Friday, 12 March 2010

A Beauty Spot (and Plymouth's madeover makeover)

There’s a spot in Plymouth’s city centre where I spend lots of time - in fact I was there earlier today. It’s a place where I can see into a shop and watch my ex fleet in and out of view while she’s working. Well, I say ex but we’re not officially divorced - she doesn’t know where I am and that, for the time being, is how I want it.

I do keep in contact with her: when I can I make the odd telephone call, that way she knows I’m OK and I know she’s OK and that the kids are OK, too.

You probably think that sounds a bit odd. I wouldn’t blame you. I know it’s not normal behaviour. I’m not in a normal place at the moment. When I am though, and I will be, I’ll approach her and we’ll talk face to face.

In case you're wondering, if she ever looks in my direction I’m safe, she wouldn’t recognise me, I barely recognise my own reflection. But I have to make sure I keep an eye on the time, I don’t want to attract undue attention from her or her workmates or those CCTV hawk eyes above me, behind me and to my side!

When I left that spot I was feeling pretty low so I trundled around the city centre to gather my thoughts. Thankfully, my feelings were lifted when I noticed that parts of the West End were being repaved following all the trippings over the last few months. At least somethings are going right...

Thursday, 4 March 2010

The Return of the Unwanted

The world contains evil - that's a fact. I've seen it in its many forms, and when I've been able to, I've removed it or avoided it. And when it's possible, I believe evil should be laid to rest; it deserves nothing more. This is why I have an issue with writer, Wensley Clarkson.

Last summer Plymouth was held under the media spotlight while the horrific case of paedophile nursery-worker Vanessa George became national news. It was a dark time. For the families involved December was met with a sense of closure (or as close as one could get) as George was sentenced to a minimum of seven years. Then, less than two months later, Clarkson's book Vanessa: A Portrait of Evil was released.

In less than two months! Does the public really need that woman's face peering at them once again, this time from the shelves of high street bookstores and supermarkets? And at this point in time is it so important to humanise her?

For me, Clarkson could redeem himself by channeling the money he earns to a worthy cause such as the NSPCC; and since the book has already sold 8,000 copies on, I'm sure they'd appreciate the gesture.

You see, I'm wary about these 'true crime' books because there's two kinds of people I don't trust: people who place ads in local newspapers for items costing between 50p and £1; and people who buy 'true crime' books and put them on display in their homes. There's nothing more perverse or off-putting than trying to socialise with somebody while the face of Josef Fritzel is staring at you from the coffee table!

But people do. It's a genre that sells very well. If Satan wrote an autobiography detailing all his diabolical deeds it would be on more coffee tables than there are coffee beans in a Kenco warehouse.