This week’s blog column from Bel Tel…

10 05 2010

My round up of the blogging week (plus gigantic cranium) can be found on the Bel Tel website here. Have pasted it up below as well…

*Never mind the ballots…

No prizes for guessing that the general election is foremost in the minds of local bloggers.

For me, only two people really bathed themselves in glory this election. One is David Dimbleby at the Beeb – for pulling an all-nighter and keeping the UK abreast of the very latest results. The second is Professor Billy McWilliams at 1690 an’ all thon – again, for pulling an all-nighter and keeping Ulster Scot abreast of the very latest results.

It was breathless stuff. For Billy, the first bad result arrived before the polls even closed. At 9.38pm, he blogged: “Oan the couch, hiv beer an remote control. Watchin the channel 4 thing. Furgat tae get snacks, but foun a big bag o’ Doritos oot o date frae Febuary. Ah hope they’re OK.”

And so it went on. At 12.03am, he scooped: “Yvette Shapiro has stuck oan a few poun’.” Whether Yvette had been spotted leaving Toals wasn’t quite clarified.

Also generously proportioned was the vast magnanimity exhibited by DUP candidate Ian McCrea. When learning of the result in North Antrim, Ian’s facebook status declared: “Jim Allister concedes to ian Paisley Jun hahahahahahahahahahahaha.” Just so.

Similarly, there was joy and excitement over at the blog of writer Jude Collins. An inconclusive election makes it very unlikely that this Parliament will serve the full five-year term. Bad news for normal human beings, but great for political anoraks.

“… it was a so-much-better-than-expected election, both in process and in product. Isn’t it lovely to think we’ll have another one inside the next six months or so? Yipeee!” exclaimed Jude.

Otherwise, the inconclusive result is befuddling people. At Will and Testament, William Crawley thinks that pervasive uncertainty is the one thing we can be certain about.

“One thing is beyond question: this was one of the most gripping elections anyone can remember, both nationally and locally… So, the public has spoken — sort of. But what have they really said?” he pleads.

William should look no further than Ulster’s Doomed, who seems pretty clear about what the people of Northern Ireland are saying. The blog states: “… at the end of the day nationalism has emerged unscathed, while unionism in all of its guises – DUP, UUP/UCUNF, TUV and independent unionist, has emerged battered and diminished. Good.” Fair enough.

UCUNF candidate Ian Parsley, fresh from being battered and diminished in North Down, is also certain on one minor detail. “… let’s get rid of that daft acronym!” he declares. And so say all of us.

Daft acronyms to one side, all Party manifestos claimed to offer a fairer deal for Unionists / Nationalists. Fine, but what about that other significant demographic – what about the waiter community?

Fortunately, Manuel at Well Done Fillet is on hand with ‘The Manuel Manifesto! Eight steps to a fairer deal for Waiters!’

His demands include:

  • Waiters on TV shows to be given actual names and not simply credited as ‘Waiter’.
  • Guaranteed minimum standards for waiters’ staff meals. No more off cuts, stuff “found” in the back of the fridge, under the fridge or from the bin.
  • Tipping classes from an early age in all school, particularly English schools. Seriously.

Lest anyone writes this off as a load of aul’ ballots, think of the disenfranchised waiter – it’s a manifesto which deserves careful reflection.

And finally, away from the election, Across the Line reports that music bloggers in the Republic of Ireland are reflecting on demands from the Irish Music Rights Organisation that they should cough up for hosting, streaming or linking to mp3s.

“Is it a case of reality catching up with the blogosphere or an attempt to apply an old system to a new world? It’s probably a bit of both. But it’s a decision that will, without doubt, shut down many independent music blogs.”

If anyone comes up with a manifesto to save independent music blogs, it will surely get my vote.

*Hat-tip Manuel at Well Done Fillet. This headline was just too good to ignore. So I nicked it. Sorry. Thanks.




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