Wanted to write something interesting… this will have to do.

I had it in mind to write a devastatingly pithy blog post for you as I sat watching Mr Magorium’s Wonder Emporium just now with my wife and two youngest boys.  It was a film that had a really uplifting message, so if I give you a bit of a stream of consciousness then the message and hence original idea for my post will come to fruition.  Or maybe not.  But no matter, bear with me…

It’s been an absolutely glorious day here in Shropshire, the sort that makes your heart sing.  Yesterday was a very similar day too.  It is going to be a real downer when the winter starts.  Of course that’s a negative message, so I’ll focus instead on the positive.  The last two days and in fact the last couple of weeks have been a real bonus on the and of what actually been a decent summer.  Not scorching but we’ve not been soaked through to the skin that often either

OK, I think I’ve remembered where I came in here – the old stream of conscience has done its trick.  Let’s get back to MMWE.  As with a lot of films of its ilk, the message is one of self improvement or even self belief without the need to improve.  You have it within you, if you would only look deep enough.  Relationships should be cherished and friendships allowed to blossom – don’t be prescriptive and do all that you can to allow others to be a success.  That way, you’ll be one too.  In my current position of being unemployed this is a message that I’ve not adhered to often enough.  So, knowing that today is the first day of the rest of my life, I’m gonna do everything that I can to make it take off in the direction in which I want  it to.  Stagnation and regret are no longer going to be given head room in my life.

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Norway / Amy Winehouse

They seem a pretty phlegmatic bunch those Norwegians don’t they? They suffer a tragedy like yesterday and the bottom line of what the Prime Minister says is basically, ‘We will be an even more open society’. I think that is such a refreshing response (patronisation alert) to what must be a crushing tragedy (you don’t say). It’s much better than the George W. Bush retort to 9/11/01. Fighting fire with fire, surely, only makes the flames lick higher.

As for Amy Winehouse, well that’s perhaps not such a great shock as she always did seem a little flaky mentally. But it’s still so sad. I have to confess that I’ve never bought any of her CDs, and I only have an .mp3 copy of her stupendous cover of the Zutons’ Valerie but it was clear that she was quite some talent. Another star in heaven is shining bright tonight. Or it will be when it goes dark.

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What’s the weather like in Oman?

Don’t scoff.  I only ask because I am seriously looking at taking a job in the Gulf.  You might remember, if not – KEEP UP, that I have recently finished my PGCE, but I can’t find a job in the UK, well at least not where I would like to work.  So having looked on the TES website at the list of job on there (like I said very few in the UK) I noticed one or two in the Gulf.  This morning, I have spoken to a lovely lady who works at putting UK qualified teachers in touch with schools in Kuwait, Oman and other far flung destinations.  So what do I do?  Do I take the chance to go out for a year (10 months actually) and get my NQT year under my belt in a British school in the middle east.  Or do I bite the bullet, tighten my belt and stick it out in Blighty until something comes along?

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An update on my impending depression…

I’ve taken a phone call this morning from a school regarding the possibility of my at least getting some time in the classroom as a volunteer, or even some paid time as a supply teacher.  So that’s promising.  I’ve also handed in my application form for that 3 days a week part-time job.  Again, promising.  Onwards and upwards as they say in Rotherham (I believe).

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Am I depressed?

No, don’t answer, it’s a rhetorical question.  It may be that I just need to pull myself together and get on with it.  Or not.  I have just finished my PGCE – I am a qualified teacher.  Grounds for celebration, optimism even, yes?  Well maybe.  You see the fact of the matter is, I don’t have a job.  In the rush to finish my course, I’ve not felt it possible to give enough attention to the task of securing a position.  Call me what you like, that’s the fact of things.  Other people on my course have found the time to finish the course and get a job, so why couldn’t I?

It’s not that I haven’t applied for any jobs, I have actually applied for about half the jobs local to me that I have seen.  I’ve had one interview.  I’ve been to look at several schools, like they recommend, but my application form has been good enough to get me on the short list for just one position.  I have had my letter of introduction looked at my the head at my last placement school and my college tutor, herself a former headteacher.  So it’s not too bad, surely?

Anyway, enough already.  I actually do feel a little better now.  I’m off to drop off an application form off at a nearby school – it’s 3 days a week, so part time.  But it’s a job and it’d be a good place to start, perhaps giving me time to do supply work on the other two days.  I’ll keep you posted.

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Delicious irony

I do love it when politicians are shown up for what they are.  In my local council area, controlled by the Tories, though I didn’t vote for em, there has been a lot of talk recently about the need to reduce the number of schools in order to save costs.  This has been subject to a long and somewhat painful consultation process over the past few months.  Well today the council finally gave its verdict and a number of schools are now to close.

But the schools are fighting back.  At least one of them is promising to use the national government’s Academy Schools legislation to wrestle itself away from local authority control in order to save itself.  Where will the money come from to fund this new academy?  Well, I’m not entirely sure, but I wouldn’t mind betting that money will be removed from the local council’s education budget in order to fund it, even though it now has no control over it and indeed had planned to close it because it couldn’t afford to keep it open.

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It’s funny

I’ve been on a course these past nine months, so I’ve not been able to keep up with any of my blogs.  This one is no exception.  But now I’m not so stressed about course work – most of which was writing essays and lesson plans – I’m now looking forward to spending a good bit of time blogging.  This means… yep, you guessed it, writing.

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The blushing coconut

Sounds like a name for a bar in Spongebob does it not?  It may even be the name of a bar in Spongebob.  But anyway, I digress.  The boys’ school had its annual school fare last week – as usual bets were hedged with the weather and it was decided to stay inside the school.  Of course the sun shone and it was absolutely sweltering (nb last year the decision to go outside was rewarded with it fine mizzle for the duration and this wasn’t from the local fire brigade’s appliance – see, you can’t win with the British summer).

One activity which was held outside, with the chance for some fresh air, was the coconut shy.  Throw three tennis balls at 5 traffic cones with coconuts perched atop.  If you can knock one off, win a coconut.  Well, without being too big headed, I managed to win myself a coconut – it wasn’t difficult, throwing the ball anywhere near the cluster of cones was good enough.  Once I’d got it home, extracted the water and dropped the thing on the floor a couple of times I was in, and the pure white flesh of the Cocos nucifera was revealed.  My question is, how much of your coconut do you need to eat for it to count for one of your five-a-day?

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British Voters Can’t Really Be That Stupid?

Well that’s that then isn’t it?  We had the chance to vote for a change, for a more representative form of election to our legislature and we blew it completely.  I don’t think that I will ever bother voting again, certainly not in a UK General Election.  My vote is meaningless.  Like I have said before, a dustbin with a blue rosette would be elected as MP in our constituency.  I don’t want a Tory MP, I would never vote for one, yet living where I live, I will always get one.  Similarly, if I lived in a constituency in Liverpool or Manchester there would be the same chance of not having a Labour MP.  Nothing that I could do in voting for somebody else would make the blindest bit of difference.

Forget the House of Commons expenses nonsense, this was the biggest scandal in British political history over the last few years.  We had a chance to change things, to make parliament better reflect the will of the people and we fouled up.

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