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LOCAL FOCUS The Eye


I don’t want to moan, but…


As i write this, in December, it’s panto time - the time of the year when the theatres are full; managers can go to bed confident that their seats will be full and children will be prised away from their screens and tablets into a live, noisy, interactive theatre, being entertained either by glossy TV stars (who prove that they really are flesh


and blood) or by enthusiastic amateurs who get joy from treading the boards at this time of the year.


My love of panto is the optimism that it provides. We know that the ugly sisters - who represent everyone’s worst nightmares - will be made to confess to their wicked ways and the good fairy will put everything right with a sparkle and a song and the granting of three wishes to Jack, Aladdin or Buttons, to solve the problems of all concerned. So it set me thinking. If I was granted three wishes what would I wish for? I am not allowed the obvious - to be happy ever after - which seems to me the sensible choice that no playwright thinks of, but something that befits the whole theatre or community – something socially conscious and even, dare I suggest - politically correct.


Wish number one is about people who block the pavement. Either a mobile phone user who weaves across the sidewalk oblivious to other pedestrians who are anxious to catch a train or use the loo, or buggy pushers who gather the family around them as they march to the shops and make me step into the road to get past them while attempting to avoid ten tonners and the 200 bus.


Wish number two eliminates ‘Have a good day.’ Of course we all want a good day but some days are never going to be good. Let’s accept it. Monday mornings, when it’s pouring with rain and you have to have it out with your partner, boss or ‘best friend’ that it’s not working. These days just have to be got through and in no way will they be good.


Wish number three is about politicians who tell us ‘we are all in it together,’ when it’s so patently obvious that it’s not true. Other grievances to eliminate for like-minded grumpy old men are; gaggles of schoolgirls screaming at each other after school, 4X4 Chelsea tractors that need all the road to drive the kids to school, people who ride bicycles on the pavement; bankers with their obscene bonuses (surely a bonus is getting something extra for doing something extra?); and huge multi-national companies who complain that their profits are only in the X trillion realm, in an attempt to make a legal virtue out of not paying taxes.


As it is New Year and a time for resolutions and all that, I shall make a resolution to stop being grumpy and instead - like the good fairy - see the positive side of life. If only I had a magic wand!


Tony Kane, Editor at large. tony.kane@timeandleisure.co.uk


PS Last month’s Eye was intended to be allegorical. I wished to highlight the transient fashion fads against the disposal of an old ladies life-time collection of jewellery and precious things. Apologies to all those who took exception.


CHRISTMAS CONTRIBUTORS


Sophie Kalinauckas T&L’s What’s On Editor, Sophie Kalinauckas, brings you the best local events for January, including theatre, music, shows, exhibitions and family activities. See pages 53-61.


8 . January 2015 . timeandleisure.co.uk


Sarah Hodgson


If you are looking to make changes this year, be sure to read our Group Editor Sarah Hodgson’s article on the cycle of change. Sarah explores the different stages. See page 19.


Matthew Appleby As part of this month’s Big Build special, gardening columnist Matthew Appleby looks at how to maximise the value of your home with a designer garden. See page 49.


Debbie Blott


T&L’s interiors writer Debbie Blott takes us to the factory floor with a feature on the new industrial luxe trend, showing you how to makeover your home. See page 39.


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