Oor freends in England Mar 15, 2020 17:55:42 GMT
Post by CC on Mar 15, 2020 17:55:42 GMT
“It's SHITE being Scottish! We're the lowest of the low. The scum of the fucking Earth! The most wretched, miserable, servile, pathetic trash that was ever shat into civilization. Some hate the English. I don't. They're just wankers. We, on the other hand, are colonized by wankers. Can't even find a decent culture to be colonized by. We're ruled by effete arseholes.”
Mark Renton of Trainspotting was a fool who was in a bad mood and had taken too many drugs. It's not in the least shite being Scottish and not all English people are wankers. I've just come back from 2 days in England and on the way home stopped in a lay-by just outside Gretna to eat the sandwiches kindly packed for me, unasked for, by an Englishwoman from Sheffield, a kind gesture from a native of one of the UK's great cities. True, the English working class have a strange and, to me, inexplicable tendency to be chauvinistic and right wing but it's no more true to say that all English folk are effete arseholes than it is to call all Scottish people sectarians, or all black people gangsters. It's lazy stereotyping which does nothing for the cause of independence, which I firmly believe in, but gives a bit of pleasure to the kind of patriot that enjoys the bigotry of Wings Over Scotland or contributes to the debate section of The National. In other words, the modern day Rob Roys of the Scottish Independence movement have got quite a brass neck accusing English people of being wankers.
England is largely beautiful. The road from Whaley Bridge to Chesterfield, where I happen to have been born 63 years ago, is a delight, and is also the best road by which to approach Chesterfield itself, which sits neatly in a valley and whose Spire, I'm pleased to say, is neither more or less Crooked than it was the last time I saw it. It would be hard to find more lovely wee towns than, for example, Knaresborough, Penrith, Barnard Castle, Cirencester or Totnes, a better-preserved historic city than York or Mr Campbell's adopted home of Bath, or a nicer seaside town than Torquay. The Yorkshire Dales, Dartmoor and the Cotswolds are exquisite. There are some ugly places in England as well, to be sure, but we do have one or two of them in Scotland as well.
When people speak of England and the English I wonder which English they mean. Do they mean Geordies, for example, or Cockneys, who are almost entirely unable to understand what the hell each other is talking about? And then there are Brummies, Mancs, Tykes, Scousers, Janners, Yam Yams, Dee Dahs and all the rest. When someone on Radio 4 refers to the Quintessential English seaside resort do they mean breezy, lardy Skeggy or are they thinking of Cornwall's lovely St Ives?
The point I'm making is that there are several, individual Englands. Penzance is the Stranraer of England just as Wick and Stornoway are the Scottish Carlisle and Lindisfarne; regardless of being within the same border they are very different in character and dialect. Not every English person is a gammon-faced Brexiteer; I am always impressed by the ability of the English to hang upside down from motorway bridges and paint perfectly spelt political messages on bridges over the carriageway. I saw Extinction Rebellion represented 2 or 3 times in capital letters on bridges over the Greater Manchester motorway approaches but my favourite, on the M1, was BARNSLEY DOESN'T BELIEVE BULLSH*T BORIS.
When someone on Twitter, with a Saltire attacked to his @name, says that the best way to keep Scotland free of coronavirus is to shoot English drivers and their passengers at the border I despair. When we play each other at sport then I'm as happy to join in the rivalry as anyone else but even there, I have to tell you, in the unlikely event of Scotland ever progressing further than England in the World Cup, a lot of English fans would switch their support to Scotland. In addition, most English people are not opposed to Scotland becoming independent; the truth is the majority don't really mind one way or another. They might have a tendency to dislike the French, Germans, Chinese, Romanians, Lithuanians, Italians, Spanish, Croatians, Argentinians etc but by and large, as far as your average English tabloid reader is concerned, the Scots are OK. In fact, people North of the Border would be as acceptable as the English themselves if it were not for our habitual wearing of kilts, eating of haggis, playing of bagpipes and speaking in a foreign language.