The Pen Is Mightier Than The F-word

Nothing like a nice fierce debate to warm the blood when there's a south-easterly blowing. Unfortunately, due to further incompetence from the editor the Spooky St. Ives site was reduced to pure gibberish for a couple of days due to his making a complete rickets of uploading the updated new year version.

However, Alan Spencer somehow managed to locate it and spot my New Year's Eve rant. As you can see a rather lively exchange of e-mails/views/intercontinental ballistic missiles ensued!

Who said democracy was dead (apart from roving US Ambassador Tony Blair)?

Alan Spencer

07 January 2002

Fantastic new year in St. Ives

Judging by your cutting remarks regarding new year's eve in St. Ives, I take it you stayed in by the fire at the stroke of midnight.
Personally, I had a fantastic night in St. Ives dressed as a seagull, mainly dancing on the beach and meeting many people, young and old, who were having an equally good time, which I don't agree actually makes me a stupid person.
I think you should get out more and don't be so precious over the town you live in.  There are millions of visitors in London every day but you just have to accept that beautiful or interesting places are going to attract tourists, just get over it.  I love St. Ives and visit frequently so I do share your concerns about crowd congestion (especially with the tide in) and the dangers of launching the lifeboat, but this is a problem for the town council to sort out and not for your little chip on your shoulder.
I also take it you were down on the harbour beach helping clean up the rubble on new year's day with the rest us, or were you too busy taking photos to go on your website?
Cheer up

Vile Jelly

08 January 2002 09:23

I'm so sorry that you have been upset by the views of a St Ives resident. I am sure that the authorities will be delighted to accept your proposal to have the indigenous population irradiated to leave a nice user-friendly theme park for you to visit whenever it's convenient.
For your information:-
The police and ambulance chiefs both said that the event was close to getting out of control and they would have struggled to cope with any major incident.
The local press said that they thought the event was getting out of control.
The vast majority of residents I have spoken to since have said that they thought the event was out of control and they would either not bother leaving their house next New Year's Eve or were considering going somewhere else rather than be in St Ives. Of course, as a frequent visitor you will be first to point out that there is no reason why residents should actually have any say on what goes on in their town.
While admiring you for being sufficiently shame-faced to go out and try to tidy up the beach the following morning, you didn't do a very good job because there is still broken glass all over. But then why should you care, you don't have to live with the consequences.
Finally, due to some technical oversight you failed to supply an address. If you would be so kind as to do so (you're obviously a man of principles) I will be delighted to pass this on to any interested parties, such as Lanham's and Moby's who might want to send you a bill for their windows broken by you and your fellow good-timers. Also, some St Ives residents may be passing your way in the future and may want to return the compliment by climbing over your house, filling your garden with trash, scratching your car and piddling through your letter-box.
I'm sure that you would agree that it would only be fair. To paraphrase Charles Kinglsey - do as you are done by.
PS. I have cheered up. It's been lovely down here since last weekend. I wonder why?

Alan Spencer

08 January 2002 15:58

Thanks for your informative reply, I have obviously hit a raw nerve!

I don't condone smashing windows, bottles or anything else for that matter in St. Ives or anywhere else, so obviously I don't appreciate being tarred with the same brush as the mindless small minority causing damage around St. Ives.

I don't believe drunken behaviour on New Year's Eve is exclusive to St. Ives though.  I have even heard of people going out up and down the country getting very drunk in towns in which they don't even live!  If you've ever been to London, the Lake District, Cotswolds or indeed anywhere else outside of Cornwall and been in a pub then you must have, in your own words, an IQ of zero.

Where I live in Twickenham we have 70,000 drunken rugby fans invading the town and leaving chaos behind on a regular basis.  However, I don't take this as a personal insult when my local pub is full or someone throws up near my house.  The St. Ives event simply needs to be sufficiently organised and policed, as is the rugby.

Maybe you need to get away from St. Ives if you really do feel that bitter.  Due to it's natural beauty St. Ives has attracted visitors in abundance since the Second World War and this is not likely to change during your life-time.  I know of a good job on an industrial estate in Milton Keynes that you might be interested in, guaranteed to be absolutely 'tourist-free.'

Whilst I admit that the town was overcrowded, several locals I've spoken to actually enjoyed the night and, yes, I enjoyed the quiet time after New Year myself as much as I will enjoy coming down this weekend for a further few days.  I can't really apologise for enjoying spending my time in St. Ives but I do sincerely apologise for not being a St. Ivean.  Sorry.

Perhaps see you at the weekend!?

Vile Jelly

08 January 2002 18:30

Who knows. If you're in The Sloop at the weekend our paths may well cross. You won't be able to miss me, I'm the one with the big chip on my shoulder!
Anyway, no hard feelings, any debate about the relative merits/demerits of New Year's Eve in St. Ives should be encouraged at this stage. It has to be better then blindly hoping 'it never happens'.
Actually, if you'd read the whole of the website (particularly the e-mails section) you'd know I'm not a St. Ivean, I'm just someone who came down here and loved it like it was and would rather it stayed that way as far as is possible. I mean what's the point of making Downlong a Conservation Area and then letting it get trashed every New Year's Eve? I was born in London, schooled in Lancashire and Liverpool, went to university and worked in Manchester and ended up in the offshore financial business on the Isle of Man, so I have been out and about a bit. The one thing about St. Ives I do know is that they aren't making any more of them so why not try to keep its character instead of turning it into just another bit of the UK?
Still, enough ranting, it's time for my medicine and primal scream therapy. Attached is an article from the Times & Echo [see next page] for no other reason than to show that it's not just me who is concerned about recent developments. I am hoping to use it briefly on my website as it is far better written than my effort which was done in haste and outrage (the latter due to the damage to my car, it's hard to be philosophical about waiting for the bill from the bodyshop).
PS. Don't fancy Milton Keynes much. I hear that they have concrete cows which might put a serious crimp on my sex-life!

Alan Spencer

09 January 2002 12:47

Absolutely no hard feelings.
I think we're basically in agreement that we both enjoy the beauty and character of St. Ives, as we frequently consider making the move down there to live having enjoyed visiting for many years.  However, as we both as television graphic designers in London it would obviously require a dramatic change of career for us both, which could be quite scary- any ideas?
Enjoy quiet St. Ives over the winter.

Hell, if there's a job going in St. Ives it's news to us. It's you lot who've got all the money, most of the actual indigenous population here is so poor an EU commission designated Cornwall as a third world country. We're hoping that if President Blair has any of his American food parcels left over from Afghanistan he will take pity and air-drop some on us.

One thing we can tell you for sure is that there is no money to be made from amateur websites. All you get is moaned at!

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