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Saturday, February 19, 2005

What they spend your council tax on.

No. 1. Moped repairs.

If, like me, you have to pay council tax you may have wondered just what it is they spend your hard earned money on. My council, like many others, zealously enforces car parking. Tribes of uniformed council workers patrol the streets, usually on mopeds, recording the licence numbers of anyone foolish enough to try parking. Today, as I rounded a corner into one of the most patrolled areas - the streets around the university - I heard a mighty howling and squealing. Expecting to see St George going 10 rounds with a dragon, I was instead surprised to see another medieval tradition, cleverly updated for the 21st century - moped jousting. Two uniformed parking facilitators were facing one another, front wheels locked, using all the awesome power of their mighty machines to try and force one another backwards. Being on identical machines, they of course were going nowhere. The air was thick with haze of exhaust smoke and burnt rubber. A small crowd had gathered. Finally, obviously deciding that they had done enough damage to council tax payers property, they rode off to gather some more revenue from the hapless university staff not lucky enough to have got a car park pass.

An amazed looking man on the kerb summed the whole spectacle more eloquently than I fear I could ever.




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