I don’t mean to be flippant, but I do feel slightly weird and dislocated from reality after five days away insulated from news and then returning to a country with certain sectors of the population on the verge of madness and anarchy.
It all has a slightly unreal quality to it, and it’s quite unnerving to think that any major city suburb is potentially a target for this meaningless pathetic violence.
Now that I’m switched back into news again, it’s all hard to avoid. So many reports, so many stories, so many views. In the studio today I was discussing with another artist the wanton destruction of some beautiful buildings, and how this in particular had struck a chord with a number of commentators. All of it is awful, but somehow the arson of architectural beauty seems particularly nihilistic and depraved.
Everyone has a view on all of this, and a good deal of common sense has been spoken. Good job too, since it is dominating the media. But there are still a surprising number of apologists ready to jump in, despite clear indications of social media being used to engineer riots far removed from any sense of local grievance.
Normally we can blame the heat of summer for these sorts of riots at this time of year. I can’t think of a riot on the streets taking place in freezing cold conditions. But just as people want to make the most of any lingering warmth and light nights, complacency is dislodged and an evening stroll down the road just may not be the best idea of the week.
I’m going to give up on tidying and do a rain dance instead. That should help matters.