Politics and Cotton Chambray

Politics and Cotton Chambray

Bought Wednesday

  • 2 metres cotton chambray ( or some looky-likey hybrid)
  • 1  7 inch zip


There was a time when I would spend all weekend reading the Saturday Guardian. Including the ‘clubs’ review. And yes, even the ‘Experience’ section with the often wacko headline (‘The horse I was riding was mauled by a lion.’)!

Bought Saturday

Last Saturday however I walked in to my local newsagent only to find that there were none left. Catastrophe! But hardly surprising given that where I live is a middle-class left-wing enclave where we all think we are free and independent thinkers yet are desperate not to put a Birkenstock-clad foot outside the box. We are decaffeinated, allotment-loving, cycling, prosecco-imbibing, organic-cotton wearing Guardian readers.


And so I nearly walked straight back out in search of my essential weekend reading. I mean, I drink coffee (NOT de-caf), don’t have an allotment and usually buy my veg at the supermarket.  Reading the Guardian was all I had to keep me acceptable. How was I supposed to swat up on articles ready to discuss them later  with our neighbours to prove that I’d bought the right left leaning paper…I mean, how else was I going to be able to fit in?

Besides, I did love spending a few hours reading through the reviews. Never mind not fitting in. Then it occurred to me that I could buy…

  • the Times

The Times pile  sat there, enticingly.

I looked around the shop. Good. No one I knew (other than my friend Katie’s son, Jake, on the till)  to catch me doing what would have been unthinkable only 5 minutes earlier. And later, I could always ply the neighbours with extra Prosecco! Ah yes, Prosecco.  The social lubricant of the Great and the Good of the parish. All I would have to do then is occasionally nod in agreement at their sage words of wisdom. As I handed over the money Jake mumbled something. Usually  I would have smiled and nodded in moronic agreement but as I wasn’t feeling my usual moronic self I said, ‘Sorry Jake. Didn’t quite catch that.’  To which came the repeated, and fractionally clearer, ‘I said that’s the second Times I’ve sold this morning.’


Later that night we had the aforementioned neighbours round. The newspaper had been tidied away. Deliberately. But I’d inadvertently left the magazine out, folded open at the style page featuring a cotton chambray two-piece.

I rapidly topped up their glasses before reaching for the magazine and thrusting the image of the cotton chambray two-piece under their noses.

‘What do you think of my next sewing project?’

‘Times, eh?’ said Anna, ignoring my decoy of a question. ‘Really like Caitlin Moran. Great social conscience … Not fussed on Matthew Parish but he writes well  although I remember the time when… What do you think of …? Thought I was the only one who…’

As Anna waxed lyrical, it was clear who had bought the other copy of the Times that morning.



And so, what was the moral of that tale?

Well the conclusion could reasonably be made that I am a moron who follows convention. And yes, I can see that. BUT, more importantly, it shows that in our desperate desire to belong we sometimes obscure who we really are.

Oh no! I’m not really going to say ‘…above all to thine own self be true’, am I????

Oh well.


It seems that at the moment I am a glass of Prosecco and a cotton chambray two-piece.


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