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The television flickered in the corner of the room while Dave popped another can of super-strength cider. It was one of those dull programs that Joan hated, one of them that don’t have any dancing or people locked in houses. Dave had lost track of the number of times he’d told her it was the job of news to be boring.
“But it’s just a show about walking,” Joan said. “Walking slowly at that. How the heck can you watch this rubbish?” This from a woman who could only burn oven chips and yet sits through each and every celebrity chef show. Her ability to see Dave through bouts of severe manful hadn’t been improved by sitting transfixed by Casualty either.
“It’s a demonstration,” Dave replied while sending the empty tin flying off a wall and missing the bin by a good foot. “They’re demonstrating about not liking something or other and how they want other people not to like it either. Look, they’ve got signs about cheese – it must be something to do with cheese or all dairy products or shops.”
“Seems bloody stupid to me. I didn’t like it when they told me to stop vaping in the library but I didn’t bloody walk anywhere.” Joan was correct; she’d carried on vaping until she was encouraged to leave by to police specials. “Hang on, does this walking and demonstrating thing work then?”
And so an idea was born.
Dave and Joan set to work on making the very best placards a felt tip pen and an old shoebox could manage. Well, if they’d thought of something to write but the cider had a soporific effect their collective brain. When the result was discovered on the kitchen table in the morning they both wondered why they’d spent a night collecting swear words.
Agreeing that the placards were probably a stupid idea, the couple decided just to shout a lot and walk with purpose. “Boo,” they bellowed. “Boo and shame,” they barked at No.10. Now obviously, living in Stoke, London was quite a distance and cost more than a breakfast pint in The Spitbucket Arms. Joan and Dave didn't bother with London so No.10 The Laurels had to do.
“I’m not sure this is working,” Joan said in that way that makes a statement sound like a question. “Mrs Owens looks confused.”
“Twitter,” said Dave. “We’ll use Twitter to ram our message home. They’ll take notice of that because it’s what all the protestors do.” But then they weren’t sure how to use Twitter or whom they should send their message to. And they were more than a little bit unclear as to what their message was.
The plan evolved. A sit down protest in KFC seemed the best way forward because it was near the library and almost lunchtime. A sit down protest with chicken burgers and gravy. Have that in your face fascist politicians. Or not, most of it was being shovelled into Joan’s at a rate of knots. Vape protests may be going out of fashion in the rest of the country but this one lit a fire in the hearts of the couple. “Next time, how about we try one of them naked protests?”