Douglas Bastard's Rants of Rage


This article was written on 10 Dec 2016, and is filled under Uncategorised.

Dead AA Gill

Oh, but he was so terribly clever, wasn’t he? Awfully witty. And the way that he moved seamlessly from a gilded early life to writing columns for the newspaper owned by that Australian person was awfully brilliant too, wasn’t it? You see, he brilliantly, incisively just seemed to know what it’s like to be a bit posh and then to write down the kind of comments you can hear people say at a certain sort of dinner party in certain areas of London and get them printed. Admittedly, they might be said by the kind of person who has food in his teeth, a small cock and a grossly inflated sense of his self-importance, but there we go. You can’t have it all.

Of course, I’m talking about AA Gill, darling of a certain type of white, male broadsheet writer who came from pretty much the same sort of background as Gill himself and who, therefore, is that most magical of things, One Of Their Own, and therefore to be spoken up in defence of at any and all opportunities and wanked over with hideous abandon now that he’s dead. They’re on Twitter as I write this, drooling over things that the Great Man said and trying to hammer their tongues right up his back passage for a final, farewell lick. They admire him, you see, because he Dared To Say Naughty Things, perhaps overlooking the fact that he could say naughty things because he was white and rich and wholly insulated from any consequences.

Had he, say, performed life-saving operations or created great and awe-inspiring works of art, then you could forgive him for being a great and epic cunt and try and swallow your desire to scrub that smug leer off his face with a wire brush. However, he had none of these skills. He simply wrote funny but rather mean things about food, which is something we push in our faces so we don’t die of malnutrition and a cast of grimly Clarksonian characters like Mary Beard, Clare Balding and, for some reason, the Welsh. Oh, and he once went Up North somewhere, hilariously, and didn’t like it very much. Brilliant stuff, that. I mean, isn’t this the reason you by a paper – to read the opinions of someone who effects to get a nosebleed if he leaves London?

Aside from the fact that he had no useful skills and attacked the kind of people that you’d expect a posh, sniggering white bloke to attack while attracting the fawning attentions of people whose sole contribution to human life is to write for a newspaper, what was Gill’s legacy? Forgive me here, but it seems to have been minimal. If you elevate people like this to celebrity status and then fawn over them, you’re effectively saying that we should heed the words of Katie Price, famous for having big tits and no morals, or that fuckwit who used to be Dapper Laughs and is famous for trying to take back an apology everyone thought was laughable anyway. These people don’t have a legacy in any sense of the word, because what they offer was valueless. A fart in a high wind has more enduring cultural value.

What we’re left with, then, is a few snotty comments about things that nobody really cares about. He had an opinion on Morrissey, you say, a bellend so vast he satirises himself? He said snide things about northern crapholes where people are forced to live by circumstance and dislike anyway? Genius. And let’s not forget that this brilliant maverick (read One Of Us) also killed a baboon. Why? Because he wanted to know what it would be like to kill a person. The early obits seem to have missed out this detail, which I’m sure is an embarrassing oversight that will be corrected tomorrow, but in what way would he imagine that killing a creature is equivalent to killing a person? If i, say, hunted down a restaurant critic and then blew the fucker all over the Farrow & Ball paint in his parlour, or whatever he called it, then at least I’d have had the satisfaction of killing a sensate, aware being who knew what was going on. Killing a baboon? Not so much. Personally, I think it’s be a nice gesture if a family of baboons came to his funeral, had a wank and then threw shit at his grieving family. Very noble, that.

Of course, I shouldn’t be saying these things about Gill, because I’m not posh, didn’t go to a good school and don’t live inside the charmed media circle. When you do, people will pop up to say that actually you’re a genius. If you don’t, you’re just being tacky. It’s the kind of class-led brilliance that made it very easy for Gill to do what he did and provided, and still provides him with herds of people who are prepared to genuflect to him. Perhaps it’s something to do with the Norman Conquest, where we’re not really happy unless we know who we should be bowing and scraping to, but perhaps someone who is more clever than me can explain. Funny old life, though, that if things had been different, he’d be obscure and I’d be the one poncing around in a bow tie as though the entire world had been laid on for my amusement.

Ultimately, I’m not sure whether my beef is with Gill, a food writer venerated for no good reason other than being posh and rude, or the legions of pricks who are posting his quotes as this is something to aspire to. Of course people liked Gill. That’s what they’re supposed to do and is how our society is wired up. They like the funny posh man, because they’re not offered anything else, and if you’re a funny working class man, there’s effectively zero chance of getting anyone’s attention anyway. None of that, of course, is Gills fault, but I’ve decided to hate him anyway for being mean when he could have been kind and for the kind of dull, pedestrian rudeness that never discomfits people with real power but gives them something nice to read when they go to bed.

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