Thursday, 15 April 2021

Spring Forward

Hello, dear readers!

Well, it looks like we are finally emerging, perhaps properly, from the short, dark, and chilly days of winter and moving forward with this year.

As I write, I’m sat by the window, looking out at bright blue skies and trying to not get too distracted by the very social birds (I’m not sure what type. Restless little things, though). Yup, it’s a practically perfect picture, one that lifts the spirits, banishes the blues, and fills the heart with hope for the future.

But of course, a note of caution needs to be heard among the bird-song.

Hope Springs Eternal
I am, of course, referring to everyone’s (least) favourite topic. The only topic in town. The one you can be absolutely sure will feature in just about every single news broadcast, every other conversation, and even the odd hour of investigative journalism. Yup, it's pandemic time... Again.


I don’t mean that literally. I don’t mean that today has been scheduled for another spike in Covid cases. No, in fact, if anything, I intend this particular post to be a seasonal ray of sunshine in these dark times. I want to focus on the positive, as I’m wont to do. I want to lean into the hopes of growth and brightness and renewal that spring brings with it

My word, do I want to.

As much as I’d like to think of myself as a positive person, however, I cannot help but feel a small spike of concern when I see the pictures of crowded streets with people mingling face to face and group to group in the streets of London and Newcastle and Manchester and Leeds.

Ins And Outs
Now, this is where some might think of me as some kind of negative-nelly naysayer. A man who wants nothing more than to stamp on the toys of people who have endured a hellish year of isolation. Where fun and friends seem to have been outlawed, and while I can see where such people would be coming from, I’m not. Really, I’m not.

To be fair, I’m not the most social of butterflies. More like a curmudgeonly wasp, or an antisocial hornet. Lockdown, although trying at times. has not been the ordeal for me it has for some. I can empathise though, with those who are desperate for a proper pint in a proper pub. I have neither the right nor the inclination to judge those people, and I won’t.


All I will say is that once more, the unlocking has taken place at a pace and a scale which I feel could have been better handled, whether this be centrally, by our alleged government, or whether the powers that be once again abdicate that decision to the pubs themselves.

More guidance could have been given. The numbers could, potentially, have been managed better. We could have started the unlocking with a gentler, steadier acceleration, rather than just releasing the handbrake and leaving it up to the people to behave.

Into Each Generation
Once again, I can hear the objections even as I write. How would such management look? Who would police it, and how? These are all valid questions, and I’m not going to pretend I have the answers. It’s why I’m neither a publican nor a politician.

All I do know is that although progress has been made in regard to vaccination (next Wednesday for my second dose, thanks for asking), we are not out of the woods yet. We are battling a living organism, a virus that will adapt and change in order to procreate and survive. There are new mutations cropping up all over the world, including a variant in Brazil which seems to have more success spreading throughout the youth. It’s something we need to be wary of. Something we need to keep a careful eye on. We may be winning the battles, but we have not yet won the war.


Back To Normal

So, yes. To return to the somewhat more cheery opening of this post, spring is with us and it is a time of progress. A time of renewal, change, hope, and optimism. Let’s seize hold of that. Let’s move forward, back towards normality. Back towards friends and family, and beer and pubs, and parties and people. Let’s do all of that but let’s makes sure that the journey to do so is one of steady, maintainable progress. Let’s make sure that our progress is not accompanied by too many steps in the other direction.

If we can do that. If we can consolidate our gains, then this spring can be one where we all spring forward.



Until next time…

Wednesday, 24 March 2021

Key Of The Door



Hello, dear readers!

There are some things in life which seem designed to make us feel old. The relentless and increasingly baffling march of technology. The chorus of creaks and twinges that accompany each new day. Conversation in which only around 70% (if that) of the words convey any kind of meaning at all. That unfortunate time you catch yourself saying ‘Kids today!’ or reflecting on when all this were nowt but fields.

Yeah, alright, that is just me getting old, reactionary, and just a little bit Compo Simmonite. I guess it happens to the best of us.

There is one other thing, however. Something which in reality has nothing to do with me, but is guaranteed to make me feel ancient beyond my years, and that’s other people getting older.

Wednesday, 17 March 2021

On The March

Hello, dear readers!

I opened last week with the trusty old saying ‘there’s no news like bad news’. This week I can take the same sentiment because there is no news.

Nothing.

Nada.

Nichts.

Yeah, that’s a lie.

Wednesday, 10 March 2021

Health, Wealth, and Priorities

Hello, dear readers!

There’s no news like bad news, or so ‘they’ (for any given value of what ‘they’ may or may not be) say.

I suppose in a way it’s true. Bad news does travel faster than good, and in these interesting times we find ourselves in there’s certainly been no shortage of the stuff. In fact, some days you wonder if the news is being shown on repeat as Covid, lockdown, and everything that goes along with it remains front and centre of every single broadcast.

This week, however, there’s been a different story doing the rounds, and I, for one, really wish there wasn’t.

Wednesday, 3 March 2021

Getting The Point

Hello, dear readers!

Yes! I’m back!

I know, I know. I promised you all a blog post last week. And I did so knowing that it wouldn’t be an easy week, but it really was a promise I meant to keep, even up to an hour before my extended deadline of 18:30 on Friday eve. Sadly, it was a promise I had to break.

The reason for this only ever-so slightly characteristic aberration made up the subject of my last post, but as that was now two weeks ago, allow me to refresh your memory. This time last week, you see, I was recovering from my first COVID-19 vaccination, and it is upon that momentous occasion I’d now like to pour forth.

Friday, 26 February 2021

Wait For It!

 Hello dear readers!

No, please don't get too excited. This short (but hopefully sweet) post is merely here to serve as a placeholder.

I had hoped to be fit enough to pen my usual weekly offering a mere two days later that usual, but as next week will reveal, the Coronavirus vaccine has given me a rough few days, which I'm not fully through yet. I have therefore decided to wait until my normal, scheduled, posting time of next Wednesday to reveal all (not in that way).

Until then, take care, and please don't take this as a reason not to get your jab when called (it's still a million miles better than the alternaive!).

Until next time...