May 24th, 2014



UKIP stumbles from gaffe to gaffe, its policies are ill-thought out and ridiculously right-wing and most of its personnel are plonkers, but none of this has stopped it from triumphing in the elections.  Nigel Farage is like one of those cartoon characters who gets blown up every 30 seconds and still keeps on coming.  Why this indestructability? I think it's obvious. He's just about the only contemporary British politician who doesn't talk like a sat-nav. 

Never Let Me Go: Kazuo Ishiguro

I wasn't sure about this book. I'd read reviews and knew what the big reveal was and didn't think I was going to be convinced by it. But I was. It's a book about denial, about horrors being glossed over- and the narrator's voice- flat, colourless, without affect- is a tour de force of subtlety and restraint. 

Summing Up

We came north when we did so Ailz could spend time with her mother around the anniversary of her father's death. It's two years now. Dot has moved on a little and has a seaside holiday planned- but ...

That'll do. I don't like the woman. Better, really, to keep to the facts and eschew any commentary.

Coming up this week meant I was able to vote in the elections. Ailz has a postal vote but I like the ritual of the booth, the pencil on a string, the big tin box, the loiterers with their rosettes. I'd feel short changed if all I had to do was mark a paper that came in the post and then post it back out again.

Of course it would be fairer, cheaper, more democratic to hold elections on line.

A bonus was getting to see Joe, Vicky and Aria. And not once, but twice. We went up to Lancashire this morning to repay the visit they made here on Monday. Joe has a big screen linked to an x-box and was playing us tunes off Youtube. Let me see if I can remember what we saw. First there was a Japanese girl band- combining Hello Kitty cuteness with heavy metal, then a bald guy in a white top hat, and then the Rev Peyton and his Big Damn Band. The Rev has a beard a blackbird could nest in and a wife who strums a washboard- and his sound is a bit country, a bit blues, a bit rock, a bit skiffle and all very deep South. I keep telling myself I should listen to more contemporary stuff, but once you've gotten off the ride it's very hard to get back on again. So much music in so many different genres! Where do you start?