Thursday, November 29, 2007

"...don't you get me started now"

17.12 Five Minutes Late
The training course was delivered by a character from David Peace's "Nineteen Seventy-Four."

A 'been there, done that' retired DC from West Yorkshire; beige slacks, brown tie, crumpled face. His non-stop anecdotes were full of unnecessarily salacious detail and I failed to see their relevance or to spot the points (self-aggrandisement apart) he was trying to make. He was one of those well balanced types with a chip on each shoulder who does the stereotype of the bluff Yorkshireman a disservice. For this reason alone, by eleven o'clock, I had taken against him hugely.

Throughout the rest of the day, as his casual bigotry made itself clearer, I began to feel more uncomfortable. My long-buried CAB training stirred. I knew I should challenge him. I knew I should not sit by and, by my silence, affirm his views. I resented his making me part of his conspiracy but was unable to find the moment, or the words, to speak up.

There is not one individual, specific, comment I could quote to illustrate my point, no one story which, in isolation, merits such a strong response and yet I know, I know, someone has to say something.

Tomorrow I will listen more carefully. I will make notes and, when I have taken a dozen or so deep breaths and counted to ten at least twice I will speak up.

(Well, I will, unless someone else beats me to it)

We Laugh Indoors - Death Cab For Cutie
Go Ahead - Rilo Kiley
Botany Bay - Kate Rusby
Tear Stained Eye - Son Volt
Jed's Other Poem - Grandaddy
House By The Sea - Iron & Wine
Lord Grenville - Al Stewart


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