Gone are those mind numbing references to getting a ‘Good Deal For Britain, ‘ now replaced by Billy Bunter style remarks like, ‘I never touched her bottom, and when I did, you never saw me!’ What is revealing is how the British Government might be brought to its knees, due to a bit of hanky-panky in the corridors of power.
The definition of unwanted physical contact, and even intrusion into people’s private lives, has changed a lot over the last fifty years. So has the definition of a sexual assault. Depending on their libido, and in their defense, it is hardly surprising that some older men and women are occasionally tempted by a mild flirtatious look, as most young people often are in in bars and clubs. What is important, is to realize that one persons sexual assault, is another’s passionate liaison. It is also important to recognize that one politicians sexual assault, is a journalist or cynical MPs political opportunity.
It has often been said that politics is, ‘Hollywood for ugly people.’ Despite the media’s valiant attempt at glamorizing politics in general, most of the MPs who attend the House of Commons are not swans – as some might imagine themselves to be – but ugly ducklings. When Robert Kilroy Silk left politics, and the aging Dr. David Owen repaired to the other place – together with the speaker TV Topper Betty Boothroyd – most of the remaining chattering and wittering MPs became candidates, for Madam Tussauds Chamber of Horrors.
When I was a young man, I used to put my male chums into three categories, in terms of their prowess in chatting up women. Firstly, there were the beautiful people – they just had to stand there, in order to be surrounded by girls – which included pop stars, and footballers. Secondly, there was the ‘chat up merchant,’ or those fortunate enough to come from the Nigel Havers Charm School, who relied on humor and a well practiced repartee.
But finally, there was a breed of Lothario who came from ancient times, who were known as knee fumblers. A pathetic bunch – who acted like half witted schoolboys, or girls most of the time – they simply couldn’t keep their hands to themselves.
Knee fumblers could always be heard – secreted away in deserted barns or stables, at country dances – due to excessive squealing, and noisy remonstrations emanating from some darkened enclave. With expletives and noisy remonstrations like –
‘Get your hands off, Tristian, you really are a pervert,’ they were often overheard with amusement, by fellow dancers and revelers alike.
Later the two lovers would immerge, with beaming smiles and red faces, to declare their engagement to all those present. This was how love and marriage, was fostered in the countryside, and almost like a page from a Thomas Hardy novel, was the prospect that most lads had who came from the provinces. But,what about us townees?
Well, we were different; more sophisticated for a start – no haystacks in Kensington – and relied on cool moves on the dance floor, and when you could hear someone speak due to the noise, a great line in chat-
“Your teeth are like the stars, do they come out at night?”
I feel sorry for knee fumblers, for that is what most of these political and celebrity alleged felons are, not just because they seem pretty unsophisticated to me, but because they might also be lonely, isolated and unhappy. Rather like many policemen are in crime fiction novels, always away from home and family for most of their time, there must be moments when they misread other peoples intentions, but not exclusively.
What passed for normal sexual behavior in the sixties, does not pass muster today. We all know that, and although some of us don’t care anymore, nevertheless there are those who have never got past the knee fumbling stage in their romantic quests. But, conversely, there are also those who are experts in the old ‘come on!’ Perhaps it would be wise for all of us all to sing-
“Keep your mind on the driving, keep your hands on the wheel, and keep your snoopy eyes on the road up ahead?”
Rather than singing, “God Save the Queen,” because, at least, Her Majesty won’t have to send you to prison!