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This Is Getting Vy Tiresome. - Wemyss's Appalling Hobby:
From the Party Guilty of Committing 'Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn'
wemyss
wemyss
This Is Getting Vy Tiresome.
Little buggers.

Vy boring.

And the gall of it. Damn me, don't they realise that today is the opening day of the first Ashes Test at Lord's? (Australia 190 v England 10-0, I'm pleased to note. I repeat: Australia 190 all out. Harmison has been superb.)

Right, then. Is this to become a fixture every fortnight? I ask in order that, if it is, we can all pencil it in ('Thursday. Weekly bombs and squibs. Rail schedules will have an excuse for delay').

This is what happens in a country too afraid to fly its own flag and in which Labour councillors object to 'Land of Hope and Glory' at Remembrance Day services (they propose Rod Stewart instead, wh rather sums up the problem). I suppose that next we'll be told that singing 'Jerusalem' offends these gentry.

Bugger the lot of them.

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magic_at_mungos From: magic_at_mungos Date: July 21st, 2005 05:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
It's incredibly tiresome. If only because it completely screws up my journey home. I was quite enjoying keeping an eye on the cricket until the top order decided not to bother turning up

And Land of Hope and Glory might offend someone. The world's gone barmy. Who is going to offend?
wemyss From: wemyss Date: July 21st, 2005 05:31 pm (UTC) (Link)

Apparently...

... It offends a Labour councillor in Wolverhampton.

Personally, I'm offended by the England side's inability to do anything with McGrath's bowling.
magic_at_mungos From: magic_at_mungos Date: July 21st, 2005 05:37 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Apparently...

92 for bloody 7. I'm officially not impressed.

Is this Labour counciller white and middle class by any chance?
wemyss From: wemyss Date: July 22nd, 2005 03:56 pm (UTC) (Link)

White, Male, and Middle-Class.

Aren't they all.

I see in the Torygraph today that he's recanted his heresy.
magic_at_mungos From: magic_at_mungos Date: July 22nd, 2005 04:59 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: White, Male, and Middle-Class.

Thought as bloody much. Why don't I have an icon saying 'stop being on my side. You're making my side look stupid.'?
wemyss From: wemyss Date: July 22nd, 2005 05:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

Actually....

Why don't I have an icon saying 'stop being on my side. You're making my side look stupid.'?

... At the mo, I'd make that a Trescothick / Pietersen icon.
magic_at_mungos From: magic_at_mungos Date: July 22nd, 2005 05:46 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Actually....

*sighs* We should be used to this complete and utter collapse by now. They've done it enough times. Stupid bloody idiots.
sgt_majorette From: sgt_majorette Date: July 21st, 2005 06:33 pm (UTC) (Link)

Nostalgia

Back in the days when the Sergeant Majorette was the merest civilian, NYC was the pipe-bomb Olympics venue. Croatians nationalists, the Jewish Defense League, the Puerto Rican Liberation group, rogue Basques: stuff was blowing up everywhere, and it got to a point where Kelly Girls working as receptionists were dropping like flies.

So after I joined the Army, I got a letter from my mother after she heard about a bombing in the US military family housing area in Stuttgart. She was comforted when I reminded her that there was only one terrorist group operating in Germany at the time, and I was safer where I was than she was back home, besides being armed.

City people understand why acting on paranoia is pointless: if they want you, they'll come to your house and get you; in the meantime, we have things to do, so if nobody minds, we'll just roll our eyes and go on about our business.

Now, you folk over there have the Olympics to contend with, which draws the worst kind of tourists: the plaid shorts with black socks and sandals, the loud drunks, the homemade explosive devices... for six years!

Our hearts go out to you, which, in the American language, means "Damn! Glad we dodged that bullet!"
wemyss From: wemyss Date: July 22nd, 2005 03:58 pm (UTC) (Link)

Tourists, Terrorists, Topers...

... And worst of all, the still-creating-and-throwing-a-temperament French.

Are you quite sure you don't want the bloody Games? I for one wd always gladly have stuck some other lot of punters with that cock-up-waiting-to-happen.
avus From: avus Date: July 22nd, 2005 02:47 am (UTC) (Link)
They really don't learn, do they?

I'm embarrassed, but can you give me a bit more info on "Land of HOpe & Glory". The ex-musicologist blushes but is determined, even though in the latter years, to become educated. I have, however, given up all hope of ever being educated to the point of understanding cricket. (That is what you were talking about, wasn't it?) Proving, of course, that on this side of the pond we truly are "lesser breeds w/o the law".
wemyss From: wemyss Date: July 22nd, 2005 04:11 pm (UTC) (Link)

Music by Elgar, Words by Benson.

