In the News……

Do you watch the News on a regular basis, or read a newspaper? Perhaps you catch up on what goes on in the World via Facebook or Twitter. Personally, I try to avoid it whenever possible because News is invariably bad or intensely irritating and sometimes both; today there is a case in point. 

Do you watch the News on a regular basis, or read a newspaper? Perhaps you catch up on what goes on in the World via Facebook or Twitter. Personally, I try to avoid it whenever possible because News is invariably bad or intensely irritating and sometimes both; today there is a case in point. 

Some people have said that Russell Brand has a screw loose; after reading this article I am not sure that he has one screw fully tightened! He is calling for tickling to be outlawed. Yes, you heard correctly – tickling; you know, that thing people do to make kids laugh (even adults sometimes if we’re lucky). What reason has he given for this startling request? Well, apparently it ‘violates their space’ and children should not be tickled until they are old enough to consent. I can’t help but wonder if he applies the same logic to hugs, holding their hands and spinning them around, tossing them up in the air…all ‘violate’ their space don’t they? I could be wrong but I think it’s termed ‘playing with children’. What would he prefer to replace it with? A discussion on boundaries and the psychological and emotional impact of only interacting with your child on a purely academic level? Bell end!

What makes it all the more incredible is that Brand says that he believes he is ‘too sensitive’ to change nappies and that his ‘romantic, reflective, religious world view’ prevents him from being a full-time parent. It does beg the question then whether he is really qualified to call for a ban on anything that is even remotely connected to parenting doesn’t it? I’ve never had kids but I am fairly sure that most parents are more concerned with loving their children and raising them in a safe stable environment than they are with ensuring that their personal space isn’t violated!

Is this really where our World is headed? Our right to freedom of speech is gradually being eradicated by political correctness, we are divided to the point of violence by politics, our schools teach equality and diversity rather than maths and English and now tickling is offensive?? Give me a break! This is why I don’t watch the News: the blatant stupidity that one finds within it!

Rant over, I am going to read a book ;O)

What about you? Do you keep abreast of the News and, if so, how to you keep from tearing your hair out? Better yet, what’s the most ridiculous News story you’ve heard this week? Let me know, I’d love to hear from you.

Lisa x

 

Hanging Out the Dirty Laundry…

I don’t know about you but I can’t help wondering why people feel the need to share every teeny tiny little detail of their lives on social media or, even more bizarre, why they want to drag the world and his wife into their familial disputes. Take, for example, the Mum-in- law who wanted to charge her son £17 for Christmas dinner; it prompted a debate on Mumsnet and has now found its way into the mainstream media. Why???

I don’t know about you but I can’t help wondering why people feel the need to share every teeny tiny little detail of their lives on social media or, even more bizarre, why they want to drag the world and his wife into their familial disputes. Take, for example, the Mum-in- law who wanted to charge her son £17 for Christmas dinner; it prompted a debate on Mumsnet and has now found its way into the mainstream media. Why???

Are our lives really so insular nowadays that we want to get involved with this kind of petty dispute? Are virtual reality shows not enough to fulfill our lust for rifling through the minutiae of other people’s lives? Maybe it’s just the case that reading about this type of nonsense makes us feel better about our own lives, who knows!

Am I being a hypocrite? I post all kind of personal stuff on WP that I possibly shouldn’t share with the world….is all this endless navel gazing healthy I wonder? Has social media unleashed something within us all that we are now happy to have our lives under constant scrutiny? Is there a positive side to it? Are we all being more open about our emotions these days behind the safety of an online account?

I’m not really going anywhere with this, I’d just be really interested to hear your thoughts; social media worries me a bit if I’m honest and I’m not sure if it should or I’m just behind the times……what do you think?

Lisa x

Just Do it 3 Times……

Have you ever read something on the internet and thought ‘that just has to be a joke’ and then you realise that it isn’t and you start banging your head gently on the nearest hard surface and wondering when everyone went mad? It’s never anything major, just a little something which immediately brings to mind the immortal words of John McEnroe, “You cannot be serious!”

Have you ever read something on the internet and thought ‘that just has to be a joke’ and then you realise that it isn’t and you start banging your head gently on the nearest hard surface and wondering when everyone went mad? It’s never anything major, just a little something which immediately brings to mind the immortal words of John McEnroe, “You cannot be serious!”

You cannot be seriousThe latest of these seems to be an attempt to alter basic biology whilst at the same time making men feel guilty about something that is in no way their fault. It’s lauded as being a way to ‘bring colleagues together’. What am I talking about? The menopause. Apparently it should not be a ‘women only‘ issue. Hmmmmmm? How’s that going to work then?

