Friday, July 08, 2005

London Attack

I usually work up in London, but the end of this week I took off as holiday as I have editing and other stuff to do on the Telos book BACK TO THE VORTEX. So Imagine my surprise yesterday when my brother called about 11.30am to say that I bet I was pleased I wasn't in London ... what? Then he told me ... Then I watched the news ... And I went all cold and shakey and worried for my friends at work and elsewhere. London is where I live and work. It's my city and this was not right at all that anonymous terrorists could blow parts of it up. But as usual London reacted calmly and efficiently. I managed (finally) to get through to work and everyone seemed to be accounted for there :) And online, someone on the OG group assembled a cool set of comments from elsewhere and I thought I'd share them:

"NEWSFLASH:There has been a widespread outbreak of grumbling and tutting today in London, along with a large number of people going home instead of to work, with a certain amount of guilty pleasure.Sorry, bad guys. We've been bombed before, and we just adjust our day to account for it. This is London calling." ~ BBC Parliament

"To quote an old Londoner who lived through the blitz and got caught up in the Canary Wharf explosion: "I've been blown up by a better class of bastard than this!"

"It'll be easy to find any terrorists; everyone else will have just said "Bugger it. I'm off to the pub."
On days like this, the music radio stations play sad music - if they play any music at all. I turned on the radio in the bathroom when I was taking my shower just now, and they were playing One by U2.HAVEN'T WE SUFFERED ENOUGH?

I'm watching the news, I do it occasionally, it seems like a good time to do so. And I'm seeing a guy who was blown off his feet by a bus going up, but basically he's okay and being interviewed. And, shock allowed, he's pretty much laughing it off. Another interview, a woman who was on the tube, just the same response but maybe a little more detailed.I love the UK sometimes, I really do. What happened is horrible, I don't diminish it and I hope those responsible are suitably punished, possibly with chainsaws ... but if they wanted terror well, they probably shouldn't have gone to London. Not because Londoners are particularly braver than anyone else (although they might be, have you seen the prices there?) but because they've walked through a helluva lot worse than that.Nice try, no cigar.

"The great British Spirit triumphs once again! Take that, Al Quaeda. You tried to spread panic with your terrorist ways, but you hadn't counted on a nation of repressed, stiff-upper-lip Brits who refuse to show unseemly emotion in public!"

When the news reporter said "Shopkeepers are opening their doors bringing out blankets and cups of tea" I just smiled. It's like yes. That's Britain for you. Tea solves everything. You're a bit cold? Tea. Your boyfriend has just left you? Tea. You've just been told you've got cancer? Tea. Coordinated terrorist attack on the transport network bringing the city to a grinding halt? TEA DAMMIT! And if it's really serious, they may bring out the coffee. The Americans have their alert raised to red, we break out the coffee. That's for situations more serious than this of course. Like another England penalty shoot-out.

"It's hard to panic the British. They've dealt with the Blitz, the IRA, the Silurians, the Zarbi, the Daleks, the Cybermen..."

So Monday I'll be heading back into Town for work and will probably go for a walk at lunchtime. My thoughts are with everyone affected by this, the 100s of casualties and those killed and maimed and their families.

Peace to all

1 comment:

doug said...

Everyone always says "terrorists", but we really should start calling them "Islamic Terrorists". This is a religious war. And I liked Dubai, too.