It’s been interesting in the last day to watch the coverage of the terrible shootings in Virginia. There is a universal response of “When will America do something about it’s gun culture? Why do they implicitly accept this sort of thing?” That’s a pretty understandable reaction from various op-ed contributors, but even a programme like Newsnight, notable for its desire to ‘catch out’ government of any stripe, led with a headline something like “America’s love of guns gets 31 students killed” (I’m exaggerating, but not by much).
I don’t disagree with the sentiment, unsurprisingly, having been brought up in the UK. It does highlight the additional sensitivity I feel at such events having lived in the US though; to some extent I’ll always think of it as my ‘other’ country, so things that happen there are more real to me than in other countries. So while I’m waiting for the initial breathlessness of the event to recede before the pointless back-and-forth over the 2nd Amendment restarts, the average person in the UK already has that level of detachment to start with. It’s no credit to me that I feel this way; as many have pointed out, 33 deaths is almost certainly a quiet day in Baghdad, and I find it easy not to dwell on those unfortunates.
Just watching ’12 Monkeys’, during which Bruce Willis says “All I see are dead people”.
Last week was an odd one – Monday was a public holiday for Easter, I worked Tuesday, then had the rest of the week off to look after the kids (schools are closed). Unfortunately on Wednesday I also came down with the sore throat that my wife had had. Not a big deal, really – it was pretty nasty for a couple of days for her, but that was all. So on Thursday the kids and I spent the whole day (as in over 8 hours!) at the local zoo. I returned exhausted, and since then have been a miserable waistrel, barely able to eat because it hurts so much to swallow, shuffling around with aching joints, but still having to look after the kids while Claire works. As part of trying to ease my discomfort I took some anaesthetic lozenges that I appear to be allergic to; the palms of my hands broke out in spots that itched most distractingly.
And as if all that wasn’t enough, the sun shone the entire week making me want to go out cycling while being utterly unable to. Once more the deity of your choice breaks wind in my general direction. Now I have an appointment to see the doctor, so no doubt I’ll be feeling completely better in the next couple of hours just to make me look extra foolish.
Update: Tonsilitis. So on top of everything else, apparently I’m now 7 years old.
A step up from regular collapsible chairs: