Tran Qui is so British he could pass the ‘Britishness’ test untutored in some respects. Not that he speaks English, nor even lives here, but he has that essential ‘British’ quality – or arrogance – of assuming that whatever he does culturally, or has always done culturally, within his national borders, should be permitted regardless of local by-laws, wherever he choses to roam.
We are outraged at the suggestion that trotting along a Thai beach at midnight in a bikini might not be a good idea – we can do that in Brighton; as for playing tonsil hockey and heavy petting in a Dubai restaurant – well the locals should wise up to the ways of the world, not prosecute ‘us’.
Yet we display histrionics when homesick Poles roast a Swan for their Christmas lunch; and as for poor baffled Tran Qui – his attempts to recreate the ever popular (in Vietnam!) late night beer accompaniment of ‘Little Tiger’ with authentic ingredients; home grown lemon grass, a pinch of chilli and a passing moggie, brought on an attack of the vapours across Europe.
A police spokesman said: ‘He grilled the animal using a Bunsen burner in the courtyard of his block of flats. It is not uncommon in Asian cultures to eat cat meat. But it is not acceptable in Germany.’
Not that there is actually a law against eating cats in Germany, just one prohibiting the munching of pets… if they’ve been given a name, Mungo in this case, they are Verbotten.
One of my ancestors was called Mungo – Mungo Park to be specific, the first ‘white man’ to go to parts of central Africa; he was widely believed to have been eaten by the locals too.
Just as well Donna wasn’t called Mungo, eh?A generation of Scouses would have been deprived of their late night snack….
A scant couple of weeks after we were married, Mr G left me a note on the kitchen table which quite clearly read ‘Gone to see lazy slut to get some fun’.
I took it as a summation of married life so far…He merely meant that he was conveying himself in a westerly direction towards a local firm called Lacy Scot’s to collect some furniture.
I am now so used to his dyslexia that I would actually read that message correctly these days. It is a form of dyslexia that is easily curable in childhood, but was unrecognised years ago. He loves to read, consumes more books than I do, but he has to settle down to read in long sessions – initially the letters bounce up and down for him, and the ‘bouncing’ doesn’t lend itself to penning a quick note.
As with so many disabilities in life, he has compensated with an incredible spatial awareness, coupled with an ability to think in 3D that continues to amaze me. He can look over a house full of furniture and calculate to the nearest inch the precise square footage required to pack it all away. He can walk into a derelict house and within minutes tell you precisely which wall can be moved to where to allow a staircase to pass under which beam – without the aid of tape measure or complicated mathematics.
He once assured a customer of mine that the Georgian ‘chest-on-chest’ that they had fallen in love with would fit into their Volkswagen car, packed correctly – he was absolutely right, though whether they ever got it out again I never did hear.
I give him measurements in inches from some customer’s house, and he will stare dolefully at my tape measure and tell me I’m wrong – go back and do it again; he ‘knows’ precisely what the space that the customer wanted filled ‘looks’ like, and it doesn’t look like the 18 inches marked on the tape measure – he’s irritatingly right every time…
Now GCHQ have discovered that many dyslexics have this special ability – and have hired 120 ‘neuro-diverse’ individuals to form a special team, utilising their specific ability to analyse complex information in a “dispassionate, logical and analytical” way. Apparently they have woken up to the fact that Alan Turing was dyslexic and this formed the basis of his valuable ability to see patterns in code. The head of their new department, IT expert ‘Matt’ said:
“My reading might be slower than some individuals and maybe my spelling is appalling, and my handwriting definitely is… but if you look at the positive side, my 3D spacial-perception awareness and creativity is in the top 1% of my peer group.”
Fascinating – but they are too late to hire Mr G – he’s halfway to England as I write, with a trailer full of household goods that nobody would have put money on him fitting on there – except me. I can guarantee you that every piece of furniture will fit in that house exactly where he said it would.
Gordon Brown has apparently set the time table for ‘devo-max’ for Scotland – by what authority is anyone’s guess.
He will be making a rare appearance in Westminster on “October 16, introducing a white paper in November, draft clauses for the new act by the end of January and a second reading of the bill to bring it into law in the first legislative week of the next parliament in June”. Did he not notice the Voters kicking him out of 10 Downing street?
The English Voters have been mugged.
The Scots retain their free prescriptions, free university education and free social care that the prosperous south East of England cannot afford for itself – too busy working to pay for the extra £17 bn in funding we send up there each year. They narrowly escaped coming under the heading of ‘International Aid’ – by a mere 190,000 votes. Just think – they could have competed for a share of the 0.7 per cent of GDP that Cameron wants to share out between Liberia and Tunisia and all points in between.
New vacine supplies for Ebola victims or ring fenced pensions for the third of Scots employed in ‘public services’ – that would have been a tough one for the International Aid Department.
Instead we are being compensated by the sight of the Labour party saying ‘please ignore Gordon’ and explaining why they don’t want Scotland to get devo-max for years to come, and still trying to get their MPs elected up there in the frozen north; the Lib-dems trying to get anyone elected – anywhere – at all; and the Conservatives becoming more ‘UKIP-friendly’ than UKIP are themselves…..
Personally, I think Cameron has played a blinder – he’s managed to shoot himself and all the main political players in the foot simultaneously.
As a blogger continually searching for the illogical and abhorrent on the political landscape, I have to say:
Good shot Sir!