Wednesday, 7 December 2011

Merry Christmas!

Dear readers

I've decided to take a break from my blog until the new year.
It's been running reasonably smoothly since June 2008, so I think I deserve a little holiday from it, don't you?
I'll be using that time to concentrate solely on my novel, which takes significantly longer than a tweet or a blog to complete!
Thank you all for reading this year. Have a wonderful Christmas and I'll be back posting blogs in the Happy New Year.

Shop Girl X

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Dodgy Diagnosis

It was my brother's 30th birthday and we were discussing aches and pains in a restaurant in Barcelona.
“I went to a chiropractor the other day and he said I’d need to see him for 6 months," my brother said. "When I said ‘no’ he messed my back up out of spite.”
“They don’t recognize it as a treatment here in Spain,” his girlfriend said.
“It hurts every morning now,” my brother said. “I was fine before, I only went because I thought it was good for you.”
The waitress came over and my brother’s vegetarian girlfriend asked if the rigatoni a la putanesca contained meat.
The waitress shook her head, “No…only bacon”
We exchanged baffled looks. Only in Spain, we all thought. His girlfriend chose a salad instead and the topic moved onto dentists.
On my last visit the dentist had said there was decay under my fillings and I’d need to replace them.
I had one nice white filling and one nasty grey filling. To spread the cost I decided to have one done now and one later.
By the time I realized he’d chosen to replace the nice white filling instead of the more obvious antique grey one, he was already poking metal instruments in my mouth and I couldn’t talk.
“When will I need to do the other one?” I’d asked, once he’d finished.
“Soon,” he’d said. “The other filling is worse than the one I’ve just done.”
The table shared my frustration and we all ‘grrrd’ in unison.
“Well when we went to the dentist he told us we had to sleep with special gum guards on,” my brother’s girlfriend said. “Apparently we grind our teeth in our sleep.”
“Can you imagine how sexy that’d be drooling everywhere when we said goodnight to eachother?” my brother said and he pretended he had the gum guards on as he leant over to his girlfriend, “Goo’ ni’ daaa’ ing”
“Goo’ niii’” she mock spluttered back.
My cousin then recounted the time when her dentist had recorded her oral problems into his dictorphone as she sat in the chair beside him.
“The teeth will return to their position after two years,” he’d said, “as the patient has a GINORMOUS tongue.”
To make it worse, an osteopath had then told her that her head was too big for her neck.
“But that’s ridiculous, what are you supposed to do about that?” I cried.
“Take steroids,” my husband said, “to get a body builder’s neck.”
My husband’s own dentist had told him when he was little, that he would need a chin implant when he got older.
“Not that I might need a chin plant, that I would have to have one.”
My husband’s chin is just as a chin should be.
“The problem is we don’t know any better!” I said. “We don’t know when they’re right or wrong.”
The rigatoni a la putanesca arrived.
At least in food we could make a correct diagnosis.
My husband looked at it with great disappointment.
The plate of pasta twirls was covered in pesto and grated Parmesan; there was no rigatoni, no putanesca and not a bit of bacon in sight.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Note to Self

I realise I’m procrastinating when I find myself wiping down my keyboard with a cotton bud.
Don’t try it at home. It just spreads dust from one key to the other.
When I set myself an amount of words to write, I get those words written. If I don’t set myself a deadline, no one else will.
I’m fifty words away from completing my target but I’ve stopped to play with a cotton bud.
It’s because I’m feeling hypersensitive about a comment I received on my blog.
The reader wrote that he didn’t agree with my recent views and that I was getting sloppy.
It’s good that people have different opinions and express them. In fact I wish the author of the comment would get a blog going so I could read what he has to say more fully.
Alas, not everyone has time to write a blog. You’d be surprised how many hours they take.
Which is why it’s irritating when a reader only comments when they don’t like the post.
Criticism doesn’t succeed in its aims without encouragement.
My writers group (who meet monthly) is ruthless with their feedback but when I leave, though I may want to temporarily burn my manuscript, I feel good because I know and they know it’s because I can do better.
To help me get through my novel, I began the ‘Enough is Enough Writing Group’ with a fellow writer, who was fed up of procrastinating. It consists literally in the two of us getting together every two weeks and reading through each other’s chapters.
The energy that our meetings produce and the motivation we feel afterwards is enough for us to power through to the next stage.
I really recommend to anyone struggling through a project, whatever it may be, to join forces with someone like-minded.
But choose wisely.
If you find yourself coming away from a session with them, feeling as flat as road kill in the middle of the motorway, then they are not the right people for you.
Find someone who’ll make you fight for what you want, not someone who’ll leave you pondering the efficacy of a cotton bud.

