Showing posts with label police. Show all posts
Showing posts with label police. Show all posts

Friday, 12 June 2020

Loyalty Means Everything to The Clones

"It's awkward having a policeman around the house.
Friends drop in, a man with a badge answers the door, the temperature drops 20 degrees.

You throw a party and that badge gets in the way. 
All of a sudden there isn't a straight man in the crowd. 
Everybody's a comedian. 
"Don't drink too much," 
somebody says, 
"or the man with a badge'll run you in." 

"How's it going, Dick Tracy? 
How many jaywalkers did you pinch today?" 

And then there's always the one who wants to know how many apples you stole.

All at once you lost your first name. 
You're a cop, a flatfoot, a bull, a dick, John Law
You're the fuzz, the heat
you're poison, you're trouble, you're bad news

They call you everything, but never a policeman.

It's not much of a life, unless you d on't mind missing a Dodger game because the hotshot phone rings. 

Unless you like working Saturdays, Sundays, 
and holidays, at a job that doesn't pay overtime.

Oh, the pay's adequate-- if you count pennies you can put your kid through college, but you better plan on seeing Europe on your television set.

And then there's your first night on the beat. 
When you try to arrest a drunken prostitute in a Main St. bar and she rips your new uniform to shreds. 

You'll buy another one-- out of your own pocket.

And you're going to rub elbows with the elite-- pimps, addicts, thieves, bums, winos, girls who can't keep an address and men who don't care. 
Liars, cheats, con men--  the class of Skid Row.

And the heartbreak-- underfed kids, beaten kids, molested kids, lost kids, crying kids, homeless kids, hit-and-run kids, broken-arm kids, broken-leg kids, broken-head kids, sick kids, dying kids, dead kids. 

The old people nobody wants-- the reliefers, the pensioners, the ones who walk the street cold, and those who tried to keep warm and died in a $3 room with an unventilated gas heater. 

You'll walk your beat and try to pick up the pieces.

Do you have real adventure in your soul? 
You better have, because you're gonna do time in a prowl car. 
Oh, it's going to be a thrill a minute when you get an unknown-trouble call and hit a backyard at two in the morning, never knowing who you'll meet-- 
a kid with a knife, a pill-head with a gun, or two ex-cons with nothing to lose.

And you're going to have plenty of time to think. 
You'll draw duty in a lonely car, with nobody to talk to but your radio.

Four years in uniform and you'll have the ability, the experience and maybe the desire to be a detective. 
If you like to fly by the seat of your pants, this is where you belong. 
For every crime that's committed, you've got three million suspects to choose from. 
And most of the time, you'll have few facts and a lot of hunches. 
You'll run down leads that dead-end on you. 
You'll work all-night stakeouts that could last a week. 
You'll do leg work until you're sure you've talked to everybody in the state of California.

People who saw it happen - but really didn't. 
People who insist they did it - but really didn't. 
People who don't remember - those who try to forget. 
Those who tell The Truth - those who lie. 
You'll run the files until your eyes ache.

And paperwork? 
Oh, you'll fill out a report when you're right, you'll fill out a report when you're wrong, you'll fill one out when you're not sure, you'll fill one out listing your leads, you'll fill one out when you have no leads, you'll fill out a report on the reports you've made! 
You'll write enough words in your lifetime to stock a library.

You'll learn to live with doubt, anxiety, frustration. 
Court decisions that tend to hinder rather than help you. 
Dorado, Morse, Escobedo, Cahan. 
You'll learn to live with the District Attorney, testifying in court, defense attorneys, prosecuting attorneys, judges, juries, witnesses. 
And sometimes you're not going to be happy with the outcome.

But there's also this: there are over 5,000 men in this city, who know that being a policeman is an endless, glamourless, thankless job that's gotta be done.

I know it, too, and I'm damn glad to be one of them."

Wednesday, 3 April 2019


The ones featuring coppers are clearly genuine — 

See this is why they are having to replace all of the frontline male police officers with good -natured, conciliatory young women under 30, who are nosey — all of that touchy-feely Community-Outeach, Social Justice wiff-waff you saw a decade ago in Hot Fuzz, ten years ago now has just gone completely through the rooF since the 2010 Riots (which were of a highly dubious and non-spontaneous, planned and co-ordinated nature,  and then never re-occurred, meaning that a large-scale staged provocation is implied), and what with the austerity measures slashing policing budgets left, right and centre, almost all of the  senior, experienced uniformed-division male. Beat Coppers decided to cut their losses and either resign from the force outright, or opt to take early retirement, with the addition of a modest cash bump in their paying-off package deal.

