The more you love your decisions, the less you will need others to love them (Not Sure)

And so, dear listener, it happened that I was out at one of my alma mater’s sisters the other day. Altho’ I have two alma maters. So that sentence has me confused; let alone you the listener. I was at the Hamilton primary school which has strong links with the Paisley one where I spent a jolly interesting two years. I was out seeing uni-Jo who is studying and stuff there. 😀

I remember it as Bell College. It’s bigger now. But it brought back a lot of memories. Not about Bell but various things including teaching at an F.E. College in Glasgow. Altho’ I think the word ‘teaching’ might be a bit strong for what I did. I shared knowledge.

For example, I led a course called Information Retrieval Skills and Week One had an ice-breaking exercise about where would you find information about a certain subject e.g. prices? In a catalogue. One chap offered The Barras as a good source of information. ‘For what?’ I naively asked. ‘For the price of bootleg porn and cheap tobacco’, he replied. That was a pass mark. 🙂

But I also remember the dread that every new ‘teacher’ feels when the students get out a pad, unclip a pen and look at you. OMG! They are going to write down what you say! Just cos you are at the front of a class or room – often behind a desk – it’s assumed you know what you’re talking about! I came out quite early and spoke from the back of the room.

I sought help. From a gin-soaked old prof who held court in the corner of a room that the College thought they’d boarded up when they built the Millennium Corridor but it was known to some of us. He had nuggets of wisdom for getting the students to look at you and to stay looking:

Begin class by smashing the neck off a bottle of vodka and announce that the lecture’s over when the bottle’s done;

Bring a small dog to class and tell the class that he’s named ‘Bodger McGee’ and is your mascot. Whenever someone asks a question, walk over to the dog and say, ‘What do you reckon, Bodger?’

If the classroom still has an overhead projector, just seconds after switching it on, clutch your chest and scream, ‘My Pacemaker!’ OR

Point the overhead projector at the class and demand each student’s name, rank and serial number.

My favourite was to start a sentence with ‘I have a friend…….and finish it there. The class was expecting me to tell them of ‘a friend who….’ when in actual fact I was reflecting on my small circle of intimates.

Only once did I start a new class on the first day of the block by sitting at the back of the class and waiting until fifteen minutes after the class should have started and exclaiming ‘Well if the effing tutor can’t be bothered turning up, then I’ll just do it.’ It got their attention.

I’m a big believer in education – in learning – in sharing knowledge. 🙂

A few weeks ago I met one of the brill workers from and we had Japanese lentil soup in a café off Paisley Road West which I didn’t know existed and I was told all about drawing exercises in art classes. It was serious Wow! No. I don’t know what use it will be in a tangible, material way but I thoroughly enjoyed hearing about it.

There is a point to all this. Sometimes I worry about what I have achieved in a tangible, material way. Or, let’s keep the pretence going…….what my alter ego has achieved. Yes. Recovery from a bad alcohol problem and recovery from bad cancer but that was years ago, jt…….The Master’s? Well if it was the golfing one, then yes, but have you got a full-time job yet? And so on. I sent the dissertation out to lots of people. How many actually read it? Many of those that did asked questions.

Even the blog. I am aware of loadsofpeople who read it and gave it a couple of listens and then said they didn’t understand it. Yet, ask these people to explain how it is feasible that the aeroplane that they were sitting on when they went on holiday can even get off the ground and they look at you strangely. Or why should we trust DNA so much? And I think that goes for the music at the end. I think people think, ‘Aye, it’s jt’s choice. It’ll be weird.’ 😦

Naw. I think minds should be open but as we encounter information coming at us from all sectors we find it easier to close our minds just in case they’re challenged. I’d the pleasure of talking to Jackie Baillie MSP and being in the company of Tricia Marwick MSP last week. They had come to learn what was going on in the Dumbarton area and they listened. And they learned. But Jackie’s a good MSP.

And I did once scrumple up some notes in a Politics class I was teaching and kick them straight into a bucket.

Cya, (keep)ing it fun and still wearing that badge? Even it has a story to tell

Johnt850, one Scot who is genetically modified to make political decisions.

And so, in case that was all too much, I will finish with a joke but it’s an obvious gag – heavily signposted. Sometimes the gags are missed in the blog cos they’re not highlighted or they require a wee think. I still smile at last week’s Greggs and the getting exercise gag. Did you like it?

Anyway, a woman has twins and gives then up for adoption. One goes to a family in Egypt and is called Amal. The other goes to Spain and is called Juan. Years later Juan sends a pic of himself to his mum. On getting it his mum tells her husband that she wishes she had a picture of Amal as well. ‘But,’ her husband says, ‘they’re twins. If you’ve seen Juan, you’ve seen Amal.’

So why not start the rest of your life with Haim….they’re a very pleasant beat combo and it’s only four minutes of your life. Take care


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