Sunday, 16 October 2011

Occupy London - Day 1

Photo by Elizabeth Hacker
‘There are none so hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free’ - Goethe

Saturday marked the beginning of Occupy London.
My cousin and I sat alongside thousands of other people in front of St Paul’s Cathedral.
A People’s Assembly was set in motion.
These assemblies have been taking place in Spain and Greece since spring.
They discuss the reasons why we are there and the practicalities of occupying the space.
With only a weak loudspeaker, it was difficult to hear so people echoed the speaker and passed the words through the crowd.
Why were we all there?
For some people the catalyst was the bail-out of the banks, others have been feeling uneasy about the system for much longer.
What unite the protesters are the questions and answers they are waking up to.
Is our democracy a real democracy?
Does our government work for us or for financial corporations?
We’re told that cuts need to be made to our public services because of massive national debt and yet there’s no law in place to stop an estimated 18 billion pounds being lost in tax havens ever year.
The Assembly suggested splitting into different groups: Shelter, Toilet, Food and Drink, Internal Affairs, External Affairs, Media, Legal Advice and Liaison.
“This movement is about empowering each one of us,” a girl said, in our group.
On one level, the message is simple. We need to take care of each other.
“People over Profits!” the protesters chanted in America.
Across the world people from of all walks of life came out to protest.
‘This is the Ethical revolution,’ a sign said.
My cousin and I didn’t camp out at St Paul’s. We were ill-equipped and went to leave at 6 o’clock.
Three lines of police refused to let us go home, though there were only a handful of us in the alley way.
“It’s not kettling,” one snapped at us. “It’s containment.”
It looked more like a power trip to us.
We waited patiently, knowing that if we were calm, they would have nothing to react against.
“Why did you come here?” one said to us. “You know protests all end up with you all getting kettled.”
“Contained,” his colleague corrected.
My cousin quickly reminded him that, without protests, we wouldn’t have the rights we have today. She reminded him women may not have got the vote.
“Women got the vote but they still can’t drive,” the second policeman scoffed.
“It was new back then,” the first policeman said, referring to demonstrations. “Now it’s old hat.”
“I just don’t know why you came,” the first one said.
His statement summed up what he thought a protester was; a scruffy, aggressive, negative, trouble maker whose actions were uncalled for.
In the demonstrations in Barcelona, I saw a sign that read, ‘You don’t have to have dreadlocks to join this revolution.’
This is a global movement. It is open to and for all humanity and no one should feel intimidated if they choose to show their solidarity.
Frankly, I hope standing up for what you believe in never becomes old hat.

Demonstrations around the World on 15th October:

SPAIN - Madrid


USA - New York

Friday, 7 October 2011

Death of a Sales Mouse

We found him under the floorboards, without a head.
At the time we were decorating the rooms above our shop. Alfie was laying new floor and I was painting walls.
He might have been there since the 30’s when there were still trams running through Tower Bridge Road.
He wouldn’t say. He was a vain mouse and he didn’t want to admit his age.
He looked at me, with his tail, and sighed.
“Don’t look at me like I’m the odd one. You’re entire world has lost its head.”
“What do you mean?” I said.
“Money,” he said. “You’ve lost it all. The banks are empty and they want it back.”
Alfie didn’t have time for a talking mouse skeleton and put him back under the floorboards.
But perhaps the mouse knew something.
Yesterday the prime minister came close to telling us we should all pay off our credit card debts.
At the last moment he was warned that such absurd advice was a threat to the country’s economy and he must reword his speech at once.
The economy depends on growth and to grow we must spend money, even if we don’t have it.
It doesn’t want us to fear debt.
The economy would like us to hunger for possessions so that we’ll use our credit cards and pay five times the value of the item in interest.
The advice Cameron was supposed to give was: Be greedy, go out and buy like you’ve never bought before.
If you worry, if you can’t sleep at night because of nightmares full of machete wielding credit cards, then you should be happy that at least you’re helping the economy.
“Beware! It is a trap.” From beneath the floorboards I heard the Sales Mouse whisper. “Who is benefitting from this system? If you don’t ask questions you could lose your head!”
“What?” I cried, as my paintbrush dribbled duck egg blue onto my jeans. “Tell me the answer!”
But he did not reply. He was quite dead.
It was up to me to seek it out.

