Leeds, united

Posted: 22 November 2011 in comics, internet, life, don't talk to me about life, personal
Tags: , , ,

It’s been a busy few days, not merely limited to the usual busy stuff of shopping, catching up on correspondence, and watching slack-jawed at the rank stupidity of those who are supposed to be in charge of what we still refer to as democracies around the world.

Oh, yes, before I forget, if you haven’t watched the following by Keith Olbermann, excoriating Michael Bloomberg, you really ought to. (It’s funny – for years, I misunderstood the meaning of the word ‘defenestrate’ – I didn’t realise it meant ‘being thrown out of a window’; I thought it meant being ripped apart. Dunno why, but the word would seem to fit what Olbermann does here anyway. Hat-tip to Tony Lee for pointing me to this…)

Whether it’s the United States (see above), Italy – where the replacement of the satire-free (for how do you satirise someone whose career has been spent satirising the political process) Berlesconi with a non-elected government, or our own government who seem to believe that replacing health care with a video of the Health Secretary telling patients everything will be ok is sufficient, it’s enough to make one simply give up.

Except of course, that’s the point – you can’t give up on democracy. Don’t like the current government? Campaign for its replacement at the next election. And before anyone jumps in with “well, we can’t replace it for another three years,” look at it as having three years to campaign.

Personally, I feel the same about this government as I do about Boris Johnson as Mayor. It’s neither as horrifically bad as its detractors are painting it, nor as saint-like and necessary as its supporters proclaim. And in that, it’s no better nor worse than the past few governments, and maybe every government for the past five decades.

But it’s lied to us. Consistently and shamelessly. Far more than previous governments. Far, far more.

Our government lied to us. Before the election, during the election, and in the eighteen months since the election.

It’s not that the government – or the ministers therein – have told us things that turned out to be untrue. That happens. I may believe that if it occurs a minister should resign under the convention of individual ministerial responsibility, but that convention, like a genuine left-wing party with a chance of power, bankers with a social conscience and Spangles, appears to belong to the long ago.

And talking of conventions…

Yes, I know it’s a weak segue, since it’s been quite some time since get-togethers of comics professionals and fans in the UK have proudly referred to themselves as conventions. (And I miss it.)

But yeah, talking of conventions, I spent this weekend in Leeds at the annual (and now two-day) get-together named Thought Bubble. Part of the annual week-long arts festival held in that fair City, I’ve heard nothing but good things about TB for some years, and since (a) I had the time, (b) it was now two days, not one, and (c) it meant that I would see some friends I never really get the opportunity to see often enough, (and that includes some I see several times a year), I went up for it.

Leaving aside my post from Friday, which while partially accurate for this weekend as it is for every weekend spent at a comics con/festival/expo, it was a fun time.

The comics pros were in good humour, as they are at most such events, and the Friday night introductory party was as expected full of alcohol, comics pros and comics pros full of alcohol.

I hadn’t intended to – and indeed didn’t – attend any panels during the weekend, but spent both days chatting with friends, and comics prod, and… discovering. Discovering new creators, new creations, and how one hall seemed to be designed for about 80% of the number of people attending while the other room could have housed an echo chamber.

Interestingly, while I heard the venue described as “miles from nowhere”, I have to disagree – it was very close to nowhere.

It’d be daft to simply list the number of people I knew at the place, however, simply because I’d miss someone out, but among the delights I discovered and obtained was the first issue of a delightful book entitled The Peckham House for Invalids by Howard Hardiman, Julia Scheele and Sarah Gordon, about turn of the [last] century super-heroines.

More – possibly – tomorrow, but here are some pics… You don’t really need explanations for them, do you?





  1. Those bankers-with-conscience-still-attached from days gone by put me in mind of the current president at TD Canada Trust, a gent name of Ed Clark. He’s been arguing along similar lines to Warren Buffett over the last couple of years and getting into hot water with the current government for his pains.

    Perhaps those days are not yet quite so far behind us?

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