Saturday, January 13, 2007

What on earth do you talk about if you can't talk about

.....just back from a night out with my pal Yasmin. Yas is a playwright so lots of her pals are luvvies, plus - or including - a few journalists. During a very pleasant meal at St John's in Archway, and having caught up with her exciting lovelife, I was in the middle of a detailed explanation of why we couldn't look at reforming the benefits system without considering whether the levels of benefit were adequate......when I noticed she was grinning broadly. No, it wasn't at something that was happening behind was me! She explained that whilst listening to my fascinating exposition she had been reminded of something one of her journo pals had said last night. Namely that politicians were so boring since all they could talk about was......politics. I had one of those dreadful moments of self enlightenment - my heart sank...but but I talk about other things...don't I? Yas challenged me on the football - what did I know about football - well I know about Luton Town.....recently? Er......more Luton Town in the 70's I had to confess. I spent the rest of the evening frantically trying to think about the other things I could talk about. The financial sector? Yes but it would be hard to discuss the high levels of personal debt and financial exclusion without running into the nonsensical contradictory policies of the Labour government. The army? Yes but that would inevitably lead on to at least a cursory consideration of government policy on Iraq, the role of the MOD and.........Trident? What about my accidents, they were always good for a Linda, we don't want people to get the mistaken impression you are accident prone do we???

I found myself on the train home thinking about this, I do have other interests don't I? I don't view everything through some primose or nasturtium tinted political prism do I? But then I caught myself mentally bemoaning the fact that the train was cold and cramped and took far too long to get back to Bedford and that any notion of choice was totally facile because not only did I not have a choice of trains I didn't have a choice about having to pay a wacking £95 a week for the privilege of practising being a sardine for three hours a day! Oh and wasn't deregulation of the buses the biggest mistake ever?

Then the phone rang - it was my Toryboy pal Andrew McConnell. He was on a later train than me, he had only reached Mill Hill whilst I had made it all the way to Flitwick. He was the dirty stop out! Did we talk about, well his first question was, what are you doing at the weekend - out delivering leaflets? His second comment was to complain about me having signed a "yellow peril" - call in notice, over his appointment to a committee...........

Still, no worries, tomorrow night I am out for dinner, so that will give me plenty of interesting things to talk about. Oh, did I not mention, its our annual dinner, with none other than the incredible Mr Huhne speaking...........and on Sunday I will look into the possibility of taking up an extreme sport.....any suggestions???

1 comment:

Duncan Borrowman said...

Among other things my brother in law is an extreme sports coach - he is a former Olympic skier and coach and can teach you to jump off the top of a mountain with a paraglider (he'll even film you on the way down. But you need to go to Australia!