HarryPotter and I went and saw the film Neds tonight. It is terrifying. It is violent. And it shows what happens to kids when you drag them through poverty, destitution and violence – they become impoverished, destitute and violent. But the story isn’t just about society; it’s about friendship and the being lost amongst the classes.
But the real reason Neds is so terrifying is because, while the film is set in the 1970s, it could have been filmed out HarryPotter’s back window. I haven’t seen loads of violence since I’ve been in Glasgow, but it’s not like I’m knocking about with the balaclavas. Glasgow can be a scary place, I’ve seen some rough people, and I am so thankful that I wasn’t raised here. I’m not saying that all of Glasgow is like this either, but parts of it are, without a doubt, fairly dire.
And it doesn’t take long to get accustomed to the anti-social nature of your surroundings. When I see kids tagging ‘IBT’ on a bus shelter — standing on their tip toes to make it look like the tag was drawn by someone taller and therefore bigger and older – I kind of laugh. When I shoo away the drunks from the front of the stairwell (something I used to do fairly regularly in the old flat), when I step over the passed out kid in the doorway by the shop, when I walk by the neds at bus shelter (and at times, on top of the bus shelter), I don’t feel afraid. Or, more accurately, I didn’t feel afraid. Now, after seeing this film, I may not feel so comfortable.
Perhaps this is part of the problem. If we didn’t treat everyone in a shell suit as a potential drug dealer, then maybe they wouldn’t go about collecting ASBOs. But, all I’m saying is, this film has gotten into my head, and I’ll be crossing the street to avoid the kid with the Buckie for a while.