Mussolini, New Amsterdam & Open Reach – Week 5 : 2018

February 2, 2018

I’ve sat in a lot of meetings at work where you’ve felt like a prisoner, that is, unable to escape. This is where somebody is probably covering worthy stuff but it is long winded, bureaucratic and bluntly of no interest. When it was over there was a great sense of relief and I may have inadvertently broken into a skip on the way out of the room.

Today I felt that type of emotion at the end of Pilates. Lou, the instructor uttered the magic words “just find a position that you can be comfortable in” and then she switched off the light. We all wearily came to a prostrate halt, flat on our backs on the mat. We knew the ‘one sided planks’, abdominal exercises, contortions to unlock your hip flexors or very unnatural movements to strengthen your gluteus maximus muscles had finished. Lying in the dark for two minutes we could reflect on the fact that probably Wednesday at 1.30pm would come around again quickly. However, for now, it was over. (Funnily enough a wet bike ride in 5°C over 50 miles appeals more than Pilates).

On the theme of pain then it seems appropriate to talk about the proposed Leeds United logo. It lasted six hours before the Managing Director, on the local BBC radio station, abandoned it and offered consultation over a new one. I still tend to think that large corporate decisions are usually reached intelligently. I know this naivety is akin to implicitly trusting policemen and thinking that banks are honourable. What happened with this sub 1930’s Italian Fascist aberration will be the subject of endless brand marketing courses for decades. It was simply inept and complacent. However it did bring all the fans together!

For those of your who peruse “Tony’s View Of The World’ you’ll see that I have been writing to Welsh luminaries about their brutal and short sighted parking regime. I’m not expecting any sympathy. However on another injustice then I had the opportunity to vent, in a calm yet destructive way, with Open Reach about our non availability of Superfast broadband last week.

This opportunity came about through our local MP, Julian Sturdy. He initially held a public meeting and then a supplementary meeting with Open Reach. A selection of local village representatives were invited to attend. We’re making progress on installation but they are a year behind schedule. Personally trying to cope with, at best, an internet speed of 1mb is difficult.

Open Reach turned up hoping to only ‘look forward’. They were a little taken aback at having to review the process and it’s apparent historic challenges. ‘The past informs the present’ I always find. However, we all finished up friends and we meet again in March.

For those who are detached from the political process then when your MP gets involved in the nitty gritty of your personal frustrations then they can seem very relevant and useful.

Talking about York then I learned that New York is not named with any direct connection to my fine city. It was in fact named after the Duke of York. This new name was in his honour when the British took over New Amsterdam in 1664. Don’t pretend that you never learn anything here.

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