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

My Blog Mojo

I’ve always said, rather smugly, that I don’t believe in ‘Writer’s Block'. You can always write, just sometimes it’s total rubbish. Real 'Writer’s Block' requires a boxer in between you and your laptop. Yet lately I’ve been squirming as the time lapse between my blog posts grows. Have I lost my blog mojo?

After three years of writing weekly here on Shop Girl Diaries, it’s getting tough. It doesn’t help that we’ve closed our shop where all the stories came from.

I could blame twitter. Being on twitter is like standing in a room full of people shouting out random facts. Some are yelling about human rights violations, mocking politicians, analysing the economic climate and calling on fellow tweeters to stage demonstrations around the world. Others are constantly updating me with publishing news, author events, blogging tips, writing competitions and book reviews. In the middle of it all, someone dull tells me they’ve just had a cup of tea. (I delete them).

Faced with such overwhelming information, I ask myself, is there anything left to say?

Perhaps the problem is that I’m writing more than ever. Offline I’m fully immersed in my new novel. It’s cooking slowly and steadily like stew and I can’t wait to dish it up. But meanwhile a blog can’t sit around getting dusty.

The clock is ticking. I’ve got a week to find my blog mojo.

Friday, 16 September 2011

The Olympic Pressure Ride

Picture from Cycle Info

Thanks to the Mayor of London my life is at risk.
Tube fares are due to increase by 8% which means I’ll shortly be forced to ride a bicycle.
My last memory of being on a bike, I was about twelve years old and struggling up a hill behind my brother.
The pedals were clearly cemented in position. I was going so slowly my bike was falling to one side.
‘Leave me here! I can’t go on!’ I sobbed. ‘Just go! Save yourself!’
My teenage brother had to deal with my whimpering for a good hour. It was the longest journey of his life.
In a city of eight million, hills are the least of my concern.
Cars scare me and buses scare me. Even confident cyclists scare me.
But most of all, Elephant & Castle roundabout scares me.
Crossing this roundabout as a pedestrian is a feat in itself as you have to orientate yourself through its underbelly of spooky subways.
I shudder when I think of going around it on wheels.
Today I saw a government poster encouraging the public to get back into cycling.
The poster showed three smiling children and their smiling father, cycling up a tree-lined pathway. I don’t believe there is a tree-lined pathway linking my house to any of the places I need to go on a weekly basis.
The price rise is to fund transport improvements in preparation for the Olympics.
I have never been bah humbug about The Games coming to London, but this crippling increase doesn’t seem fair at all, especially since the majority of Londoners were unable to secure tickets.
Frankly, in the spirit of the Olympics, visitors should have to run everywhere.
London transport is already the most expensive in Europe.
If it goes up any more then we must take a stand. That won’t be hard in rush hour.

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Mental Block and the Extraterrestrials

“It’s all a learning curve,” My Mum says.

I had rung her in an emergency, hoping she could offer me the verbal cure to mental block.

If writer’s block leads to a failure to produce anything new, mental block leads to a failure to do anything at all.

Mental Block hit me today as I stood under a smoky bridge on Old Street.

I had 250 flyers in my bag to promote my workshop and I didn’t want to move.

The sky was a dull white blanket again; the worst August since the beginning of time.
Like being in a depressed person’s head, a friend described it.

All around me there were bars and pubs and café’s. All full of potential people who might reject my handsome flyer.

Mental block naturally sees a glass half empty. In fact, it sees a half empty glass as a glass with a little dribble of backwash at the bottom.

So there I was, rooted to the spot, utterly frustrated by my metamorphosis into a complete wuss.

What was it? Had all my childhood shyness come back to haunt me?

All I wanted to do was to go home and lie under my duvet for the rest of eternity.

My life flashed before me, not only what had been, but what would be.

I envisioned myself with grey hair still talking about Shop Girl Diaries at parties, the one and only book I would ever write.

And as I was sinking into despair, I saw two extraterrestrials walking towards me in the distance.

They were green and blue and fluffy and at least 6 foot tall.

As they drew nearer I saw they had human eyes and human noses sticking out of gaps in the techni- colour fabric.

And on their backs were string bags...
loaded with leaflets!

Oh god, I thought, I could be wearing that!

It dawned on me then that it wasn’t so bad. I was doing this for myself!

I read our Stim.u.lus workshops motto and remembered what it was all about.
U-inspire U-motivate U-create U-develop U-stimulate

U don’t give up under a polluted London railway bridge and retreat back to bed.

