So David Cameron did a big interview on Sunday about his views on the different and difficult problems facing the UK. He said he'd like there to be more social responsibility. Tick. He assured the interviewer he'd like a better Britain. Who doesn't? He said he thinks Labour should get behind Gordon Brown or sack him. Okay. And he mentioned he's worried about crime. All righty then.
No biggie. Just the usual "vote for me and everything will get better" and he even threw in an almost-promise for tax cuts.
Then when asked about the Tories' ideas for the NHS, he uttered the following: "We're not really there yet."
Excuse me, Dave? Come again? You're "not there yet". Really? You didn't think that would come up? You assumed that you'd have more time to work it out? Step away from the Hackett catalogue and have a good think about it, would you? Maybe stop worrying about whether you're going to cycle or drive in to work and then maybe, it's just a suggestion, you and your clever friends should have a sit down and a chat about the health service? Uh, cheers.
There's almost nothing more infuriating than someone who isn't ready – whether it's a girlfriend who promises she's "just round the corner" when she's still in the bath at home, or the next prime minister saying he's not altogether prepared to discuss what he'd do with the NHS. These people are the ones who sit at a restaurant table, study the menu for five minutes (usually in silence. I mean, Jesus, how hard can it be? Order the bloody special you moron) and then ask the waiter "to just hang on a minute while I have one more look".
These are the people who give birth and then take eight weeks to decide on a name for the baby. I mean, tell me if I'm being unfair (well, actually don't) but they've known that a new person was coming, right? It's not like they woke up one morning and suddenly saw a little creature at the end of the bed with a "what am I called?" sign round their neck. You've got nine months people; your stomach isn't just growing because you've decided to have a few more Pringles – make a list of names and choose one.
These are the people who haven't decided what they think of something even after they've seen it or tried it.
"What did you think of Mamma Mia?"
"Uh. I liked it. Not totally sure whether I'd recommend it, though. I'm still sort of making my mind up."
"Did you enjoy watching the new Antiques Roadshow?"
"Yes. I suppose I did. In a way. But there were things... I don't know. Was it perfect? Only time can tell."
"What flavour ice cream do you want?"
"Gosh. That is a question. I think I might have the pistachio. Although. No. Because I'm wearing white. A green splodge would rather ruin it, don't you think? Do they have honeycomb flavour? No, I suppose it is quite rare. Um. What did I fancy again? I'll tell you what, let's ask that man behind the counter what he thinks is the best flavour. Something makes me think toffee pecan would be nice. But would it be too sickly?"
"That's 30 seconds of my life I'd like back please."
"I'm sorry? Didn't hear you. Am thinking about whether or not to have sprinkles. Now, let me see..."
So Mr Cameron, I know you might not have the perfect answer but maybe just a little inkling would make the rest of us feel better. When my daughter jammed her finger in a heavy supermarket door a month ago and we ended up in Accident and Emergency on a Saturday afternoon this is what happened:
We were asked (even though I was holding a screaming two-year-old whose whole arm was covered in blood) if we could go back downstairs to register as a nurse couldn't look at her until we'd registered. We were also told that the lifts were now closing for "maintenance" but that I could use the stairs as there were only seven flights.
I was told that under no circumstances was I allowed to leave any belongings, so I'd have to go downstairs and up again carrying the six Tesco shopping bags I happened to have.
After registering we were told that we were now in a line and that my screaming toddler wasn't allowed any pain relief until it was our turn. We were told that there were no vending machines full of sweet things and that, at the weekend, the shop in the hospital was closed. I said that some chocolate buttons might take her mind off the pain so I might just pop out to buy her some, but they quickly told me that then it would mean I would lose my place in the line and would probably have to register again.
After a three-hour wait we finally got to see someone who then asked for her hand to be X-rayed.
"You're never going to believe this but the machine's just gone on the blink," the X-ray technician told me, so the nurse told me to maybe try another hospital.
So, I'll tell you what, Dave. Have an answer, have an idea, make me believe that when you win it there isn't a chance you won't be "not really there yet".Reuse content