It’s late evening… I felt like a scribble. I thought I’d follow the British newspapers’ near unanimous example and obsess about food issues while direr things are left unaddressed or buried in a hurry. I suppose they are muzzled by their advertisers/owners – that would fit in with the general trend of purchasable advantage. Heh, I think I’m soon giving up the media for another two years. They appear to be in touch, but not able or not willing to report properly let alone investigate or write on anything in depth – apart from they seem able to write in depth and investigate horsemeat. And soft drinks. And err obesity (with foodbank usage on the rise we are going on a crusade against obesity. There is yet another gross reality disconnect there, and shame on the media for playing along.)
I did (briefly) consider having another look at Twitter as a source of information but see that things are spammed out of existence if inconvenient to someone who can buy spammers, so that’s not going to be very useful for finding things out. Comes down to it the best source of information remains real people, and it’s free. All you have to do is talk to them! Amazing. I learn more about current affairs on the bus than I do in the papers or on the radio. (I still don’t watch tv). The internet is pretty good too – but you don’t have the natural filter of knowing how well you know the person telling you stuff. If my friend tells me something has happened, in other words, I give it more credence than I give to an anecdote from a less known bus person. Direct information is pretty accurate because of that filter. People travel too – the chat isn’t all about local.
So meat. It’s been around 3 months since it started tasting odd, time to see if anything has improved. It hasn’t. A pack of pork ribs (cheapest thing I could find) was what I cooked. I’ve pinned the taste down though, or rather the smell. It smells like antibacterial handwash. It tastes like it smells (but no I’m not going to be tasting antibacterial handwash to check), the taste goes right through, and you can smell it while cooking. Yuk. Are other people also noticing it? I’ll make a point of finding out next time I’m on the bus, (particularly the one that travels to the supermarket.)
So there ya go. Regarding all the other rubbish, the country rings to the sound of purses snapping shut and in the background is the furtive scrabbling noise of people trying bolster their financial underpinnings, mainly by paying down debt at this stage. That’s probably a wise strategy, and best do it fast before some fool decides interest rates must rise “to curb inflation” (to safeguard lender-income which will drop if people pay off loans more likely). The cost of money actually bears virtually no relation to the market anymore due to weirdie financial practices skewing it beyond the direct relationship you find in textbooks (*coff* Libor). The rest of the rat-like scrabbling consists of breaking any societal tie that might translate into a liability. So if you’re wondering where your car pool went, well, the net contributors and most reliable car poolers probably feel they can’t afford to carry it anymore. That kind of thing. There is a subtle but noticeable fraying in the collective fabric.
Ah well it’s all nothing too surprising really. If you use high unemployment and workfare to drive down labour costs in order to disguise the fact that as a nation you aren’t exporting/earning all that much – it filters through into the consciousness of everyone far sooner than expected. The speed of it catches politicians every time, by the way. The minute wages fall, spending stops and lending begins to yield less of a return as people get rid of debts faster than hot potatoes if they possibly can. Trapped indeed are those that must borrow to survive. When interest rates rise to cover the shortfall, they are in a bad situation indeed.
People telling me that they are paying down this debt or that lets me know that the “ignorant masses” have already figured out that they would rather not risk an interest rate rise, and (rightly or wrongly) don’t believe assurances that such a rise is unlikely. Good. People thinking for themselves = there is hope! People I talk to aren’t putting the extra money in the bank either – they have shortfalls of their own to cover, (if people banked the money it would (at least theoretically) be a force down on the rate: more in banks = they try to pay out less interest). Hah! The temptation to cash in on the current but fast disappearing large borrowings of the masses by just a teensy tiny tiny fraction of rise in interest is there alright, despite what it would do to the already foundering economy – and all us ignorant people know it. It’s the first time I’ve seen people paying down debt ahead of (and in case of) a rise though. There really is hope.
Shedding debt right now this minute if you can is definitely a good move – let’s get back to wittering about horsemeat. Personally I’m going mostly veggie, but not really because of horse, more because of the suspicious antibacterial-handwash-like flavour in the pork I bought. I come from a clan which ranges across the globe and up and down all walks of life, so eating unusual things is the norm, but I prefer if it’s food.
So what direr things have I buried then? Dishes and worries. I don’t feel like washing the dishes or worrying the worries – so I’m doing a “newspaper” for myself to avoid both.