But this, and countless other instances  of mostly  young men (and  indeed, yes, on occasion,only or more young females of that same age-bracket) out in public places  with HD Quality video cameras on their iPhones and similar devices to capture footage of rookie policeman,  only barely just that little bit older than themselves — why continuing with a High-Visibility Policing doctrine of  having officers in uniform, mostly rookie raw recruits all freshly-graudated and Straight Outta Hendon, being seen standing  guard on behalf of the British Public over  the local potential soft-target public right-of-way pedestrianised concourse/public transport hub /  commuter  interchange —  why that delicate mass delusion ofongoing and indefinitely self-sustaining and stable, perpetually renewable Folie a Deux of a Long Peace after almost 25 years of hard-won relative socio-ecconomic calm, on the streets and rural village communiies in the North of Ireland and elsewhere across and throughout all of the length and breadth of mainland Britain, 

Sunday, 24 March 2019


You have failed, Doctor. 
Begin conversion. Phase one. 
Cleanse the brain of emotions. 

The Chin: 
No. Craig, fight it! 
They can't convert you if you fight back. 
You're strong. Don't give in to it. 

Help me! 
The Chin: 
Think of Sophie. 
Think of Alfie. 
Craig, don't let them take it all away. 
Make it stop. Please, make it stop! 

The Chin: 

Please, listen to me. 

I believe in you. I believe you can do this. 

I've always believed in all of you, all my life. 

I'm going die, Craig. 

Tomorrow, I'm going to die,
but I don't mind if you just prove me right. Craig! 
(A Cyberman helmet closes over Craig's face.) 

Begin full conversion.

[Ladies clothing]

(Alfie is crying.) 
Don't worry, it's just a little light going out.


(They are on the monitor.) 
Unknown soundwave detected. 
It is the sound of fear. 
It is irrelevant. 
We will remove all fear. 

The Chin: 
Alfie, I'm so sorry! 
Alfie, please, stop. 
I, I can't help him.

Emotions eradicated. 
Conversion complete. 


Emotional subsystems rebooting. 

This is impossible. 
The Chin : 
He can hear him. 
He can hear Alfie. 
Oh, please, just give me this. 

Craig, you wanted a chance to prove you're a Dad.
You are never going to get better one than this. 
What is happening? 
The Chin: 
What's happening, you metal moron? 
A baby is crying. 

And you'd better watch out, because guess what? 

Ha ha! Daddy's coming home! 
(The Cyberman helmet opens again, and Craig starts to break out of the conversion chamber.) 
Alfie! Alfie, I'm here! I'm coming for you!
The Chin: 
Yes, Craig. 
(The Doctor gets free of the confused Cyberman and grabs his sonic screwdriver.) 
Alfie needs you! 
Emergency. Emotional influx!
The Chin: 
You've triggered a feedback loop into their emotional inhibitors. 
All that stuff they cut out of themselves, now they're feeling it. 
Which means a very big explosion. 

Overload. Overload. Overload. 

Get it open! We need to get to Alfie! 

The Chin: 
They've sealed the ship! 

We've got to get out of here! 

The Chin: 
I know! 
(The Cybermen's heads start exploding.) 

The Chin: 
The teleport! 
(The Doctor sonicks the controls and they beam away just before the whole Cybership goes KaBOOM.)

[Ladies clothing]

How did you get in there? 

Here's your Daddy. 
(Val hands Alfie over. He gurgles.)
The Chin: 
That was another review. 
Ten out of Ten.
The Cybermen. 
They blew up.
 I blew them up with love. 

The Chin: 
No, that's impossible. 
And also grossly sentimental and over simplistic. 

You destroyed them because of the deeply ingrained hereditary human trait to protect one's own genes, which in turn triggered a, a, a. Yeah. 

Love. You blew them up with Love.

The World can be validly construed as forum for action, or as place of things. 

The former manner of interpretation – more primordial, and less clearly understood – finds its expression in the arts or humanities, in ritual, drama, literature, and mythology. The world as forum for  action is a place of value, a place where all things have meaning. This meaning, which is shaped as a 
consequence of social interaction, is implication for action, or – at a higher level of analysis – implication  for the configuration of the interpretive schema that produces or guides action. 

The latter manner of interpretation – The World as Place of Things – finds its formal expression in the Methods and Theories of Science.

Science allows for increasingly precise determination of the consensually- validatable properties of things, and for efficient utilization of precisely-determined things as tools (once the direction such use is to take has been determined, through application of more fundamental narrative  processes). 
No complete world-picture can be generated, without use of both modes of construal.

 They Think They Are Bears... 
They Want Us to Think That They are Bears -

Quickly  - How Do You Hunt a Bear ?

The fact that one  mode is generally set at odds with the other means only that the nature of their respective domains remains 
insufficiently discriminated. Adherents of the mythological world-view tend to regard the statements of their creeds as indistinguishable from empirical “fact,” even though such statements were generally formulated long before the notion of objective reality emerged.

Those who, by contrast, accept the scientific  perspective – who assume that it is, or might become, complete – forget that an impassable gulf currently
divides what is from what should be.
We need to know four things:
What There Is,
What to do about what there is,  

that there is a difference between knowing what there is, and knowing what to do about what there is 

what that difference is

To explore something, to “discover what it is” – that means most importantly to discover its significance  for motor output, within a particular social context, and only more particularly, to determine its precise  objective sensory or material nature. This is knowledge, in the most basic of senses – and often constitutes  sufficient knowledge. 
Imagine that a baby girl, toddling around in the course of her initial tentative investigations, reaches up  onto a counter-top to touch a fragile and expensive glass sculpture.

