7/7: In Memoriam

Fifteen years ago today, on the 7th of July 2005, domestic Islamist terrorists carried out a series of suicide bombing attacks in London.

Three bombs were detonated on underground trains, and a fourth on the top deck of a London bus.

52 people were killed, and 700 injured. The bombers also died in their own explosions.

Those killed were from 19 different countries, including Britain. Three of the bombers were British-born sons of Pakistani immigrants, one was a convert born in Jamaica.

At the time, I was living less than a 10-minute walk from where the bus was blown up. I had been on night duty, working for the Metropolitan Police, and was sleeping. I didn’t hear any of the explosions, but did hear the sirens of the emergency vehicles. Such sounds were so common in London, I paid them no attention, and went back to sleep.

The Great British Public

Yesterday, the pubs in Britain could open for the first time in three months. People were naturally advised to be careful. Keep social distancing, obey the restricted numbers inside bars, and take some responsibility for their actions.

In Central London, this was the result.

Such pig-ignorance, and utter disrespect for all those who have died, and the essential workers and medical staff who have sacrificed so much since January.

Entitlement. Selfishness.

Those two words should be added to the flag of the United Kingdom.

Thinking Aloud On a Sunday

Litter.

I woke up today thinking about Litter. Not just any average, everyday litter, but the mountains of rubbish (garbage) left behind recently in some beauty spots and city centres. Adding to the blatant disregard of public safety by not social distancing, the thoughtless morons who participated in the sun-seeking events or football celebrations also thought themselves to be above clearing up their own litter.

After almost 500,000 ignorant visitors descended on Bournemouth beach, they left behind them some 70 metric tonnes of rubbish. This included a great deal of plastic which might have been washed into the sea, as well as numerous cans and glass bottles posing a hazard to people and wildlife.

Someone also took this short video of the spoiled beach, early the next morning.

Liverpool Football Club celebrated winning the Premier League championship for the first time in thirty years. Against the advice of the city authorities, and the club itself, tens of thousands of hysterical fans took to the streets of the city to celebrate. Not only did they show complete disregard for social distancing, they managed to start a fire in the iconic Liver Building by firing rockets at it. Then when they finally went home, this is what the ignorant horde left in their wake.

An impromptu Gay Pride event was staged on Clapham Common, in London. Attended by over 500 people, it was said to be peaceful and good-natured.
Until they went home, and it was discovered what they had left behind on this popular recreational green space.

I am just beyond anger at this disgraceful behaviour. I don’t want to even be of the same nationality as the inconsiderate pigs doing things like this.

SHAME ON YOU! SHAME ON ALL OF YOU!

Another view

With the current situation in America dominating the headlines, and most social media, it is almost impossible to find another view that is well-balanced, well researched, and written by someone who has personally experienced racism.

But here is one, and it is well-worth reading. If only for some sense of balance.
https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1268898468766134279.html

I am unable to reblog it, so only have that link to it.

Brian Cushion: RIP

I wrote this post on Saturday. Most of you will remember it.
https://beetleypete.com/2020/05/30/a-covid-19-saturday-getting-personal/

I received many kind comments, and my blogging friends and followers were, as always, very sympathetic.

Later that day, I got the news that my dear friend had died late that afternoon. So I thought it appropriate to update everyone with that.

I refuse to let Brian be a statistic, so here is something about his life, and the kind of man he was.

Troubled in his teens by the bone-wasting disease, Osteomyelitis, he was determined not to let the constant medical treatment get him down. He turned to music instead, with a voice to rival the Blues singers of the past, and even equal to the great Howlin’ Wolf. I was 17 years old when I met him, and he was singing at the front of a band, performing in a school hall in the London suburbs.

We were soon firm friends, and that friendship lasted for 51 years. Even though he has died, we are still friends, and always will be.

He later married, and I was the best man at the wedding. He and his wife had a daughter who he loved so dearly, becoming more than a father to her, a friend as well.

Over the decades, we lived together in a shared house, and spent a huge amount of time in each other’s company. We played Monopoly with an intensity usually reserved for Chess masters, and constantly disagreed on many things, especially politics. We shared holidays together, and saw each other through relationship and marriage break-ups, bad times and good times.

Many years later, decades of pain klling drugs caused his kidneys to fail. Brian had to go onto a dialysis regime until a transplant became available and he underwent the operation. Following that, he spent the rest of his days taking a daily cocktail of tablets, and having to attend hospital constantly. He still managed to play golf whenever he could, and once he retired, he rented a flat next to the golf club car park. He also continued to sing and perform with Blues bands around London and Kent.

Here he is five years ago, at his last ever gig. He is the man in the hat, singing and playing a harmonica. The pretty fair-haired girl at the front of the audience is his daughter.

He worked as a copy editor and proof reader, where his obsession with correct grammar and punctuation served him well. When I started this blog, he was one of my earliest and most loyal supporters, though he never failed to correct errors I made.

Brian was a good man, a loving father, and a true friend.

He will never be just a number.

Mason & Painter Vintage

On behalf of a great blogger and writer, Felicity Harley, I am featuring a shop belonging to one of her relatives.

The shop is in London, and this is their introduction.

