The Anonymous Widower

The Telegraph Has A Go At A UKIP Candidate

Winston McKenzie, a UKIP candidate in the Croydon North by-election is reported to have said, that adoption by same sex couples is child abuse. The report is not in a gay publication, but here in Her Majesty’s Daily Telegraph.

November 27, 2012 Posted by | World | , , | Leave a comment

C Would Be Laughing Loudly Today

My late wife would be laughing very loudly today at some of the legal stories in the papers.

The Times has a story about the large increase in the number of litigants-in-person and how they are clogging up the court system. They were often C’s nightmare, as they delayed cases and put up her client’s bill.

The Telegraph has a story about another couple, who’ve wasted all their savings on who has custody of their two children. C had done many cases like this, although this has a new twist in that the couple are lesbian. At least in this case, the kids seem to know what they want to do and hopefully are old and sensible enough to rise above it all.

You do get the impression, that some people shouldn’t get married and certainly shouldn’t have children.

November 10, 2012 Posted by | News | , , | Leave a comment

Where Are All The Women In The FTSE 100?

The Standard asked this question last night in an article. All of the usual reasons are given and never being at boardroom level in a large company, I wouldn’t know why there are so few.

i do remember though at a dinner of the Ipswich law Society many years ago, the Education Officer or something like that of the Law Society getting up and saying that looking at the statistics of legal education, that by the turn of the millennium, there wouldn’t be any good male lawyers coming through.

i don’t have the statistics, but I know quite a few exceptional female lawyers who could have done well in business. so why do exceptional women choose certain professions like law, medicine, dentistry and veterinary science, but shun others like business and engineering?

Everybody has the right to a good career and exceptional people will succeed, wherever they go. So perhaps the problem is not the selection process, but the reasons why the various groups choose their particular career path.

I was interested to see that one of the women featured is Alison Cooper, the head of Imperial Tobacco. It’s not a job I would do on ethical grounds and I’m rather surprised that a woman has decided to do it. But she does like an odd cigar.  As she has two daughters, I bet she gets a bit of stick about it.

October 10, 2012 Posted by | News | , | 1 Comment

And The Babies Came Too!

I suspect these two babies aren’t very old and they both behaved very well!

And The Babies Came Too!

I think it shows that the seats have fairly good legroom and space underneath.

August 10, 2012 Posted by | Sport | , | Leave a comment

The Public Olympics

Because it’s in the UK, we are seeing much more about the home life of British athletes. And often their mothers.

August 3, 2012 Posted by | Sport | , | Leave a comment

The Canadian Family in Penang

Years ago, C & myself were waiting for the Penang Hill Railway to get on top of Penang Hill.  I can’t remember exactly how we got talking, but it could have been a can of Coke in the hot weather and this Canadian family with three children helped clear up the mess. It turned out they were two teachers and had sold up all of their possessions and were going round the world. They were obviously educating their children as they travelled.

They had started in the UK and then crossed Europe by train to take a ferry to North Africa, where they crossed the Sahara in a truck. Gradually, they progressed through Africa to Dar Es Salaam, from where they took a dhow to India. When we met them, they were living in a two dollars a day flophouse in Penang. In a few days, they woukd be off and hoped to get to Darwin.

I asked if they had had any trouble.  They said, only really the baboons. But then babons are the hooligans of Africa. Although, their son had broken his humerus, somewhere in Northern Nigeria.  The local head man introduced them to the local bonesetter, who felt it all back into place. Later in Lagos, the Canadian High Commission, got them an appointment with the best orthopaedic surgeon in Nigeria.  When he looked at the arm, he just gave a knowing look and said that the bonesetter was better than he was at puting broken bones back together. He’d not had any trouble since.  I wish that bonesetter had put my gammy arm back together.

I always wonder what happened to that family.  I assume all was well, but it would have made the travel book of the decade. I suspect, the authorities would have something to say, if a family tried it now.

June 30, 2012 Posted by | Health, Transport | , , , , | Leave a comment

One of the Worst Days of my Life?

Today, my youngest son, George, would have been forty, which we always think is an important milestone in a person’s life. We tried to arrange a party or even a drink, but gradually everyone has cried off, so I shall celebrate this all by myself. I understand more and more the fortitude with which Aung San Suu Kyi endured her isolation. All of those birthdays and important milestones, that I’ve missed. And I will miss in the future.

But hey, at least I’m still here, despite the efforts of the Devil.

Luckily, by chance, I was given an overdose of survival gene at conception and that keeps pulling me through.

All I can say, to others now, is make sure your children don’t ever start smoking. George’s smoking probably led to his pancreatic cancer, especially if he was an undiagnosed coeliac and thus had a compromised immune system because of his gluten-rich junk food diet.


June 20, 2012 Posted by | Food, Health, World | , , | 4 Comments

Aung San Suu Kyi and the DJ

Years ago, I can remember Dave Lee Travis on Radio 1 on Sunday mornings, whilst I was writing Artemis. I suspect as a young mother in Oxford, Ms Suu Kyi was listening to the same program.

Aung San Suu Kyi then went back to Burma to care for her dying mother and for twenty four years she couldn’t return to the UK, as she feared any return to her family would mean the Generals wouldn’t let go back to Burma.  She couldn’t even return for the death of her husband, Michael Aris.

But during those years of isolation in Burma, she did at least have the BBC World Service, which kept her in touch and she listened to the shows of Dave Lee Travis, who briefly met her yesterday.

In some ways I can understand her isolation, although I’ve never suffered like she has.  When I had my stroke in Hong Kong, there was only CNN, that I could understand on the television. But at least, I could get BBC Radio 5 at most times through the Internet. Never has a broadcasting channel been so important to my sanity.

Today, Aung San Suu Kyi is praised in the first leader of The Times. The last sentence is something we should all remember.

She not only represents a better future for Burma, but testifies to the resilience of the human spirit in extreme adversity.

I very much agree with that. She has also been an extreme example to me, as to how to cope with the worst that life can throw at you. But then I’m not alone and thousands of miles from my friends and family.


June 20, 2012 Posted by | Health, World | , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Are Young Girls More Difficult Than Young Boys?

This has never occurred to me before, as C and myself, just had the three boys. But on the bus back from the Angel a few minutes ago, there was a girl of about six really pushing the limits with her mother, who had another in a buggy. Thinking about ir, when I see bad behaviour on these buses, it possibly is more often that it’s girls being a bit raucous and naughty.  I’ve also been on buses with a load of twelve year old boys and this can be a nightmare too.

So when they are young, are girls worse than boys? Or do they play advantage of what they are expected to be like?

May 15, 2012 Posted by | Transport, World | , , | Leave a comment

Give Mothers tax break for home help, Cameron told

This was the headline on the front page of The Times today.

Lt is not a new idea, as I heard it from a senior civil servant  in about 1980.

He was in the Department of Employment and had proposed that if you employed someone properly out of your salary and paid their taxes accordingly, then you would get tax relief. It wouldn’t be just for cleaners, babysitters and gardeners as in the current plans, but for any legitimate purpose.

Thus, if you were in a high paid job and perhaps felt, you’d like to start a small business, then you could employ someone to investigate if it was feasible.

As it says in today’s front page, it would cut the black economy and raise extra revenue.

It was eventually dropped, as the government’s model of the economy had no knowledge of the black one.

I hope they do now!

February 10, 2012 Posted by | News | , , | Leave a comment