Stewart Dakers

The fraudulent business of recycling

I am a litter picker. No, not one of those high-minded volunteers who have proliferated of late with litter-picking sticks and black bags, but a professional: I am paid to empty the bins and collect the debris left by the public in a small park in Middle England. And I’m angry, not with the great

Another country | 31 May 2018

One day there won’t be anyone to deliver the mail any more, and then what will the City types do? I heard this prediction more than 20 years ago when I worked behind the bar at one of the pubs here in my rural town. At the time I considered it melodramatic, but now it

The real Paralympic heroes aren’t found in a stadium

We crumblies hail from a sporting era when a Scottish rugby captain could stub out his fourth fag of the day before leading the team out on to Murrayfield. When a one-handed slip catch would receive a brief nod of approval from the captain. And when a goal could be scored without a mass bromance

The death of the funeral

Funerals ain’t what they used to be. Today’s emphasis is more on celebrating a life past than honouring the future of a soul. While I am not averse to a celebratory element, the funeral is morphing into a spiritually weightless bless-fest. This was brought home to me last week at the funeral of Enid, a

Live fast, die not too old

As an old man, well past my Biblical sell-by date, I cannot for the life of me understand why increased longevity is received as such a universal blessing. One thing’s for sure; its celebrants are not the oldies themselves, so it is time someone challenged this assumption. Let me start with a parable. It concerns