1. My former boss was interviewed in today’s Guardian in a piece entitled “The new embraceable Britain” discussing our “sudden craving for big, bold works of public art” and points out the increasingly significant role of artists in regeneration schemes. I am particularly pleased to see that, over three years after I left the company, their office is still described in the paper as “somewhat messy” – just the way I liked it J
2. Another Guardian article today on the glasses vs. contact lenses debate. As a devotee to spectacles, I’m pleased to see that glasses win. Those of you who know me well know how much I love my glasses (see my flickr account for proof) and also know that I have willingly paid significant amounts of money for them and every night keep them IN THEIR CASE and not just on my bedside table. Anyway, I digress. I concur entirely with the article’s assertion that contact lenses are, frankly, unnatural and that glasses can do wonders for the presentation of a well-framed face. And, yes, they can get in the way a bit during certain activities and I am so very blind that I can’t even buy prescription sunglasses (not the ones I want anyway) so have to spend all summer squinting but, having worn them for 16 years with only a brief spell of madness during which I wore contact lenses and hated them, I look *really* weird without them on these days.
3. Today, I’ve been working from home and have been listening to my iTunes library in alphabetical order by song name. I just get crazier. I thought I’d have got through a good few letters but nine hours of constant listening later (with 15 minutes for lunch) and I’m actually only up to “As You Are” by Travis (I skipped “As Heard on Radio Soulwax, Pt 2” on the grounds that it’s over an hour long).
4. I have a compulsion to buy books when in the vicinity of a charity shop. On Saturday, I bought a copy of Ian McEwan’s On Chesil Beach from the Acorns shop in St Peters (which is within in walking distance of my house – not good) for 95p. Ha! Beat that Amazon and Tesco! (I realise I could just get it out of the library for free and that would be even cheaper but that’s not as charitable, is it?) Unlike my old English teacher, who used to lend me books and freak out if I opened them a bit too wide, I like a dog-eared book. If they’re loved, they should definitely have a crease down the spine and maybe a few pages turned over. However, this book is a little too loved and the damp and musty smell emanating from its pages is rather putting me off.
Again with the digression – sorry. My point was to recommend a visit to Enviroability’s Book Swap Shop in Ross-on-Wye. As well as providing valuable and meaningful employment opportunities for people with learning disabilities and contributing to the social enterprise’s environmental ethos, it is an incredibly well-stocked book shop. Books aren’t priced (largely because forcing those who work in the shop to work out change would draw attention to their disability) but I always end up spending a fortune in donations when I visit.
5. I’m really pleased to see that the women of Coventry could be getting a well-deserved pay reward following the decision that their pay was unequal to that of men doing similar jobs. Those that will say this is not a matter of sexual discrimination will be sorely mistaken. Job roles that are traditionally seen as “female” are still undervalued by society and whilst that remains the case, intelligent and motivated young women will continue to underperform because of an assumption that their natural preference for more pastoral careers is not as important as traditionally “male” professions. What’s more, we’ll continue to be unsuccessful in attracting very capable men down essential career paths such as social care, teaching and nursing.
Huh. I got a bit serious at the end there, didn’t I? I’ll try harder not to next time.