ghost of Christmas future looking at Christmas present, and I think she’s right.

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