This Tesco delivery man didn’t want to be photographed, nevertheless, I showed him my blog and photos of many of his colleagues which he enjoyed. Because of lockdown, delivery men aren’t allowed into houses to help with shopping so I sit on the piano stool by the door and take out all items of the crates, some one by one, because they are heavy. I don’t have bags because that’s not saving the planet and rightly so, it’s an extra 40p.
While I take out each item, the delivery man tells me his story. He isn’t quite sure of his delivery man protocol because he was shielding during the last lockdown, but this lockdown he was told he wasn’t ill enough. I asked him why this was. He told me because he hadn’t had his usual consultations and that he was off his medication, “It was the medication that stuffed me up in the first place. They gave me steroids for five years and it was that gave me…” The man proceeded to tell me a list of his ailments, diseases, diagnoses, conditions, all of which I have forgotten, I’m not one for remembering labels, people YES, thoughts and feelings YES, acknowledging pain YES. But NOT labels. This delivery man was upset, angry, frustrated, exhausted and I suspect in physical pain. We’re all in some pain and/or anxiety, life is hard at the best of times, some of us are more aware than others, expressed in different forms, all pain, all dis-ease tells our unique story. My story is in the making in the book I am writing/editing, gosh it takes forever the edits.
(By the by the way, a friend asked me why I wouldn’t want a vaccine of any sort when I was a user of recreational drugs in my youth. Firstly, I don’t want bits of male foetus in me, secondly, I have worked so hard on my body with the help of the most wonderful homeopath akin to the Queen’s, and thirdly, I took recreational drugs to relieve emotional pain, but then came the physical pain and MS numbness and blurred vision, my brain couldn’t listen, and then came the therapy to help me see. The Body Keeps the Score by Bessel Van Der Kolk explains this well. I’m sure Mr Van Der Kolk has a few things to say about this plandemic.)
Back to Tesco. How totally patronising, mind numbingly insulting is this email I received from them today, just take a look …
“Santa’s making a
list and checking
Have you been naughty or nice this year? Whether it was a dodgy DIY haircut or making up homework for the kids to get a little quiet time, have you had any naughty little slip-ups year?
37% I’ve accidently given a relative a dodgy home haircut
5% I’ve made up homework for the kids
48% I’ve forgotten to sing Happy Birthday while washing my hands
10% I’m guilty of sneakily cheating on a virtual quiz
Fuck off, fuck off, fuck off … I immensely value your Tesco delivery men, and am very grateful that (unlike last year) you have pickled walnuts on your shelves, but I object to this shit – fucking quizzes, happy fucking birthday hand wanking and oh, the hilarity of cutting hair when we’re not qualified. I’ve never read such tripe and been so insulted, that’s what you think I do Tesco, or even think about, this is some of the worst advertising I’ve ever come across, is it supposed to be funny? That’s what has been difficult this year? Really?
Fuck off mainstream media, fuck off mass media, just fuck off. It’s time to change Mr Tesco, no room in the bunker for you mate, stop tittle tattling over last lockdown. We have been locked in, shut down, had our human rights and livings eroded, mental health and economy devastated due to the disproportionate fear-based response to this virus. We’ve been kept in isolation, prevented from spending time with our friends and family and like the economy, most days I feel I could be on the brink of collapse.
The fight in me at least relieves symptoms, writing helps, I know this because I used to run a writing as therapy group for people with MS in the Peckham library. I was in Peckham Rye park yesterday and Alice Cooper’s song “Don’t give Up” came up on my Spotify. It helped me enormously, Alice originally wrote the track about suicide, but then Covid came and the lyrics seemed to just fit…. And, of course, suicide rates have increased and will increase, just wait until those 2020 figures come in this time next year, in my work and life communities, every week I hear of another young person having taken their life.
Here is a poem I wrote about fucking on the bowling green in Peckham Rye Park
I complained about his dick tion
But I loved his stroke
He was paralysed right down his right side
He could do double with his left
With slurred speech he told me to fuck off about my complaint about his dick tion
We walked through Peckham Rye Park
I hate walking. He loves walking with three-pronged stick
Like Jake the Peg, diddle, diddle, diddle, de
Hung to left
It was a full moon. We fucked on the bowling green