The latest topical insights from Aberdeen musical sketch comedy team, The Flying Pigs, written by Andrew Brebner and Simon Fogiel.
Davinia Smythe-Barratt, ordinary mum
Those beastly Tories have once again sold our planet down the heavily polluted river. “Dishy” Rishi has decided to back-pedal on some key environmental targets, which threatens our efforts to reach net zero status.
It’s all very disappointing, even though it’s not at all surprising. As my friend Vivien put it at the last meeting of KACMAC (Kingswells and Cults Mums Against Capitalism – we have a radically anti-globalist agenda, and prosecco): “If the Tories won’t look after the planet, we’ll just have to do it for ourselves!”
Like all ordinary mums, I care deeply about the environment and always try to do my bit. We now have an electric car which Snezanha, our au pair, uses to ferry the children around. (She’s Bulgarian, but she’s marvellous.)
I don’t drive it myself, not after my disastrous experience when I took it to Kippie for pilates and brunch and forgot to charge it! In the end, I had to cadge a lift home off Sir Ian Wood, and then send Snezanha out in the Discovery to tow it home. I did feel sorry for her, because it was absolutely lashing rain. But, as I explained, we can’t save the planet without making sacrifices.
We’ve also cut right down on air travel, which means the kids now only take one flight per year to see their father in Belize. Milo is still in tax exile there, the poor lamb. He’d love to be back in the UK but it just isn’t possible now, not with all those silly sanctions!
So, now we only fly when it is absolutely essential, like when we go to our yurt in Morocco, and to Chamonix for our annual ski trip, and the odd weekend city break. Like next month’s trip to Chile.
Of course, that will have its own environmental impact. I’ve seen an absolutely adorable angora sweater on the website of a little boutique in Santiago. If I pop that on of an evening this winter, I might be able to turn the thermostat down a degree on the central heating. Net zero, here we come!
Tanya Souter, lifestyle correspondent
I da ken aboot youse, but I’m nae looking forward tae some o’ the schools being shut next wik cos o’ the strikes. Partly cos o’ the disruption tae my kids’ learning, but maistly cos I’m knackered. I’ve jist had them for six wiks at hame. Six wiks! Ye get less for shoplifting oot o’ the Co-op (weel, my pal Big Sonja did, onywye).
Six wiks o’ looking efter yer kids is plenty, so it’s nae my shottie onymair. It’s the teachers’ turn tae deal wi’ the wee radges, ken? I canna hae them back at hame noo, especially in the wik that they’re pittin up the price o’ Tennent’s by 25p. I dinna hae the emotional resilience tae deal wi’ it. Ken fit I’m saying?
It wiz only last wik I managed tae convince them that their school’s roof wiznae gan tae fa’ on their heeds cos it’s made oot o’ yon Reinforced Aero Concrete. That’s unasseptable an’ a’, by the way – if they hid tae build stuff oot o’ chocolate, they could at least of used Toblerones. They’re tough enough tae punch a hole in yer soft palate if yer nae careful.
Onywye, I telt my bairns they wiz being feel. I mean, it’s nae like wir ain hoose is ony mair structurally sound, is it? Nae wi’ the amount o’ holes my Jayden has kicked in the was fan he’s haein a meltdoon cos we’ve rin oot o’ Coco Pops.
So, back they went, and noo this. Mair strikes. Fan I wiz at school, we didnae hae a’ this disruption. Well, we did, but we caused it wirsel’s, so ‘at’s different.
But it turns oot it’s nae the teachers on strike ‘is time. It’s ab’dy else fa works in schools fit is seeking better pay and conditions. Cos ab’dy kens if the jannies, cleaners, dinner ladies, administrators and pupil support staff is on strike, the hale edumacation system really will collapse. They are the the vital cement fit keep things ga’an fan somedee’s jist knocked a window oot, or boaked o’er a classroom fleer, or taen a tumble aff a climbing frame and cracked their heid open.
I hid niver really thocht aboot it afore, but these are the folk fa mak sure wir kids are safe and fed and, crucially, under control fan we’re haein wir lattes, gaan tae the gym, or jist watching Doctors wi’ a box o’ Maltesers. The work they date is vital, and that is fit wye I fully support them in their industrial action.
In fact, I’m backing their strike tae the that on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday next wik – I’m nae gaan tae dae sae much as a hand stitch tae look efter my kids, cause fitiver else I may be, I’m nae a scab.