Discrimination in any shape or form is wrong. Just plain wrong.
Worryingly there is a new form of discrimination causing
much grief in my family, both close and extended. So insidious is it that you, dear reader, may well have been discriminated against without even realising it, that’s how worrying it is. I am talking here about Covid Sticker Discrimination.
Hands up everybody who has been awarded a sticker after receiving either their first jab, or their second jab, or (the most fortunate among us) both jabs. These are not exactly
the equivalent of those stickers the Tooth Fairy (aka the dentist) awards littl’uns for being “brave.” They are quite small, just a fraction bigger than a two pence piece and there’s no mention of bravery just a picture of a crown and
the words “I have had my Covid vaccination.” Given the importance of everyone being jabbed, you would think we would all be encouraged to sport a badge with pride, now wouldn’t you?
I can’t remember who was the first member of our extended family to report with glee that not only had they received their vaccination but they had a badge to prove it. Predictably, this announcement led everyone on
our extended family WhatsApp group who was sticker-less after being jabbed to complain bitterly of the sheer unfairness of Sticker Distribution. Even more predictably, when the ever younger family members share the news that they have now been jabbed the first
question they are asked - even before the obvious “Pfizer or AstraZeneca?” - is “Did you get a sticker?!”
It is important, in terms of
setting the record straight, to explain that I wasn’t offered a sticker at either of my appointments. First time around, I didn’t even know there were such rewards as stickers on offer; second time around I was so caught up in the moment that I
never thought to ask. I am, however, the proud possessor of a sticker, courtesy of the ever-thoughtful Alison, sister of my brother-in-law (so as near to my family as you can get without being born or married into it). It was such a surprise - in a sweet card
accompanying my sticker Alison explained that nobody deserved a sticker more than I did. Thank you, Alison, I’m not sure I deserve a sticker any more than anyone else but I will treasure it nonetheless.
Perhaps the funniest story was when my son in law “Rules is Rules”, husband of the Middle of the Darling Daughters, wheedled his way into receiving a sticker when he went for his first jab. I have to tell you that
he is a strapping man, a little over forty years old, and probably the very last person the staff at the vaccination centre would have expected to demand a sticker. The Middle of the Darling Daughters was well proud of him, declaring that it was a clear demonstration
that he had been fully integrated into the Ball Tribe, with all its eccentricities.
This morning, when our Singing for Pleasure choir met, via Zoom, for
our weekly singalong, we discussed another blatant discrimination - against singers. Why, we lamented, were people being allowed to attend football matches, discos, race courses, festivals - when amateur singers were required to abide my the Rule of Six? Thousands
upon thousands of amateur singers are distraught at the unfairness.
Before launching into this week’s Song of Choice (“Uncle Tom Cobleigh
and All” aka “Widdecombe Fair”) we came up with an excellent plan to address the issue. We would become, we agreed, a Guerilla Choir. We would turn up at a local shopping centre, each of us taking up position in a different place - then at
a given signal one of us would start singing, to be joined by another, then another until all of us were in full voice. We could just imagine the busy shoppers stopping in their tracks in amazement and bemusement, trying to spot where all the voices were coming
from. Even for one as law-abiding as I, the prospect is tantalisingly inviting.
Down with Sticker Discrimination! Down with the Rule of Six Singers!
You know it makes sense...