The tune is Pomp & C, March One. The words by Benson are:

Land of Hope and Glory,
Mother of the Free,
How shall we extol thee,
Who are born of thee?
Wider still and wider
Shall thy bounds be set;
God, who made thee mighty,
Make thee mightier yet.

Hardly popular with that section of the country that cringes, kowtows, submits to dhimmitude when threatened, believes that PC Plod the Local Bobby is a fascist monster but are glad he’s there to warn people against flying the Union flag lest it ‘offend’, and are ashamed of their own damned country. Just today, some poster at Another Site reacted to the news that police marksmen had shot a probable suicide bomber on the Tube, by ‘not feeling wonderfully proud to be a Brit at present’.

My response is,
Rather the problem, isn’t it. Can’t re-enact Trafalgar because it wd upset the Frogs. Can't sing ‘Land of Hope and Glory’ at a Remembrance Day ceremony because it offends the delicate sensibilities of Labour councillors in Wolverbloodyhampton. Can’t get Red Ken and the bloody Met to stop bringing terror imams into the country, and on the rates at that. Mustn’t arm the bobbies to stop bombers.

This is the sort of attitude that cd lose a war despite tactical, operational, and strategic superiority, and is assuredly the multiculti wooliness that creates a country in which third-generation subjects, born here, are assimilated as to cricket, clothes, and motorcars, and yet still hate the land of their birth.

So, darling. When the war is lost, and a dhimmi population in these isles pays the jizaya polltax to the conquering mediaevalists, and the mullahs come to round up anyone suspect of being gay or lesbian, so that they can be executed by having dry-stone walls pushed over upon them to crush them to death ... I will have been dead in a ditch, first, but do you, I ask, remember than that, ‘I told you so’.
But that of course reveals me as the next Enoch Powell, I'm sure.

I cannot understand people who are fans of the Potter series and yet who fail to derive and apply the obvious morals.

As for cricket, don’t worry that you don’t understand the game. Judging from the past two days, neither do the England side.
avus From: avus Date: July 23rd, 2005 02:30 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Music by Elgar, Words by Benson.

Thanks for the musical response.

A plea for further education from one less fortunate. I've tried both my recent Oxford Concise English-English & my old copy of the OED (can't afford the new one). And my final port of call for all things Brit -- my wife, who, bless her, consumes English mystery novels, was no help. So:

1. I think Remembrance Day is what we, in the States, used to call Armistice Day, 11/11, and now more broadly call Veteran's Day, isn't it? (While I very much like remembering all vets, I'm kind of sad to lose the connection to the end of WWI.)

2. Can't find even a hint about "dhimmi". I assume it's Indian?

3. Also missed "on the rates". The closest I could find was a referral to "rates" as property taxes, evidently, in the UK, only on commercial, and not on private. (Not so here in the States.) Is that the same thing as "on the dole" or "welfare"?

4. I assume Benson = Arthur Christopher Benson (1862-1925). He isn't in the most recent Oxford Book of English Verse, but is in that wonderful old Quiller-Couch edition. (Yes, I know, I could probably google it. But that's so much less fun than browsing through books, don't you think?)

I know none of the people you refer to, but that's all right. I think I get the idea, though I'm modestly curious about Enoch Powell -- I assume no relation to the estimable Colin.

Other points:

5. Regarding an unarmed police -- dear Lord, I've always thought, given what we face here in the States, that this particular Brit tradition was rather... eccentric? Yes, it's sad that we had to lock our doors, when we moved from country to city, but it's a whole lot sadder not to understand realities. And as to problems w/ shooting that terrorist, just what the hell else could the police do? Actually, I feel sorry for the police -- killing, when you're a decent sort, is always very hard. I have a colleague who works w/ Police & Ambulance, helping them get over grisly death. It's the price of being humane, and I'm sad when people who serve have to bear that, though I know they bear it willingly.

6. In our country, the medievalists are the Christian far right -- very different. Their attitudes about gays & straights are more charitable. But I strongly suspect that, if they could get away w/ it, while they wouldn't execute by loose stone wall, they would return to our tradition of imprisoning, not to mention police subtle support of gay-bashing, or at least looking the other way. Really, I'm afraid in places where they predominate, it's uncomfortably close to what the Blacks in the South had to endure. Not lynching, thank God, but a clearly second-class citizenship (and NO American should EVER be second class unless they've earned it through felony!) with harassment & violence a regular feature. In Colorado Springs, some of my gay clients talk about the look-the-other-way attitude of our police regarding violence against gays, violence serious enough to hospitalize.

So from time to time, I get worried about our Prot medievalists - irony, given that Protestantism was a product of the Renaissance. But then I remember de Tocqueville, and I figure, in the end, it'll right itself, so long as we keep a firm hold on our basic rights.

