The fact that these events are almost invariably horrible kind of takes the edge off things a little.
It’s getting to a point where I’m almost blase about the bounteous availability of horrible things on offer. So much so that last Thursday afternoon when an air ambulance was hovering directly over our back yard and I could hear the sound of at least half a dozen police and fire engine sirens on the main road I carried on diddling away on the Internet.
It was only later on, when a friend left a jokey, but dark, comment on one of my flickr photos about ‘Price Cutters’ that I bothered checking up to find out what had been going on...
It turns out someone had chucked a fire bomb into my local Price Cutter convenience store and one of the poor sods inside had choked to death. He’d got stuck in the back of the shop and couldn’t get out because the door was locked. Having been obliged to put shutters on my own windows years ago, after the local burglary rate just got plain stupid, I sometimes wonder if I’d be able to get the buggers open in time in case of fire. The choices we have to make eh?
Like I said, the firebombing happened on Thursday.
It didn’t rate as much of a national story.
Then, round about Sunday morning, the police declared that the attack may have been racially motivated. The media went balllistic. Suddenly, it was the lead story in all the TV and radio bulletins. Clapham Road was swarming with news crews…
The moral of the tale being…
Human life is more valuable if taken by a racist?
My favourite quote of the day came from one of the blokes in the convenience store next door (yes, we just can't get enough convenience stores around here). He said something along the lines of
I’ve lived here for more than ten years and I’ve never heard of an incident like this. I can’t believe it. Kidnappings and murders, yes … but someone firebombing a shop … That’s unusual
Welcome to Lambeth
The only other funny of the day came from the police e-fit of the arson suspect. Compiled with state of the art, multimillion pound supercomputer technology and an enormous database of all known human facial characteristics, they came up with this …
by PC Plod, aged 5
For fuck’s sake