February 8, 2014 by Mark Burton
Hyperbole, exaggeration and ridiculously self-important statements have finally receded in London following last week’s tube strikes.
Following 48 hours of having to endure a slightly shitter tube network than normal, incidences of phrases like ‘Blitz spirit’, ‘Dunkirk mentality’ and ‘travel hell’ have dropped down to normal London levels, roughly five times the national average. An actual judge used the words ‘Dunkirk spirit’ to describe a jury managing to make it to court and nobody batted an eyelid, as though reaching a central London location using a still acceptable level of public transport were in any way akin to floating into a warzone across miles of open sea in a bathtub. Similarly, literally all of the people who described an exchange of pleasantries on a bus as ‘Blitz spirit’ were subsequently at a loss to explain how this event was in any way comparable to having high explosive dropped on your house for several years.
The level of blatant egocentrism sweeping the Big Smoke threatened to exceed tolerable levels and leave Londoners weeping uncontrollably into their soy lattes, bleating about enduring terrible hardship. Examples of these travails include waiting 10 minutes for a tube, unplanned use of own legs and talking to other Londoners in a semi-civil manner.
Indeed, the infectious wave of camaraderie threatened to engulf the entire capital – reports suggest an outbreak of singing on one bus and strangers helping a fainting woman on another. Many Londoners found themselves unable to intentionally elbow strangers or block people from getting off trains despite a strong urge to do so. They found themselves speaking in tongues, uttering alien phrases like ‘no, you first’. Many have subsequently described the experience as ‘hellish’.
Thankfully, the episode has passed and a healthy level of fear and hatred of one’s fellow human has been re-instilled across the capital.
The rest of the UK, predictably, have failed to see what the problem is with waiting 10 minutes for a bus or train and have quietly pointed out that while it must be quite tough to have to walk to work, it’s probably almost as tough to have your house flooded, have your transport network washed away and your entire county re-classified as a large lake. They have also suggested that Londoners who still think they’ve got any kind of issues at all might like to swap lives for a week, or kindly shut up.