As we approach the first anniversary of the Great Fear, Saturdays have largely become the most uneventful day of the week. My activity, or otherwise, on them has become governed by the weather. This aftenroon was very pleasant — so out I went. The local sheep population had a spring in its step, too.
The establishment in question is located somewhere round here but that sign isn’t pointing to it. Instead it just presides over a mostly empty car park, where there should be signs of visitors, shoppers, people just hanging out in the town centre on a Saturday.
One of the lies we’ve been sold over the last year centres around the notion of ‘essentia’ and ‘non-essential’ retail. Amazon can compel their drones to go work in warehouses that are centres of virus transmission, but I am not allowed to patronise a local bookshop, nor to buy a pair of shoes. This has been an unparalleled opportunity to shaft small businesses, one the Tories (backed up by Labour, who are even worse) have taken with glee, while puttng on their concerned face, and telling us it’s all for our own good. Not if you are a business owner, I imagine. But that’s OK, we can just blame them for ‘not adapting’, like not inventing a way to get nails done online. Sorry to break out into this again, but there’ll be weeks more of this crap yet.
So exciting was yesterday that it slipped my mind that it was the day on which this record was confirmed — this is now the longest run of English-only pictures on this blog. As of today it is 144 days since day 3,312, when Scotland (in the form of Loch Skeen) featured for the day. That, and the one from about 100 yards into Wales on 24/6/20, are all that I have taken outside England in over a year. This is not the life I was leading up to that point; make your own judgments as to whether it’s a better or worse thing for all concerned, but it at least illustrates the impact of all the present crap. (And it is crap. This is not a political point.)
Also, in West Yorkshire anyway, it’s still snowing.
So schools and colleges had one day of life and now Bojo has said they’re unclean, like the rest of the country. So Joe gets to spend the next six weeks, maybe twelve, at home, while algorithms and their creators bicker to be given the right to determine his future. Conviviality and intimacy are things of the past, getting further away all the time.
Grim weather led to the cancellation of a planned day out and with Bojo the Clown having decreed all other options ‘unsafe’ (while he flaps around in his comedy trousers), we dug out the box set of The Singing Detective and sat and watched its seven hour span through the afternoon and evening. Classic TV, and as it was always a period piece, it hasn’t dated. Joe got through the lot though he seems less than attentive on this shot. It gave the day its main interest, but how I miss other people.
This monstrosity spent the day plonked outside the house, squatting on the pavement, a metal pile of unfriendliness. Want to walk up Keighley Road? Naaah… sod you. There should be a law against it…. Oh, there is: double yellow lines. But those are clearly of concern only to wimps and lefties.
A turntable has made a reapperance in our house for the first time in twenty years, so we’ve been digging out some of the old records that survived the Great Vinyl Cull of the 1990s (I was a student, I needed the money, I regret it now, sure). And it’s been an excuse to pick up some new material as well, including that of the very fine band seen to top — previous blog stars themselves. I wonder what music will, in the end, emerge from this time of paralysis, or what art of any kind.
Hebden Bridge’s hundred-year-old Picture House has not featured on the blog in 2020. Flooded (again) on Feb. 9th and then forced to close by the New Fascism — until tonight. Tonight, we could return to support this valuable local resource, see a good film (Saint Maud) and have a glass of wine at our seat. Next week, as we are pressured back into whatever the hell ‘Tier 3’ is being defined as by Our Glorious Leaders, we will still be able to see movies, but not have a glass of wine at our seat. This is the kind of difference that gives me a warm, cosy feeling of safety and respect for authority.
In all these 3,334 days I have yet to depict my local area’s tallest construction, Wainhouse Tower — so here it is. When conceived in the 1870s this was originally going to be a mill chimney but disagreements between land- and mill-owners meant that it was eventually just built as a folly, and according to its Wikipedia page, it is the tallest folly in the world — which I did not know until just this last minute. So one to add to the ‘superlatives’ list on the Stats page when I next get round to updating it.