It’s a bit ironic that Burns Night is nearly upon us and half the mice in East Lothian have migrated from the adjacent field into Cybernat Towers. The great man once wrote:
“I doubt na, whyles, but thou may thieve;
What then? poor beastie, thou maun live!”
The humanity of the man was admirable – such concern for his fellow earthdweller, such compassion, but poison it is. I’ve had enough of that scratching in the attic keeping me awake. And talking of extermination…
Did you know that a 1.5 Megaton nuclear strike aimed at Faslane would take out everyone within a 90-mile radius in under a fortnight? I’m not sure what sort of equivalent tonnage would be involved in a major incident at the base, but whatever it is it’s unlikely to be reassuring.
They say as well that the land would be completely uninhabitable within a 30-mile radius for quite a while. My contingency plan is to make a bolt down the A1 towards Berwick, wait a few weeks for the fallout to dissipate and then move back in with my old dear in Fife.
There’s another way to look at the catastrophic effect of this particular benefit of “walking taller on the world stage” though.
For starters there’d no longer be any need for this wee boat floating in the serene waters of Loch Awe. Even if its owner was still around anything pulled in from the loch would likely make him glow in the dark.
Similar effects will be experienced at Loch Moidart, a sad end for an area that saw Bonnie Prince Charlie’s warships come sailing in.
Or Loch Sunart. The ancient oak woodlands along the bank would no longer be home to some of Europe’s finest collection of mosses and lichens.
Society would soon break down of course with the end of those familiar structures we’ve all come to rely on.
Soon it’d be everyone for his/herself. Pity any foodstuff will be poisonous though.
Well-fed wee chaps like this will no doubt long for the good old days.
However, there’ll unfortunately be no more of these:
How could there be when there’ll be none of these wee beasties to do the pollinating:
And as for the effect on the price of your property if you’re anywhere near the blast zone, well it’s just too depressing to think about. The best you can hope for is that it’ll be picturesque enough for some future interstellar space tourist to take an interest.
Next to Angels in Fur Coats – aka dugs – my favourite animal is the magnificent, majestic red deer, bountiful in the Glen Affric forests. This laddie here almost looks like he’s glowing already.
If he thinks there’s not much around to eat now then just wait. Same with his pal below. It’s common knowledge that we’ve got too many of these gorgeous animals and the numbers have to be kept under control to preserve the ecosystem. There’s been talk of reintroducing the wolf which is an incredibly daft idea. What self-respecting wolf will burn up the calories chasing one of these fleet-footed creatures when he can sit by a field and munch a sheep any time he wants? As crazy as that would be, it’s nothing compared to slowly cooking them alive. If we’re going to make venison burgers out of them then the least we can do is humanely shoot and butcher them first.
On the other hand a “nuclear winter” might actually not be such a bad thing. After all, look what happens when a wee dusting of snow is applied to already spectacular landscapes:
It’s just a pity there’d be nobody around to see them.
Sacrifices have to be made though and we have to accept that we need these never-can-be-used obscenities as they allow us to punch above our weight. The MoD say they can’t be housed in the south of England as too many people would die in the result of a catastrophe. Now I don’t know about you but when the first effects of the radiation poisoning hit me and I start honking up my own blood, I doubt if my first thought will be, “This is great, I’m saving more than 30 lives somewhere else.”
As my core temperature increases and my various bodily functions break down it’s unlikely that my blood will boil as much as it does when I think of the potential desecration of all that beauty. Well worth it eh? Must be the union dividend of which they speak.