Showing posts from August, 2012

At last, common sense prevails. (My annual educational rant.)

August is the month of GSCE and A Level results in the UK.  This year, for the first time since GSCEs were introduced in 1988, there has been a fall in the amount of A*- C grades awarded. It is only an overall decline of 0.4%, however, in English the corresponding pass marks have dropped from 78.4% to 76.3%.

As a consequence, there has been an outcry from many teachers, parents and governors. Some parents have been incensed that their children's papers might have been marked too harshly. Presumably, some have been appalled that their children might even have been deducted points for bad spelling and punctuation. This almost seems fair as we've all been subliminally indoctrinated that grammar is no longer important and what really matters isthe effort, the thought behind the writing. You see, it's now all about the content. Yes, on occasions it might be easier to read kid's school work in Braille but what does it matter! So long as everyone hugs, kisses and celebrates th…

Just Waffle, Kim Kardigan and Random Musings

Waffles probably are more interesting, especially with butter and syrup, but since I don't have any it'll have to be just waffle. Yep, it's one of those posts where I just have random musings.

I did something truly horrendous, painful even, early this morning. I actually clicked on an article on the Daily Mail about Kim Kardigan. I have successfully managed to avoid doing this for about two years but I've still managed to discover who Kim Cardigans is because she is mentioned just about everywhere. I think Kim does stuff in the US on telly, I don't think any of it is noteworthy but feel to correct me if I am wrong. I think it's the type of  reality TV where, if British reality shows are anything to go by, the women wear skimpy clothes and have fake breasts and generally want a career as a porn star and the men are usually failed body builders, air stewards or ex boy band singers with identity crises. On British reality shows there's usually also the token g…

Are you feeling glum?

So now the Olympics have finished you might be feeling a little glum. A bit depressed even - especially if you can't fit into a leotard without the use of a crowbar or lift a beer can to your mouth without taking a pep pill.
I have a remedy for this.
Read this story and look at the accompanying pictures. If this story does not make you laugh you need a humour transplant. It's about an elderly woman who chose to "restore" a fresco entitled Ecce Homo (Behold the Man) by Elias Garcia Martinez in the Sanctuary of Mercy Church, near Zaragoza in Spain. Unfortunately, her restoration has made Jesus Christ look like he's suffering an agony worse than the crucifixion as well as suffering from acute constipation. I haven't worked out why he wearing the Eskimo headress. 
My comment on this story is; I cannot wait till I'm eighty and I can get away with that kind of stuff. I'd try it now but I'd probably get arrested. 
Alternatively, I could get a degree in …

Silly Olympian Thoughts

Do you remember Mrs N? She's my friend who is also a tennis mum and who ages ago set me this challenge. Now she has set me another challenge - which is to write a paragraph about a picture which was  doing the rounds on Facebook during the Olympics. Take a look:


I can be succinct at times. Not often, I admit. But this is one of them. However, I think Mrs N was imagining more than a one word paragraph so I'll have another bash.

Actually, I should point out that I'm pretty sure this picture wasn't photographed during the 2012 Olympics and was probably taken in Sweden (the clue is in Goteberg on his kit) which is the country where they wear funny hats and clogs and talk in strange voices - except for Abba who sing in high pitched harmony but who also, by strange coincidence, wear Lycra. Anyway, this confusion made identifying the athlete more difficult and despite my inserting some descriptions of the athlete into Google I've come up with nothing - which i…

I'm all right, Jack.

One of the things I have noticed as I get older is that I become less tolerant, particularly of incompetency which I witness in increasing frequency. There is, I believe, a clear difference between incompetency and an error caused by a mistake. We all make "mistakes", have accidents and make errors of judgement. I believe most of us have the capacity to forgive such "mistakes" - without compassion we would be a lowly race. Incompetency is a different issue altogether though and as the years tick by I've noticed that I experience more and more "incompetency" which has often been the cause of much aggravation and heartache - this varies from the smallest tasks such as not receiving the letters from school to my father dying an early death from undiagnosed and untreated cancer.

So yesterday, after another such experience I have thought about the reasons why levels of incompetency are rising. Here are some of the reasons I consider to be the primary cause…

Pencils Away!

It was Master Jacob's fourteenth birthday yesterday. A few days prior to the great event, he told me that he did not expect any pencils or pencil cases for his birthday. Apparently, they are boring.

How can this be? Every child needs pencils. I simply cannot see the attraction of an Xbox 360 game over a set of HB pencils with gorgeous yellow and black stripes or even some of those glittery ones with the rubbers stuck on the top or, even better, those pencils with the replaceable leads!

I always encourage my boys to buy pencils when we visit tourist attractions so they come away with something really useful. I mean - if there's a choice of a sparkly pencil for 99p or a fluffy duck wearing a military helmet emblazoned with Desmond's Wildlife Farm/ Military War Museum/House of Horrors for £12.50 what sane mother wouldn't encourage their child to buy a really useful gift? Pencils are the choice of every responsible mother.

Am I right, Ladies?

So anyway, as I am also a lovi…