U pick yourself and U get on with it because if U want something U have to be proactive!

U got it? I did, eventually.

For more info on the blog workshops visit StimulusWorkshops

Wednesday, 17 August 2011

Limited View

I have some issues with my local cinema.
Firstly, the majority of viewers come to eat rather than to watch the film.
A surround-sound of shuffling and crackling packets makes it impossible to hear what anyone is saying for the first twenty minutes.
As the trailers begin I’m already thinking, “If I was a dictator…”
But of course, if I were a dictator I’d have more important things to do than ban noisy eaters from cinemas.
My second issue is the existence of Premier seats, those indulgent armchair seats that cost extra and take the best part of the cinema.
For me, these seats are a symbol of all that’s wrong with our society. Every square inch has a price. You can no longer have a decent seat for just turning up early.
Must every little comfort really incur a charge?
Will we soon be paying an additional charge for sitting down on a bus, and eventually for clinging onto the bar?
Next there’ll be tracks in Oxford Street. The lane nearest the shop windows will be the most expensive and the free lanes will veer in and out of the traffic.
Oh we’ll never allow that, you say.
But not so long ago we had a tax on windows. If you couldn’t pay they’d come along and brick them up.
These charges will creep in so we barely notice them, until one day we wake up and submissively pop a pound in a metre for the first breath of the day.
Last week the Premier section at my local cinema was completely empty.
A staff member sat in the aisle guarding its emptiness from people that assumed, wrongly, that their ten pound ticket entitled them to a normal position in the cinema.
Nope, ten pounds gets you a seat at the back or at the front.
It seemed churlish to stop people enjoying those seats when no one else was coming for them.
Frankly, Premier seats give me the creeps.
Elitism doesn’t belong in the cinema.

Friday, 12 August 2011

Shop Girl Diaries - The Audio Book

You're on the train, squashed in between an armpit and a rucksack.
A pony tail tickles your nose.
It belongs to a woman in front of you, who's talking (too loudly) about a wild night out.
You want to tell her it's too early to be talking about these things, but she's wearing new trainers and you're afraid.
More people squeeze in.
Even the smug people with kindles can't raise their arms to read.
You close your eyes and breath deeply.
You're so glad you decided to buy it on I-tunes.
Leaning a little on the rucksack behind you, you dig into your pocket and press play on your mobile.
The lively voice speaks into your ear... telling you a story that makes you forget where you are and where you're going.
The Audio Book has arrived.
Enjoy and please give it a good rating!

Sunday, 7 August 2011

The Current Moo-d

I’m in the mountains.
It’s where we’ll retreat to when the system crashes.
We’ve already decided how we’ll survive. We’ll get a cow in here like we did the sofa. We’ll hoist it up a four-storey building and keep it in the spare room.
We won’t eat the cow. She’ll provide the milk for our tea.
Tea is essential in a crisis.
Additional protein will come in the form of woodworm. There’s a bout of it going around the village, the man in the paint shop has never sold so much spray.
My father has one eye on the news at all times. He’s mostly interested in the stock markets, which I have yet to understand.
Meanwhile, the 15M movement that sparked the protests in Spain has spread to Israel.
In Tel Aviv 300,000 people took to the streets today in protest against high living costs.
The appeal of these movements is that it brings opposing sides together; right, left, religious, secular, Arab, Jew.
If we can transcend our differences so we can begin to listen to each other, then all the better.
Twitter went mad with tweets in Hebrew and Arabic.
Only one stood out in English: “To Israelis: when you demand your rights, remember that there are Palestinians with no rights; no voices to demand it”
Well, that’s all very well, but perhaps is too easy to point the finger at the general Israeli people.
What about the military missions of our own government? By the same judgement, we are also to blame for occupation and the murder of innocents.
Meanwhile the Pope is coming to Madrid.
Frankly, he might do better going to Somalia, which has been pushed aside to fit in all the other news. At least it might attract some media attention there.
And finally, London is burning.
So, you can see why I’m hiding away in the mountains.
I just need to find a cow.

