They prosecute nuns, don't they?
But, for the moment, we have second-hand bookshops, containing wonders. Today I scored a dog-eared copy of the Divine Liturgy of St John Chrysostom and William Adlington's 1566 translation of The Golden Asse by Apuleius, and, as you can imagine, they have set me thinking about London's public transport system. The thing is, Old Jack Chrysostom missed his chance. What we really need is a simple ejaculation: "Oh God, I wish You existed because there is stuff I need you to deal with."
Stuff, for example, like reducing the HQ of London Transport to a smoking crater, shrouded in a feverish dust compounded of the pulverised bones of honking managers in nylon socks.
And why? Not because of the closure of half of London's tube lines at any given time. Eight million people a day driven weeping on to the surface by cackling, blood-drenched Underground guards wielding 8ft 6in 16-plait kangaroo-hide RM Williams stockwhips? No; we cannot blame London Transport for this little problem, which was in reality caused (as Nostradamus predicted) by: (a) peculiar suggestive fissures in the Deputy Director of Unpersuasive Whining Noises' dinnertime liver'n'onions; (b) a dodgy misalignment between Jupiter, Aldebaran and the undiscovered planet Sprod the Putative; (c) two dead toads under a beulah bush witnessed by the Assistant Manager (Managerial Information Services (Support) Directorate (Support Division (Secretariat))) on his holidays; and (d) a flock of pigs flying past the boardroom window and distracting the Chief Enforcement Officer at a crucial moment.
Furthermore, it's nothing to do with London Transport. Surprised? Ha. London Transport doesn't do tubes any more. Tubes are London Underground Limited. London Transport does buses, despite the fact that they all seem actually to be run by companies called things like Arriva and Praevia and Sensitol.
Do you understand any of this? No; nor do I. It's something to do with "business", and, as anyone will tell you, it would be intolerably bad form for any God to take revenge on some hapless organisation, which, in normal times, you might think should simply be disbanded and its management sold into gerontophiliac slavery. Any God might, on the other hand, feel obliged to step in on behalf of the nun.
The nun was London Transport. You will remember the nun, because a week or so ago she was hauled before the courts by London Transport for falling asleep on the bus and missing her stop. What would you have done with the nun? That's right: you would have said to yourself, "Poor thing, up since 5am, spent her day in good works, has taken a vow of poverty, I will see her safely on her way with a kind word out of sheer human decency." But not London Transport! No; they prosecuted her. Their mothers may fondly believe that they are selling drugs in a brothel, but, no! They prosecute nuns! Real men!
A lesser journalist than I might have thought, at this point, it was worth ringing London Transport and speaking to a "spokesperson", or, possibly, some adenoidal jobsworth in cheap trousers who would parrot a wholly unconvincing set of self-serving lies through clenched and yellowing teeth, which I would then report. Well balls to that. London Transport has no right to reply. It has no right to live. It has, like so many other thoroughly modern, profit-centred, management-oriented organisations, so completely absolved itself of any of the duties of simple humanity that it has lost the right to be accorded the complementary privileges. And so one reads St John Chrysostom with mounting fervour, praying for God to reappear from His immemorial fastness and smite the buggers into screaming oblivion, aionas ton aionon.
But it won't happen. They will go on from strength to strength, and nuns will continue to be prosecuted, and the tube lines will continue to disintegrate, and men in cheap trousers will continue to be paid for telling unconvincing lies. And Apuleius? Oh come on. The Golden Asse. Says it all, really, wouldn't you agree?
Art Piece taken off website amid 'severe security alert'
Maisie Williams single-handedly rises to the challengeTV
Academy criticised after no non-white actors nominated
tvAn expose of hooliganism masquerading as an ideological battle
artLee Hadwin can't draw when he's awake, but by night he's an artist
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
- 2 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 3 The enemy within: People who hear voices in their heads are being encouraged to talk back
- 4 Phil Neville backtracks on Tomas Rosicky 'I'd smash him' comments from Match of the Day 2
- 5 SAG Awards: Fake applause track interrupts Reese Witherspoon
Mr Selfridge series 3: Actress Kara Tointon says 'we're starting to see his demise'
Ed Sheeran texts Noel Gallagher to offer him tickets after Wembley Stadium rant
Benedict Cumberbatch says Hollywood is better for black British actors
Sia apologises for 'Elastic Heart' music video that sees Shia LaBeouf wrestle 12-year-old Maddie Ziegler
Game of Thrones season 5: IMAX releases new trailer with first look footage of Tyrion Lannister
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks