The B of the Bang
This beautiful sculpture, my favourite ever, has finally been dismantled and sold for scrap. Okay, it went rusty and some of the spikes fell off and almost killed passersby, but so what? It was gorgeous.
The sculpture was inspired by sprinter Linford Christie, who once said that he began running ‘on the b of the bang’ of the starter’s pistol. I am sad to see it go.
As are the Manchester Evening News, apparently, who appear to have wanted a skewered pedestrian at the very least. This is from their report:
The 184ft structure was eventually taken down in 2009 after a success of spikes fell off.
I don’t know science but I do know the value of an ion.
Or perhaps it’s a collective noun?
Happy Independence Day to my American readers!
We forgive you!
May your day be fun, your dogs be hot, and your fire work.
My Tooth Root
The dentist was very nice – he put magic cream on my inside cheek before sticking it with giant needles and rottling around in my gums like a dog with a marrow bone. I didn’t feel a thing.
As I lay there being prodded with a number of pins, it occurred to me that there is no doubt of my nationality: a strange man offered me violence while I listened to The Archers on Radio 4, pretending it wasn’t happening. And of course I had a stiff upper lip.
The treatment was not as horrible as I remembered, possibly because dentistry has moved on since 1983; but I was left with a lopsided face. I didn’t know it was lopsided; dentists don’t keep mirrors in their surgeries, for obvious reasons. I wondered about the funny looks and screaming kids as I walked home, but it was only when I called on my friend that I realised my usual natural beauty might have deserted me.
She opened her door, horror came over her face, and she grabbed me in a bear hug, muttering. ‘Oh Tilly! Oh Tilly!’ For once, I’m not exaggerating. She thought I’d been attacked or had a stroke. It was an easy mistake to make:
I never appreciated how difficult it is for stroke victims to eat properly, even though I witnessed my poor Mum-in-law’s struggles. I haven’t made that much mess eating since I was a baby. Imagine it being a permanent condition. Awful.
I was surprised not to have an aching tooth this morning; but my root has gone, of course; so I wouldn’t, would I? My cheek is tender and it hurts to smile, but that will soon wear off.
I have a temporary filling until next week. I do not have to pay for any of this treatment. God bless the NHS! I would, if I was working; and I would, gladly. In the meantime, God bless the welfare state! The benefits system has many faults but letting people die of rotten teeth isn’t one of them.
Finally, thanks to my family, who have been broadly sympathetic: