Monday, 9 July 2018

That flag

The UK seems almost as hot as Israel at the moment. I went down to Worthing in shorts and a T-shirt yesterday and still felt hot. Sadly, I wasn’t there to jump about on the beach in a carefree and jolly manner. Instead, I went down to work on the music for 100 Faces with our music producer, Paul. The task was to identify the best takes from the session with the Camerata in readiness for filming.

There comes a point at which being the director, composer and producer of a film collides - and that point has just arrived. Usually, I’ve been able to work on the constituent elements separately, or I’ve had a producer who’s been working full time with me to take care of the avalanche of ludicrous questions you get asked in the run up to a shoot like this, or take responsibility for all of those really important things like booking hotels for cameramen and sorting insurance, which get temporarily tossed aside when you’re trying to record an Israeli orchestra or create a shot list.

It, of course, entirely goes without saying that the train down to Worthing was badly delayed. We stopped in Littlehampton for an age. Quite why the train went to Worthing via Littlehampton and not Brighton, I’ve no idea, but there was talk of planned engineering at Three Bridges - none of which was mentioned on my Trainline App, which told me I could expect to arrive in Worthing half an hour before I actually did.

I don’t know how Brighton people deal with the dreadful Southern Rail service. Our woefully poorly transport infrastructure makes the UK begin to resemble a developing country. On the way back yesterday, the train was so overcrowded that I ended up sitting on the floor between the loo and the concertinered rubbery bit where the train carriages join. By the time I’d emerged at Victoria my back had gone into spasms. I’m surprised we weren’t given the option of sitting on the roof of the train!

Thank God for them England football lads, eh? They’re gonna show the rest of the world that we mean business. They’re gonna put the great in Great Britain again. Or England. Whatever. Who gives a shit? It’s all the same isn’t it?

I walked past a house in Worthing utterly bedecked in England flags and immediately felt uncomfortable. I wonder if there are citizens in any other country in the world who feel their own flag symbolises something other than pride in their homeland? I’m okay with the Union Jack, which, for me, represents unity. When I’m on my travels around the world, and I see a Union Jack, I’ll often feel a twinge of belonging. The England flag, on the other hand, feels like nothing but a flapping advert for racism, prejudice, and separation. I’d be interested to know if I’m alone in feeling this.

I genuinely envy the Welsh and the Scots, who, it seems, can wave their own flags with pride and great joy without feeling like there are sinister overtones in doing so.

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