She observes its color, sees its shine,  feels that it is smooth and cold and heavy to the touch. Suddenly her mother interferes, grasps her hand,  tells her not to ever touch that object. The child has just learned a number of specifically consequential things about the sculpture – has identified its sensory properties, certainly.

More importantly, however, she 
has determined that approached in the wrong manner, the sculpture is dangerous (at least in the presence of Mother)
has discovered as well that the sculpture is regarded more highly, in its present unaltered configuration, than the exploratory tendency – at least (once again) by mother.

The baby girl has  simultaneously encountered an object, from the empirical perspective, and its socioculturally-determined  status.

The empirical object might be regarded as  
those sensory properties “intrinsic” to the object. 

The status of the object, by contrast, consists of its meaning –
consists of its implication for behavior.
Everything a child encounters has this dual nature, experienced by the child as part of a unified totality.
Everything is something, and means something
The distinction between essence and significance is not necessarily drawn. 
Stormy :
Mum - What Makes You Happy?

Stormy's Mum :
New Shoes, Comfortable Bra - I'm joking.
YOU Make Me Happy.

Stormy :
Me, why?

Stormy's Mum :

Because, you alphabetise all my books, aaand you tell me if I'm wearing too much make-up


aaaand you write the funniest birthday cards... 
Plus, you are really, really good at picking a ripe avocado; 
and you help me finish crosswords I have NO BUSINESS finishing, and -

Because -

You are The ONLY Thing in This World, 
I KNOW I Got Right...

Stormy :
Night, Mum.

Stormy's Mum :
Night, Sweetheart.
[ Hugs a Tree ]

“BUT WHY MUST we go for a walk with Ellen?” grumbled Michael, slamming the gate. “I don’t like her. Her nose is too red.” 

“Sh!” said Jane. “She’ll hear you.”

Ellen, who was wheeling the perambulator, turned round. 

“You’re a cruel, unkind boy, Master Michael! I’m only doing my duty, I’m sure. It’s no pleasure to me to be going for a walk in this heat –so there!”

 She blew her red nose on a green handkerchief. 

“Then why do you go?” Michael demanded. 

“Because Mary Poppins is busy. So come along, there’s a good boy, and I’ll buy you a penn’orth of peppermints.” 

“I don’t want peppermints,” muttered Michael. “I want Mary Poppins.” 

Plop-plop! Plop-plop! Ellen’s feet marched slowly and heavily along the Lane. 

“I can see a rainbow through every chink of my hat,” said Jane. 

“I can’t,” said Michael crossly. “I can only see my silk lining.” 

Ellen stopped at the corner, looking anxiously for traffic. 

“Want any help?” enquired the Policeman, sauntering up to her. 

“Well,” said Ellen, blushing, “if you could take us across the road, I’d be obliged. What with a bad cold, and four children to look after, I don’t know if I’m on my head or my feet.” 

She blew her nose again. 

“But you must know! You’ve only got to look!” said Michael, thinking how Perfectly Awful Ellen was. 

But the Policeman, apparently, thought differently, for he took tight hold of Ellen’s arm with one hand, and the handle of the perambulator with the other, and led her across the street as tenderly as though she were a bride. 

“Ever get a Day Off?” he enquired, looking interestedly into Ellen’s red face. 

“Well,” said Ellen. “Half-days, so to speak. Every second Saturday.” She blew her nose nervously. 

“Funny,” said the Policeman. “Those are my days too. And I’m usually just around here at two o’clock in the afternoon.” 

“Oh!” said Ellen, opening her mouth very wide indeed. 

“So!” said the Policeman, nodding at her politely. 

“Well, I’ll see,” said Ellen. 

“Goodbye.” And she went trudging on, looking back occasionally to see if the Policeman was still looking. 

And he always was. 

“Mary Poppins never needs a policeman,” complained Michael. 

“What can she be busy about?” 

“Something important is happening at home,” said Jane. “I’m sure of it.”

“How do you know?” 

“I’ve got an empty, waiting sort of feeling inside.” 

“Pooh!” said Michael. “I expect you’re hungry! Can’t we go faster, Ellen, and get it over?” 

“That boy,” said Ellen to the Park railing, “has a heart of stone. No, we can’t, Master Michael, because of my feet.” 

“What’s the matter with them?” 

“They will only go so fast and no faster.” 

“Oh, dear Mary Poppins!” said Michael bitterly. 

He went sighing after the perambulator. 

Jane walked beside him counting rainbows through her hat. 

Ellen’s slow feet tramped steadily onward. One-two. One-two. Plop-plop! Plop-plop! 

And away behind them in Cherry Tree Lane the important thing was happening. 

From the outside, Number Seventeen looked as peaceful and sleepy as all the other houses. 

But behind the drawn blinds there was such a stir and bustle that, if it hadn’t been Summer-time, a passer-by might have thought the people in the house were Spring-cleaning or getting ready for Christmas. 

But the House itself stood blinking in the sunshine, taking no notice. 

