I’ve just bought Griff Rhys Jones’s book Semi-detached (a half price bargain at Watersones just £4.00), I’ve only read the first chapter so far but it seems somewhat evocative of a lost age. Children used to be able to get up to all sorts of mischief and I wonder if the modern British child still has these opportunities. Things like going to Jerry Shirley’s country house and creating havoc, wandering around a USAF airbase and doing things you shouldn’t in Woolworths. I hope that kids are doing things they shouldn’t it’s the way you learn the things you should do (or how not to get caught).
Having the book has also meant I can’t get the Manfred Mann single out of my head.
Two further thoughts on modern life
The modern world – acquisitive and dislocated
This is meant to be a value judgement but seems to me that as we (the ‘comfortable’ many in the so called developed world) now have reached the plateau of consumption and we’ve moved from consumption to acquisition as a goal in itself, there is now recognition of this and (of course) academics are of course mining it like crazy.
Progress has been about leverage – mechanical, electrical, electronic, computational and biological. The gains have been at a price, modern life dislocates you in time and space, you work away from where you live and holiday in foreign lands. Celebrity involves and consumes, the unreal appears hyper real the real is traversed at speed in a mood of panic – the modern challenge is how to enjoy advances without paying too high a price.
Ain't gonna bump no more (with no big fat woman) by Joe Tex, a joyous record from a great artist whose mastery of the microphone stand remains unrivalled (watch the video). RIP Joe.
ARISE SIR RINGO
And let's all support the petition for Sir Ringo - I've been a trifle ambivalent to such things before - I hope it works.