I was at an event this afternoon presenting trophies to the winners of a football tournament. It was great, very enjoyable. Most of the time. At the end I was going round folk and letting them know that I was one of their MSPs and encouraging them to get in touch if they'd any problems I might be able to help with. Everyone was receptive and took my contact details but there was one guy who just started having a go at me.
He starts pointing in my face saying "you lot, none of you want to help folk like me" (yes that's right, that's why I'm coming up to you asking if you want my help with anything) "you are all the same" (never heard that one before)!
I think the most patronising and disingenuous thing you can do in those circumstances is take it without standing up for yourself. It would be a bit fake for me to do that so I didn't. I told him I thought there one thing he might need to do himself if he wanted my help and that is ASK ME!!
At this point he admitted that he had never been in touch with me. He went on to tell me about someone he had contacted who couldn't have cared less. I was happy to point out that it wasn't even my party never mind me so hardly fair for him to judge me. I also pointed out the irony of me walking up to him asking could I help with anything and his immediate reaction being that no politician ever wants to help anyone.
It was fine in the end and he's promised to email me with details of a particular difficulty he's having. However it does annoy me the way that one bad experience somehow ends up with us all being the same. I can't imagine me walking up to someone I don't even know and telling them how bad they are but today was not the first time it happened. Ah well, it takes all sorts I guess. Moan over! Thanks for listening ...