Is someone going to follow all the men in the office with a portable steamer in hand and shove it down the front of their shirt every hour or so? Will their skin be given a good going over with sand paper and then blasted with salt every few days? Will they be woken up in the middle of the night by someone drenching them in warm water? Perhaps someone will invent a mood destabiliser that will take their emotional state from ‘I love you so much’ to ‘Will you stop annoying me! If you have to breathe do it quietly’ in a matter of minutes. There could be a scientists out their right now working out how to artificially dry out their lady bits……oh no wait they don’t have lady bits…….

Nope we can forget all that, apparently the way to bring colleagues together is for men to say ‘menopause’ during the working day, preferably 3 times; presumably they then click their red slippers and instantly have a hot flush. What the actual F is wrong with these people?????? Is there more to it than that you ask, well yes there is; does it make any more sense you’re wondering? No, it doesn’t.

The other thing menopausal women can do to help colleagues understand their symptoms is to jot them down in a communal book, I wonder how that would read?

“I just accidentally sat on a spider and now it’s dead, I can’t stop crying”

“If John from accounting doesn’t stop with that ridiculous laugh of his I’m going to go over there and force feed him his stapler”

“I’ve just taken off 4 of my 5 layers of clothing, my hair’s all over the place, I’m sweating, my face is like a boiled beetroot and someone just had a go at me for wearing my vest in the office…..and now I’m freezing, has anyone seen my jumper?”

“I think I’m going to have to stock up on my supply of KY jelly on the way home”

“My boobs are going to end up touching my navel at this rate”

“When did my skin start looking so old”

I have to scream nowIt could be one woman jotting all this down before lunchtime. Please tell me how it will be of any benefit at all to her male colleagues to have this kind of insight? Would the women in the office benefit from knowing, in lurid detail, the emotional and psychological problems caused by erectile disfunction? Perhaps companies could start a book for that:

“Vigorous stimulation last night caused slight friction burns and I think I’ve got a touch of RSI”

“Is it wrong that I only succeeded last night by visualising Joan in the warehouse, sitting on the forktruck in nothing but thigh high waders?”

Perhaps, instead, we should stop all of this bloody nonsense and remember that men and women are different and no amount of sharing or chanting the word ‘menopause’ 3 times a day is going to change that.

What do you think? Is this a forward thinking initiative or a load of old bollocks?

I’d love to hear from you :O)

Lisa x

 

 

 

 

If in the Name of Equality…

Do you sometimes come across something in the news that you get a bit miffed about but you don’t like to say anything because you know that your views might offend some people? Do you really enjoy free and open debate, even on the thorniest of subjects like politics and religion, but find that it’s increasingly difficult to avoid the minefields planted in the name of political correctness?

Do you sometimes come across something in the news that you get a bit miffed about but you don’t like to say anything because you know that your views might offend some people? Do you really enjoy free and open debate, even on the thorniest of subjects like politics and religion, but find that it’s increasingly difficult to avoid the minefields planted in the name of political correctness?

I find myself miffed this morning and I’m hesitant about saying anything in case I inadvertently offend someone but, if I don’t say something, it will irritate me all day so here goes.

I love inspiring words! You know the sort, they just uplift everyone, they are not specific or targeted, you don’t have to have suffered to be able to relate, they were just written to motivate. One of my favourite examples is IF by Rudyard Kipling, you know the one, it goes like this:

    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise……
I suppose, if you want to be picky, you could say that the last line ‘And you shall be a man my son’ is sexist but you’d have to be pretty bloody picky after reading all the lines that preceed it.
Anyway, these words were painted on a wall in a Manchester University, I assume to act as inspiration for the students. However, they have now been painted over and replaced by the words of Maya Angelou. Why? Well, some of the students decided that Rudyard Kipling “stands for the ‘opposite of liberation, empowerment and human rights’.”
Kipling died in 1936 so he doesn’t ‘stand’ for anything if we’re going to be pedantic about it but isn’t it his words that are important and not the fact that the opinions that he may or may not have held (that point is debatable) are not ‘acceptable’ in today’s (100 years later) society?
That aside, the students claimed that it was their job to “uphold our principles of inclusivity, fairness and empowerment”. Ok, fair enough, so what did they replace ‘If’ with? Another poem that would be an inspiration to others regardless of their faith, colour or creed? No. They replaced it with a poem about people of colour breaking the bonds of slavery; both literally and metaphorically.
Now, while I would agree that we can all take something from this work as it is powerful and beautifully written, it is not inclusive.
Out of the huts of history’s shame
I rise
Up from a past that’s rooted in pain
I rise
I’m a black ocean, leaping and wide,
Welling and swelling I bear in the tide.
These are not words that will resonate with everyone because the vast majority of us can have no concept of what it is to be enslaved but they were written over words that all of us can relate to in the name of ‘inclusivity and fairness’; frankly I do wonder at the irony…….
Is it wrong to think this way? Have I reached an age where I am out of touch with ‘modern’ sensibilities or has political correctness trapped us to a point where we are afraid of critical thinking?
What do you think? Agree or not, I’d love to hear from you.
Lisa x

The Man Who Cried Rape…

The story broke in the morning papers, a few hours after this respected elder statesman had finally been told what he had been accused of. He left the police station a broken man, broken by questions and accusations and into the waiting glare of the press, waiting like hyenas to capture the perfect image of his shame and confusion.

