Wouldn’t you be p*ssed off?: I have noticed that there are some differences between men and women but those organising toilet facilities appear not to have twigged these. At an all day event there comes a time when nature calls and you look for the loos. On Saturday afternoon I strolled briskly into the gents with no problem at all and yet nearby there was a queue of 39 women for the ladies’ equivalent facilities. And I have the photos to prove it on this blog! Surely that’s close to sexual discrimination – or at least water closet discrimination? Has the CLA ever had a woman Chair by the way?
Red tape: bureaucracy is an easy target at the Game Fair. All you have to do is say ‘red tape’ and a groundswell of chuntering develops. A gentleman, I think from Worcestershire, asked a question about red tape at the ‘debate’ on Big Society which had me on the panel. Caroline Spelman tut-tutted about red tape and said that this government would reduce it (I think all governments say that don’t they?) and said that the difference between this government and the last would be that this government would trust people to do the right thing rather than assume that they would do the wrong thing. I look forward to sending off a cheque to the Inland Revenue for my income tax without filling in any forms and on the basis of me doing the right thing!
And the gentleman who asked the question was complaining about the forms he and others in his village had had to fill in to get £40,000 out of the Heritage Lottery Fund. What exactly does he expect? The £40k he got could have gone to someone else so how should HLF choose without him telling them why he wanted the money, what he would do with it etc? The MPs’ expenses scandal should be warning enough about lax handing out of public money. The origin of the word bureaucracy is in office – it’s office work. We need good, sensible and quick office work but office work is still needed. And red is a nice colour anyway.
Kate Hoey: is the Labour MP for Vauxhall and the Chair of the Countryside Alliance. She was at the same table as me at lunch on Friday and when she learned who I was she was keen to give me her views on the RSPB and raptors. She wasn’t the least bit interested in discussing the matter, I just had to listen. It would be quite difficult for me to vote for Ms Hoey if she were standing in my constituency. Ms Hoey is a bit coy, or in fact silent, about her role with the Countryside Alliance on her official website even though the Alliance has its Headquarters in her Vauxhall constituency.
It’s my hobby: while I ate my lunch of a venison roll on Saturday I sat down in the sun and watched a hobby high overhead chasing martins (the closer of which were all house martins so I guess they all were). Below it was a crowd of people which probably had a higher proportion of raptor haters than any other crowd in the country. And yet I bet hardly anyone noticed this superb falcon looking to catch its lunch as I ate mine. Someone else had done the killing, skinning and cooking for me whereas the hobby was all on its own. I finished my lunch but didn’t see the hobby catch its midday meal.
Best bacon: …and while we are on the subject of rolls… the Barn Bacon Company, whom I have mentioned previously in another place, provided me with my Saturday breakfast. And delicious it was too. They now have a sign claiming to be the best bacon rolls at the Game Fair and there was a long queue for their produce early on Saturday morning.
Buzzards, watch out: buzzards are the raptor species next in line for an assault in my opinion. I had several conversations when people told me that they were worse than hen harriers! Praise indeed from the grouse shooting community.