The Virus

I wrote the words below 20 years ago on a pad of paper during and episode of the debilitating mental state that plagued my early life. I decided to post it on World Mental Health Day as these feelings remain something it’s almost impossible to explain. But it’s vital to try. Back then, the only […]

The ‘shouting down’ brigade.

  Nigel Farage recently exclaimed that we should not to be afraid to talk about terrorism, a topic that occupies news and media discussion almost more than any other. Yet people for whom this notion appeals – the feeling that they can’t talk about something must overwhelm the reality. ‘Not allowed to talk about’, ‘silenced’ […]

Prevent: A rant.

‘Prevent’, the policy, is a verb masquerading as a noun. Prevent is short hand for ‘preventing violent extremism’. Its problem is that it appears to attempt to prevent a lot more than that. Prevent is a negative. It expresses what needs stopping not what needs starting. Prevent is lost in fear. It leaves a vacuum […]

How far is Sports Direct from the ELT industry?

Most of us in U.K private language schools work zero hours contracts and at an hourly rate that covers teaching hours only. This pay is said to ‘cover’ other unwaged duties like administration, marking and class preparation. However, the extent of these duties has no defined cut off point and at various times, and particularly for the […]

The London Kids in a Box Test

               During my many years as a resident of the North I always disliked London. It was always a pain to visit. I’d stay at my sisters in Haringey then agree to meet a friend for a beer. Ninety minutes later I’d arrive at a pub after stumbling though […]