Middle class? Mwah? Thoughts from a Glastonbury toiletFri Jun 2017


The twitterati has set the internet alight with accusations that Glastonbury festival-goers are (horror) middle class. Let’s have a minute’s silence for the thousands of photos of Corbyn and Sheeran that can’t be uploaded because people have to deal with the haters right now.

I don’t know why we’re scratching each other’s eyes out. The middle classes are average. Are Macbook warriors worried society might win the race to its ever-increasing middle? (Make my little red book a Moleskine, thank you). Isn’t that what everyone wants? No kings, no paupers, just people anxiously polishing their own toilets before work so that their law-student-cum-cleaner won’t have to?

I performed at Glastonbury and the toilets were my sole preoccupation. I hold my hands up: on this summer’s class scales I weighed in as upper-middle bordering on tee-pee. For while I too, had to hover over a natural composting cesspit with optional flies, I did not have to queue for the experience. And what an experience it is.

In fact, as I peered into the shallow depths of Glastonbury’s long drop bogs, choking on the stench of its toxic bowel waste, confident that any seat art was accidental, I wondered if this might be the way forward.

For over the last few years it has become impossible to frequent even the most reliably filthy London pub without finding its toilets insta-ready. I have felt obliged to note hand towel thread-count, soap brands and tile dimensions. Maybe I don’t want to shazam another soundtrack to pee by. We used to be relieved to use our own loo (and my first flat-share had an outdoor privy). Now we just feel inadequate. Maybe I miss the days when a top-notch toilet meant nothing more than an amusing picture and the possibility of toilet paper.

However middle class I was before Glastonbury I am now home, and for the first time in years I do not want to redecorate. I’m not thinking about paint colours or floor finishes. Surely we can all agree – it doesn’t get less middle-class than that.

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