Revolution is in the blood

Twisty, for the second or third time since I have known him, carefully enunciated the words ‘Poor People’ at me, as if I could not possibly know what this means.


Considering the last twenty years, let alone the ones before that, I have no idea why my friends continue to maintain this assumption of my privilege.  Privilege in Glasgow means that you do not get the help everyone else is entitled to, because someone was stupid enough to work and earn money, that you do not get jobs you are well qualified for, on the grounds that someone else would benefit more from them than you would, and even if you do manage to scrape your way into something just to pay your way, the people working with you make all sorts of assumptions about you based on your ‘posh accent.’ You get tired of explaining yourself, so you end up assuming that most people are going to be assholes no matter what you say to them.  They are very welcome to the imaginary chip on their usually better paid shoulders.


My American, and some of my English readers, on hearing my voice, may not necessarily pick up on my ‘posh accent.’  The accent was acquired via a mother who, having been brought up by an enterprising widow, was determined that her little angels would start in life with a carefully maintained avoidance of the guttural notes that Glasgow is famous for. I also travelled for ten years, so a mangling of regional accents contributed to the current voice. More discerning listeners tend to pick up on these, but most of the time, it is better to just avoid people and their stupid assumptions altogether.


My father liked to circulate conflicting stories about his family.  It was not until tonight that I found out that he had not even told my mother much about them.   When my father fell in love with and bought this house, most of his family told him not to bother them again.  It was just not part of the communist pose or very serious religious ethic to go falling in love with beautiful houses.


I took a look online tonight to see if anything had been added about my famous great grandfather.  As luck would have it, not only was I able to rule out one of the stories dad liked to laughingly tell us, I was able to ascertain why my mother was ‘kept away from the rest of the family.’  My father, a quiet conscientious objector who defended himself in court and spent WW2 working for the forestry commission and taking care of the single women left over from WW1 in his family, was the grandson of Glasgow’s last great revolutionary.


No wonder his family were so embarrassed when dad fell in love with a house, and a woman who was not only Tory, but determined to pop out as many babies as possible.  He was rebelling against a bunch of revolutionaries.  I am now less surprised that he felt the best course of action was just to keep his mouth shut and work like fury.  How embarrassing to be the black sheep of a rather famous politically radical family.  I am more proud of him than ever.


One thing my father gave me, was a healthy disrespect of authority and from an early age I was very much aware, despite his quiet attitude, that everything was to be questioned, and nothing was as it seemed.  My mother and him happily argued for decades, whilst maintaining a shell that protected them from the children from hell that they brought into the world.  They were fortunate to have a house large enough for most problems to simply disappear into another room until it was safely quiet again.


Having spent most of my life shocking people that have known me for years if I bother to explain who my family is, little knowing that even my mother did not know, I have a better attitude than Twisty when people set out to wind me up with their ill conceived nonsense.  I am getting less tolerant of people however, which concerns me.  Lack of tolerance and patience is a sign of aging.  The sooner I get the next project underway the better.


Twisty’s comment on my Conservative blog posts was that I sounded like ‘Thatcher with a dash of Bolshevik.’  That makes perfect genetic, never mind ideological sense.


There is no excuse for putting a cross on a voting slip next to a party which has functioned like a death cult.  Politics is for the service of the people, not for turning a blind eye to the purging of the disabled.  The Conservative administration should be on trial, not sitting in government.  If you agree to what they have done, you are no better than they are.


Please frack Edinburgh Central first, Ruth. I look forward to seeing tanks in Haymarket.

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