19 June, 2011



I'll let you into a little secret. When visiting CiF, I don't always read the OP, or "above the line article" as it now seems to be called in CiFspeak. Sometimes a glance at the title, standfirst and author's name is quite enough to get the gist of the likely argument. You can then proceed straight to the below-the-line ding-dong where all the fun is and pick up the detail as you go along.

But today's Slutwalk piece by Selma James is a lulu and needs to be read and savoured. A confused rant by a superannuated 1970s ultrafeminist trying to relive her glory days, it attempts to namecheck what must be every "issue" Selma has been interested in over the last 50 years, whether relevant to whatever Slutwalk is about (what is it about?) or not.

I've not read identity-politics bollocks of this quality since I was a hairy lefty 68er myself, rioting (well, in a safe consensual way of course — more arm-waving and chanting than anything else) on the campuses of Germany 45 years ago. It was quite a nostalgia trip. Quoting from it doesn't do it justice. Read the whole thing.

Anyway, I did get to the pub yesterday as planned. Unfortunately there was a total dearth of fit young totty, so I was unable to implement my masterplan of cultivating a warm aura of smug self-righteousness by manfully (if that's the right word) restraining my inner rapist in their presence.

There was a hen party though. You could tell that because they all had the words "Hen Party" printed on the back of their identical sweatshirts. Otherwise the gathering of, shall we say, amply fed ladies in their 40s and 50s was remarkably sedate, rather like an office Christmas drink-up that's still at the careful stage. They eventually tottered off, presumably in search of a further helping of quiet conviviality in another hostelry.

And there was a small party of friends celebrating someone's birthday. According to the balloon attached to the birthday girl's coat she was 60 yesterday. Strange feeling, being older than someone just now celebrating their 60th. But I did manage to resist the temptation to make some patronizing quip or other.

And there were some very mildly rowdy Millwall fans attempting to engage in mddle-aged banter with the hens.

You never knew Greenwich could be so exciting, did you?

Still, the Polish lager was up to scratch. Bit hard to cock up really; it comes in 500ml bottles and you store it in the chiller cabinet until sold.

Articles of this 'quality' are one of the reasons I stopped visiting CiF.

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