Saturday, January 31, 2009

Shepherds Warning

'Red sky at night' etc is true most of the time. This new dawn does not bode well. Seen at seven thirty this morning, getting lighter every day the gorgeous red sky promised cold and wet, snow even. Yes! the cold is here, yes! the snow is on its way but as to the Shepherds warning, I agree the signs are there.
Several papers this morning are foretelling that the current economic scene will get worse, although Richard Branson puts it this way 'Shares have gone rock bottom and will go even lower'. He must know something about the structure of the earth that I dont. 'Below rock bottom' would take cataclysmic seismic activity of the earthquake kind, or volcano kind or techtonic plates colliding kind.
So , I am waiting for snow, and yes I am waiting for the media to cash in on the expected frugality drive. The Telegraph has already begun with a booklet on how to kill and draw your own Turkey, and what to make out of the entrails. Others will follow. Marguerite Pattern will have another late flowering in her career telling us how to boil up chicken bones and make soup, or horror of horrors lead us back to Spam.
I have decided be very positive about the economic downturn-how even the words have potential. Down turns bring a reassessment of values and priorities, of government spending on essential services, on a care and share approach . There will always be those ready to make money in 'new ways quickly' in a spiv sort of a way. There will also be a look to the beauty in free things like red dawns.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Pick yourself up

Pick yourself up,dust yourself down,and start all over again.........
Well I think those were the defining words. I'll wait and see what the forth estate says tomorrow. Why on earth did only the Queen of Soul have the sense to wear a hat. She at least gave the whole proceedings some sparkly class. Mrs Obama nearly made it with her glitter .I did enjoy it though. I believed the prayers, and the speech. The poem by Elizabeth Alexander was the highlight of the whole show for me. I am waiting for a transcript of it. Meanwhile here is a picture from the telly....

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Unwanted guests

Daughter near Brighton has just spent the weekend using this wonderful tool. I have asked her to buy me one as come the first day of the Summer Holidays now only 6months away, I can be sure that I will probably need one, when daughter in Scarborough rings up in tears asking for help of the combing kind, and we will have daily visits, and many happy(!) hours sitting outside the back door with kitchen roll and bowls of water.

Friday, January 16, 2009


I have finally got the measure of Twittering. I have been sorting it out,investigating , appraising and evaluating. Put another way, I have read, marked, learned and inwardly digested. Twittering is a phantom message service. Firstly it is an addictive time waster. Perfectly reasonable and educated people are sending tweets about their most banal and everyday thoughts and all their friends are reading them and thinking they must do the same. Secondly a huge market of Twitterific and the like products are now subtly available after the first sprat has reeled them in. I too am part of the crowd, and just incase I miss out on any hidden bonuses I too am capable of sending banal and boring thoughts to the great ISP in the sky. Thirdly this is not a new phenomenom. It all started or was documented for the first time in 1837.
Only difference is that in 1837 ,in the Emperors New Clothes ,the tweets were word of mouth only, because the microchip had not been invented.

Thursday, January 15, 2009


I just love stats.The sitemeter on the gives me as much pleasure as the actual blogging. I have slowly turned into a nerd, maybe even an anorak. I wonder if on Mastermind you may answer questions on 'Blogsite stats' or ' URLs I know and love', or 'Locations ' or 'Out clicks'. I like them all. It is no good looking at the blog oneself, 50 times in one day, as Pete and Brian and Simon will suss that it no time. If I let 50 friends know the URL and hope they look at the site, I might get 10 of them looking at it. If I encourage all my 78 Facebook friends to look at the site,this might happen;
  • all my children will look at the site,
  • former colleagues who are winding down at the end of a tiring school day might look at the site
  • old friends from Dorking are leagues ahead in the cyber stakes and won't look as they are all twittering but not following me
  • my sister has already looked but will have lost the URL and the inclination
  • my nephews and nieces are all partying or on holiday in cold places so have no time
  • vicars and bishops and youth workers are all doing their own superb blogs so might look to see if I am following their blogs
  • Richard Dawkins will look at the site to see if I have mentioned him even though he is not my friend
  • Archbishop Sentamu will not look at the site, he knows I am one of his Facebook groupies but although he really appreciates all I do for him and God, he lets me get on with it as he loves Body Ministry.
  • My Facebook friends from the 1980's will not look at the site, they dont remember who I am.

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Victoria and Albert

We are working side by side in the Study. Spouse is writing his report for Work on my Mac Mini. It is good to have him in the real world again. That world of tab keys and spacing, keyboard shortcuts and autosaves. I am twittering a little on the Toshiba. Not much to do really when you have only 2 followers and no internet connection from your mobile phone. Still it keeps me in the real world again,that world of Victoria and Albert with their console or is it consort desks.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Erasmic soap. Thank God for Dixons

Aged parent and I are never at a loss for conversation. It is much easier now that she has followed eldest daughter to the audiologist and got a Digital Hearing Aid on the NHS. I have to fit it for her of course every time . She cannot manage its intricacies. I am now privy to the most interesting revelations, a pleasure to listen to as no shouting is involved. Apparantly
My Grandfather Frederick Richard Holding (died 1950),AKA the Pioneer motorist and first person to drive across the Runcorn Transporter Bridge has a history involving Erasmic Soap.
Aged Parent tells that when Grandfather was a boy in the 1880s he couldnt be found at the school he was supposed to be attending. When questioned it emerged that he had been truanting by working at the Erasmic Soap Factory, and was working to earn the money for a suit. I have researched this , and found that the Erasmic Soap factory was indeed in Warrington where Grandfather lived with his Aunt and her husband. Aged parent was delighted when I came across the Shave Stick in our local Emporium Dixons of Filey. Now Erasmic is owned by Keyline Brands of Mumbai. The smell of it has immediately brought back a flood of new found memories. What treats in store!

Monday, January 05, 2009

Team building

I see from the status updates(Facebook) of former colleagues at HJS that today has been set aside as an Inset day on Teambuilding. What a relief that I don't have to be there. Whilst I dont think they will be paint balling in the grounds , or using newspapers and cardboard boxes to cross the Assembly Hall, I do know that they will alll be wanting to sit quietly in their classrooms preparing Smart Programmes on their laptops, or having a tidy in the Stock cupboard. Some things you just cannot leave to a NTA or LSA. Ownership of ones own room is part of the anthithesis of Team Building.
I am in a Team now, only I am the Lead teacher, the Head teacher, the Curriculum Adviser, the Payroll Clerk ,the Cook and the Caretaker. It is wonderful.