“Would you mind coming with us please Sir”?

“What’s this about officer? It’s late”

“We need to talk to you down at the station Sir; some allegations have been made against you”

“Allegations of what? Look, what’s going on?”

“Please come with us Sir”

He looked back into the concerned eyes of his wife, took his overcoat from the stand in the hallway and followed the policeman through his front door and into the waiting throng of press, gleefully snapping away,  enjoying his discomfiture.

The story broke in the morning papers, a few hours after this respected elder statesman had finally been told what he had been accused of. He left the police station a broken man, broken by questions and accusations and into the waiting glare of the press, waiting like hyenas to capture the perfect image of his shame and confusion.

Barricaded behind his front door with his crying wife and shocked children, a prisoner in his once happy and tranquil home, he discovers that he is not the only one plunged into this nightmare. Friends and former colleagues have been dragged into the gutter with him; their names and faces plastered over newspapers, the internet and social media, their characters muddied. He takes a call from one desperate friend who is trying to comfort his wife, she has dementia and has been traumatised by the search on their home by police looking for ‘evidence’ against him.

“What is it that they’re looking for? They’ve turned everything upside down; the wife is beside herself, you know what’s she’s like if her routing is disturbed. They’re asking me to remember events from 30 years ago for Christs sake, I can’t remember what I had for breakfast yesterday!”

He could hear the break in his friends voice as he tried to make light of things.

“I don’t know what to say to you my friend. We have an accuser and, apparently he has been believed, the police didn’t offer any ‘evidence’, just questioned me…..for hours”

He could hear the weariness and frustration in his own voice and he rubbed a hand across his face as if trying to erase the lines that seem to have deepened since yesterday; God was it only yesterday?

He turned his attention back to his friend who had even more shocking news for him. A colleague who had died two years previously was accused along with them

“For the love of God, the man’s dead! This is going to crucify his family, haven’t they suffered enough already?”

The two men finished their conversation and went back to their waiting families, unable to answer the terrible questions that hid just behind their eyes.

No charges are brought but the trial by media begins. His photograph is everywhere, the terrible accusations are in print for anyone to read: rapist, kiddie fiddler, beast, monster. He can’t sleep, can’t eat. He ventured out only once, he needed to feel fresh air in his lungs and his poor wife needed more tranquilizers to help her keep her sanity; it was the only thing that he could do for her, except swear over and over that it wasn’t true.

He wouldn’t be able to enjoy life outside for many months after that day. The vile words that were thrown at him like stones, the people with their cameras and their tape recorders crowding around him, taking the breath from his body. He did what he had been told and kept silent but he was so angry that he wanted to lash out at them, smash their stupid bloody cameras and scream

“I’m innocent”.

He was experienced in the world of politics, he should be after 45 years, so he knew that they would make up their own stories however many times he denied the accusations; their readers lust for salacious gossip encouraged their poison pens and lined their pockets.

He was right. The stories continued, the hate, the filthy comments, all of it. Of course, their home had had to go, how could they go on living there with all this going on? They’d made a new start somewhere far away and were trying to have as normal a life as possible but he knew that his wife still cried every day although she did her best to hide it from him. Losing his job didn’t help; after all his years of faithful service he was thrown out like a sack of rubbish, not because he had been found guilty of anything but because the accusations ‘hurt the party’.

He hurt too. He was hurting.

They found his body in his car, surrounded by empty pill packets and an equally empty bottle of scotch. Ever the perfectionist he had arranged everything so that someone else would find him; he couldn’t bear to cause his wife and children more suffering than he had to…….he’d done enough of that already. His note read:

“I am sorry for the pain that I have caused to you, my family, and I am sorry that I am not strong enough to continue living this life. I did none of the terrible things of which I’ve been accused; I hope that you will believe me in that. I have no guilt in this matter other than than for the suffering that you have been through because I am who I am. I love you all so very much but you will be better off without me; maybe now it will stop and you can all live again. I’m sorry”

Two weeks later the same papers that had driven him to take his life and ruined the lives of his friends and colleagues reported, quite dispassionately, that the accuser of these men had lied. The police had taken his word as fact and the media had picked up the baton and beaten them all with it. The man who cried rape was a fantasist, he had dreamed up the whole thing: the child rapes of 30 years ago, the pedophile ring, the murders, all of it.

He would, of course, be charged with perjury; the police would make sure that he got his just deserts, after all he’d cost them a small fortune between the investigation and the payoffs to the innocent men that he’d accused………

This story is mine but is based on this article  which was published today.

Lisa

x

 

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