Fairness by Ferdinand Mount

Fairness

Ferdinand Mount

A story full to bursting point with little incidences of tenderness, betrayal, naivety and cynicism and a look at unfullfilled love through snippets of social history from the past 50 years. It is a twisting journey following a man's attempt to understand every meaning of the word 'Fairness'.

Extract

To be honest, which I wasn't, even my few years in the service having taught me never to confess ignorance unless forced to, and preferably not even then - a lesson people seemed to find useful in all departments of life - I had not heard of Woden Heath. But there it was in the briefing notes: small gas board coking plant, stocks at 3/1/74 17,000 tons.

Brendan was right, Woden Heath looked promising. As well as the usual half-dozen pickets there was a knot of people standing by the fence but a little apart from the pickets. They were chanting 'The miners united will never be defeated' in a cheerful but slightly provisional-sounding way, as though this was a chant to fill in time until they received the real message.

A small woman in a bobble hat came forward.
'We've got permission to stand here.'
'No, what-'
'God it's you. I thought you were a policeman.'

Parallels
  • The Sun Also Rises by E M Hemingway
  • Turn of the Century by Kurt Anderson