Chance meetings

By December 23, 2004No Comments

It’s always nice at this time of year to swallow various prides, put aside any differences and cessate any negative feelings. It’s Christmas, after all. And that was precisely my frame of mind as I entered the gym last night, bracing myself for a vigorous workout that usually leaves my legs wobbling festively.
As I ordered a couple of Lucozades over the counter, the man next to me stared. After a few seconds, he piped up, “Just like to say congratulations on your website.”
“What?” I blurted, as I stared at the barely familiar face of a man keen to shake me warmly by the hand.
“We’ve all had a look at your Harper post, and we thought it was spot on.”
I’ve been congratulated by email several times since the controversial post reared its head more than a year ago, but never in person, never from someone that knows the deep workings and views of the people involved and whose only tool of recognition for me was the various photos on this site. I explained that my views were never made on that post – and have never been made public before or since. I was quoting others, and others were commenting on those quotes. The private investigators that subsequently phoned and emailed were only carrying out their job for someone that had plainly decided that free speech was a privilege, not a right.
Still, it was nice that this mystery gym visitor took the effort to speak up in support of the cause. Michel Harper is plainly a man with a good business brain, someone that has generated a lot of income for himself and the town. I’ve heard both positive and negative things about him. It’s true that he puts on a good show – I myself was in his Voodoo Lounge last Friday, although you may think me hypocritical. For all I know, he could be a genuinely good egg, as my good friend is at pains to point out. But this chance meeting led me to think – if so many people are disenchanted with their working experience at those premises, is it likely that they are all in error – or more likely that the one man who is the focus of their palpable anger is at fault?
Mind you, it’s too festive for those thoughts to be swilling around. I hope all those presents are wrapped and under the tree and that you’re all in a suitably merry mood. Hell, send a Boriscard if you want…

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