After all, it thought to itself, I have seen such bustlings often before and shall probably see them many times again, so why should I bother about it? 

And just then, the front door was flung open by Mrs Brill, and Doctor Simpson hurried out. 

Mrs Brill stood dancing on her toes as she watched him go down the garden path, swinging his little brown bag. 

Then she hurried to the Pantry and called excitedly: “Where are you, Robertson? Come along, if you’re coming!” 

She scuttled up the stairs two at a time with Robertson Ay, yawning and stretching, behind her. 

“Sh!” hissed Mrs Brill. “Sh!” 

She put her finger to her lips and tiptoed to Mrs Banks’ door. 

“Tch, tch! You can’t see nothing but the wardrobe,” she complained, as she bent to look through the key-hole. 

“The wardrobe and a bit of the winder.” 

But the next moment she started violently. 

“My Glory-goodness!” she shrieked, as the door burst open suddenly and she fell back against Robertson Ay. 

For there, framed against the light, stood Mary Poppins, looking very stern and suspicious. 

In her arms she carried, with great care, something that looked like a bundle of blankets. 

“Well!” said Mrs Brill breathlessly. 

“If it isn’t you! I was just polishing the door-knob, putting a shine on it, so to say, as you came out.” 

Mary Poppins looked at the door-knob. It was very dirty. 

“Polishing the key-hole is what I should have said!” she remarked tartly. 

But Mrs Brill took no notice. She was gazing tenderly at the bundle. 

With her large red hand she drew aside a fold of one of the blankets, and a satisfied smile spread over her face. 

“Ah!” she cooed. “Ah, the Lamb! Ah, the Duck! Ah, the Trinket! And as good as a week of Sundays, I’ll be bound!” 

Robertson Ay yawned again and stared at the bundle with his mouth slightly open. “Another pair of shoes to clean!” he said mournfully, leaning against the banisters for support. 

“Mind you don’t drop it, now!” said Mrs Brill anxiously, as Mary Poppins brushed past her. 

Mary Poppins glanced at them both contemptuously. 

“If I were some people,” she remarked acidly, “I’d mind my own business!” 
And she folded the blanket over the bundle again and went upstairs to the Nursery. . . 

“Excuse me, please! Excuse me!” Mr Banks came rushing up the stairs, nearly knocking Mrs Brill over as he hurried into Mrs Banks’ bedroom. 

“Well!” he said, sitting down at the foot of the bed. “This is all Very Awkward. Very Awkward indeed. I don’t know that I can afford it. I hadn’t bargained for five.” 

“I’m so sorry!” said Mrs Banks, smiling at him happily. 

“You’re not sorry, not a bit. In fact, you’re very pleased and conceited about it. And there’s no reason to be. It’s a very small one.” 

“I like them that way,” said Mrs Banks. “Besides, it will grow.” 

“Yes, unfortunately!” he replied bitterly. “And I shall have to buy it shoes and clothes and a tricycle. Yes, and send it to school and give it a Good Start in Life. A very expensive proceeding. And then, after all that, when I’m an old man sitting by the fire, it will go away and leave me. You hadn’t thought of that, I suppose?” 

“No,” said Mrs Banks, trying to look sorry, but not succeeding. “I hadn’t.” 

“I thought not. Well, there it is. But, I warn you! I shall not be able to afford to have the bathroom retiled.”

“Don’t worry about that,” said Mrs Banks comfortingly. “I really like the old tiles best.” 

“Then you’re a very stupid woman. That’s all I have to say.” 

And Mr Banks went away, muttering and blustering through the house. But when he got outside the front door, he flung back his shoulders, and pushed out his chest, and put a large cigar in his mouth. 

And, soon after that, he was heard telling Admiral Boom the news in a voice that was very loud and conceited and boastful. . . 

Mary Poppins stooped over the new cradle between John’s and Barbara’s cots and laid the bundle of blankets carefully in it. 

“Here you are at last! Bless my Beak and Tail-feathers –I thought you were never coming! Which is it?” cried a croaking voice from the window. 

Mary Poppins looked up. The Starling who lived on the top of the Chimney was hopping excitedly on the window-sill. 

“A girl. Annabel,” said Mary Poppins shortly. “And I’ll thank you to be a little quieter. Squawking and croaking there like a packet of magpies!” 

But the Starling was not listening. 

He was turning somersaults on the window-sill, clapping his wings wildly together each time his head came up. 

“What a treat!” he panted, when at last he stood up straight. “What a Treat!” Oh, I could sing!” 

“You couldn’t. Not if you tried till Doomsday!” scoffed Mary Poppins. 

But the Starling was too happy to care. 

“A girl!” he shrieked, dancing on his toes. “I’ve had three broods this season and –would you believe it? –every one of them boys. But Annabel will make up to me for that!” 

He hopped a little along the sill. 

“Annabel!” he burst out again. 

“That’s a nice name! I had an Aunt called Annabel. Used to live in Admiral Boom’s chimney, and died, poor thing, of eating green apples and grapes. I warned her! I warned her! But she wouldn’t believe me! So, of course—” 

“Will you be quiet!” demanded Mary Poppins, making a dive at him with her apron. 

“I will not!” he shouted, dodging neatly. “This is no time for silence. I’m going to spread the news.” 

He swooped out of the window. 

“Back in five minutes!” he screamed at her over his shoulder, as he darted away. Mary Poppins moved quietly about the Nursery, putting Annabel’s new clothes in a neat pile. 

The Sunlight, slipping in at the window, crept across the room and up to the cradle. 

“Open your eyes,” it said softly, “and I’ll put a shine on them!” 

The coverlet of the cradle trembled. Annabel opened her eyes. 

“Good girl!” said the Sunlight. “They’re blue, I see. My favourite colour! There! You won’t find a brighter pair of eyes anywhere!” 

It slipped lightly out of Annabel’s eyes and down the side of the cradle. 

“Thank you very much!” said Annabel politely. 

A warm Breeze stirred the muslin flounces at her head. 

“Curls or straight?” it whispered, dropping into the cradle beside her. 

“Oh, curls, please!” said Annabel softly. 

“It does save trouble, doesn’t it?” agreed the Breeze. 

And it moved over her head, carefully turning up the feathery edges of her hair, before it fluttered off across the room. 

“Here we are! Here we are!” A harsh voice shrilled from the window. The Starling had returned to the sill. And behind him, wobbling uncertainly as he alighted, came a very young bird. Mary Poppins moved towards them threateningly. “Now you be off!” she said angrily. “I’ll have no sparrers littering up this Nursery—” But the Starling, with the young one at his side, brushed haughtily past her. “Kindly remember, Mary Poppins,” he said icily, “that all my families are properly brought up. Littering, indeed!” He alighted neatly on the edge of the cradle and steadied the Fledgling beside him. The young bird stared about him with round, inquisitive eyes. The Starling hopped along to the pillow. “Annabel, dear,” he began, in a husky, wheedling voice, “I’m very partial to a nice, crisp, crunchy piece of Arrowroot Biscuit.” His eyes twinkled greedily. “You haven’t one about you, I suppose?” The curled head stirred on the pillow. “No? Well, you’re young yet for biscuits, perhaps. Your sister Barbara –nice girl, she was, very generous and pleasant –always remembered me. So if, in the future, you could spare the old fellow a crumb or two. . .” “Of course I will,” said Annabel, from the folds of the blanket. “That’s the girl!” croaked the Starling approvingly. He cocked his head on one side and gazed at her with his round, bright eye. “I hope,” he remarked politely, “you are not too tired after your journey.” Annabel shook her head. “Where has she come from –out of an egg?” cheeped the Fledgling suddenly. “Huh-huh!” scoffed Mary Poppins. “Do you think she’s a sparrer?” The Starling gave her a pained and haughty look. “Well, what is she, then? And where did she come from?” cried the Fledgling shrilly, flapping his short wings and staring down at the cradle. “You tell him, Annabel!” the Starling croaked. Annabel moved her hands inside the blanket. “I am earth and air and fire and water,” she said softly. “I come from the Dark where all things have their beginning.” “Ah, such dark!” said the Starling softly, bending his head to his breast. “It was dark in the egg too!” the Fledgling cheeped. “I come from the sea and its tides,” Annabel went on. “I come from the sky and its stars; I come from the sun and its brightness—” “Ah, so bright!” said the Starling, nodding. “And I come from the forests of earth.” As if in a dream, Mary Poppins rocked the cradle –to-and-fro, to-and-fro with a steady swinging movement. “Yes?” whispered the Fledgling. “Slowly I moved at first,” said Annabel, “always sleeping and dreaming. I remembered all I had been, and I thought of all I shall be. And when I had dreamed my dream, I awoke and came swiftly.” She paused for a moment, her blue eyes full of memories. “And then?” prompted the Fledgling. “I heard the stars singing as I came and I felt warm wings about me. I passed the beasts of the jungle and came through the dark, deep waters. It was a long journey.” Annabel was silent. The Fledgling stared at her with his bright inquisitive eyes. Mary Poppins’ hand lay quietly on the side of the cradle. She had stopped rocking. “A long journey, indeed!” said the Starling softly, lifting his head from his breast. “And, ah, so soon forgotten!” Annabel stirred under the quilt. “No!” she said confidently. “I’ll never forget.” “Stuff and Nonsense! Beaks and Claws! Of course you will. By the time the week’s out you won’t remember a word of it –what you are or where you came from!” Inside her flannel petticoat Annabel was kicking furiously. “I will! I will! How could I forget?” “Because they all do!” jeered the Starling harshly. “Every silly human, except–” he nodded his head at Mary Poppins –“her! She’s different, she’s the Oddity, she’s the Misfit—” “You Sparrer!” cried Mary Poppins, making a dart at him. But with a rude laugh he swept his Fledgling off the edge of the cradle and flew with him to the window-sill. “Tipped you last!” he said cheekily, as he brushed past Mary Poppins. “Hullo, what’s that?” There was a chorus of voices outside on the landing and a clatter of feet on the stairs. “I don’t believe you! I won’t believe you!” cried Annabel wildly. And at that moment Jane and Michael and the Twins burst into the room. “Mrs Brill says you’ve got something to show us!” said Jane, flinging off her hat. “What is it?” demanded Michael, gazing round the room. “Show me! Me too!” shrieked the Twins. Mary Poppins glared at them. “Is this a decent Nursery or the Zoological Gardens?” she enquired angrily. “Answer me that!” “The Zoo –er –I mean—” Michael broke off hurriedly, for he had caught Mary Poppins’ eye. “I mean a Nursery,” he said lamely. “Oh, look, Michael, look!” Jane cried excitedly. “I told you something important was happening! It’s a New Baby! Oh, Mary Poppins, can I have it to keep?” Mary Poppins, with a furious glance at them all, stooped and lifted Annabel out of the cradle and sat down with her in the armchair. “Gently, please, gently!” she warned, as they crowded about her. “This is a baby, not a battleship!” “A boy-baby?” asked Michael. “No, a girl –Annabel.” Michael and Annabel stared at each other. He put his finger into her hand and she clutched it tightly. “My doll!” said John, pushing up against Mary Poppins’ knee. “My rabbit!” said Barbara, tugging at Annabel’s shawl. “Oh!” breathed Jane, touching the hair that the wind had curled. “How very small and sweet! Like a star. Where did you come from, Annabel?” Very pleased to be asked, Annabel began her story again. “I came from the Dark. . .” she recited softly. Jane laughed. “Such funny little sounds!” she cried. “I wish she could talk and tell us.” Annabel stared. “But I am telling you!” she protested, kicking. “Ha-ha!” shrieked the Starling rudely from the window. “What did I say? Excuse me laughing!” The Fledgling giggled behind his wing. “Perhaps she came from a Toy Shop,” said Michael. Annabel, with a furious movement, flung his finger from her. “Don’t be silly!” said Jane. “Doctor Simpson must have brought her in his little brown bag!” “Was I right, or was I wrong?” The Starling’s old dark eyes gleamed tauntingly at Annabel. “Tell me that!” he jeered, flapping his wings in triumph. But for answer Annabel turned her face against Mary Poppins’ apron and wept. Her first cries, thin and lonely, rang piercingly through the house. “There! There!” said the Starling gruffly. “Don’t take on! It can’t be helped. You’re only a human child after all. But next time, perhaps, you’ll believe your Betters! Elders and Betters! Elders and Betters!” he screamed, prancing conceitedly up and down. “Michael, take my feather duster, please, and sweep those birds off the sill!” said Mary Poppins ominously. A squawk of amusement came from the Starling. “We can sweep ourselves off, Mary Poppins, thank you! We were just going, anyway! Come along, Boy!” And with a loud, clucking chuckle, he flicked the Fledgling over the sill and swooped with him through the window. . . In a very short time, Annabel settled down comfortably to life in Cherry Tree Lane. She enjoyed being the centre of attraction, and was always pleased when somebody leant over her cradle and said how pretty she was, or how good or sweet-tempered. “Do go on admiring me!” she would say, smiling. “I like it so much!” And then they would hasten to tell her how curly her hair was and how blue her eyes, and Annabel would smile in such a satisfied way that they would cry, “How intelligent she is! You would almost think she understood!” But that always annoyed her, and she would turn away in disgust at their foolishness. Which was silly, because when she was disgusted she looked so charming that they became more foolish than ever. She was a week old before the Starling returned. Mary Poppins, in the dim light of the nightlight, was gently rocking the cradle when he appeared. “Back again?” snapped Mary Poppins, watching him prance in. “You’re as bad as a bad penny!” She gave a long, disgusted sniff. “I’ve been busy!” said the Starling. “Have to keep my affairs in order. And this isn’t the only Nursery I have to look after, you know!” His beady, black eyes twinkled wickedly. “Humph!” she said shortly. “I’m sorry for the others!” He chuckled, and shook his head. “Nobody like her!” he remarked chirpily to the blind-tassel. 

“Nobody like her! She’s got an answer for everything!” 

He cocked his head towards the cradle. 

“Well, how are things? Annabel asleep?” 

“No thanks to you, if she is!” said Mary Poppins. 

The Starling ignored the remark. He hopped to the end of the sill. “I’ll keep watch,” he said, in a whisper. “You go down and get a cup of tea.” 

Mary Poppins stood up. 

“Mind and don’t wake her, then!” 

The Starling laughed pityingly. 

“My dear girl, I have in my time brought up at least twenty broods of fledglings. I don’t need to be told how to look after a mere baby.” 

“Humph!” Mary Poppins walked to the cupboard and very pointedly put the biscuit-tin under her arm before she went out and shut the door. 

The Starling marched up and down the window-sill, backwards and forwards, with his wing-tips under his tail-feathers. 

There was a small stir in the cradle. Annabel opened her eyes. 

“Hullo!” she said. “I was wanting to see you.” 

“Ha!” said the Starling, swooping across to her. 

“There’s something I wanted to remember,” said Annabel, frowning. “And I thought you might remind me.” 

He started. His dark eye glittered. “How does it go?” he said softly. “Like this?” 

And he began in a husky whisper: “I am earth and air and fire and water—” 

“No, no!” said Annabel impatiently. “Of course it doesn’t.” 

“Well,” said the Starling anxiously, “was it about your journey? You came from the sea and its tides, you came from the sky and—” 

“Oh, don’t be so silly!” cried Annabel. “The only journey I ever took was to the Park and back again this morning. No, no –it was something important. Something beginning with B.” 

She crowed suddenly. “I’ve got it!” she cried. “It’s Biscuit. Half an Arrowroot Biscuit on the mantelpiece. Michael left it there after tea!” 

“Is that all?” said the Starling sadly. 

“Yes, of course,” Annabel said fretfully. “Isn’t it enough? I thought you’d be glad of a nice piece of biscuit!” 

“So I am, so I am!” said the Starling hastily. “But. . .” 

She turned her head on the pillow and closed her eyes. “Don’t talk any more now, please!” she said. “I want to go to sleep.” 

The Starling glanced across at the mantelpiece, and down again at Annabel. 

“Biscuits!” he said, shaking his head. “Alas, Annabel, alas!” 

Mary Poppins came in quietly and closed the door. 

“Did she wake?” she said, in a whisper. The Starling nodded. 

“Only for a minute,” he said sadly. “But it was long enough.” 

Mary Poppins’ eyes questioned him. 

“She’s forgotten,” he said, with a catch in his croak. “She’s forgotten it all. I knew she would. But, ah, my dear, what a pity!” 

“Humph!” Mary Poppins moved quietly about the Nursery, putting the toys away. She glanced at the Starling. He was standing at the window-sill with his back to her, and his speckled shoulders were heaving. 

“Caught another cold?” she remarked sarcastically. He wheeled round. 

“Certainly not! It’s –ahem –the night air. Rather chilly, you know. Makes the eyes water. Well –I must be off!” 

He waddled unsteadily to the edge of the sill. 

“I’m getting old,” he croaked sadly. “That’s what it is. Not so young as we were. Eh, Mary Poppins?” 

“I don’t know about you–” Mary Poppins drew herself up haughtily –“but I’m quite as young as I was, thank you!” 

“Ah,” said the Starling, shaking his head, “you’re a wonder. An Absolute, Marvellous, Wonderful Wonder!” His round eye twinkled wickedly. 

“I don’t think!” he called back rudely, as he dived out of the window. 

“Impudent Sparrer!” she shouted after him, and shut the window with a bang. . .

Friday, 8 February 2019


Well, well, Mister Eddington. 

You just couldn't resist the temptation to come after me, could you, Captain. 

I like to finish what I start.
Well, I'm afraid you're going to be disappointed, again. 
You won't get me, Captain. 

But I do have a consolation prize for you. 
Actually it's more of a gift.

 Incoming transmission. 
Sending over a document. 

It's a book. One of my favourites. 
Les Miserables. 
Thank you, but I've read it. 

Recently? If not, you should read it again. 
Pay close attention to the character of Inspector Javert

The French policeman who spends twenty years chasing a man for stealing a loaf of bread.

Sound like anyone you know? 

[Mess hall]
(Miserable Sisko is reading a PADD.

We've towed the transport ship out of the planet's gravitational pull. 

Once our repair team is back onboard, release the tractor beam. 
The Cardassians can limp their way home in a day or two. 

Les Miserables. 

You know it? 

I can't stand Victor Hugo. 
I tried reading The Hunchback of Notre Dame, but I couldn't get through it. 
It was so melodramatic and his heroines are so two dimensional. 

Eddington compares me to one of the characters, Inspector Javert. 

A policeman who relentlessly pursues a man named Valjean, guilty of a trivial offence, 
and in the end Javert's own inflexibility destroys him. 

He commits suicide. 

You can't believe that description fits you. Eddington is just trying to get under your skin. 

He did that eight months ago. 

What strikes me about this book is that Eddington said that it's one of his favourites. 

There's no accounting for taste. 

Let's think about it. 

A Starfleet security officer is fascinated by a nineteenth century French melodrama, and now he's a leader of the Maquis, a resistance group fighting the noble battle against the evil Cardassians. 

It sounds like he's living out his own fantasy.

Exactly. And you know what? 

Les Miserables isn't about the policeman.

It's about Valjean, the victim of a monstrous injustice who spends his entire life helping people, making noble sacrifices for others. 

That's how Eddington sees himself. 

He's Valjean, he's Robin Hood, he's a romantic, dashing figure, fighting the good fight against insurmountable odds. 

The secret life of Michael Eddington. 
How does it help us?

Eddington is the hero of his own story. 
That makes me the villain. 

And what is it that every hero wants to do? 

 Kill The Bad Guy. 

That's part of it. 
Heroes only kill when they have to. 

