Monthly Archives: May 2013

As the examination season comes to it’s long overdue finale, my thoughts are left to fumble over the past few weeks. The exams themselves, of course, are only half the story as our fate now lies with a regiment of examiners armed with red Biros and those dreaded mark schemes.

A fate which clearly slipped my mind during a particular examination where I found myself insulting approximately 18% of the entire world’s population.

It was during a ‘General studies’ examination (an exam which is pretty much as the name suggests!) when I chose to answer a question regarding how families in the UK were changing as well as their economic/social consequences. I suppose saying I ‘chose’ to answer that question is a bit of an overstatement, I merely settled for it in the face of a different choice of question regarding organ transplants. Since my knowledge of transplants is neither ‘general’ nor specific, it wasn’t much of a contest!

As the invidulator declared that ‘we may now begin’, I started what began as a formal and punctual essay. But, as my argument developed and boredom struck, it wasn’t too long before my coherence turned to chaos. In fact, as soon as I began evaluating the negative ‘consequences’ of gay marriage my ranting took a turn for the personal. I began to recall all that the Catholic Church has spewed with regards to how same-sex marriage is harmful to society and (in my heated, flustered exam state) I may have directly scorned the Pope himself!

I debated crossing all of this out but in my head I figured that a little controversy may make my essay stand out a little in my favour, that is, only of course if my examiner isn’t a fan of the dear Pope.

So there you have it, if you want to potentially offend the person who has the power over your qualifications, insulting the Pope could be a good place to start. Ohhh, sometimes I wonder why I’m trusted with pens!



Today I found myself writing an essay. This exercise is not particularly unfamiliar to me, after all, I do pursue three subjects which almost exclusively rely upon the of churning out of endless sheets of endless script.

Unlike most of my essays, however, today I found myself (perhaps in my slowly-deteriorating sanity) creating a brand new word! Not even in the enlightenment of my own consciousness, I should say. Who knows, perhaps there is a small percentage of Shakespearian innovation (i.e. I can make up whatever the hell words I like) rattling around up there.

Although such an irrational idea seems more like just another side effect of my accumulating madness.

Instead I shall put it down to my unconscious laziness which led me to combine the words ‘with’ and ‘the’ into the portmanteau ‘withe’.

Not to be confused with the definition of a twig, (no, really…) ‘withe’ is, I have conjured, the defeatist way of writing ‘with the’.

So, for example, ‘Anna went to the dance withe handsome cheese sprayer’.

Perhaps a more appropriate title of this post would have been ‘how to alienate MY readers and YOUR friends’ but in the likelihood that ‘withe’ does not catch on, at least there is one thing that can be gained from this post: that ‘Cheese Sprayer’ is, I do not lie, an official profession!

And to think, people spend years training to be doctors and psychiatrists- they’re definitely missing a trick here!


Tonight I met the poet and author Simon Armitage.

The verb to meet, I should say, has been used rather loosely here. I’m sure nervously asking for an autograph with a side order of small talk doesn’t come under the dictionary’s definition of ‘to meet’. Nevertheless, after this acquaintance and consequential fluster, my friend and I (as well as an audience of people) spent an evening listening to a man, who, in my opinion, reigns high among the poets who walk the Earth.

I realise that ‘becoming inspired’ is a clichéd requirement when going to poetry readings and such, but that’s how I feel. I’m inspired to write poetry not to change the world but to write simply to write. To find meaning and novelty in even the dullest of things, even in ‘kicking mushrooms’.

‘If you try to write a poem about the meaning of life you’ll end up writing about a brick wall. However, if you write a poem about a brick wall it’s more likely that you’ll write about the meaning of life’.

What I found most amusing was his minor mocking of how schools teach us to analyse a poet’s use of ‘form’. He explained how he had half-heartedly adapted a poem about water to visually appear like a tide (i.e. the lines went in and out) in order to satisfy this artificial checklist of critical analysis. Awww.



Until this evening it had never been so accurate to compare me to one of Justin Bieber’s ‘fan girls’!


Today I received a notification from WordPress congratulating me on having been a member of the site for precisely two years! That’s certainly a long time- an eighth of my entire existence in fact.

A lot has changed since then; for one, I have discovered the extraordinary concept of ‘tagging’ posts. You see, for a long time previous to that discovery, I must have assumed that readers would simply appear magically. (Admittedly though it is pretty magical how many people have read my aging blog over the years! Man, I feel old just saying ‘years’ with an ‘s’.)

In a short time this blog has given me an unmissable amount of joy, in particular the time it was broadcast to my English class (on two occasions nonetheless!).

But of course with great anniversaries comes great sentimentality, which has inspired this short poem out of me-

If I shouldn’t see another
Sun-sodden field or sky of blue,
Think only this of me. Those days,
Spent in your arms, though few,
Were the greatest of any other.
O, how I loved you.

Happy Birthday Blog!

I’ve just realised that if you were a human you’d probably be walking by now… oh my!

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