Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Pants on Fire

I am having very bad anger management issues today so I may be even more fractious and flippant than usual, if such a thing is possible. Could somebody please have the Guinness Book of World Records people on standby just in case I burst through the core of my own ill temper. Thank you. I find it is better not to get more than one rejection a day. That extra one seems to tip you over the edge somehow. It begins to look like a conspiracy and I start to wonder if everyone in the world is related to Flavia Spamidoni – don’t ask. Even my much anticipated vegetable box from Abel & Cole was full of odd items like red cabbage and beetroot. I made borscht and sauerkraut. It did not lift my mood in the way that say a nice plate of Jerusalem artichoke and fennel might have done.

My patience, which incidentally is so rare it is valued more highly than Beluga caviar in some royal houses, has been virtually exhausted by the interminability of waiting for the year to crank itself up. Does it always take this long to get going? I’m usually still sunning myself in southeast Queensland at this time of year, admiring my tan and flat tummy. There is a brief respite at Christmas where a small quantity of fish and cake is on offer but my mother feeds us only grass and cardboard for the duration of the holiday season. If you are looking to drop a dress size in under an hour, it is the perfect regime.

It’s taken me most of the day in fleeting glances at BBC News 24 in between painful novel editing to find a subject that I could be even vaguely engaged by. I’m swearing off politics for the remainder of the week as I became convinced I was schizophrenic. Separation from reality can apparently be induced by over-exposure to people who are frequent flyers to the twilight zone. As Kant said ‘An intelligent child who is brought up with a mad child can go mad.’ I have at last found something to talk about, although it sounds like a bit of a tempest in a teacup to me.

The House of Lords is gearing up for a challenge to the proposed new Sexual Orientation Regulations which are scheduled to become law in England in April. The regulations have already been introduced in Northern Ireland as of 1st January this year. The BBC reports,

‘Critics say the regulations would mean hotels could not refuse to provide rooms for gay couples, and religious groups would be obliged to rent out halls for gay wedding receptions’.

I’m having a little bit of a problem working out if time is going backwards or not at the moment. I should never have persevered with Torchwood – the long term side effects can be debilitating. Forgive me, but isn’t it already against the law to discriminate against gay people in the service industries? I gather that these new regulations are an overt statement of the obvious to prevent particularly thick rednecks from popping up shingles warning ‘no gays’ outside their B&Bs.

As a former hotel manager I would suggest that it’s not a good idea to go into the hotel business unless you are quite flexible in your attitudes towards personal behaviour. If you can’t cope with the idea of people having same sex between your perfectly starched sheets then you are probably going to find some of the more eccentric practises of human beings when they are holiday extremely challenging and may find the funeral game more to your tastes. Anyway, what about the YMCA, a Christian organisation synonymous with young men sharing travel adventures?

There’s a candlelit vigil in front of the House of Lords where the debate is raging tonight. Perhaps protesters will burn copies of A Suitable Boy to keep warm. According to the BBC, hoteliers are not the only pious business people who may be cast into nightmarish commercial transactions,

‘Some also argue a Christian, Jewish or Muslim printer could be legally forced to print a flyer for a gay night club, or a teacher would have to break the law to promote heterosexual marriage over homosexual civil partnership.’

God forbid! Quite literally apparently. Do printers really have to stand in the way of a regulation designed simply to stop people from being arseholes to other people in order to refuse work? Couldn’t they just say they were busy for the next six months or quote a ludicrous price or pretend they’d run out of Pantone 1767? And what’s the thing with teachers all about? I don’t actually think they are allowed to offer themselves for marriage within the classroom. I know Juliette Fleapants married our maths teacher but I’m pretty sure he waited until she’d finished school to ask her.

The rally has been organised by the Lawyers’ Christian Fellowship and although I haven’t actually read the regulations, I am forming the impression that they probably read like some sort of instruction, or imperative even. This would be in character with central Government's usual modus operandi. One of the organisers, barrister Thomas Cordrey told the BBC,

‘Christians have no desire to discriminate unjustly on the grounds of sexual orientation, but they cannot and must not be forced to actively condone and promote sexual practices which the Bible teaches are wrong.’

Has someone got the wrong end of the dildo do you suppose? Surely no hair-shirted hotelier need perish from anguish at the prospect of being deluged by gays whose mission in life is to tempt them into breaking a law. Stand down the catacomb builders because unless your hotel is on Mykonos or Fire Island you probably have nothing to fear. If you are indeed a hideous homophobic host in Horsham, I’m guessing that gay people would probably rather miss Eurovision than give you any of their money and they probably know about you already. Now if you will excuse me, I have rage to process...

Picture of The Village People from


Fringe Poet said...

Gosh. You have come back raging. Hope you had a good break! Sorry you got two rejections in one day. That is pants. I got three in one day once - a record I hope.

That's so pants said...

Hi FP. Nice to hear from you too and a Happy New Year. Three in one day - ouch. I would be suicidal. I too hope it's a record.

Reading the Signs said...

But you send your work out. That's the part I'd like to get to more than once in a blue moon. I hope you keep on doing it and that the time comes when it pays off. Meanwhile keep raging - and writing.