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Tony Grist

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Panhandlers [Oct. 6th, 2012|04:04 pm]
Tony Grist
Saturday is when the panhandlers are out in force. We were leaving Asda when Ailz got snagged by a woman recruiting for the Friends of the Canal and River Trust. If I understood the spiel they're sort of like the National Trust only for wet stuff. If I'd been the one who got snagged I'd have smiled and made my excuses but Ailz is made of gentler stuff. We're now members. I suppose I'm happy about it. I like canals. They're photogenic.

I left Ailz in the car at B & Q. On the way in I was greeted by a member of staff who was raffling a hideous garden ornament for some good cause or other. I was polite but firm. On the way out I had to run the gauntlet of a bunch of sad looking, uniformed young people with buckets. They were collecting for the Air Cadets. I'm not at all sure I approve of the Air Cadets. Kids should be hanging out on street corners outraging the middle-aged, not learning to be instruments of the State. I put my head down, clutched my bag of compost to my chest and hurried past.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: ingenious76
2012-10-06 03:46 pm (UTC)
I'm not entirely sure why you have a problem with the Air Cadets. The kids I've taught who have been cadets generally have been resourceful, responsible, and resilent - qualities that are generally lacking in today's youth. Is that such a bad thing?
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-10-06 03:56 pm (UTC)
Possibly not.

I just don't like uniforms.
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[User Picture]From: heleninwales
2012-10-07 01:42 pm (UTC)
I don't like military-based youth organisations either.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-10-07 02:32 pm (UTC)
Apart from a very brief stint in the Cub Scouts I managed to keep out of them.
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[User Picture]From: veronica_milvus
2012-10-06 03:57 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry that happened. But rest assured, the Canal and River Trust will be lovely. My friend Jo Bell, who lives on a canal boat, has just been appointed Canal Laureate. Perhaps you might be prevailed upon to send her a Manchester Ship Canal poem?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2012/oct/04/jo-bell-canal-laureate-national-poetry-day
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-10-06 06:38 pm (UTC)
We may be inspired to go walk along some tow paths.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-10-06 06:38 pm (UTC)
Not much of a choice...
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-10-06 06:53 pm (UTC)
He chose wisely then.
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[User Picture]From: pondhopper
2012-10-06 05:45 pm (UTC)
Sometimes it's really hard to avoid all the people wanting money for their cause. I've developed a stony look that keeps most form even approaching me. Or I pretend to be talking on my mobile as I go past them. It works.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-10-06 06:41 pm (UTC)
Good tactics- both of them.
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[User Picture]From: daisytells
2012-10-06 05:55 pm (UTC)
In 1956-1958 I was in the Civil Air Patrol here in the States. I assume it is the equivalent of your Air Cadets. However, we did not fund raise or panhandle.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-10-06 06:41 pm (UTC)
It sounds like the same kind of outfit.
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[User Picture]From: huskyteer
2012-10-09 08:55 pm (UTC)
I was in the ATC for a couple of years. Hated the drill, the uniform and the bizarre emphasis on boot-polishing, but I got to fly Chipmunks and gliders and, on summer camp, go up in a Hercules, a Chinook and a VC-10 tanker.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2012-10-10 10:19 am (UTC)
I guess it was worth paying the price. :)
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[User Picture]From: endlessrarities
2012-10-17 07:10 pm (UTC)
Mr Telford would be immensely proud of you!!!
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