Birmingham Book Festival

Yes, we the birminghamese have learned our words and there is now so much interest in books that we have our own library. And the library is giving us a festival!

http://www.birminghambookfestival.org/

It’s now halfway through so I doubt I’m going to do them any advertising favours here – though do look out for next year’s. I took partner to see Mark Thomas speak about his new book Belching out the Devil about Coca Cola and how many evil things they do in so many different countries.

This was extra fun for me because partner enjoys coke frequently. Ha. He may still go for it, it’s just not as easy when you know they pay workers less than a living wage in Turkey, they drain and pollute the water supplies of Indian villages, they use child labour in their sugar cane fields and turn a blind eye to their trade-unionist staff being shot in their bottling plants in Columbia. I can’t wait to read the book. I’ll let you know how it is. (we also got his previous book “As used on the famous Nelson Mandela”)

The great thing about Mark Thomas is how ordinary and approachable he is. He’s enthusiastic and good humoured with his blokey London accent and attitude – the opposite of the activist stereotype. (who does fit the activist stereotype? if you know, please share). I think it helps ordinary folk to put a person they can relate to to serious issues; it shows that you don’t have to be snobby or a hippy to boycott things, and you don’t have to be a raving loon to care about what goes on in the world. Good stuff.

When I first set this blog up I thought “gosh, why ever would I want to create a load of pages? I can’t even think of one” and now I’m getting overrun as I think I should add one for things worthy of boycott….

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