Monday, August 23, 2010

The Integrity of the X-Factor

People are complaining that using auto tune software on the X-Factor compromises the integrity of the show.

Hello . . . . . . ?

WHAT integrity?

Friday, August 20, 2010

Silly Season Again

So the X-Factor is on again this Saturday. Well, what do you think - will we get any actual singing, or any good singing this year?

One thing the programme does is highlight how many delusional people there are in the UK and how many mentally ill people there are. Especially the particularly disturbed people who come back year after year, clearly after not bothering to take any voice lessons. But then why would they? I was watching Cheryl Cole perform live at some concert a few months ago and it was embarrassing. She has a voice but she really needs to fine tune it and most of all strengthen it. She sounded like someone on the karaoke. Yet she's a successful 'singer.' If after all those years as a singer she doesn't feel she needs to vastly improve her singing then why would the people auditioning.

As a good example, take Rhianna. When she started out she had a terrible nasal voice bordering on the whining. Now, she can sing. Listen to that cheating song of hers vs. Russian Roulette. BIG difference. Now it's clear she has done some considerable voice work.

But for our Z list celebrity culture, talent is a minor consideration, if it is one at all. So sadly, I doubt we'll get much good singing tomorrow night.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Poor shouldn't mean thick

A story on the BBC website this past week states some stats saying that poorer kids are more likely to be killed or injured on the roads than richer kids. The argument is that richer kids have back gardens and parks to play in and are driven around in cars, whereas poorer kids have to play in the street.

I disagree. The problem is poorer parents don’t teach their kids sense – in this case, road sense. I have had this experience of a poorer area. There are several playing fields within a few yards, plus a central green, yet a certain bunch of kids decide to play in the street. In fact one set, saw me go into my car ready to go somewhere and at the moment I turned the key in the ignition, that is when they decide to run out into the street RIGHT BEHNIND MY CAR. And get this, their parents were standing right there watching them and they didn’t move a muscle to remove their kids. I had to wait until the cretin, moved out of the way which took a while. Now is money the issue here?

Hell no! Some people don’t want to admit it, because it is politically incorrect – but many poor people are at least remaining in their poverty because of their mindset and the attendant habits. And this goes to how they raise their kids.

All this talk of equality – the focus is on the wrong things. Producing more and more vehicles for poorer people to do all sorts will not work if un-progressive attitudes prevail. – and no, you don’t have to be privileged to be progressive. I read on the money saving website the other day that a grant of 10,000 laptops have largely remained unclaimed. They were earmarked for poorer people. And don’t talk about if it was publicised enough – if you are disadvantaged you should be looking out for what you can get. Lord knows those who aren’t do.

At a certain point – progress has to be down to the person who will benefit from the progress. Some people, sadly cannot be helped – not until they want the help.

Ensure all have access to relevant services and opportunities – after that it is survival of the fittest.

Making roads safer not the solution - making people teach their kids sense is!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Getting out of a funk

Getting out of a funk is hard.

Been in one for a while.

But what do you do if you feel as if you are going crazy? What if you can't afford to do what you KNOW will help?

I don't have the answers but I'm going to have a stab at it.

1) Try and take a deep breath and breath slowly for at least 30 seconds.
2) Say a word of thanks for your blessings - they are likely to be many.
3) Then think of what you REALLY want to do - don't analyse it, just think of it.
4) Then - without fear, write down what YOU need to do to do that thing.
5) Then pray for guidance
6) Be obedient and then do what needs to be done in faith.
7) Keep on keeping on (being obedient and working).

I'll let you know how it works.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Learning from our mistakes

Check this story out from today's Independent.

It's very good and poses some sober questions about English people's attitude to mistakes and the lessons that can be learned from them. It is time for us to start learning from our mistakes instead of hiding them and continuing in wrong and unhelpful practices.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

High Quality UK Programming

Big up to the creators of the new Sherlock show on the Beeb. This goes to show that the UK can produce excellent programmes soothe question is, why don’t they do so more often? Often the cry is money and in some respects that makes sense, but in terms of good stories and acting, that can still be done with limited sets etc. I think part of the problem is the UK audience. It’s hardly a discriminating one. Crappy soaps filled with miserable, low aspiration people are the staple. There are seemingly very few aspirational UK soaps. Nothing to look up to. Oh well, with programmes like Spooks, Hustle and now Sherlock there is hope.

Enjoy it when it comes back as the creators say it is coming back.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Comfort over Competence – the British Way

Watching an episode of Boston Legal, the one where they give Brad the partnership over Jerry. The issue here is that the partners didn’t want Jerry to be a partner because they felt he didn’t fit in. They however acknowledged that he is extremely competent and has brought in shed loads of money. They had him work extremely hard hanging out the hope of partnership each year even though they knew he wouldn’t get it. Thing is they were happy to take the fruits of his labour but didn’t want him to benefit from it.

This is the same in the British workplace. I see it time and time again, intelligent, hardworking people are kept at a low salary and low hierarchical level while those that ‘fit in’ but who are almost always incompetent to the point of madness are promoted. This means they get more money and status. By extension, they are better able to take care of their families, enjoy a higher standard of living and have the regard of many. Meanwhile, those who are at the coalface making intelligent decisions and effecting positive change are kept on lower salaries and not given any regard.

If this is you, I advise you to leave your job as soon as is feasible and either go into business for yourself or go to work for a decent company – there are some, often large multi-nationals. It is of no use to stay at companies who operate like this – they will kill your spirit.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Time to man and woman up

Simple statement today – we are given stewardship over kids, to care for them and to raise and train them to be worthwhile fulfilled adults. They aren’t given as some sort of ego booster or as a way to make you feel better about yourself. So, keeping that in mind, employ some common sense when it comes to discipline and stop wimping out. In the long run (and it’s the long run that counts) learning consequences and restraint though painful in the present is a whole hell of a lot less painful that finding bail money in the future.