Monday, 31 May 2010


I have seen a number of films over the last few weeks and I can't decide if I am falling out of love with the genre or just have seen a run of poor films. Theoretically Hurt Locker should have been really good as it contained interesting concepts, featuring people who go out of their way to do a dangerous job. It was filmed in realistic locations and the heat was a real problem for the actors as it would be in real life. The problem I had was that the main character was rash over a long period of time. I can understand one rash action or a series of related actions linked together but where 1 person continues to be rash putting the lives of those around him in danger I feel it would have been clamped down on by Army chiefs not known for their tolerance of the maverick. It win the Oscar put this seems to be for topic matter more than for the film and the fact it was up against the great looking yet plotless Avatar.

I then saw the laughable Robin Hood. It should have been good as it was Ridley Scott and Russell Crowe who did Gladiator, lots of swords and battles and good archery skills. The disappointment comes from the fact that it was called Robin Hood. If they had called it "Random Norman Warrior" (not very catchy) and set it in "Normania" I think it would have been more enjoyable but Robin Hood and King John link the film to a certain place and time period which the rest of the film needs to adhere to. Thus why invade England when invading Normandy or Aquitaine (both controlled by England) would have been afar more sensible tactical option. Other glaring geographical and historical inaccuracies litter the film.

Then to help out with the film course we watched two Alfred Hitchcock films, Vertigo and Rear Window, both all time classics. Reviews were mixed when it was released and I tend to agree with them. Variety said the film showed Hitchcock's "mastery", but was too long and slow for "what is basically only a psychological murder mystery". Similarly, the Los Angeles Times admired the scenery, but found the plot "too long" and felt it "bogs down" in "a maze of detail. When it is re-assessed using the concept of Obsession between both the man with the woman and more subtly the woman with the man then the film becomes better but it still drifts.

The final film is "Rear Window " which I always thought would involve cars but didn't. It was very good although their were times when I wondered if anything was going to happen (the building of suspense). The acting was good, Grace Kelly radiant and a clever denouement.

In conclusion I need to reduce my expectations before the film as if I think the film will be good it won't be.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Didn't get the job

So I will have a new line manager which will be different as I have only had Richard for the last nine years. The interviews will be on Thursday and I hope that whoever comes in does not feel the need to rock the boat or make their mark too significantly. They will have to hit the ground running as I need to know what to teach the Yr12 when they come back after half term. They have sat the exam for this year but I can't start teaching them next years work until I know what the new boss wants. I also hope that they don't like having too many meetings that go on too long and provide some biscuits. They need to have a sense of humour, see the need for me to carry on mentoring trainee teachers, teaching a lot of sixth form and buying TIME magazine for me to read. In fact the only thing I want them to do differently to Richard is to be a bit tidier and not send me emails with work to do on Sunday evenings.

Bye Bye Yr 11

So long and thanks for all the fish to
C Anderson
G Chastney
C Duncan
A Fisher
L Sorrell
G Halls
G Short
H Cunningham
S Piper
S King
C Parrott
T Laskey
R Copsey
S Taylor
C Mercer
E Lake
M Weavers
T Marriott and
T Gregory

in the words of Vinnie Jones - its been emotional

After the madness the dust settles

House selling.
Thank you for getting rid of HIPs. Sadly the £200 was already spent and the solicitor seems to unwilling to refund despite not delivering the services that were contracted. I am sure that there is a sub-clause somewhere that they can use to wiggle out of the loophole.

House buying
We have seen many, rejected most and we are hoping that a few more come along that are what we are looking for. We have found one that we quite like but it seems tobe a bit of a minefield. Firstly the house is not in good condition but after an inspection by a builder we are happy that it is structurally sound and worth having a surveyor look at it. We made an offer as did a mysterious cash buyer. Both have been rejected as the buyer wants the asking price (yeah right) despite putting a card in each room asking ney pleading for offers. The other bid also seems to sometimes disappears when talking to the estate agent almost as it is designed to push our bid up. We have sent an offer with the justification of why it is so low to the solicitor of the people selling as they are getting dsivorced and appareently cannot be civil to each other. Thisone looks like running and runnning but even with all the work it represents the best value for money.

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Change of Government

Only the second change of government that I can remember, the last being Blair succeeding Major in 1997. The end of an era and I hope that history treats Gordon Brown well as he has improved the lot of schools hugely in his time as Chancellor and I worry for the direction of education under the Conservative government.

Gordon Brown always seems to me a good detail man but maybe lacked the flair needed to see the bigger picture but his heart was in the right place and he seems to have been taken off course by both issues that affected all parties (expenses) and the world (banks). Next stop the back benches and then the Lords at some point although his knowledge of finance I am sure will aid his future career options. Good luck Gordon you tries hard and I don't think the media every gave you a chance - we didn't like Blair because of the spin and we didn't like Gordon because there was a lack of polish!!

Next stop a coalition. Could be interesting to see how this will work. I hope that the Lib Dems can take the edge of Conservatives more outlandish ideas.

Monday, 10 May 2010

“I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather. I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration, I can humiliate or humour, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or dehumanized. If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming.”
— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Sunday, 9 May 2010

The election

Chloe kept her seat which is a shame.

May be a Con -Lib Dem pact would see a change of government but without some of the extreme stuff Cameron wants. As none of the parties can afford another election soon it will be interesting to see how they can work together.

A dilemma

SO my boss, the Head of Geography, is leaving after being my boss for 9 years and that raises some interesting issues. I don't know what thoughts the Head has had yet but as there is a need to save money the cheapest thing would be to appoint from within whilst hiring an NQT to teach the lessons. The thought of someone coming on as a Head and re-arranging everything that works nicely is not a pleasant one (why do they feel they have to change things) but the only person in the department who would be interested is me due to either family commitments, illness or having other jobs in the school but I already have 1 new job for next year as well as a full workload as OUP have asked me to write them some exam questions. On the other hand I am buying a new house and extra income is always useful. A decision needs to be made.