Speedysnail

The Situation

I’ve been wanting to write a longer entry here for weeks, rather than just post Covid-19 links and the like, but the situation has conspired against me. Like millions of other parents, including my wife, I’m attempting to juggle working from home with home-schooling and entertaining two kids, and have had little time or energy to write anything for myself; but it hasn’t just been that. It’s that what I’d be writing about is both too personal, unsettling, and momentous, and, at a time when millions are sharing the same experience, too generic, ordinary, and obvious.

But one day I’ll want to look back over this blog to remind myself what we were all going through and what I thought of it all, assuming I’m still here. So I’ll try to capture some of it.

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5 April 2020

Two Metres Apart

Queue at Sainsbury's
Sainsbury’s Murrayfield, Edinburgh, Friday 27 March 2020

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28 March 2020

Empty Shelves

Empty Shelves
Tesco Hermiston Gait, Edinburgh, Monday 16 March 2020

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17 March 2020

Castle Terrace

Edinburgh Castle
Edinburgh, 7 March 2020

Such a great place to photograph Edinburgh Castle from. But yes, there really is a car park in the way.

11 March 2020

The Ministry of Housinge

David Allen Green wrote recently on the conceptual problem of the TV licence, which is under attack by the government as a way of punishing the BBC for its lack of ideological fervour for Brexit. The licencing scheme is certainly problematic, and when I first moved here I couldn’t see why the UK kept it over a system of funding via general taxation. But the Tories are contemplating a model of private subscriptions, not general taxation, and a flat tax licence is better than starving the BBC to death. What a miserable prospect a Britain with no Beeb would be.

28 February 2020

No Deal Strikes Back

The odds of No Deal at the end of 2020 have shortened considerably in the past week or two, even if the government is refusing to call it that. It’ll be more or less certain if we pass 30 June with no UK request to extend transition, but given the tone of current government rhetoric it’s already the way to bet. Why would Johnson sacrifice his reputation among Leavers by accepting a compromise deal when he can look tough by rejecting one? (The major betting sites don’t seem to have this on their radar at the moment. All they’re taking bets on is when the UK will rejoin the EU and which country will leave it next.)

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28 February 2020

Backs to the Future

Memories of England in better times, when HMV and Parrot Records were full of Carter USM albums emblazoned with the flag of Europe. I spent one of the happiest nine months of my life studying here as a Masters student, thinking deep thoughts, making good friends, performing onstage. I carried my 35mm camera around at times, taking about a hundred photos of the town over the course of those nine months, another laughably small number compared with what I would have taken in digital. I’ve finally scanned them and sorted them into a gallery for Detail. Take a punt:

Cambridge

1 February 2020

Hangover

I saw in 11 p.m. last night by watching Rocketman. In hindsight, it seems appropriate to have been watching a movie about someone who started out full of talent and promise, grew insanely rich, spent a few years going off the deep end in a coke-fuelled frenzy, and ended up in rehab.

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1 February 2020

Not With a Bong But With a Whimper

Rat’s coat, crowskin, crossed staves

A Metafilter post on today’s main event.

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31 January 2020 · 1 Comment