Friday 10 September 2010

To be or not to be....

"I think I'm putting lard on the cat's boils that night. He's an arse..." was the response to my text asking a friend if he was going to be watching TV on Thursday night. What I was really asking was whether he'd be watching Alan Davies' Teenage Revolution. AD was at Bancrofts, where The Boy goes following in my footsteps, and has built a career slagging off the place. I don't know why the school lets him back, but they do, so we have to endure his nonsense time and time again. Last night, he spoke in a contemptuous way about it being 'posh'. Well compared to many schools it is, but then if you're brought up in a prosperous middle-class area, living in a house that is worth (today's prices) in the region of £800,000 by a successful chartered accountant father (and mum who wasn't mentioned) you're really quite posh yourself aren't you? His key act of rebellion seemed to be riding his bicycle on his neighbours drive and putting posters on his bedroom wall. Wow. Over the last decade or two Bancroft's has been one of, if not the, the top mixed schools in the country, and manages to churn out people who generally avoid the elitism of many Public Schools. I'm so glad that Lucy Mangan in The Guardian described it as "an extremely tedious hour"

One performance I will miss though is The Boy in Twelfth Night as he has decided not to audition for the Senior Play this year. His reasons are complex and it's a great sadness after he stunned everyone with his genius performance in the Middle School play earlier this year...but he says his evenings are full, so I'm not going to if I could anyway!

And back on the professional stage Deathwatch with Simon Russell Beale (by reputation our greatest living stage actor) is getting rave reviews, which I don't understand as the play itself is cheesy nonsense and the man's performance is not all that it could be. Just shows that you can't trust the critics...not that I did anyway.

I feel I need to lie down...

Wednesday 8 September 2010

Oh it's back to school...Tara's Gallery

Me: "I've forgotten to get Brandon Flowers"
The Boy "Well there's two florists in Loughton"

Hopefully that's not a sign that the last five year's education has been wasted. The Boy is a great lover of music - he has quite a talent, and picked up playing the guitar very easily....I'd like to think that it was because he was exposed to recorded music from the earliest days, and live music from when he was knee high to a grasshoppper. Of course we all have off days...

For this week's gallery I chose this shot. Taken just before he started at his then new school five years ago. He was moving from a very right-on school in Finsbury Park, where poverty hung around every corner and there were notices in the school playground telling parents it was harmful to take their children out of school to Bangladesh for three months, to a posh Public School - interestingly it manages to churn out some very well rounded kids without the elitist attitudes of many of its ilk. Perhaps it's because some parents sacrifice a lot to be able to pay the fees for Bancrofts.

He's standing on the balcony of the flat we lived in on Borough High Street. The poor lad had a very long commute because our plans to move close to the school had taken longer than expected. We finally moved in October, and he was then able to walk in five minutes.

Yesterday, he returned to school after the long break as a Fifth former. It's one of the few year's that has a name that most people would recognise - he's been a Third (first year), Remove (second), Lower Fourth and Upper Fourth. I still don't understand the modern way of doing he Year 11?

Fifth form seems to be the beginning of the end...a year of GCSEs, two of 'A' Levels and then away to University. If I remember rightly, the year is accompanied by feelings of being grown up, but without the wisdom and maturity to be gained in the sixth form.

He's looking forward to it. I'm sure it will be another successful year. I hope.

Monday 6 September 2010

Bang goes September

So it's barely got going and....:

1. Grandad in Cyprus has landed up in hospital with pneumonia and pleurisy. This is, of course, number one crisis, and will cause sleepless nights in Loughton, whilst in Cyprus Grandma in Cyprus runs around in ever decreasing circles and wears herself out. Naturally we have absolute faith that this will work out fine.

2. The Cat's Mum's birthday. Friday night we all headed out after I made some Vodka Martinis. We came home some hours later after one of our number disgraced herself in the taxi. Not seen behaviour like that for 20 years.

3. The Cat managed to break the hubble bubble pipe. I'm pleased, the Cat's Mum's pleased as it will save any future discussions

4. Friday afternoon and the office above decided to redo their plumbing. I don't think the idea was to send all their waste water through the ceiling. But it may have been.

5. I can't find any of the photos I've taken on the new phone...they're supposed to be on the computer somewhere, but they are elusive, so that'll mean no photo post this month

6. The Boy is having a clear out of clothes too small to wear. Without even rummaging through the bag, I can see plenty of things that are still too big for him

7. Potential new client has moved meeting to the time when I'm supposed to be getting food for The Cat's Mum's birthday meal tonight. I can't refuse. I will suffer later

8. The new Simon Russell Beale play (Deathwatch) is erm risible...and one of our group was so scared in one part, she screamed loud enough to bring the roof down. The whole theatre turned and looked. I slunk down

9. I still haven't caught up with all the blogs I like to read, so I shall end up getting further and further behind...

10. I'm supposed to be organising the OB's dinner...but the OB's haven't yet got the website working so that people can book tickets. It's happening 15th October. Or not.

11. School starts tomorrow. I wonder which bits of uniform need replacing?

Sunday 5 September 2010

Technology defeats us all...

I was looking back over the blog from year or so ago, and discovered that when I switched from the Blogger comment system to Disqus, all the previous comments disappeared. I'm rather sad about that, especially as I hadn't meant to move to Disqus...hey ho as Henry Ford never said, "History is bunk".

I've also been given a new HTC phone by T-Mobile because my Nokia was so awful. In fact my relationship with The Cat's Mum may well come to an end now because we'll have nothing to talk about. The thing about the new phone is that it has an app for social media, and what I now find is that when I post on Facebook, that post also comes up on my RTFM Twitter feed. So magically, the real me is revealed to the hidden me. I'm not sure that's good, but anyway, keeping secrets was never a strong point. I may yet have to reveal my real name.

Whilst we were away in Icyland, GCSE results were published. The Cat and The Boy were awaiting results which contribute to their final grade for three subjects. They were cool as cucumber about it. And naturally I appeared to be. As we arrived back, The Cat ripped open her results to get a very impressive 2 A*s and an A. The Boy's results were back in the old home...his initial comment that he could wait, changed and he nearly bit my hand off when I offered to drive him over there to get them. 15 minutes later he had his results. 3A*s including two which were 100%. I'm pleased. The Cat's Mum's pleased and The Cat and The Boy are both off to a flying start as they begin their GCSE year on Tuesday....