Blogging from the Highlands of Scotland
'From fanaticism to barbarism is only one step' - Diderot

Tuesday 14 October 2008

"I don't like this tie. It makes me look like a spiv"

I just heard the classic remark in the title from Jack Woolley, who unfortunately suffers quite severely from senile dementia, in that classic story of imaginary rural life in Britain (rural England more specifically), The Archers. His wife, Peggy Archer, seems to have had what is probably a stroke in yesterday evening's episode, and this evening he is being 'prepped' by Matt, the prosperous businessman 'boyfriend' of her rather louche wealthy daughter Lilian, for a visit to the hospital to see Peggy.

I've seen a lot of ties that make the wearers look like spivs in my time (a conclusion usually confirmed by mercifully brief-acquaintance with the wearers), so whilst poor old Jack may have completely lost his mind, and he himself comes from a pretty hard-nosed Birmingham background (in the storyline, you understand), he has not lost his nose for a wide boy (or in the memorable literal translation into Arabic of one of my fellow Arabic-students when referring to such people: "huwa walad' areed")! Lilian's boyfriend Matt is definitely one of those!

In any case the reason for this particular ramble on my part is that I have seen quite a few talking-heads on my television over the past few weeks, during the course of the financial debacle we are still living through, who are very obviously wide boys, smartly-dressed city-boys or politicians or journalists of course, but wide boys nonetheless who I wouldn't trust for an instant. Incidentally in this illustrious group I would not include that old-Labour reprobate Dennis Skinner who I saw on television either this morning or yesterday wearing a deep red shirt and an equally glaring red tie - no doubt there was a political message in his choice of attire so different rules apply in his case; I may not like his politics, but I do respect him at least.

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