Saturday, 19 September 2015

I had a letter in the paper

There is nothing particularly unusual about this. I do write letters to the editor occasionally. I think I have mentioned it elsewhere in this blog.
Yesterday I took aim at the new Prime Minister and the way he had managed to get the job. The Senior Cat read it and said, "You're not pulling any punches are you?" 
No, I wasn't.
A bit later the phone rang - a complete stranger looking for "the man who wrote the letter in today's paper". (I write under my initials and it confuses most humans, especially male humans who tend to assume that initials means the writer must be male.) He was rather taken aback to learn the person who answered the phone was female - and literate. Still, he told me, it was a good letter.
And then I prowled up the street because I needed to go to the Post Office and the bookshop.
There is always a queue in the Post Office and it tends to move rather slowly. Yesterday it moved very slowly indeed. There was more than one person in the queue who knew me and remarked on the letter. Other people heard them. The three Post Office staff chipped in saying they hadn't read it yet. Someone unfolded the paper he had just bought and read it - aloud. 
I squirmed but, left or right of politics, they seemed to like what I had to say.
My turn came at the counter and I posted my niece's birthday present and then dived for cover in the bookshop.
"Good letter Cat," someone told me as I was hiding behind one of the shelves. Grrrrrr....
I bought the book I wanted and went into the greengrocer. I thought  I was perfectly safe in there. The staff are lovely but they don't read newspapers. No, there was the retired Chief Librarian buying something. He nobbled me - but he liked the letter. 
I pedalled home, stopping on the way to give the elderly cocker spaniel a pat - because he was looking hopefully over the gate. Someone else walking another dog stopped,
"You're the one who...."
I finally made it inside the house. If the phone rang then the Senior Cat could answer it. I was "out". 
And then someone else did phone. It was a call from someone close to the nerve centre of the last week's political shenanigans. I thought I was in for a blasting but all he said was,
"Cat, did you have to be so damn forthright?"
Yes, I did. I wasn't going to allow a  basically decent man to be knifed in the back. It isn't the way things should be done at any time. 
But the thing that annoyed me is that so many people, most of whom I don't know (at least by name), right across the political spectrum agreed with me. They agreed with me now that the man they loved to hate is out of the way. They would not have written a letter themselves for fear of being seen to support him. 
I wanted to call them all cowards for not supporting him earlier - but I was too damn cowardly to say it.

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