Proper British

This story got a lot of attention a little while ago:

A supermarket security guard has won the internet’s hearts as he stood in the pouring rain to shelter a patient dog. Morrisons security worker Ethan Dearman was photographed braving the elements outside the supermarket in Giffnock, Glasgow on Sunday. The picture, taken by Mel Gracie, 25, shows Mr Dearman holding a green umbrella over golden retriever Freddie, who is relaxing underneath.

And the pic:

Several people have commented that this is a typically-British story.  I disagree (and my Brit Readers will back me up on this, I think).

What would have made this a typically-British story would have been if the security guard was fired for not doing his proper job — because if there’s one thing Brits excel at, it’s bossing people around just because they can.

It’s precisely the same mindset behind a parking warden booting an ambulance for parking in a No Parking zone while picking up an injured patient, or a pharmacist’s assistant denying a customer a purchase of a pregnancy test kit during a lockdown, because it’s not an “essential” item.

I love Britain and its people, and I have as many Brit friends as American or South African friends, but this is one character flaw I find particularly tiresome.


  1. Just because I’m a little cranky this morning I have to ask what does the age of the photographer or the color of the umbrella have to do with the story? If a 50 year old had taken a picture of the guard holding a blue umbrella, would the story be any different? The world has too much useless information as it is – no need to add more.

    1. Maybe they’re filling that in for people who can’t see the photo, or it’s a rule Across The Pond (TM) to give that sort of attribution in the text.

  2. So Security Gard in modern Britishland = Footman ???

    Also seemingly lost to suburbia is that the Lab is a water dog and will happily wait in the cold rain for the return of their alpha dog because it’s coat is a very warm raincoat.

  3. Would it be too hard to pick up the leash and move the dog over under cover and retie it where the carts are? And most dogs can handle rain just fine, they retrieve out of water and the wonderful kind security worker is kind of a dumbass standing in the rain without a hat or holding the umbrella over both the dog and himself. This might be a great visual example of the Peter-Principle where a person has been promoted beyond his abilities.

  4. The UK used to be the land of the Jobsworth – as in “That’s more than my job’s worth.” – so lampooned by Esther Rantzen’s That’s Life and then Private Eye. So a picture like this would not have happened.

  5. While it’s a cute picture, I have to wonder why people bring dogs shopping. I see it sometimes when people go around the grocery-store with their little purse-dogs in the child-seat on the cart. I’m sure the dog would be much happier at home on the sofa (I know I would be whenever I have to go grocery shopping).

    And don’t get me started on people who bring their (non-gun-trained) dogs to fireworks shows.

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