ZELLA COMPTON: Oh yes, they are the great pretenders
I am a guilty Love Island addict.
It’s a terrible thing to admit, but I can’t help watching.
This is the first time I’ve watched a series though, and I say that in the hope that you won’t judge me as the main audience appears to be teenagers, and those in their early twenties.
Such is my addiction I was equally delighted and mortified to be able to hold my own in a conversation in a hair salon with the entire teenage team washing my hair (my hair’s so thick, curly and knotted that washing it is a spectator sport).
Although I went a bit awry with my answer to ‘who do you like?’.
I answered about the most attractive male (until he opens his mouth and speaks). However, it turns out that the question was about who I liked for the win, which couple will grab the prize at the end of the series by finding true love.
I’m not sure that many of them will find love, as the idea of a cash pot is surely a grand incentive to appear to like someone else, and hang-in there to be in the running. Mind you, two months is a long time to have to pretend.
There is, and this is where the fascination kicks in, a lot of pretending.
You can read it between couples as they almost look comfortable snuggling up to one another, but the eye contact isn’t what it should be, or the touch of skin comes with a flicker of revulsion that only skilled connoisseurs of body language can spot.
The show’s not all about sex. Instead, we’re entertained by abstinence. Couples working out if they have a ‘connection’, waiting to see how things pan out.
What’s really interesting is the fact that the nation’s teens are being shown that however pretty the men or women are, they can still be idiots with the conversational skills of an overripe banana.
So all in all, while some might crow at the nation’s mental capacity for watching such tripe, we are also learning about waiting, connections and the need for liberal applications of sun screen.
It could be a lot worse.
THAT OLD ‘JOKE’ ABOUT THE FEMALE DRIVERS STILL ISN’T FUNNY
Women in Saudi Arabia have finally been ‘allowed’ to drive in their own country. It raises my hackles that this misogynistic ban has continued throughout all these years, but hooray for those women who can now take a step – or a car journey – nearer to a freer life.
I suspect there will be an awful period of transition in which women have to put up with that so-called humour of female drivers not being able to park, drive, navigate, stop, start etc.
There are only so many ways in which women can be put down, belittled.
Scrap that, there are millions of ways in which women are still put-upon and demeaned on a daily basis across the world. Casual sexism disguised as a joke is still sexism.
DON’T APPLAUD TOO LOUDLY FOR THE SUPERMARKETS
I am excited that Morrisons is bringing back paper bags for loose fruit and veg, and guess what? Seemingly you can also take your own containers in for fish and meat.
Hooray for the war on single use plastic. It’s about time. While I am glad that this is a step forward, I think it’s also very important to remember who has taken us on this journey.
Yep, that’s supermarkets with the endless need to package everything for distribution. It’s no secret that these companies put the smaller greengrocers out of business, and effectively started the high streets folding long before the internet.
While we applaud every small step, we should hold supermarkets to account for wiping out the packaging, local produce, and environmental practices of just 40 years ago.