You Read it Here First
I am afraid that this might turn out be a rant, possibly a ramble and maybe a non-event. I don’t know where I might end up but I feel the need to set off on the journey anyway.
On 19th May 2012, Embra’s big team, the mighty Heart of Midlothian gave the wee Embran team a thorough skelping in the final of the Scottish Cup. The following day, there were, by common consent, 100,000 Jambos on the streets of Auld Reekie celebrating that result. My chosen vantage point was at the foot of the Castle Rock.
You can see it was glorious weather. Turns out it might have been absolutely perfect conditions for improperly-maintained cooling towers to do their worst in disseminating Legionella pneumophila.
As you may or may not know, there are presently 40 confirmed and 48 suspected cases of Legionnaires’ Disease in Embra. Two people have died in the last week. All of the affected individuals had strong connections with Saughton. Dalry and Gorgie, site of Tynecastle Park to which the Cup made its triumphal procession and heartland of our support. Said procession happened well within the incubation period of LD.
None of which matters in the great scheme of things, of course. Sometimes, you just can’t help being in the wrong place at the wrong time. My deepest sympathies go to the friends and relatives of those who were unlucky enough to contract the disease. I hope that they find and punish the irresponsible bastards who failed to do their job and make sure that the cooling towers were safe.
Today was a major sports day and Mrs M handed me the remote to work my way through a feast of rugby from 3 am when Scotland kept up the honour of the Northern Hemisphere by winning yet again. Followed by three gripping games where Ireland and Wales were, in my opinion, unlucky, and the Bokke won despite a spirited fightback by England.
The reckoning, of course, was that I was on supper duty while Mrs M caught up with ‘Holby City’ which she had recorded – don’t ask! She just likes it and we should all march to our own drums.
So, one of my signature dishes from our early marriage. We were just about able to afford to go once a month to a cheap and long-closed restaurant on the Meadows called ‘Palumbo’. Their house sauce incorporated morello cherries and Mrs M loved it.
In those days it was veal but she went off meat and I moved it to a pasta sauce. These days, it’s toasted garlic, oregano, finely chopped onions, mushrooms, enough ham to keep me nearly happy, cream and fresh cherries soaked overnight in Fino sherry. For the avoidance of doubt, it worked well tonight.
But I had a slight ear on ‘Holby’ despite myself. The story line, to be continued next week apparently, was an outbreak of Legionnaires’ Disease. There were no announcements before the programme about what that story line was going to be and nothing afterwards with call lines for people who might have been affected by issues raised in the programme.
To date, if google is to be believed, there have been 11 complaints about the BBC being insensitive by airing the episode at this time. Only two pontifications from local politicians about said insensitivity, both along the lines of ‘Would they have shown the episode if there had actually been an ongoing outbreak of LD in London just now?’ One statement from the BBC along the lines that they recorded it three months ago and could not be expected to cancel it because of an unfortunate coincidence.
I think this might still be a major flair up. We live in interesting times in Scotland and those of us who support the Union are only too aware that the SNP will use any weapon to attack that Union. On this particular issue, I’m not prepared to say that they will have any real justification for the self-righteous indignation up with which they will probably puff themselves.
But, to be fair, a tiny wee part of me is always going to wonder if the episode would have been aired if the outbreak had been in London or Salford.