Monday, April 15, 2013

Thatcher's Marching Band Woke Me Up

So, having been so rudely awoken by Her Majesty's Armed Forces and Swing Band, I watched the rehearsal for Lady T's funeral.

It was all deeply impressive. Loud music, orders being barked down Fleet Street and then followed in perfect unison, uniforms immaculately turned out, officers swishing swords, moments of mass stillness and silence, and, by the end of the run, Herculean amounts of horse dung across Ludgate Hill.

The whole thing, effective and moving (one way or another) as it will be, absolutely stinks of militaristic celebration of a cult of personality. In short, it's rather reminiscent of the sort of parade used in the anti-democratic states that The Lady fought against. 

David Dimbleby was walking along in the procession taking notes. Top effort for a 74 year old in the chilly morning light.

Favourite moments: Sergeant Bilko completing the presenting of his arms a second too late - there's nothing like the sound of a singular cock-up echoing off the steps of St Paul's; walking back up Fleet Street and watching the soldiers change the arm they were holding their weapons with, simply because I'd never really thought of them getting tired.

© Jack Blackburn, 15th April 2013

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