The gunpowder plot was a dry story we were regaled with during the more boring but required elements of history the lecturer felt he had to pedal over; but, at the time all those many years ago, events were fresh, remembered, and seemingly remembered with gratitude over the following few decades by: the serfs and lords grateful that the horrid fawkes, and his catholic co-conspirator heathens, had so majestically and so publicly failed (obviously by the will of he who shan't be named), which is a bit different to the air of celebration the vast majority of us (here in the uk) now enjoy every bonfire night. A time which wouldn't be quite the same without gut-retching hotdogs, eye gouging sparklers and the odd rocket or two mistakenly fired into a supermarket which is then relieved of its goods on the premise: "we were only trying to stop them catching fire guv, really!"
If over the past 10 years old guido had being around and tried the very same thing the headlines in the red-tops would have screamed "We beat you fawksey, you bonkers sex starved roman loving maniac!"; which would, no doubt, be the fastest selling editions of the papers since the last time something tragic occurred to grip the collective myopic eye of we morally outraged middle se- citizens.
Perhaps in a few hundred years there'll be parts of the moon devoted to a stellar day of celebration, with antique nuclear bombs been set off and the whole shebang broadcast to an eager colonised solar system – in memory of that day when they finally managed to get one off, or for the two which were dropped on japan, by the states!
There's something else, others and myself (separately you understand) find odd, namely that in the current clime with increasing scrutiny been placed on security, where hardly a day goes by without some plot or the other somewhere been discovered, and trumpeted as the reasons why the trillions being spent for our safety are a necessary evil, you would have thought the arch criminal explosive plotting over-minds would have given a little bit more thought to the 'ins' and 'outs' of communicating with each other and their mindless minions, and abandoned the tried but slightly riskier approach of two plastic cups and a sturdy length of string. At the very least you'd expect quadruple state homomorphic encryption (i really have no idea either) with a minimum of 2048 bits per level, as the basic bargain basement entry point for any aspiring (or is that potential), all-fired up hormonally imbalanced chemically insane brainwashed fundamentalist nitwit (of whichever denomination), happy to meet whomever on the other side, after their whoopee for reproductive matter has been effectively removed from the gene-pool.
But as the bbc piece states, "the arrests relate to a possible plot involving islamist extremists, with potential uk targets." So not an actual plot but a hypothetical we're writing an imaginary possible plot which might come in handy at some stage in the future. Could this perhaps be a plot similar to paul chambers at doncaster's robin hood airport one winters day? Where, hoping to eventually meet his better-twittered half he tweeted:
"Crap! Robin Hood airport is closed. You've got a week and a bit to get your shit together otherwise I'm blowing the airport sky high!!"
Because as most of us know when it comes to anything either side of 16.2 degrees and a teaspoon of rain, our transport systems are utterly flummoxed, whilst we proles hang around our anger and annoyance exploding with all the vehemence of an aggravated tut.
Excellent, they've caught them. So what was it then, what was the bit of proof that did for yet another bunch of hapless terrorists? Did they send an email, or a text or a tweet, were they shadowed by undercover operatives here and overseas, or did they have blueprints stuffed down their pants for the shard or the angel of the north in gateshead? Blueprints, i suppose, could be one reason for the tasering of a 24 year old man whom the police helpfully pointed out afterwards, "did not require hospital treatment." Wait a minute. You've just tasered someone in the belief they might be about to level something prized or riddle holes into soft cushiony flesh, and you wipe your brow in abject relief that they didn't require hospital treatment? Very odd sentiments, are you sure he wasn't one of your's you realised you'd tasered by mistake? As surely you'd be far more interested in informing a glued to their security blanket public which shopping mall or tourist hell hole you stopped ending up looking like a slice of emmentaler proudly fountaining the red stuff as a may day parade in the old soviet union!
I look forward to hearing or reading exactly what transpired, and hope the best details won't be shuffled off centre-right in a flurry of furious recriminations under the carpet of national security for an interminable number of decades. For all we know, one of the alleged might have inadvertently let his slightly blind bull-mastiff out one windswept cold and grey spring morning, where it promptly proceeded to take a bite out of the head of mi5's paymaster-general's short-haired apple-sized chihuahua, mistakenly thinking it was a meals-on-perambulating mouth sized snack.
Hold on though, the piece (again from the beeb) goes on to say: "arrests are not linked to the olympics or paralympics, police said." Whoa, hold your horses there speedy! The whole world's attention (or a lot of it) will be swivelled on to the uk for over a month, and as people around the globe are getting ready to enjoy the events their sporting representatives will be competing for, possible potential hypothetical terrorists here are aiming for a major target like, what, the bull and duck pub down a flooded grassy lane in the middle of the back of somewhere beyond?
Well if they are, that will at least provide those of us with our heads underneath a rock wishing the whole thing would go away, something other to ponder over. As all the rest will be cheering from the rafters oblivious but happy they'll have something else to complain about when the medal tally totals 2; instead of their crap wages, overpaid footballers, another banking scandal, mp's fiddling again, or the love-life of some other celebrity's partners spouse pet goldfish doing it with the castle.
Bonkers, barmy and laughably ridiculous... and it apparently doesn't have anything whatsoever to do with boris!