A Rant at Modern Life

I’ve just been watching the news. It seems that “news” is a report of Dame Judy Dench eating 100 Maltesers as part of the Captain Tom 100 Challenge, a report from a woman who nearly died of Covid, but didn’t, and a report about a Covid memorial at St Paul’s Cathedral.

None of that, to me is news. It’s entertainment or current affairs.

Sport pulling out of social media is news, though I’m cynical about how it will work out. And someone drowning in the Thames whilst attempting to save a woman who fell in, is also news. It’s very selective news though, with a narrow focus on the man who drowned, and not on the man who also jumped in but didn’t drown.

There are plenty of options for rewarding this sort of bravery, including medals of the Royal Humane Society. In 1882 the Assistant Manager of London’s Lyceum Theatre dived into the Thames in an attempt to save a man from drowning. He was given the bronze medal of the society, though he’s better known for something else. He wrote Dracula.

Sorry if I seem a little cynical at the moment but I’ve just been dealing with some paperwork relating to my dad’s probate. I have just seen a life reduced to numbers and his wife of  62 years described as a tenant in common. As the icing on the cake there is a monitoring form at the end, asking if I, amongst other things, am black or white and whether I consider myself to be disabled. There are questions about gender too. I didn’t understand them.

It’s a waste of time effort and trees. Even if you do find that Death is racist, homophobic and doesn’t like cripples, what are you going to do about it?

And who thought it was appropriate to attach the questionnaire to the probate papers?

21 thoughts on “A Rant at Modern Life

  1. Helen

    Oh my word – why oh why does everything have to be ‘equality’ monitored? So someone can agonise over why there aren’t enough black wheelchair users going through probate?

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      I can se why they want to ensure equality of recruiting, for instance, but equality of probate? We ar in danger of reducing people to numbers, and nobody really cares about the lives behind the numbers.

  2. tootlepedal

    It probably matters more if you are the one who is gender fluid than if you are the one who is confident of their own status.

    Adding the questionnaire to the probate papers may well be a government wheeze to appear to be doing something without actually doing anything.

    Life does become complicated and often tedious when you have to take other people’s needs and wants into consideration. Marriage is hard enough and there is usually only one other to think about there but I totally agree about Power Point presentations. There is no need for them at all.

  3. charliecountryboy

    Even through all that you can make me smile (a little) Hope the holiday weekend improves. By the way I’ve been informed at a training day in college there are 91 genders… I didn’t ask as it was on a PowerPoint and lost interest after the 2nd slide.

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      The ability to ignore PowerPoint is, I believe, what is known as a “real world” skill. So is cheering people up, and you managed it with your description of the training session. That, as the non-PC Mr Punch would say, is the way to do it.

      I’ve noticed in the shop that when you give someone too much choice things get out of hand. After the first half dozen genders I begin to lose the ability to differentiate and after the next half dozen I begin to lose the ability to care. I am not a nice man and I am seriously considering declaring war on the modern world. Quite frankly, we live in a world where we can’t ensure our kids are properly fed, so why should I care if someone feels slighted because I fail to grasp the differences between “gender fluid”, “gender variant” and “middle class tosser”?

      1. charliecountryboy

        Dear Lord, a half dozen? I got to three and I have certificate to show I’ve been trained. I have to agree. I wouldn’t lose sleep over the not caring, I very much doubt a gender variant person cares that I’m heterosexual (Can I say that?)

        Yes choice is bad, I remember a time when you ordered a pint of bitter, mild or lager. Now I feel I need a degree in chemistry on the odd time I visit a pub 😂

      2. quercuscommunity Post author

        Yes, pubs are a lot more confusing than they used to be. Most things, to be fair, are. However, whereas I need to know about pubs because I may occasionally experiment with different types of bitter, I don’t feel the need to learn about other matters where my mind is made up. 🙂

        Have to admit I started om lager before moving on to bitter, and did experiment with mild when bitter went up to 26p a pint. At 24p you could still get four for a pound!

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      I’ve been lucky as my sister has taken most of it on – that’s probably why it hit me so hard last night. Things will pass and the good memories will remain. 🙂

  4. Laurie Graves

    “Even if you do find that Death is racist, homophobic and doesn’t like cripples, what are you going to do about it?” There surely is a lot packed in that one sentence. Sigh.


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