Yesterday was the Thame Fair. Every year the whole town is swallowed up in a carnival-type atmosphere; the roads through town are coned off; half the shops flip the signs to ‘Closed’; the restaurants are packed; there is a heady smell of diesel, toffee, hotdogs, vinegar and fresh doughnuts overlaid with the unmistakable sticky-sweet pinkness of candyfloss (which unbelievably also comes in blue, green and yellow but still smells pink, if you know what I mean).
In case you are wondering, we did go. We took the kids (+friends so we wouldn’t be subjected to any of the rides) and, I hate to say it, but it was fun. We kept bumping into people we knew (that is, the children and I did as my hubby is not as well acquainted with the children’s friends and their parents), it was surprisingly clean, and, while my heart was in my mouth for a few of the more daring rides my daughter tried, it was safe. Extortionate but safe. A while back my husband tried to trace his roots and found that his great-great-grandparents on his father’s side went by the name of Hebborn and were, in my father-in-law’s words, carni folk. Sure enough, yesterday, the waltzer bore the name of Hebborn and we immediately felt a sense of belonging. The cheapest and most environmentally friendly ride (and the most fun) was the Helter-Skelter which bore only a few lights on the front and required no more than one attendant. It was half the price of the other rides and you got two gos! Bargain. Also, to top it all off with sweetest cherry, the kids got some exercise as they had to climb to the top. Of course, I didn’t have a go as that slide looked awfully narrow…
This past week was a seesaw of political correctness. The Pope finally apologised for all the moral-wrecking, soul-destroying priests in child abuse cases, referring to it as a ‘crime’ rather than a sin and thereby opening up the avenue for prosecution services to make a stand and the victims to make justified claims. Together with his volte-face on female priests earlier this year I see it as a little too late to bring back into the fold all those the Catholic church managed to alienate over the past two decades. The church’s stance on Aids, birth control and homosexuality is still as big a turn-off as ever. But that is surprising in itself and makes one wonder where the religion is failing for, if you look at the statistics, as many people are converting to Islam every year as are leaving the catholic church and their views are just as inflexible. Even so, it appears the Pope has a few followers of Islam running scared to the point where they make plans to ‘do away’ with him which resulted in furthering tightening his hold over his congregation. So what is the magical formula? When I find out I shall open the church of Bea Turvey. Watch out world for that fateful day.
Lady Gaga, poor deluded soul, still believes she needs to shock and her revolting dress of skinned flesh, very much in the style of a late Damien Hirst, made a statement of her desperation to be liked. Her music is good enough to sell on its own merits yet she still has an overwhelming reliance on such tactics. It reminded me very much of Madonna in the 90s, but on a grotesque scale, mixed with the fur-totting divas of the sepia-tinted era, craving the public’s adoration whilst at the same time flipping them the finger. Great songs, crap mind.
And then there is the other side of the public figure. The side that encapsulates the likes of Oprah. Why, during the same week, did Lady Gaga’s dress accumulate so much media coverage when Oprah’s unassuming generosity, in this case flying her entire last audience to Australia on John Travolta‘s plane, elicit a tiny paragraph? I wanted to hear more about Oprah, revel in the feel-good factor, but was instead left with a nasty taste in my mouth every time I looked at the font page sporting Lady G in her gory get-up.
So it was a week of Political Correctness clashes in the world of stars (and you cannot deny that the Pope is a media star). The great events that were the Thame Fair and Oprah’s lavish gift balanced against the Pope’s visit and Lady Gaga. I try to be fair and open-minded, and I thank the presence of this blog that allows me to speak my mind. If this is the only way we can now have open, frank dialogue about the various insanities in this world then I shall utilise it to it’s fullest. After all, you need only click on the big X at the top right. I don’t think that is what is meant by the X-factor, but it will do for now.