The Auntie Doris Years: 1949

National

I know that I went on a bit about the National Health Service in my little Homily about 1948, but it does seem so sad that the current government are picking it apart in the name of austerity, and yet it was set up in a period of austerity, and was something to be proud of. Any road. I won’t go on about this or anything. I’ll just mention what was set up by the socialists in 1949. Legal Aid. There you go. I won’t breathe another word, because you will just dismiss me as a mad old dead red under the bed. But just think on.
I’ll tell you what else was brought in in 1949. National Ruddy Service. And that had a direct effect on our household, because they only went and conscripted little Cyril.
I had mixed feelings about it. He was doing well for himself in Hilversum’s wireless repair shop. And it seemed to me that with Hitler out of the way, we didn’t need any more soldiers, but they decided that they did in their wisdom, and there wasn’t a lot I could do about it. He wasn’t going to be a conscientious objector, so off he went.
To be honest, when I look at how my nephew Michael turned out, I’m not so sure that a bit of National service wouldn’t have done him some good. After all, it taught blokes to polish their ruddy shoes and tuck their shirts in. But then when I think about it, I think that on the whole we are better off without it. Its increasing the size of the Army, with impressionable and largely obedient youngsters, thats what it is. What would have happened if we had had national service in the Miner’s strike eh? It wouldn’t have just been bobbies smacking people over the head with truncheons. They would have had the youth of the country under the orders of the generals. It hardly bears thinking about.
And don’t let them pull the wool over your eyes with talk of a non military “charitable” national service either. Looking after the elderly and infirm, cutting peoples gardens, driving meals on wheels and what nots. That’s just replacing a decent welfare state and Social Service system with cheap labour!
But little Cyril got an half decent deal, because of his growing knowledge with wirelesses, he got put in some sort of a communications division, where they put his talents to good use and taught him a fair bit more an’all. And he hardly ever had to touch a gun neither, which is a bonus in my book. And my Raymond’s book too if you must know. He reckoned that he had done enough shooting for our family thank you very much.
Auntie Doris’s Pop Pick of 1949: “Enjoy Yourself (its later than You Think)” By Guy Lombardo and his Royal Canadians. Good advice. There I was in 1949 celebrating my 35th birthday. Time ruddy well flies, doesn’t it.

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