I drove down a street today and was reminded of the last time I drove down it. This street is in an area largely populated by students from a local university. It was a nice day. Many people like to sit outside on nice days. Occasionally I do myself. Although if you live in a terraced house, with only the pavement in front of your house, you probably have to want to do it more as you are much more in public. I have seen people put kitchen chairs etc out there to enjoy a sunny day in our unpredictable climate. Good on them, I say. On this particular day, a few. students (I am assuming they were) decided to avail themselves of the British weather. No kitchen or garden chairs? No problem. They had man-handled a sofa out there to sit on.
And they looked happy.
I just can’t imagine myself doing this…and that is a Bad Thing. I admire the ability to ‘seize the day’, and ignore the voice in the head that says, ‘You might knock the paintwork on the way out, the sun might go in, what will the neighbours think’. Children have the ability to live in the moment. At what stage did I lose this and start justifying why I couldn’t do this stuff? Why I had to do the ironing, or whatever, instead.
I need to try and get this back.
In the words of a famous mobile phone company, I need to ‘Be a bit more dog’.
Ok. So we know that the recent story-line of Tina and Peter’s affair and Tina’s subsequent murder was designed to get ratings. Coronation Street over the last decade or so has had ever more unbelievable tales to get people to ‘tune in’. I know they were not on their own with this one, but being the loyal northern bird that I am, this is the soap that I grew up with, and it remained a constant in my life. In times gone by, it was an ‘everyday tale of northern folk’ and was famous for its somewhat gritty northern humour.
But the tale of Tina/Peter has left a very bad taste. We know Peter is a bigamist and a headworker who can’t keep it in his trousers. But it would be nice to think that bad stuff gets punished sometimes. Am I the only one to find it misogynistic that Tina has paid the ultimate price for her affair with a married man while Peter hasn’t? Doesn’t this have a horrible parallel with women being stoned to death for adultery? And the Christian idea that all the trouble started with Eve being a wicked temptress and poor Adam didn’t stand a chance, the poor love…
And yes, I know that Rob actually killed Tina. Those scenes too showed him using force, before the later fatal blows to get his own way. I would argue that it somehow normalised this. During the argument he claimed that everyone ‘fancied Tina but no-one wanted to be with her’ (para-phrasing). Once again a woman is having her looks used against her, in a way which de-values her as a person. When was the last time you saw this happen to a man? Tina was punished for her beauty, in the way that many of us have been punished for our ‘averageness’. We know that Rob may, or may not get punished, but this is too far down the line to remove the damage already done.
Coronation Street used to have a history of strong female characters and I am sad that this is changing. Unfortunately I see society valuing women less, and allowing more and more Strip Clubs.
I had hoped my teenage daughter would grow up in a better society for women than I did. Sadly, this is not the case.