Monday, 25 July 2011

You're the Ones that I want! (ooh ooh ooh dammit)

After watching another piece of depressing news last week, I decided to embark on a change of lifestyle.
No longer did I want to be part of our greedy, all consuming society.
From now on I wanted to live simply.
I pictured recycled trainers, homemade jeans and potatoes growing steadily in saucers under my bed.
There is a saying: when you make a decision the whole world conspires to make it happen.
This is not so if you live in London and you’re decision is not to spend any money.
My intentions were good.
I genuinely felt I didn’t need anything and that, at least, made me happy.
And then I received a reminder e-mail for a hen party
The theme was ‘Grease meets Moulin Rouge’.
I opened my wardrobe and found nothing inspiring.
“I’ll buy something from a charity shop,” I said, confidently.
I bought a top from a charity shop once.
I never wore it. A month later I gave it back to them in a bag of old clothes.
Some people love digging around in second hand shops.
Personally, I don’t like the musty smell.
Still, I thought I could change.
I headed to Camden on a mission to be resourceful and creative.
After an hour of digging through bargain baskets and rails of hideous corduroys, I’d had enough.
I’m not a patient shopper.
When I saw a whole stall dedicated to shiny leggings my heart soared.
I would look like Sandy after all!
I picked up an awful pair of leatherette leggings.
“Fifteen pounds,” the stall holder said.
It was more than I had in my account.
But I did have cash... and it was going to solve all my problems.
It wasn’t the best bartering I’d ever done.
I handed over the money.
It hit me as I walked away that I had seriously failed in my mission.
Not only had I not managed to buy something cheap, recycled or second hand, but I’d bought something that I’d probably only ever wear once.
I felt miserable as I ruminated on how my fifteen pounds could have fed half the planet.
Then I tried the leggings on.
They were deliciously dreadful.
I started to feel better.
There is a saying: You can’t do everything at once, but you can do something at once.
I decided that for today, that something would be to lighten up!

Monday, 18 July 2011

An Extract from my Novel

‘The “Discovery” of America’ by Beny Quintero

Columbus’ spirits soared as they neared land.
He’d spent a good part of the voyage worrying whether they’d find it again.
It would’ve been terribly embarrassing to return to Spain having failed to disembark for the third time.
But God Almighty had smiled upon his knackered compass.
Below fish nibbled at the ship; fish which Columbus had also discovered.
“What shall we call this new land?” called Jose Maria de la Vega, self-proclaimed champion toreador (in the children’s category) and now sailor.
“We shall call it Colombia after me!” Colombus cried.
They anchored the ship and approached the inviting beach in small boats.
It’d been an appalling journey and their bodies were broken.
They were hungry, thirsty, stinking, lice-ridden and their teeth were falling out. They threw themselves onto the sand crying with relief.
The voice had been projected through a curled up palm leaf which belonged to a short, dark-skinned man with a very round face. The sailors scrabbled to their feet, their hands instinctively reaching for their rusty knives.
The little man was suddenly joined by a large gathering of men with spears.
To the shocked Spaniards, they all looked identical.
The leader of the group marched towards the new arrivals with a brooding face.
“Right, what are you doing here?” he said. (He’d learnt the Spanish tongue from a small boy who’d miraculously appeared on the island a few years before and had become one of them.)
Colombus stepped forward, outraged at being greeted as such.
“What do you mean? I’ve just discovered this land!”
“Well that’s just being silly isn’t it? My ancestors lived here before your mother was an egg.”
“Now hang on a minute!
“Papers please.”
“What do you mean papers?”
The leader stared at Colombus frostily.
“You must have some sort of permission to be on this land. A written letter from one of the locals inviting you to a wedding perhaps?”
“No but...”
“A visa allowing you to work here because there’s absolutely no one else in the country who can do your particular job?”
Columbus sunburn grew redder as he stood there paralysed with rage.
The leader looked passed him and squinted out to sea.
“I hope you don’t mean to park that ship there forever.”
“Where else am I going to park it? We need to bring our belongings ashore.”
“What belongings? They’ll have to be inspected by customs. You can’t just bring anything in here... this is assuming you have permission to be here at all. If not, we might confiscate everything. ”
“Look here!” Columbus yelled. “This is how it works. I’ve discovered these lands and now you’re going to help me find all the gold, jewels and tobacco, which I'm then going to take back to the Queen and maybe I’ll take you with me too as my personal slave!”
“That temper isn’t going to get you any favours.”
“Give me my gold!”
“You need a license to import and export.”
“It’s my God-given right!”
“It’s not about right, it’s about licenses.”
The heat was making Columbus dizzy. He needed to kill this irritating little man but his sword was currently in the pile of flea-infested clothes which he’d ripped off in a frenzy as soon as they’d reached land.
“You must repent!” he cried, feeling faint. “You are heathens! You owe the pope gold and tobacco and strange fruit for your crimes against God!”
The leader wiped his nose then looked at his hand and frowned.
“We will have to detain you all, for illegal entry to the country, failure to supply any trading licenses, religious extremism...”
His nose was starting to run furiously. He wiped away the dribble on his upper lip.
“You will be fined and sent back home....aaargh...why is my nose doing this!”
The leader sneezed. Columbus looked at him grumpily.
“You’ve just caught a common cold, that’s all” he said.
The leader looked at him in horror then down at his hands.
Then he keeled over and died.

