Another benefit of subscribing to the Times (in addition to privileged access to the btl comments) is watching those mini videos titled “Liddle’s Got Issues”. Not that Rod is particularly charismatic or easy on the eye, but the one I watched today about the reluctance of the Remain protesters to engage was well worth the sub. The idea was that he would accost some of the banner-wielding folk that were hanging about in the freezing cold and try to get one or two of them to explain why they were there. Well, we kind of knew why, but what was their message? "Why exactly are you against Brexit?" The best (and only forthcoming) response was “Because it’s a bad idea”, at which the speaker was hurriedly whisked away.
On the surface, this was an amusing demonstration of the total absence of substance behind the demonstrators’ cause.
But on another level, it was reminiscent of those hearty brush-offs that baffled poor Gabriel Gatehouse when he tried to talk to some Dutch Tommy Robinson supporting activists (September 2018):
"The biased BBC? You must be joking!", one woman yelled at me down the phone. "You just want to stick me on TV and call me a racist”.
So maybe those annoying, banner-waving, in-yer-face protesters were struck dumb by a fear of being misrepresented by The Times. Or maybe they were just dumb.
While watching Rod, I had an intrusive thought. No, not about a load of filth, but, like the heroine in the new Channel 4 thing “Pure”, (I haven’t watched it yet) I do get intrusive thoughts. Not particularly of incest, bestiality or fantasies involving TV presenters, but in this case, of Rod’s scarf (which looked decidedly girly) and which was wrapped several times around his neck as if to keep out the cold. If so, why leave a triangle of exposed flesh above such a thin-looking shirt? What about the draught? That was my intrusive thought and it wouldn’t go away.
Other intrusive thoughts are possibly the result of being too immersed in this kind of blog. When I’m watching, say, Andrew Marr interviewing, say, Barry Gardiner - rather than listening to what they’re saying I find myself automatically wondering why they’re saying it. Suspicious, I am.