Feet on seats

On many of London’s buses there is a set of seats at the back of the bottom and top decks – where there are seats that face each other. The really annoying thing is that some people think they have a God-given right to put their feet up onto the seats opposite. (See my flickr set for just a few examples of this very widespread, disrespectful behaviour.)

Most of the time it’s the younger folks who exhibit this total lack of respect for hygiene and general well-being of the bus and fellow passengers. I often feel sorry for those unfortunate fellow travellers who subsequently sit on those seats not knowing that the seat has probably been used more often to accommodate the filthy feet of the people than as a legitimate seating position.

And that’s exactly what I felt the other day when I noticed a respectful-looking old man coming onto the bus and sitting himself down in one of those “feet-up” soiled seats. What was even more horrifying was when an Asian girl came on a couple of stops later and sat almost opposite him and put her filthy feet up onto the seat right next to him!. I was shaking my head at the audacity of the woman. But nothing quite prepared me for the shock of seeing so-called respectful bloke get up a few minutes later (after disrespectful Asian woman gets off the bus) and switch seat and put his own feet up!

At first he seemed like a pretty respectful sort of bloke …

Flying a flag

Less than a week until the World Cup football tournament kicks off and the sporting patriotism of car drivers in the neighbourhood is really beginning to show. This year it really is about showing your pride and support for our boys by sticking an England flag on either side of your car. Sales of these specially-made flags (which attach to your rear passenger car windows) are rocketing, so much so that even the guy who normally sells bucket-loads of roses on A40 Westbound off-ramp to the Hanger Lane Gyratory is now selling buckets-loads of England flags instead.

But like all these things there are exceptions to the rule. Multicultural London harbours multinational patriotism. And in my own neighbourhood there are certainly quite a few people who would not pass Norman Tebbit’s Cricket Test (remember that?). Tebbit’s context was “Asian” and “cricket” then. These days it’s more likely African or Eastern European and football.

Pride & support for the boys of Ghana national football team
On a car parked in Morrisons supermarket in Queensbury, London NW9

And these days it would be considered a failure by many in the community not to support the side of your place of origin.