I’d rather you spelled every single word wrong than you not be here Steven
I certainly second that!
I was introduced to Anke by David Haywood, whom I seem to remember quietly slinking off as the conversation took in sex work, pornography, and possibly female ejaculation.
Ahem... I prefer the term "fading into the background" rather than "slinking off" (sounds slightly more dignified somehow).
For the record, it was just the first two topics that I find terribly depressing to discuss. The third is just fine, and indeed I have a good friend who used to work in the field of female ejaculation (and so I may even have been able to constructively contribute to the conversation!).
I read an early draft of Anke's article and, I'm afraid, had to skip large sections. It was very well written & researched, but far too upsetting for me.
It's an important piece of work that should be widely promulgated -- but to people less easily upset by that sort of thing than I am (I can't even watch 'mild' fictional violence on TV).
Thanks for writing this piece, Emma. I was too unhappy and socially awkward (between the ages of 12 and 33 approximately) to do any of the fun things at university described here. But it's interesting to find out what people were doing, and nice to know that they were enjoying themselves so much. A shame to see the venue for all those happy memories disappearing (despite its appalling ugliness and uselessness as a work of architecture).
Coping, in this country at least, means hiding your tears of pain from your mates. It means not feeling, not experiencing, being tough and hard.
Alternatively, this song by US psychotherapists Garfunkel and Oates may help put the World Cup into perspective (not that I necessarily endorse some of the unnecessarily honest and -- ahem -- cruel observation they make here):
Great piece, Dave! It's a depressing outcome of the Dirty Politics revelations that I instantly found myself wondering about the timing of the public announcement of these threats. A very convenient distraction from Hager's most recent investigations.
A fascinating piece by both you and Prof Easther! [In my experience a Prof is several degrees scarier than a mere Dr. Interestingly,, in Germany, they are ranked above saints and only slightly below the trinity. There is talk (amongst German professors themselves) that they may even be ranked within the trinity.]
David, can you please tell Miss Spong that neither I nor any member of my family will open the door to her…
Look, I told the prison administrators that trying Miss Spong on day release was a bad idea – and now look what’s happened!
Russell, I will certainly convey your message to Miss Spong, and I offer my condolences to you and your neighbours for what must have been a very trying experience.
It goes without saying that, of course, the judiciary of this country had a very good reason to put Miss Spong behind bars (not to mention her black-listing by the SPCA), but – if it’s any consolation – I don’t think the thing with the cats was necessarily directed at you or your household.
If you recall the job interview when we hired Miss Spong: how she raged on and on about cats; how she said that cats were against democracy; how she maintained that if you observed a cat when it was watching Robert Mugabe on television, then you would see the cat smiling to itself, and thinking “There’s our Robert”. It all adds up to a pretty good prediction of the subsequent events in your street.
In other words, I don’t think that Miss Spong had any plan to “put the frighteners” on you via the cats, but rather it was a case of: the cats were there, the lamp-posts were there; she had a knife. In other words, she had the motive, the means, and the opportunity – so naturally she just put the three things together.
Incidentally, for those of you who have been wondering how Zippy and Bungle (and George) were employed in between Rainbow and CERA, then this will explain:
Wow -- 7.00am and already four comments of genius that have significantly extended the analysis of our parliamentary reporting.
Rob: what an excellent suggestion. I shall have a word with Ms Spong when she is in a better mood. It's my understanding that she has family in the church and is therefore rather reluctant to publicize her various 'scrapes', but she must also weigh this against the public's need to know (in my opinion).
Paul, Martin, and Ian: you are obviously persons of great brain (perhaps you eat a lot of fish?) and I only wish that the Public Address budget would stretch to hiring you as additional parliamentary reporters. What a formidable team we would make. I thank you!
Our 88-year-old stenographer, Miss Spong, has requested a bonus for spelling “weltanschauung” correctly, and hopes that Russell Brown’s house doesn’t burn down in the event that there’s not an extra fifty in her brown envelope this week.
Unfortunately Russell has a policy of not paying at all when threatened with arson, so you’re bound to be a bit disappointed, Miss Spong. Nevertheless, we’re sure that you’ll still be doing the transcripts next week—if you want to maintain your normal cigarette habit!
What a trouper you are, Miss Spong. It would be a good few extra years in prison if anything really does happen to Russell’s house. And, of course, a few extra years is tantamount to a death sentence at your age!