Sometimes you find a yearning for the quiet life,
The country air and all of its joys,
But badgers couldn't compensate at twice the price
For just another night with the boys, oh yeah,
And boys will be boys, will be boy-oy-oys . . .
-- Roxy Music, "Editions of You"
Via Andrew Stuttaford at The Corner [National Review Online] I learn that Otis Ferry, the 21-year old son of Bryan Ferry -- leader of the aforecited Roxy Music, of which band Mr. Stuttaford opines correctly that "their first two albums were among the greatest ever recorded," though my personal enthusiasm would perhaps expand that list to at least four of their first five albums -- is, of all things, the UK's youngest joint master of foxhounds. As such, he has placed himself in the forefront of those fighting the Blair government's ongoing effort to ban foxhunting, and was among those who last week invaded the House of Commons in protest -- "the worst breach of Commons security in living memory," leading to institution of greater precautions than had previously been taken against, say, international terrorists.
Stuttaford links to this Telegraph profile of Otis, who apparently makes all the country girls swoon. Those who can set aside whatever personal revulsion they may feel toward the hunt will find the younger Mr. Ferry more than somewhat engaging, and quotable.
On the parliamentary invasion:
Does he regret his raid on the mother of all parliaments, along with seven other protesters? 'I didn’t want to do anything stupid like dressing up as Batman and swinging off Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar Square. This was different. MPs were discussing my future and our freedoms — we needed to be there.'
When Otis found his way into the debating chamber, he initially felt relieved. 'It would have been embarrassing if it had gone off halfcock. We didn’t have lots of inside knowledge. But I’ve got a good sense of direction and the corridors were quite straight.'
On his life vs. his father's and his argument with the Commons:
'I suppose we couldn’t be living more different lives,' Otis says. 'But I prefer the unpretentiousness of country people to the music scene. There aren’t many with their noses in the air. Everyone speaks their mind. That’s what makes me so angry about the MPs.
'They say it’s all about class war, but many of the hunt followers are workingclass. They’d just prefer to have people like me clubbing in London rather than cubbing. That’s stupid. At least, in the country, I am doing some good chasing the vermin.'
And of course, on The Queen:
His other hero is the Queen. 'It’s a sad story if our monarch can’t hunt any more. She’s wonderful. I look at all those MPs who have never even bothered to come to a hunt, and I think: you gimps - you haven’t even done your homework. I’m not very trendy but, jeepers, those Labour backbenchers are such losers.'