Another trip up the A470 to Hay-on-Wye. Got stuck behind the obligatory caravan for a good ol’ while. Witnessed lots of people driving stupidly, overtaking on blind corners and the like. Nice one.
Anyway, the reason I was going to Hay this time was to see David Simon, best known as creator of The Wire, but he was there to mainly discus his books ‘Homicide’ and ‘The Corner’. I thought that was pretty obvious, what with Hay being a ‘literary festival’ and all that, but the idiots sat behind me sounded a bit annoyed about it. The books formed the basis for the TV series so it’s not as though there wasn’t really any common ground.
The whole talk was really interesting, Simon held court on topics familiar to fans of The Wire – the collapse of regional newspaper journalism, the failure of the ‘war on drugs’, political corruption etc. He made a pretty powerful point about how the war on drugs has essentially descended into a war on the poor. I would have happily sat and listened to him for hours. I love hearing people who know their stuff talking about things they’re passionate about with clarity and authority, especially when they’re as likeable and down to earth as David Simon appeared to be.
It gave me the appetite to finally start reading The Corner, which has been sat on my shelf/coffee table/next to my side of the bed in various states of not-being-read, and I really need to purchase the DVDs of Generation Kill and The Corner.
Really looking forward to seeing Treme now, which is the new show he’s working on at the moment. Apparently it’s to do with New Orleans and Hurricane Katrina, so there’s plenty of scope for him to be David Simon-y about that!
Downsides: the idiots behind me kept having little chats amongst themselves, and seemed incapable of sitting calmly in a reasonable manner. They were like children. They kept shifting about and knocking the back of my chair. At one point the lady idiot went to get something from her bag and somehow managed to head-but my shoulder.
I was on the verge of Having Words but I didn’t really want to Make A Scene in front of David Simon. I’m sure he would have been on my side though.