A humorous glimpse of what happens when the sun finally comes out 'oop North'.
|What does one think of immediately after hearing the word 'England'? Is it the typical 1940s beach scene, correct with stripy all-in-ones for men and a cigarette attatched to each yellowing digit? Or could it be the traditional pub scene, where an ageing landlord with a beer-belly serves his finest brew and ale to compliment his famous gammon and pineapple? Either way, it's not a pretty sight for any fashion enthusiast. I think it's safe to say that England is well off the mark set by Paris and Milan, if that is indeed any fair comparison. Unfortunately for us, the English have somehow grabbed hold of all of the cuts and cloths from Mr. Dior's "rejected" pile and managed to stamp their own blaring-red sign on everything else that British designers conjure up in their pits of clothing doom, and, even more unfortunately, it all gets worse as soon as the sun comes out...
As hot days are a rarity in the sheep-infested mud-pit we call 'England', the inhabitants always make the most of the abundant Mediterranean sun by dropping, well, everything. Plans for William the Boar's evening on the table cease, and off come the shirts to display human-like gelatinous masses more worthy of being a starving child's dinner than any pig could ever strive to be. In an instant, feather-down is exchanged for polyester, polyester is exchanged for cotton and the original cotton-wearing excess-sweaters shrug their shoulders and toss their shirts onto their new barbeque. It really is a shame that nobody actually knows how to cook on a barbeque in England.
Although the thought of doing one's weekly shop around Tesco (an all-in-one market plus electronics centre plus boutique for the grossly large and inexplicably lazy) seems even more daunting when it is added with the stress of having to queue behind a radiating crimson mass (complete with too-tight spaghetti straps and muffin-top overhang) whilst waiting for one's ice creams to melt into a sticky nuclear liquid, hot days do have their advantages. The amusing 'chav' hybrid seems to take well to the weather, after the initial lag-phase where they spend half a day trying to figure out whether it's sweat in their Reeboks, or if they've just stepped in a puddle. This results in the infamous 'chav-free summer', where, for a short time only, Reeboks are swapped for flip-flops, shorts are donned instead of the aptly named 'sweaty-pants' and the peaked caps get lost within the unusual array of sun-protecting devices that take to the streets. For a short while, all is well for the elderly, as they languor in the sun and enjoy a menace-free walk to the Bingo hall.
So, is the sun really something to be feared in England? On the plus-side, it brings an end to the long lived moaning about rain and confuses the family of chavs that lives down the road, but is it really a good thing? Surely, nobody wants to see Big Phil with his shirt off as he cooks a sausage on a stick, and even less people want to see Shirley and Maureen donning boob-tubes and sporting the washed-up-whale look. What England needs is a fashion makeover. We need to ditch the beer-guts and too-red shoulders! We need to wave goodbye to the string bikini strung (very tightly) over the obese! Most importantly, however, we need to stop stopping everything for the sun, and just take it as another day. Yeah, so it's hot, Dave, but is it really too much to ask for you to wear an airy shirt? Mr. Armani managed in the heyday of his heat! Seriously, Brits, we need to get our act together. We need to pull our socks up (literally), wave goodbye to the flab and ditch the inappropriate use of swimwear in dry public places. For the sake of everyone you might come into contact with on the next sweaty day that 'oop-North' encounters, please, please think about your appearance...and cover the reddening blubber! On behalf of all Brits, I prematurely thank you.