Podcast with Poseidson aka Jon Guest – London Waterways Manager for The Canal & River Trust
As we all know, if you want to scare off a gang of criminals, the best way is to dress up as a PE teacher.
Fear of crime is a constant undercurrent when you live on a boat – especially in London. In fact, if you’re thinking of bringing a boat to London and are not here yet, think again. Crime is a guaranteed daily occurrence.
We all know about the East London gangs systematically working their way up & down Victoria Park – breaking into boats, terrorizing the occupants, storing generators & sacks of coal in their extra-baggy hoody pockets. If the boat is unoccupied, one of the more notorious gangs – the whacky baccy Hackney fuckees – will leave your taps running & fill up your toilet. It’s their USP. Gangs these days are very savvy when it comes to marketing.
As crimes against boaters continue to soar, possible solutions have been discussed at secret meetings around our towpaths. Something needs to be done. It’s time to strike back.
The day that my Operation Whistleblower defense pack was delivered to me was the day I threw my Boater’s Taser into the canal (before you try to get one, they are no longer available from Midland Chandlers – but check in the secret cabin at the Excel Boat Show).
My whistle was accompanied by a yellow card. It’s in front of me now.
On the front is a drawing of a chubby-fingered boater, holding the whistle in his mouth. He is on the verge of a heart attack. This is because he is sucking on the whistle instead of blowing it – a mistake we’ve all made. It raises the question of whether boaters should take a course before being left to run amok with such specialized kit.
The reverse of the card has several wise pointers on how to keep safe & make the best of the whistle.
Don’t play with your whistle. (also a euphemism for female masturbation).
Have a torch handy ….. for when it’s dark.
It’s almost as impressive as something I read on the same subject just before Xmas. Following a spate of burglaries on elderly people at home, a local paper was advising residents of how they could protect themselves.
One section read as follows:
If someone rings the doorbell unexpectedly, before answering, shout loudly, “It’s alright Fred, I’ll get it.” This will make the caller think that somebody else is with you. If you don’t like the name Fred, use another name that you prefer.”
Boaters’ whistles will be amongst the many topics I’ll be turning my attentions to in ‘Angry Boater Live’. The shows start in a few days at Lee Hurst’s Backyard Comedy Club, Bethnal Green. More info – including a link for cheap tickets – below.
Joel – January 4th, 2015