JUST AN OBSERVATION

Just an Observation
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A few diverse and interesting musical treats lined up over the next week. This is encouraging on an Edinburgh scene which in recent times has not been renowned for such things, especially in the wake of a council who seem determined to stamp out any live music scene as soon as it begins.
First up is The Trama Dolls, Boots For Dancing and Paper Cloud extravaganza at the Voodoo Rooms this Saturday-21st May- which looks like being one of those Edinburgh nights out not to be missed. As there were no pre-sale tickets up for grabs beforehand and with interest in the event running very high it is recommended that to ensure entry into what is bound to be a great gig then an early arrival is essential as all places are on a strictly first come first served basis. The doors open at 7.30 and the first band is on about 8 so be there or be square as they used to say!
As if this wasn’t excitement enough then next Thursday sees Brian Wilson bring his legendary ‘Pet Sounds’ to the Usher Hall on the tour he insists will be the last time he ever performs this Beach Boys album in its entirety. I am extremely looking forward to this and having those beautiful melodies combined with celestial harmonies wash over me in some form of musical soul cleansing. Again one not to be missed!
Then on the Saturday following this –the 28th- The Nightingales roar into town for an intimate gig at The Leith Depot which is also close to a sell out already so if this flicks your switch again best move swiftly or face disappointment.
So that is three very different gigs in a week which for Edinburgh is some kind of record although pretty soon it will be back to the likes of Simply Red or some totally forgettable boy band you may or may not have heard of to provide musical treats the council approve of or at least make money out of.
Talking of Edinburgh council it would appear that there are plans afoot to build a new hotel complex in the old town at the back and to the sides of the Central library which due to its positioning will block out the natural light that illuminates the interiors of this beautiful building and which lends it so much of its character.
I personally love the Central Library and during the Festival and in between shows when I need a much needed respite from the over-crowded streets, bars and restaurants of this area I often take a short break to escape the mayhem and soak in its peaceful ambience . If these plans go ahead then that will no longer be much of an option as the only view from the library will be a corporate structure reminding us all that Edinburgh council only really cares about its tourists and very little for its residents.
There has been much talk over the last few weeks about transgendered people and their right to use the toilet of their selected gender. Speaking as someone who is actually ‘gender fluid’ this is an issue I have lived with for years.
It is an ongoing debate I have within myself every time I use a public toilet as without fail the majority of times –about 90% upwards- I use a male toilet I usually get stopped on my way in or after I am actually in and told I am in the wrong place. On the instances I use a female toilet however no-one ever seems to bother and it is a much less intimidating experience.
I found the introduction of disabled toilets a relief as they became more prominent even though I don’t identify as disabled at all but at least it afforded me some privacy without having my motives questioned.
I mean it is not as if I am going to the toilet for any reason other than what it is actually designed for and if I was going for any reasons other than that would I be doing it in such an obvious and noticeable way likely to attract attention? It is something I have to gauge on a different basis whenever I am out as I try to assess which toilet will be the best and safest option for me in that environment and I feel that it should be discretionary.
Those people who are up in arms about trans people and others who are less gender confined using their toilets due to their supposed fears of their threatening behaviour, molestation or whatever really need to question their own threatening behaviour and attitudes. After all we all have to go somewhere so why not in peace!

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    • Valerie Thornton Hunter
    • May 20th, 2016

    At Copenhagen airport you all share toilets – men and women share and queue together – Euro-Toilets! If you need to go you need to go – it is certainly not gender important to me.

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