WMN LETTERS: UKIP not so good as they think they are
UKIP not so good as they think they are
When it comes to hubris, it seems that nobody can compete with UKIP party members living in the South West and their seemingly incessant letters to The Western Morning News. If it's not the repetitive ramblings of Dave Grylls or Peter Wyatt, then it's their old chum Hugh Williams who, in his latest letter (WMN Sept 17) asks us all to look at recent defections and election results to see how well UKIP is supposedly doing.
Well, I have done just that and when it comes to defections, I immediately think of the recent comments in from Dave Smith, a former UKIP activist in Exeter who is clearly fed up with the party's antics locally. There again, perhaps Mr Williams has in mind the fact that UKIP's own founder Alan Sked who, seemingly so cheesed off with the lurch of his political lovechild towards the far right, is now in the throes of establishing yet another anti-European party.
And when it comes to monitoring electoral results, I myself have to look no further than the recent by-election here in Wadebridge where UKIP's candidate finished a dismal fourth. This result is conveniently overlooked by Messrs Grylls,Wyatt and Williams. Now why is that, I wonder?
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Poor quality clasp for heroes of the air war
Having just received from a relative who flew in Wellington bombers in the Second World War a colour photo of the bomber Command Clasp that he has been awarded, I would like to say how disgusted I am at the quality of his clasp. It looks like something you would purchase from Woolworths for six old pence.
When you consider that 50,000 plus members of Bomber Command died, the Government surely could have produced a much better quality clasp or even a Bomber Command medal to honour these men.
I trust that the recipients of this clasp in your readership area agree with my comments.
Beware searching for ex-lovers on Facebook
Before you decide to have a curious peek at an ex-lover's Facebook page, be warned! Most Internet search engines allow you to remove your search history so if you visit somewhere you shouldn't – House of Commons computers visited 300,000 pornography sites last year – you can wipe out all traces of your indiscretion, but not with Facebook.
This poses a problem because you may discover said lover is still blonde, gorgeous, married to a millionaire property developer who provides her with a Porche 911 Cabriolet to attend Pilates and Zumba classes, whereas you are balding, clinically obese, afflicted with halitosis and a fungal facial rash, drive a rust bucket and are skint, and as a consequence are seriously depressed. If her name begins with the letter 'T' – the most commonly used consonant – then Facebook will keep you depressed because every time you enter a word beginning with 'T' in the Facebook search box a list of names with thumbnail photos will drop down that includes hers, just to remind you that she's still lovely and you're still a sad loser. And there's nothing you can do about it. Facebook stores these names and there's no means of removing them so consequently its Help pages are full of desperate pleas from sad losers begging the social network to do something to enable this search history to be erased. Apparently the only way is to close your account.
Looks not as vital as we sometimes think
Whilst having dinner with friends, who take some level of pride in rearing their own animals and growing their own produce, I was slightly taken aback when at the end of a meal recently they produced a plate of rather unappetising plums from their tree. Being polite, and urged to sample the gaping split plums, I took one, only to find out how wrong, and judgemental, I'd been. They were the juiciest, most luscious and tasty plums I had ever eaten.
I started to consider some of the battles I frequently fight on behalf of those who suffer needlessly from pre-conceived ideas and prejudice.
Take supermarket produce for example. In their quest to provide us with perfectly formed, evenly sized cucumbers straight as an arrow, or perfectly formed tomatoes, strawberries, mushrooms, potatoes, eggs, you name it, all regimentally lined up in their protective trays, little consideration seems to be given to the cost of this, not just to us, the consumer, but also to the poor farmers who are growing the stuff. They are learning the hard way that nature does not produce the perfect veg., at least not without considerable human intervention.
On the same day that I had been offered the plums, I had made a rare visit to a supermarket, and on leaving spotted an entire punnet of peaches that had been thrown away. Ifished the punnet out, ignoring the look of horror on another shopper's face, and was mightily pleased on getting them home to find that only two out of the seven were in fact showing signs of going bad. Result.
This led me to thinking about other imperfections we encounter in our daily lives, and often dismiss or disregard those we encounter; the mongrel dog, the disabled person, the person who stutters or is dyslexic, the Heath Robinson contraption made for us by a loved one, the cake that sank in the middle, the jam that didn't quite set. The list is endless. So next time you are out and about, seek out the gnarled, mis-shapen fruit and veg, the people who don't fit the mould, the imperfectly executed piece of art; embrace them, and enjoy them for what they represent.. The fact is, that try as hard as we might, life and all that exists within it is far from perfect, but that doesn't mean it, or they, are not worth our love and attention, and can be enjoyed .
Combe St. Nicholas