I’ve just been browsing through an old copy of the Guardian newspaper from the UK, that I had bought some weeks ago.
I know lots of people still regard that newspaper as, to paraphrase a recent comment about it….”a load of old Leftist twaddle…”
But with me, it’s nothing to do with which ideology the paper follows or pushes. No. For me, that paper represents all that was good in the 1960s, when I was but a student in the UK.
Ok, we did have bad things as well in those days….the high cost of film and cameras, no such thing as central heating, etc. Oh, and we used to see signs in some house windows saying “Room To Let–No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs” Wow! And wages that today would be laughed at. My dad earned just £15 a week, and that was after hard work in a furniture factory, not some laid back office job.
Mind you, I still remember doing the weekly shopping sometimes with my mum. In those days, most of our shopping had to be done at different stores….we went to the butchers to get our meats, the greengrocer for the fruit and vegetables, the grocer for general foods such as tinned stuff, bread, milk, etc, the baker for bread rolls, pies and such and the hardware store for anything to do with fixing or repairing things around the house and garden.
But things were beginning to change. A new phenomenon, the supermarket, was creeping in. I think I’m right in saying, but somebody correct me if I’m wrong, the very first supermarket to open in the London area was called Victor Value, and which later became one of the biggest stores in the UK, namely Tesco.
Mind you, a whole shopping cart could be filled up to the top, for just £5, or around $7.50…..no, this isn’t a misprint, it’s absolutely true! I suppose it’s all relative anyways…either money was worth more then, or things were really cheap.
Anyway, I digress. At that time, my dad used to be an avid reader of the Guardian, and me and my siblings had endless fun looking at him hidden behind his newspaper at breakfast times or in the evenings and weekends. We just couldn’t understand what was so interesting about a newspaper!
As copies of the paper were always around…in the washroom, in the lounge, even in my dad’s workshop, it was difficult not to get involved, and gradually, I also began reading it, just as a habit initially, then more seriously, as I began to understand the articles in it.
So from that day on, till now, almost 40 or more years later, I still make a point of buying the paper, even though I have to pay through the nose to get it here in Vancouver…for me, it’s worth every penny!
But the reason why I mentioned the paper, was to tell you about a little advert I saw in it in a recent copy. It was about a street shooting session which was being arranged by one of the Guardian photographers in London.
But what made my eyes almost pop out, was the price….around £400! Granted it was in central London, but still, come on, man!
And I laughed when I compare my fee for street shoot sessions in Vancouver downtown…..$25!
Someone please tell me who is pulling whose leg here!