If you are looking for a window on Britain as we sit precariously on the edge of something or other thatdoesn't look altogether rosy, spend a weekend in St Albans. It's the chipper upside of hell. Get ferried around in cars (Britain is the only European country with booming car sales) for the minutest distance, witness roadside tears (as if dodgems don't have to bump) go to Waitrose three or four times and receive little green tokens for the Girl Guides and free copies of the Daily Mail (!!) watch idiocy on huge TV screens (we own the biggest in Europe) and go to the pub for a lock in with the interminables, those portly fans of the Arsenal and English rugby (whose green and pleasant the rest of the world defiles) who prove so adeptly that the proudest are usually the dumbest.
Quite unreasonably, I blame St Albans for ALL of Sky's excruciating football commentators, a vast percentage of those who make it to Countryfile, and the worst of all tabloid journalists. I see it as the Bayreuth of X Factor, the home of actuaries, and resting home for Page 3 models (and I tend to LIKE strippers, topless models and so on).
St Albans sucks, it's just like where I come from, Wilmslow, Cheshire, where as AA Gill remarked; you wouldn't want to get fat, you'd be letting down your car. This is Britain when it has cash.
This is exactly what we both chose to escape from long ago: we all have to hate something to make progress.