Sunday, May 03, 2009

Those who lived through the final years of the 70s in the UK will perhaps see something familiar in the picture of the Spanish trade unions endorsing the government’s avowedly ‘socialist’ response to the economic crisis and threatening to call a general strike if there’s any relaxation in what are widely considered to be generous unemployment and pension provisions. So, will there be a winter of discontent here later this year? Probably not.

In the UK yesterday, it was considered newsworthy that the first two people to contract swine flu had recovered from it after a few days. As people usually do from flu. Of course, it wouldn’t be modern Britain if they hadn’t been able to flog the ‘story’ of this miracle to the tabloid press via the ineffable Max Clifford. Today, the medical profession is urging people not to panic. Just a tad late for that, of course. My view is we should slaughter all the pigs, along with the lawyers. And the journalists.

Only in Spain? There was a large rear-view picture of both Princess Letizia and Carla Bruni in the quality media this week, as they went up the steps of Moncloa palace. Ironically, it was re-shown in an El Mundo article yesterday in which the writer railed against the macho-sexist treatment of the visit of the La Bruni with her rather-less-well-appreciated husband. From an article in El Pais today, I gather the picture originally appeared in this – of all things – left-of-centre paper. The writer quoted the (female) editor of El País spouting the sort of justificatory guff one hears from the (usually female) editors of UK magazines that tell 12 year old girls how to satisfy the sexual demands of their boyfriends. With sisters like these . . .

It was suggested on Skye this morning that it costs around 200,000 pounds to bring up a child until he/she leaves home. And about double that thereafter, in my experience.

Some of you will know I got it wrong about the start of the match last night. It was 8pm, not 8.45. And I also miscalculated on the venue. Even the alleged gay bar was stuffed to the rafters and the screen was hard to see through the curtain of thick smoke. So I repaired to my regular smoke-free bar and gave myself a semi-permanent crick in the neck by watching it from a bar stool directly below the TV. But at least Barcelona treated us to another exhibition of their scintillating play, scoring six more goals than they managed against Chelsea last week.

Finally . . . Theft around the world:-
1. “A cardboard cut-out police constable, displayed in a Stockport (UK) shop to deter thieves, has been stolen.”
2. Why do they remove the traffic lights from the roadworks half-way down the hill into town every night? Do they think they’ll be nicked by gypsies from the nearby settlements? If so, this is surely disgraceful.


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1 comment:

Midnight Golfer said...

My experience in construction in Spain:
If it isn't tied down, it won't be there the next day, and sometimes even the stuff that was tied down.

Also; never buy your workers their tools for them. Make them buy their own tools, or charge them to rent yours. It's heartless and cruel, and time consuming to keep track of, but it's the only way to make sure there will be enough tools by the end of the project to start the next one.