Never one to refuse the chance to have a rant and taking advantage of my great leader's trip to Birmingham to stroke her beard as well as visiting the Gas Street Basin, I thought I would regale you with my views on an urban myth which seems to resonate far and wide across the ether but is especially championed within the confines of the Canal World Forum. This is not the kind of myth promulgated in the Daily Mail - the French demand that we have straight bananas, flat crisps or square onions to go with our Kraft cheese slices (can you still get them?) or that there are millions of Roma waiting in Calais to shoplift their way to fame and fortune or that any royal, however obscure, poverty stricken and impossible to pronounce (preferably all three) deserves greater sympathy than any overseas natural disaster especially in a Muslim country and of course the biggest myth of all, oft repeated in the Daily Telegraph, that New (or even old) Labour are synonymous with the red tide of Socialism and there are mounted hoardes of Red Army cavalry waiting to change our way of life forever. These myths have two main themes, one , to reinforce the fact that the old world order is alive and well and secondly, that anything to do with what George Bush called Urp especially if it is also to do with the French is a bad thing and no good will come of it.
Back to the job in hand - the myth in question concerns earth bonding to a metal boat hull (what incidentally happens when you have a fibreglass or wooden hull?) . There I bet that has got your attention, at least it links to Moomin's comment. When this was last broached (for the thousandth time?)on CWF, who almost without exception think (know) that it is a good thing, the 'Dirty Den' of the forum, not known for his humanity or kindness, justified earth bonding not because the 'numbers add up' or 'it is more work for boat electricians ' or Readavolt gizmos can sell more gizmos but because visiting children 'might get electrocuted'. Well try as I might, I have found no evidence whatsoever that any child, adult, pensioner or single parent (for Daily Mail readers) having been electrocuted fully or partly. I am not disputing the theoretical position but there are plenty of stories of people suffocating or dying of CO poisoning either assisted or un assisted by bottles of vodka and blocked ventilation and people drowning likewise and even people having a few fatal injuries from other sources but nowhere can I find people, howsoever defined, being injured or dying from electrocution and there are, I have no doubt, some right dodgy turn outs amongst the nearly 40000 boats on the Inland Waterways.
Tomorrow 'War is a danger to health'