Dig a hole and stay cool. Pray too, if you want to

The Skinny | No 93 – Heatwave Over Grey

What are we skinning? The sudden requirement to mix our tears with sweat as we learn of Malta being greylisted by the FATF.

Why are we skinning it? Because it’s precisely the kind of farcical pile-up of tragedy and inconvenience that makes for great comedy.

Do you think that Malta’s propensity to murderous heatwaves in midsummer could have influenced the FATF ruling? It’s certainly a more plausible interpretation than that other one.

Which other one? That Bernard Grech’s open letter may have somehow swayed the minds currently at the helm of the FATF, who would otherwise have been fully sympathetic to Malta’s cause.

The PN didn’t help though, did it? I mean… I guess? In the same way that a child hiccuping in the middle of St George’s Square would not have helped, or a dog catching a ball thrown in its direction by its owner at Ta’ Qali National Park ‘didn’t help’. At this point, the PN is literally that inconsequential.

So you’re suggesting that the Labour government and its assorted technocratic hangers-on really need to take full responsibility for what’s just happened? It would be a good start, yes.

It’s exciting. Yes, the unprecedented always is.

Scary, too. Well, you can’t have excitement without at least a pinch of fear.

It’s the edge that you need. And being on edge is what we do best, it seems.

Yes, I haven’t been relaxed since around 2006. Could have something to do with our Mediterranean temperament, could be something else…

We did have quite a tumultuous few years. The political crisis hitting us right before COVID, and now this?! Yes, it’s quite a lot to take in.

Good thing we still have our homes to relax in. Our homes, which are flanked by construction sites on all sides, which we can stay cool in thanks to airconditioning that racks up an already substantial electricity bill.

At least you can travel to the beach. Yes, and meet the horde of only possibly vaccinated tourists while driving there in our polluted private cars, because some villages (*cough Mgarr cough*) are actually barred from having access to public transport because Infrastructure Malta deemed it a worthy and apposite punishment.

Now you’re turning your guns on everything and everyone. Like the heat, pure anger is merciless and directionless.

Do say: “Actually, it’s wisest not to say anything at all, under the pall of the literal meteorological heat and the figurative heat cast in our direction by international regulatory bodies. Dig a hole and stay cool. Pray too, if you want to.”

Don’t say: “Eurovision should reflect the annual national mood. Maybe Lawrence Grey’s moment has finally come.”