Someone whose website I follow has had a mildly nasty experience at the hands of what she calls a couple of British twats. Apparently two men (surprise) highjacked a thread in which she was asking for some specific help and advice to tell her, more or less, that she was basically stupid for contemplating the thing she wanted advice about.

She thinks the men are snobs. I think they’re self-important men. Anyway, I’m not here either to offer advice of my own, beyond saying I too “couldn’t understand why these two men had even bothered to join in the discussion.” I am here, rather, to take advantage of her use of a storied photograph that, I suppose, illustrates snobbishness (rather than boorishness), to commemorate Ian Jack, who died last week. Ian Jack’s brilliant writing and reporting breathed such life into the photograph and the boys that it was a pleasure, 12 years on, to be prompted to revisit it.

There they were again: Wagner, Dyson, Salmon, Catlin, Young, doomed for ever to represent a continuing social tragedy.

I suppose being assailed by boorish men is also a continuing social tragedy. I also think the complaint does not need that image.

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