Eddington could have killed me back in the refugee camp or when he disabled the Defiant, but in the best melodramas The Villain creates a situation where the hero is forced to sacrifice himself for the people, for the cause. 

One final grand gesture. 

What are you getting at, Benjamin?
I think it's time for me to become The Villain.

Monday, 21 January 2019

WPC : Yaz and The Rize of The British Policewoman

"Grown-ups really shouldn't need to call The Internet Police to sort it out for them."

Les Miserables isn't about The Policeman.

Jamie :
So, you’re sort of like a  — 
World Secret Police..?

Brig. Lethbridge-Stewart :
Well, no, we don’t actually arrest people — we just investigate.

[Call centre / Tardis] 

UK Security Helpline. 
This is Polly. How can I help?

Our Lady : 
I'm sorry, what? 

UK Security Helpline. 
How can I help?

Our Lady : 
Get me Kate Stewart at UNIT. 
This is a code zero emergency.

I don't know what that is, I'm afraid. 
Which organisation did you say?

Our Lady : 
UNIT. Unified Intelligence Taskforce. 
This is incredibly urgent. 
The fate of the entire planet is at stake.

Checking for you. 
Oh, I'm so sorry. 

UNIT operations have been suspended pending review. 

Our Lady : 
What? No, it can't have been. 

UNIT is a fundamentally vital protection for planet Earth against alien invasion.

Yes, but when did that last happen?

Our Lady : 
Now! Right now!
What happened to it?

Just checking. 

All UNIT operations were put on hold following financial disputes and subsequent funding withdrawal by the UK's major international partners.

Our Lady : 
You're kidding. 

Other Armed Forces are available if you can answer a couple of questions to help me best direct your call.

(The Doctor ends the call.)

Our Lady : 
We're on our own. 

The Austro-Hungarian Empire was the ideal model of a Police State.

It copied (and perfected) the French model refined during the Revolutionary, Napoleonic and post-Napoleonic eras.

It was said of the Hapsburg Empire of Prince Metternich, it was maintained by —

A Standing Army of Soldiers

A Sitting Army of Bureaucrats

A Kneeling Army of Priests 


A Creeping Army of Informants

This is why I am so interested by the timeliness of the new BBC adaptation of Les Miserables 

And, by Bane knitting —

The Colourful Jester : 
It is a far, far better thing that I do than I have ever done. 
It is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known...
(Mel comes running in

Never mind the Sydney Carton heroics!
You're not signing on as a martyr yet. 

The Colourful Jester :
Go away, Mel. Go away. 

That trial was an illusion...!

(The tumbril vanishes and the Doctor falls onto the cobblestones.)

The Colourful Jester :
Ow! You've ruined everything!

Run, You Brilliant Girl —



A young Police Constable approaches two squabbling women. Her attitude to policing seems to channel Sgt Cawood from Happy Valley.

She smashed it with a hammer!

Cos you keyed me nearside door!

Because you parked in my spot!

It's not your spot. 
There are no spots.

Ladies, please! 
Thank you. 

Can I suggest a simple solution? 

 “ Never Ask for Permission, It’s a Complete Waste of Time. ” 
— Tony Benn 

You pay for her cracked window,
 you pay for her scratched door, 
and we all agree that parking round here is a nightmare —

But that grown-ups really shouldn't need to call The Police to sort it out for them. 

Now, if we're all agreed on that, 
there's no need for me to take any further Police Action and we can all get on with our lives. 

What do you reckon?

[Police car / Police station]

I'm just saying,  
I am capable of more 
 than parking disputes.

And I keep telling you, 
Don't run before you can walk. 

You're a probationer, Yaz. 
Learn The Basics.

From Who? (See What I Did There..?)  
— She was sent out to attend the parking incident solo, so she already  knows “The Basics of Routine Community-Policing”, well enoughto do it unsupervised, without additional officers or back-up, whilst sleep-walking underwater, and with the lights off for the entire street, as well as the next 3 streets on either side. 

She Doesn’t Need Supervision
And They Know That.
Because She’s unpartnered — and out there on her own.

YAZ : 
I want to do more

Can you not get them to give me something that'll test me? 

Something a bit different.

There is something that just came in....
If you want ‘different’....

“For a over a Thousand Generations, The Jedi Knights were the Guardians of Peace and Justice in The Old Republic —”

“We Can Only Protect You;
We Can’t Fight a War for a You.”

“We’re Not Soldiers.”

“Before The Dark Times —

Before The Empire.

But There are Alternatives to Fighting.

You Must Face Darth Vader, Again.

We downloaded something from your Web site the other day and there you were talking about how you wanted the Jedi to be more than just fighters. 

You wanted them to be “spiritual,” but you didn’t say what you meant by that?

Well, I — I guess they’re like ultimate father figures or negotiators

And — and at this point in time they are — 

They’re sent out to negotiate a — a deal.

They help to put forth answers where people are in the middle of a dispute.

They’re aren’t an aggressive force at all. 
They try to — Conflict Resolution, I guess, is what you might — 

Intergalactic Therapists.

“This is an Unexpected Move for Her — it’s too aggressive.

1985 :