Mason & Painter Vintage
Welcome to Mason & Painter vintage store, established in 2013 and located on Columbia Road, east London, home to the famous Sunday Flower Market.

The shop forms part of an old upholstery workshop – once part of the booming furniture trade in Shoreditch, dating back to around 1880. Our carefully curated selection of stock mixes French vintage café furniture, homewares, mirrors, paintings and prints with industrial salvage, ceramics and plants.

As well as the premises mentioned, they also have an online shop, and a WordPress blog.

https://masonandpainter.wordpress.com/
https://masonandpainter.wordpress.com/shop/

If you would like to contact them about anything, here are the details.
https://masonandpainter.wordpress.com/contact/

I don’t usually post such features, but Felicity is one of the most supportive bloggers I know, so I am happy to help on this occasion.

Sir Tom Moore: Knight of the Realm

Not long after the news media began to tell us about the impact of the Coronavirus pressures on the staff of the NHS, there was a feature about an elderly man who was hoping to raise £1,000 to donate to NHS charities in their honour. Known as Captain Tom Moore, he was a 99 year-old retired man who had served as an Army Captain in WW2, with the famous ‘Forgotten Fourteenth’ Army in Burma. With limited mobility now, and using a wheeled walking frame, he was determined to walk one hundred circuits of his garden, before his 100th birthday.

Using a donation page set up by his family, he quickly raised that money, and much more besides. So much more, that he decided to keep on walking until the actual day of his 100th birthday.

By the time that day dawned, he had raised over £30 MILLION pounds!

That huge amount overloaded the system of the company managing the donations, and forced them to hire extra staff. It is the largest donation ever raised by one person in the history of the organisation, and the largest ever donation to one single charity.

Tom became an overnight celebrity. He made numerous TV appearances, topped every news headline, and received so many cards that his local post office could not cope with the deliveries. His story was taken up all around the world, with foreign TV crews making the trip to his home to report it. He even opened one of the new Nightingale Hospitals, by remote video link, and was made an Honorary Colonel of his old regiment, The Yorkshire Regiment. He also received a ‘Pride of Britain’ award, along with personal messages from the Queen, and other members of the Royal family

In every respect, he became the man whose face embodied the fighting spirit of Britain, as it faced this incurable pandemic. People began to clamour for him to receive official recognition. A petition was started to urge the government to award him a Knighthood. Even I signed it, and I rarely sign such things.

On his 100th birthday, he also celebrated another achievement. A recording he had made with singer Michael Ball went to number one in the record charts, giving Tom the distinction of becoming the oldest person to ever top any record chart. The song was ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone”.

Today’s news is that he is to be awarded a knighthood.
He will now be Sir Thomas Moore.
Never has anyone deserved a title more than him.

There is an old old saying, “They don’t make them like him anymore”.
How true, in his case.

Congratulations, Sir Tom.

If Ants Were As Big As Poodles

The photo above is of a ‘Murder Hornet’. I read this about them yesterday.
‘Huge ‘murder hornets’ capable of killing humans have invaded the US’.

It’s pretty big, we can all see that. But what if it was as as big as a pigeon? Then imagine hundreds of them swarming around on a hot day. It’s a lucky escape for humans that insects are tiny in comparison to us. If ants were as big as dogs, even small dogs like poodles, they would have wiped out the human race a very long time ago, I’m sure.

Even the smallest insects kill tens of thousands of us every year. Take the mosquito spreading malaria, or locusts wiping out crops, leading to starvation for many. By combining into huge swarms, or living in city-sized colonies, insects prove that there is strength in numbers.

If humble houseflies were as big as oranges, just think how miserable our life would be. Something so easily dealt with by swatting, fly spray, or even a rolled up newspaper would suddenly become a whole different ball game. And think of dragonflies as big as eagles, swooping down on us. Or perhaps don’t think about that, as it’s too terrible to contemplate.

Spiders are not insects, but if they were as big as dustbin lids, we might all be in a lot of trouble. One of those in the bath wouldn’t be easy to flush down the drain by running the hot tap. And getting trapped in their web would be the end of you, undoubtedly. And if wasps were the size of Havana Cigars, the idea of a country picnic woud never have even been invented.

Gardens would probably not exist if aphids were as big as a lemon. Try washing them away with a spray of soapy water. Not going to happen. And if bees were the size of grapefruits, forget getting anyhere near their honey.

So evolution worked out pretty well for us, didn’t it?

INDIA ON COVID-19 || COVID-19 UPDATE.

Another view of the effects of Covid-19, this time from Suzan, in India. Fascinating to hear about how the virus is affecting life in different countries around the world.

Magical BookLush

Good morning people. How are you all?? How’s corona?? Is it still traumatizing you?? Well, India has learnt how to fight it…actually India has learnt how to overlook it. I haven’t been writing or commenting on any Covid-19 posts basically trying to avoid anything related to it because I got my news reporting mom. To be honest she should be a journalist. Too much reporting of news. Well, I had thought of informing you all the state of India so here I am with today’s special post about Coronavirus. So without any further ado let me step by step take you to all the things going on in India. Let’s go, shall we??

So as we all know Coronavirus is spreading all around the world and killing many people. It’s hard to avoid the news when the only news you get is ‘coronavirus killed these many people in these many…

View original post 816 more words