Mothers, Conspiracy, Frustration

Conspiracy To Steal Time From Mothers?

The handover from March to April 2019 didn’t go too well in the UK.

The clocks went forward the night before UK Mothers’ Day. A nationful of mothers had an hour trimmed off their special day!

Some conspiracy theorists think this was planned by a man! The theory is supported by the next day being All Fool’s Day (April 1st).

So here’s how it works:-

  • In Britain, Mothers’ Day/Mothering Sunday is the traditional name for the fourth Sunday in Lent – three weeks before Easter.
  • British Summer Time begins at 01:00 GMT on the last Sunday of March and ends at 01:00 GMT (02:00 BST) on the last Sunday of October.
  • April 1st is the only fixed date (to clarify: April 1st every year)

Hence the dates WILL naturally coincide occasionally. However… the first two date calculations were set by committees of men, centuries and decades ago, so who knows?

Speaking of Mothers…

British Parliament in the dark

The inconclusive Brexit-debate farce still continues in the “Mother of Parliaments”, the UK House of Commons.

Britain voted to leave the European Union (EU) by a small majority (51.9% versus 48.1%) in a referendum nearly three years ago.

For those who don’t know about Brexit, it’s much too complicated to go into all the details here.

For those who do, you know how Parliament responded.

The UK should have left the EU on March 29th, 2019 at 11pm. But extensions have been requested from the EU to delay the exit due to Parliament’s inability to decide how to respond to the result. Members of Parliament argue endlessly over what the result means, what the voters intended, what they thought they were voting for, what “leaving” actually means, and if they should ask the voters again.

Many politicians seem conflicted between the overall national referendum result, their duty to follow their own local constituents’ preferences, party loyalties, their personal convictions and – let’s be honest – personal ambition. Result: seemingly endless deadlock.

Their antics have humiliated, angered and frustrated voters from both sides of the argument – those who want to remain in the EU and those who want to leave. The other EU member countries are also extremely displeased. The words “constitutional crisis”, “conspiracy” and “dysfunctional” are used ever more often to describe Parliamentary goings-on and the elected members. Deselections of “renegade” sitting members by their local party organizations have already begun.

Whatever happens, I expect there will be many new faces in Parliament after the next General Election on both sides of the House.

Side Notes on the State of Parliament:

  1. The iconic “Big Ben” clock tower and its chimes have become symbolic of British Parliamentary democracy. The chimes have been silenced for months due to repairs.
  2. The debating chamber was recently flooded with water (some say sewage), forcing members to stop their debating and leave the chamber.

(NB: Big Ben is actually the tower’s bell, although constant misnaming has led to the tower itself – the Elizabeth Tower – being also referred to, incorrectly, as Big Ben.)

Even the building itself is falling apart, perhaps as a symbol of the state of the politics it has to house?

Watch this space…

Warning! Failed.

I was at Luxembourg airport this week and spotted an unattended bag. Not knowing how to contact the airport police, I informed a waitress at the cafe closest to the bag. She duly informed her manager, who was serving a line of customers. She said something like, “Oh, I’m busy with all these people.” As the bag was beyond a wall of glass next to that cafe, that location was potentially extremely vulnerable.

I searched for the Police desk, while moving myself well away from the potential blast zone. Fortunately, I spotted someone retrieving the darn thing. Phew!

Still, the event didn’t inspire much confidence in the “good citizen” reporting we’re constantly asked to do.

Conclusion: A frustrating month for many. Here’s to a better Spring season.

 

2 comments on “Mothers, Conspiracy, Frustration

  1. A clever discussion about Mother’s Day, Andy, and an entertaining one about the Brexit SNAFU (using the military definition for SNAFU). And Luxembourg… well, that speaks volumes about the world we are living in today, now doesn’t it?
    Thanks for the entertaining read! Here’s to a wonderful Spring!

    • Glad you liked it, James.

      Yes, the Brexit SNAFU (good description) looks like it will roll on for months or even years. We added Luxembourgish nationality to our portfolio of passports a couple of years ago as I guessed it would all end up in a mess (and to avoid the rush). As I’ve lived here for longer than I lived in the UK and have a family and a home here, I probably should have done it much earlier. Anyway, my travel rights and state pensions are now protected.

      (Lesson for politicians: look into the future and prepare for what might go wrong, not just what will get you through your next term of office!)

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