Thursday, 7 July 2011

I'm Sorry But...

I have a terrible confession.
I’m telling you this now because I’ve just read an article on 'poetry phobia' in a writers’ magazine.
It’s a relief to know there are other writers out there who have the same ‘problem’.
I’m not frightened.
I know the words aren’t going to jump off the page and push my head in an oven. That only happens to the people who write them.
To me, poetry is like one of those math’s problems.
If George left his house at four o’clock walking five miles an hour....
It’s giving me a headache already. For god’s sake just tell me when George will get there!
Should I blame it on English A level?
The emphasis was always on wrenching five different possible meanings from each verse.
It was even worse if the poem didn’t have any verses.
Sometimes it looks like the poet has just thrown a bunch of magnetic letters at the fridge.
‘Work that one out,’ he smirks at me, like an evil magician.
Seamus Heaney wrote a poem about his Dad doing some digging.
I argued with my teacher because I didn’t see why there had to be so many levels of meaning in it.
Why did the mud have to symbolise the turmoil of his inner life?
Why couldn’t the mud just mean mud?
There's no need to ruin it with analysis.
Now I really didn’t intend to quote poetry in my blog. But what a bunch of satisfying sounds from Heaney.
Perhaps if we hadn’t had to look so hard for the hidden meanings I might have enjoyed poetry at school.
There's a section in the article on possible treatments for poetry phobia.
I start to read it but I'm instantly agitated.
No, I don’t want to be flooded with poetry! That's a curse not a cure!
And, anyway, I’m not scared.
There is a difference, isn't there?

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

The King Wants Our Last Potato

Mum is flicking through a posh catalogue of LED lights.
They come in a roll much like sellotape. You can cut off a strip and stick it where you like.
The catalogue shows a kitchen plunged in near darkness, with a blue glow coming from under the cupboards.
“You’d have to stick them around your head to see what you’re doing,” Mum says.
What they’re lacking is a bright, sparkling chandelier – we still make them, but from upstairs.
I’m a Shop Girl without a shop.
As there’s no shop, this blog will have to change.
“You’re not going to start writing a political blog are you,” someone tweeted worriedly. “Because I think you shine more in your other stuff.”
I’m excited by the buzz of people coming together in solidarity.
It gives me hope after last week’s The Apprentice where Lord Sugar showed his approval for the ‘tiger’ Melody.
She ‘eats them up and spits them out,’ he said, (‘them’ being her fellow colleagues), ‘that’s why I like her’.
It’s a value system that will be difficult to change.
A new democracy would require us to evolve into nobler human beings.
Lord Sugar...How very feudal it sounds.
Our democracy has a feudal air to it too.
We have ‘Lords’ that rake money in to feed a gambling habit.
They win a lot, then suddenly lose a lot.
The ‘King’ needs their support and approval, so to keep them happy he makes sure the peasants get their wages cut and hand over whatever’s left. He doesn’t spare the old peasants either, who are already living on one turnip a week.
The peasants hand over their last potato.
But the Lords whine and say it’s not enough. They are accustomed to at least one million gold-plated vegetables and can’t stomach the idea of less.
The King asks for more.
The peasants hand in the mud that clung to their last potato.
A few Lord’s increase their salary because of the stress. They toss and turn on their 100% Egyptian Cotton bedspreads and worry they’ll have to postpone the purchase of another golden goose.
The King asks for more.
The peasants are high on hunger and indignation. They gather together and sing peaceful protest songs.
The King doesn’t listen.
“If they don’t have bread. Let them eat tiramisu,” the queen says.
The peasants throw rocks and are hanged for treason.
And meanwhile, the King declares war after war on any country that doesn’t copy his own, and watches everyone kill each other, while making millions through corruption and an autobiography.
But I digress.
This is obviously not a political blog.
I am just an intrigued Shop Girl.
Come the revolution I’ll be pinning crystal beads together.