Pathetic Fallacy

rain on the river

I don’t know if it’s the return of the rain, or lack of sleep, but the reality of Brexit really began to hit home today. Normally I’m a ridiculously positive person, but I found myself almost in tears watching a video clip of vile racist abuse on a Manchester tram and wondering just what has happened to my country. There’s only so much gardening, bike riding, and sharing of black humour on Twitter that you can do – and then you wake up again in the morning and it’s still happening. We’ve voted ourselves out, nobody has a plan, the Labour party have formed a circular firing squad – the news just keeps getting worse. I’m not even going to mention the football, because there’s an unholy amount of gloating going on by the Scots, which doesn’t bode well for any future indyref debate. Last time around the independence campaign was conducted in a spirit of democracy and debate and a lack of anti-English sentiment that did Scotland proud. If there is another one, I dread it being conducted in a spirit of bitterness and resentment. There are some genies that cannot be put back into the bottle once they have been unleashed.

All I can say is this – to the Scots, the EU, to anyone listening. We’ve all had friends who’ve become troubled, who lash out in their misery and make themselves unpleasant and generally try and shake off the people who love them most and want them to be happy. Mostly we understand that that’s not the real them that’s behaving that way and that all we can do is ply them with tea and sympathy and hugs and support and shrug off the things that they say when they’re not really thinking straight. So please, tempting as it is to kick England when it’s down, and much as it deserves it, bear with my poor self-harming country anyway while it works its way through a dreadful nervous breakdown. Send it tea. Lock away the knives. And don’t let it do anything drastic if you can.

mugs and kettle

Send tea… it’s all that can save us now

And to my compatriots I would add: damn it, whatever happened to Keep Calm and Carry On? We have never needed it more than in this hour.


22 Responses to Pathetic Fallacy

  1. ballsofwool says:

    Something is being done by this man, among others, which might give you as much hope as it gave me. Jolyon Maugham QC. Find him on Twitter and WordPress at waitingfortax

    • ballsofwool says:

      I, too, have been very down. At least my grandad was an Irishman…I (and an estimated MILLION others) am applying for my Irish citizenship and passport. What a world!

      • Paul M says:

        My daughter applied for Irish passport on her 18th birthday – two years ago, so nothing to do with this, she just wanted to assert her national identity inherited from her mother.

        (Have you ever wondered why the English don’t really have any sense of identity, anywhere in the world? You never hear an American describe themselves an an English American. Irish, Polish, German, Swedish, Norwegian, African, yes, English – never. Perhaps because we have always been imperialists and colonialists and being a victim is what binds you together, not being a perpretator).

        My son, just turned 18, has the same feelings. He has opted to go to uni in Cork, and he treasures his Irish nationality although he has never lived there. Shame it is going to look like one of the projected million UK citizens looking for a lifeboat. I just wish I could do the same. An Irish wife and 12 months living in Ireland would do it – Sherry Fitzgerald’s website is next port of call.

  2. disgruntled says:

    I need some hope right now! I do have two Irish grandmothers, but that doesn’t help the rest of us

  3. Anonymous says:

    Totally agree with all you have said , I wake up now thinking f***k what happened . Tho I have never liked our illustrious prime minister at least he has now given us some thinking time .

  4. velovoiceblogspot says:

    I have an Irish great-grandfather who was born on the boat… with his birth recorded on arrival…. in Canada. Much as I cherish the heritage and music and love of singing that he passed down to his daughter, who passed it to her son (my father) – fat lot of use he is to me now!! (Just joking. But seriously. Our life plans are seriously fucked. And we’re definitely amongst the lucky ones.)

  5. disgruntled says:

    What happens when the entire population of Britain ends up with an Irish passport?

  6. Perhaps we could knit an enormous woolly jumper for England? We’re going to be going through another period of self-absorbtion , there’s no getting round that, but the situation for any liberal in England must be just awful and we can’t forget our neighbours if we’re ever going to look ourselves in the mirror. But I have little idea of what words might offer comfort right now. My motto right now is carved into a house in Edinburgh; ‘Luve God abuve al and yi nychtbour as yi self’ which I interpret to mean that we should look after each other even if our eyes are on loftier goals.

    I actually Googled ‘How to get an audience with the Queen’ yesterday. It may well actually be time for her to speak up. I’m not sure anyone else can do much right now.

  7. disgruntled says:

    Perhaps a shipment of Tunnocks Teacakes to go with the tea?

    • ballsofwool says:

      While they’re welcoming…I think they might draw the line!
      You realise you’re experiencing seriously mixed feelings when even applying for a passport feels like a protest vote. Confused, yes and unsettled, that’s a good word for it, Flighty.

  8. Flighty says:

    I’m feeling very unsettled, and it’s been made worse as it’s been by far the worst year yet on the plot. xx

  9. Charles says:

    When all else fails just remember that we are still being lead by the same bunch of clowns and idiots that were there before. So not much is going to change. Being at one remove from Europe is not the end of the world, quite frankly the idea of being shot of the likes of Junker does put things into perspective. Just ignore the wailing and it will all blow over. By the way if I hear another “young person” bewailing their fate at the hands of selfish old people I will have to shout very loudly “If your generation had bothered to vote as the old people did you would not be in this mess” Its democracy, you have to vote , petitions afterwards to parliament do not work.

    I appear to have donned my brisk grandmother’s mantle but given that my second computer in 6 months died yesterday and I have had to reinstall everything, including Windows 10 onto a new (second hand ) laptop using Somerset broadband I feel that a certain briskness is in order.

    The weather is indeed terrible but the cucumbers in the greenhouse are going mad. Something is eating one of my four pots of runner beans, which meant I have had to move it (the other three pots were doing fine until one blew over in yesterdays storms.)

    We are now self sufficient in salad so let the politicians do their worst, we wont die of scurvy!

    • disgruntled says:

      I suppose in this climate, any straw is worth clutching at – especially those living abroad or here from elsewhere. But yes, no point pointing the finger at each other now

  10. wisob says:

    To be fair, Scots would have reacted with glee at England loosing to Iceland regardless of what else was going on in the world (just don’t mention the Faeroe Islands…)
    Having been thoroughly shocked and depressed I’ve now stuck my head in the sand and am keeping it there, unless and until I can find something useful to do about the situation.

  11. Kathleen says:

    I share your angst “from across the pond.” Our upcoming US election leaves little hope for the sane — well, almost sane — among us. I may need something stronger than tea. Your blog, however, is always the high point of my day. Keep pedaling.

  12. Andy in Germany says:

    Apparently I’m not the only Brit applying for citizenship in Germany either. It seems anyone who can get out is trying…

  13. northernbike says:

    I’ve been close to tears too and don’t think I can ever come to terms with it so not sure what state I’ll be in after it’s all dragged on for another two or three years. It’s a tragedy and I feel very fearful of the future and disorientated now that so many, including quite a few people I know seem to hold values so distant from my own. I feel like a foreigner in my own country. I can entirely understand why Scotland will want out of the whole mess and can only wish them well in that

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