Our religious tradition is so very different from yours, never having a national church. The freedom of religion and from religion has led, curiously, to a very religious people. And there's a healthy & lively debate, always, about where are the boundaries of separation of Church & State, w/ lots of doomsaying on both sides, and generally the Courts & the people taking a fairly middle-of-the-road, sensible approach.
avus From: avus Date: July 23rd, 2005 03:08 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Music by Elgar, Words by Benson.

Regarding multiculturalism, I think the States might have something of an advantage -- we've been at that longer. We don't see a diverse culture as separate from patriotism. We have holidays for lots of folks, including things like Cinco de Mayo which, I believe, celebrates a Mexican victory over some unofficial Yanks who were invading on their own.

I think sanitizing Trafalgar seems pretty silly. You Brits don't mind when we sing the Star Spangled Banner, do you? (Except for the fact that no one could possibly sing that tune.) Funny story: when I was in music grad school, I organized the University Band, and got support for it by playing at basketball & football games. The University of Chicago had just built a new Field House, and I had the pep band at the first home game. At the game's start, attended by the U of C President & all her minions, I began as I had always heard basketball games begun, with the Star Spangled Banner, which is always started w/ a solo tenor drum roll, during which everyone gets up, faces the flag, and places hands over hearts. Up went everyone, and then, just before beginning the music proper, I heard a furious whispering. Turned out that someone had forgotten to get a flag for the Field House. Red faces all around, though I was amused -- seemed just the sort of fuck-up that hardcore academics would do. Needless to say, the second time the pep band played, Old Glory was prominently displayed.

Regarding your problems w/ third-generation Brits.... I hesitate, b/c I really don't understand your culture. But here, both a vigorous country-of-origin culture and a vigorous national culture appear to go mix. Assimilation works both ways, except for the dominant language. Yes, there's always a lot of contention -- but then, we're a contentious people. But the only folks I know who are ashamed of their culture, unfortunately, are the German Americans, though this, fortunately, is fading, though only after the language has died out. (My mother's father & my father's mother's mother came from German in the 1880's. My grandmother, who was, more or less, my mother, never spoke German around me, though I found out after she died that she was fluent. I recall w/ great sadness, studying German in her backyard, and wishing I had someone to speak German w/, this when I was a musicologist. And she was right there. Makes me ill to think of it. And there's nothing about Germany & WWII that doesn't make me furious.

American culture is always changing in many ways, and I suspect, in the end, that'll be good -- like American religion. Though it can be tough, even VERY tough. (You've listened to Leonard Bernstein's Romeo & Juliet adaptation, West Side Story? And our history w/ Blacks & Native Americans is far from glorious, not to mention other groups. But we yell & scream & the old racists are gradually forced to accept the next generation, and then the new group gets mad when a newer group comes in. Neverending. My brother-in-law came from a Chicago mixed marriage -- Polish & Italian. And Oh, the stories that came out of that.

avus From: avus Date: July 23rd, 2005 03:09 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Music by Elgar, Words by Benson.

Last piece, I promise. I wanted to get one more thought in....

Again, I don't know your side of the pond, but I'm pretty clear that, here, the problem tends to be less the absence of national sentiment than the presence of hate. I'm trying to think my way through the notion of hate as mental illness, individual & social. Not that I think hate is only a mental illness. Obviously, it's not. Hate is also & always a vice & a sin, among other things. It's just I have little to say about vice & sin, though I have personal acquaintance w/ both, just little professional expertise.

Mental illness, though, I know more about, and might be able to stumble on a small piece that could be useful, or at least interesting, maybe thoughtful. I'm seeing it, now, through the lens of what are currently called bonding or attachment disorders, which are a very recent addition in our field, and which our field has very poorly thought through. The traditional cause-disease model seems to work less well here. I suspect, rather than a kind of pragmatism, that ontology is more likely to point the way. But I'm not sure when I'll find time to fumble my way through that.

I do think though, that hate may be one important key. And not being military, I have more to bring to my thinking, there, than the military-security perspective you have.

And thank you for being so understanding about my cricket ignorance. I've never liked watching sports, which makes learning a new sport difficult, though I did enjoy playing sports. Might have something to do w/ my disinterest in porn. Why watch someone else have a good time? I say make your own!
wemyss From: wemyss Date: July 24th, 2005 05:14 pm (UTC) (Link)

Don't Let Me Forget...

... to come back to this.

Right now, it's just too much to address in the depth it all requires.
avus From: avus Date: July 24th, 2005 11:31 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Don't Let Me Forget...

I quite understand. Take your time.

Hope things go well, for you & your country, and for all those around the world whom you hold dear.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: July 25th, 2005 05:00 pm (UTC) (Link)

Er, Thank You.

But it's nothing so dramatic, I assure you. Just a sudden spate of Other Calls Upon My Time.
avus From: avus Date: July 25th, 2005 08:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Er, Thank You.

Glad to hear that.
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