The British Stiff Upper Lip

A commuter train station in Düsseldorf.  A single, solitary Brit on platform 1, waiting for a train.

What’s that there on the railyway line?

Guess it’s my old brown shoes.


Sunray seemed to like that song (by Flash and the Pan) when he was stationed on Cyprus, defending Queen and country (from the safely of a desk in SBA HQ, of course).

We Brits have a reputation for having the stiff upper lip, remaining calm in the face of adversity.  Serbo-Croat has an expression:

vezti se englez


Approximate translation: “to behave ‘Englishly.'”

And mostly, I do keep up the British stiff upper lip.  Like a duck traversing a pond, even if underneath everything is splashing about at 200kph, on the surface, all seems calm.  Calmness begets calmness.

Friday afternoon was different.  Not sure what came over me.  Maybe I was a bit hypoglaecemic.  Maybe I hadn’t done enough cycling, walking, swimming, etc to break down the adrenalin.  Maybe it was the frustration of coping with Sunray’s alcoholism.  

My eyes were suddenly quite damp.  I blinked.  I blinked again.  Deep breath.  Listen to Cracklin’ Rosie by Neil Diamond for the 100th time that day.  Wipe eyes.  What’s for dinner tonight?  Don’t let Charlie Kilo see you’ve been crying, been upset.  All will be good.

Ah, here comes the S6 train.

Charlie Kilo has only once seen me cry, and that was two years ago.

Laugh, and the whole world laughs with you.  Cry, and you’re on you’re on your own – which is probably quite a good thing when you need to let go in a public place.


2 thoughts on “The British Stiff Upper Lip

  1. Wer ist Charlie Kilo?? Kenn ich den?

  2. I cannot answer that question. 😉

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