Sunday, April 25, 1982

Of human feelings

Dad’s prejudice and unthinking bias again made me angry. He said The Observer is “anti-British,” “wishy-washy” and “weak.” He's going to get The Sunday Telegraph instead. He sees what he wants to see, nothing else.

At 1240 a Radio 2 newsflash brought the long-expected Ministry of Defence announcement that there's been a British helicopter attack on an Argentinian submarine. There are no reports of casualties. Things got very much worse in the afternoon and Argentina reported they’d repulsed a machine gun attack on Grytviken and an attack on the island of S. Georgia itself. They were also unconfirmed reports of fighting on the island.

Anger, tension and misunderstanding between Mum and Dad, Dad extolling the virtues of strength over “weakness” and pacifism: he even criticised Christianity. Sometimes he seems so militaristic and intolerant. When Mum resisted he got frustrated, puffing and blowing and saying “I-can’t-understand-your-attitude.” Mum said he was putting a barrier of personal differences between them both and sometimes I can't believe their marriage has lasted as long as it has. Dad is devoted in his own way but he doesn’t seem to understand her very well, and it always seems to be Mum who has to back down, swallow the bitter pill and sacrifice herself. She's the one who's had to work harder to make it come right. She’s had to keep quiet. Later went on a walk over Keddon Moor and came back in good spirits. I hate to see arguments.

At 6 came the news that Marines were ashore on S. Georgia and at 9 the Government announced that S. Georgia had been recaptured. I couldn’t help feeling a little thrill of excitement.

The true spirit of the country is in its people, its cities and streets and pubs and fields, and has nothing to do with the Government and jingoism and the petty games of power-politics. Mum, if only she'd see it, is an anarchist at heart.

Heard Ornette Coleman's Of Human Feelings on Peter Clayton's show.

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