I have not been involved in this local election campaign, except for being a candidate and hand-delivering more leaflets than is conceivable this side of sanity. It gets me out and about, which we all need after these weird years. It is cold on the streets this year: blazing sun and high temperatures, but a colder reception at the door.
Not from all though: this is a friendly village. At the locals, it sends in a rash of salad-munchers, though come the general elections it is reliably blue, but reliability is now in short supply. Boris the rockstar PM is no more – he is a hunted figure, who has taken on a mantle of seriousness in place of fun and it does not play well. Anger over those after-work drinks is utterly illogical, without sense or coherence of reason, but it is real. Once the sheen has come off, we all suffer, and notice that the cost of living is rising and the taxes re rising too when we were promised, when they swore blind, that they would come down. How can a candidate in a little election fight against that?
I will do what I can, what I usually do – trudge the streets, hammering worn feet on hardened tarmac pavements, wondering how late I can post leaflets before householders get angry at the disturbance (the emails that came in last year about that were not friendly), spending lunchtimes and long evenings folding and stacking.
If nothing else, it shows me the variety of streets and made environments that I otherwise just skim over. The streets of identikit houses are not identikit at all, as householders remake them in their own image; the ex-council house with a new, smart porch and refurbished to look like a mini-mansion, and a Beemer parked at the front, or the house with a car collection (that must annoy the neighbours) or an ornate garden spread out at the front. Scaffolding is in every street and that shows enterprise; even the new-built houses having extensions and personalisations. Whatever commentators have said over a hundred years about dull suburbs and mass-production houses, they are not any more, because every householder is an individual making their house into a unique home.
Even so, I must turn back: I am still many hundreds of leaflets away from being able to rest on the ‘bank holiday’ weekend.
- Letterboxes, endless letterboxes
- No rest, not today
- Boris unleashed
- Politics makes screaming madness
- Honest, Georgian elections
- The Rise of Political Lying by Peter Oborne
- The Demon in Democracy: Totalitarian Temptations in Free Societies by Ryszard Legutko
- Woke: A Guide to Social Justice by Titania McGrath
- The Madness of Crowds: Gender, Race and Identity by Douglas Murray
- Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles MacKay (1841)
12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos, by Jordan B Peterson
- Pistols at Dawn: Two Hundred Years of Political Rivalry from Pitt and Fox to Blair and Brown by John Campbell
- Political Correctness Gone Mad?, by Jordan B. Peterson, Stephen Fry, Michael Eric Dyson and Michelle Goldberg
- An Utterly Impartial History of Britain by John O’Farrell
- 1000 Years of Annoying the French by Stephen Clarke
- By Thomas Hobbes in the Civil War and Restoration era: