Never let the future disturb you. You will meet it, if you have to, with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present

Sunday, 28 February 2010

Your doctor, my doctor! :-)

Be happy. It's one way of being wise.

"A prominent supporter of Tony Blair's health reforms is to advise the Conservatives, arguing the party is now "committed" to the NHS.

Professor David Kerr, a leading cancer specialist, will become shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley's principal clinical adviser - a paid role."

But then Professor Kerr goes to talk the talk we all know! :-)

Hang on there Gordon! We're gonna do it!

.. and you know, the ancient Egyptians have a proverb that says

"When you neighbour the happy, you will be happy too"

.. try me Prime Minister... Be happy and keep happy company and just keep listening to my happy music .. This is my prescription for you ... listen to my happy music twice a day; morning before you go to work - and evening just before bed time! And no attacks on anybody's person - and stay positive and smile Gordon .. always!

... and I've made you a Bes Prime Minister .. It's your Mascot .. for Good Luck :-)

Gordon Brown for Britain - and Britain for Gordon Brown :-)

Happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence

Saturday, 27 February 2010

Do you make money .. or cost money?

He who accounts all things easy will have many difficulties

Of course! 1 + 1 = 2 .. any mathematician or accountant will tell you that! But that applies only if you are counting material things that you can touch, oranges, apples, cars, buildings ... etc - but in the business world, thing are very different, because 1 + 1 will always have something else to consider, hence the equation will become:

1 + 1 + ? = 2 + ? = ?

And it's finding that elusive value for ? that makes or breaks any business! Take an example, say you own a small hotel somewhere and you want to calculate the unit price per bed, ie, how much should each bed be per night so that you can cover your over heads and make some, say 10 - 15% profit. The easy way is to calculate all your overheads; the mortgage you're paying, staff wages, linen, supplies ... etc, add them all up and plus your target profit and divide by the number of rooms then by the number of days in the year and you're done! Only, if you do that, you're sure to close down before the year is done! With great loses too! Because you are assuming all your beds will be full every night for 365 days every year and that's an impossibility, unless you have a contract with some other business that guarantees you that. Even then, you did not take into account what may happen during the day to day running of that hotel; breakages? Staff absence and the probable need to use more expensive agency workers to save the day? .. etc, etc .. let alone that those you may have a 100% occupancy 'contract' with may want to negotiate with you to renege on, say, one dead month or two!

Therefore, in the 'accommodation' industry, owners or managers calculate their unit price based on an occupancy rate of 40 weeks per annum to give themselves some lee way to deal with any (?) or the unknowns. If you then sell less you lose .. more .. well, lucky .. enjoy! But that 40 number was not just plucked off the air either, if you like, this number is the culmination of what the pyramid below looks like based upon past performances of other hotels maybe, your location, seasonal events; if you're near a hot spot, like a good beach for example or a sports event that has 'fixed' seasons .. etc .. and also on what each member of staff cost you in real terms.

You see, a small hotelier can not afford just to pay staff by the hour for how many hours per annum, because you have to take into account staff holiday, sick leave, and (?) as well - and then there is 'performance' or you'll never get value for your money. So, instead, they look at each member of staff as they regard the rest of their assets. Much like when you use your Tomtom to guide you to an address in an unknown area to you .. to show you the way ... It is therefore what each member of staff will do within a given period minus all know factors + ? .. or the same calculation as cost per bed/per night/per 40 weeks occupancy, add to that Productivity prediction per staff member too - and that is quantified by previous performance so you do have figures for it - and estimates for future performance.

And here the cost per unit, or hotel bed in this case, will be the addition of the above as in 1 +1 =2 manner .. and hope to survive! Because, those above calculations are all but predictions still! .. only, in this case, it's calculated risk. And here you know your occupancy target per annum; 40 weeks - you then go set some targets of productivity for your each member of staff too - again those targets are based on your 40 week calculations. and then just get down to the day to day business .. and hope and pray .. but keep your eyes reeally wide open .. or else! .. and that's why you saw 'sale' signs in many high street shops just before last Christmas .. business that made a mistake in their 'calculated' risk accounts and had to sell at reduced, then at net cost price, then at any cost to stay afloat! ... hopefully .. because many did go down as the current recession became deeper .. and you really can not calculate for that, when no customers are coming into you your shop doors!

How do they calculate the cost price per unit for an NHS bed? - although not a hotel as such but I still hope it is not based on 100% occupancy for in the real life outside, that's too cheap and will lead to a definite loss - because there will always be an (?) in the equation! .. calculate on 100% and this would be business suicide in the outside world! ... and maybe the reaon why health, for example, is in the red nowadays .... because it never considers a value for (?)!

And if you want more effeciency and productivity, you need to calculate that 'per unit' or member of staff before you can see any real gains! ... and that's how you keep your cost to a minimum too and keep your nose above water at all times ... You know, that reminds me of when I worked for a foreign public sector office long time ago. I was one of a small team in the accounts dept in a real posh office in Belgravia, only public sector is public sector posh or not .. and, as is the case with most similar departments, you walked in and there would be piles upon piles of files and papers on most if not all desks - and one day, my big boss walked in "Your desk is clean Sam!" ... and I looked him straight in the eye and said, "Yes, Mr Ambassador :-)" ... there were a few changes a little latter on in that dept ... you couldn't tell it dealt with accounts anymore! ... and I wasn't in that 'particular' office for long either ... ;-)

Time to look properly at your accounts public sector and account of them too ... and for their health ...

In Health, Unit cost per bed? ... and 'productivity' .... who makes money .. and who costs money?

Have 'they' calculated their 'unit cost' correctly? .. and ..Who is value for money and who is not? ... Have a guess .. and yes! Guessing IS allowed! ... it's actually all about guessing and getting it right in business ... what doing business is all about ...

A salesman must also have flexible goals. You may say, ''I want to sell 10 accounts this week,'' and you sell five. You're ready to die. But, you tell yourself, ''Five isn't too bad. You know, next week I'll aim higher and maybe I'll sell all 10.

Perhaps sad necessity accounts for the best accredited opinion that probability has no meaning whatsoever when applied to a single event, either past or future

Friday, 26 February 2010

Hey! Judge! :-(

The savage in man is never quite eradicated.

"Confined to a squalid room for months, the emaciated girl was deprived of food and regularly beaten, before she died in excruciating pain in May 2008, weighing just 2st 9lbs. On her death, she was found to have suffered more than two dozen injuries.

Khyra and five other children in the family home in Birmingham were forced to share a single mattress and survive on just a small bowl of food a day, in conditions compared to a "Victorian workhouse" ... Mrs Justice King said: "It is beyond belief that in 2008 in a bustling, energetic and modern city like Birmingham, a child of seven was withdrawn from school and thereafter kept in squalid conditions for a period of five months before finally dying of starvation,” she said.

"This was sustained and punitive brutality to very young children over many months of a type which thankfully is virtually unheard of in this country ... Details of Khyra's suffering emerged at the end of a criminal trial at Birmingham Crown Court into Gordon and Abuhamza, who saw murder charges dropped after both claimed diminished responsibility.

Psychiatrists claimed that Gordon, 35, had suffered major depression at the time of Khyra’s death, while Abuhamza, 30, was a schizophrenic."

Diminished responsibility?!!! A mother who systematically starved one child to death and two out of five other children are nearing death too .. a normal mother would starve herself to death to give her children when needed! That's instinct! But this woman also put all five of them in squalid conditions for months and month on end, has beaten them repeatedly and systematically starved them, while the house was full of food. - only she locked the kitchen door so they can't gain access to this food, which can then be the reserve of herself and her boyfriend! How can that become 'diminished responsibility'??!!! A woman who bought all the food she could get selflessly for her self and her pleasure alone, but at the same time she deprived her own off spring who were treated much below animals, while, at the same time feeding a boyfriend! ... is depressed beyond noticing that her children were dying?! Of hunger?!

schizophrenic or not, that boyfriend looked well fed! And so does this 'monster' of a mother! They were both allowed into the kitchen but not the kids! I wonder, did she cook and feed herself and that man in front of them as well, while those kids were being denied the food? And it wasn't that they were short of money! There was even a tub of ice cream in that crammed with food freezer! But 'majorly depressed' mother here kept that for herself .. and her 'man'! Fancy that! We have ice-cream in the house but it's not for the children, six of them, no less! It's for me, Mum, because I am depressed! Well, if that monster of a woman is so majorly depressed as she claimed - and got away with the murder, why is she after the ice-cream in the first place?! I thought major depression suppresses the appetite, does it?! I have no idea but I imagine it must do if you do lose interest in life, then that may mean losing interest in food too? - I don't know why but I just can't link ice-cream to depression! Maybe because it is a 'happy' food ... :-(

Then again, There was a video on the news where she was giving the children some food because of a party of some sort, so people she didn't want them noticing how cruel she was to her children did not notice, she gave the children some food - but the portion, I do give my cats much more! .. and the excitement on that little girl's face, she was getting any food at all was saddening! Then, another incident when this woman sent the school a letter accusing them of incompetence?! then pulling the children out to educate them at home! .. Then two educational inspectors visit and she has set the scene for them - a make shift classroom, only no children were present! That's premeditation to hide reality, isn't it? Same when teachers visited but she won't open!

.. and the little Khyra used to scavenge for food or steal from other kids at school! Only MUM stopped her even the luxury of doing that! ... and the little girl died slow and she died in agony, beaten, tortured, starved and aged 7! ... and weighing less than 3 stones! This is no depressed woman .. this is a hardened monster .. and this was premeditated murder of the most vicious type! This monster knew, deprivation of food leads to death - that's why she ate despite her presumed depression! Depriving the kids then only means she also knew that something drastic would eventually happen to them one day! Yet she continued with the deprivation, the beatings and the starvation .. and how cold was she when she called the police to inform that her daughter died in her sleep! And that boyfriend, why didn't he call the police - even the natural father too, why didn't he call the police? .. would the police have done anything?

And mum claimed 'diminished responsibility'! What's a murder most savage, most horrid and most barbaric then?!

I mean, if she had shot this child in the head, I would have thought that was the result of temporary insanity - but she didn't, she starved this child to death .. slowly and for months and months!! .. and the other five are in terrible condition too! Because of this woman's cruelty!

This woman is a murderer, she should have got life! and have that served for the full duration too! Minimum! But, she got away on the smaller charge of manslaughter .. and will probably be jailed for just a few years .. then out again to enjoy her 'majorly depressed' life .. with ice-cream!

You know, so long as miscarriages of justice keep on happening like that, there will always be such heart wrenching stories of children being neglected, abused and tortured to death by the vultures they call their parents and, sometimes, carers or other family members! So long as justice is not properly done, why should social services, who did nothing in this case despite many attempts by teachers at that little girl's school, take those children's cases seriously!

The reality is .. nobody cares!

Every now and then we will hear of a similar story like this and we will all rise up weeping for them .. for a while, then things die down until we hear of the following one -- to rise again weeping for the unbearable suffering of those innocent and can't fend for themselves children .. then it's old news again .. and so on ... and given the current status quo, it will continue to be so! and it will keep on happening, again .. and again .. and again ...

You see! Unless you ditch this bureaucracy that leads only to no man's land and therefore stifles efficiency and leads to neglegence in all of the public sector, nothing will change! It is either a 'fully' integrated system that will really be accountable for it's failures, a system that will cooperate to report, to protect and to investigate the dire happenings, in this case, to such vulnerable children - and punish properly when punishment is due. A transparent system and hence, an effecient service that properly connects the police, the educational system to the social system and health system and the legal system .. Together .. or .. nothing at all! ..

And vulnerable kids like Khyra, baby Peter and Victoria .. and many, many others will continue be let down, while those responsible, either the individuals causing the harm or those working for the authorities, escape scot free! Even get rewarded for their incompetence .. or promoted .. or get away with minimal punishment, if at all! And since there is nothing solid in place to stop this waste of people as well as resources, such vulnerable children will keep on dying while not succeeding to survive because of this barbaric failings in our civilised jungle! ... left as it is, people, young and old will die!

.. And Khyra means 'one who hands out goodness'! Only no one handed the poor little girl any! Even her own mother! ...

.. and Justice was not done here judge! :-(

And if this judge could do nothing but to accept the plea of 'diminished responsibility' because of a technicality, then the law is faulty here too!

'Link to Dr Crippen's post on that same subject'

We weep over the graves of infants and the little ones taken from us by death; but an early grave may be the shortest way to heaven.

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Swines R us! ...

A pig used to dirt turns its nose up at rice

No! This post is not about 'The' swine flu 'campaign', for that has been ditched already and the government has been trying to find some idiots somewhere around the globe to off load the mountain of vaccine it bought to protect us from the 'pandemic' too! ... the government has been quiet since ... wot? No idiots around?! .. and Sir is leaving in may ... so, that's ok then, isn't it? ;-)

And those in the know say that the Swine flu campaign cost Britain one BILLION pounds! That's 1000,000,000.00 .. I think! But it seems that even those pointy heads on top do not have a clue what losing this astronomical amount of money to the swines means! Perhaps because they can't visualise the amount! You see, we can't comprehend what we can't see .. and so is our imagination is limited to that concept too .. for example, if we are to imagine monsters from Mars, they'd still be a distorted vision of what we know and see on a daily basis. Hence, those will be weird combinations of semi humans with heads pointing up or no ears maybe ... part smoke with no legs and part animals, plants, metals, rocks .. wind .. etc .. etc? .. but sure enough, they have to be part of what we have seen and know from before and no more.

But I have always wanted to know, what does a Billion pounds really looks like? ... nobody knows because our impoverished imagination can't reach this far. Maybe it's time a computer wizard can perhaps make us a fictional image of what that may look like by, say, piling up the image of 1 billion pound coins piled up in Trafalgar Square on a computer programme or something. Would that sum then cover the Nelson Column and maybe extend right to Big Ben and our Ali Baba house?... I don't know ..but until we can comprehend what the loss of that money means, the grandeur of the event when losing it happens never sinks in! .. until you read something like this Dr Crippen post comparing the Junior doctor pay to that of 'High flying' law:

"If these young men and women had gone into nearly any other profession, most would become very high earners. Look at the salaries offered by leading London law firms. Look at the work conditions. Look how excellence is rewarded"

Perhaps Dr C, this is why Remedy UK is asking if medicine is still a 'proper' profession .. in part! Because reward is not only about money, although this is the most important aspect of any job; to earn in correlation to your abilities in order to live a life in correlation with the effort you put into the job! ... but that doesn't happen in medicine! Forget about those who will take their first F1 posts in August @ £22k a piece and no accommodation since that tiny 'perk' has been scrapped too, meaning real earning being cut to around £17k 'a piece', because those young docs are just that to 'them', pieces, aren't they?! ... and no place to rest in hospital while on call either! .. But how about a doctor 5 years on from graduation after a life long of outstanding achievement and six, not 5, years of studying medicine and graduating with prizes and/or distinctions and perhaps an extra 1st class BSc, an MSc, or even a PhD on top, 11 years in medicine.. and now you're earning the luxurious sum of £46k per annum inclusive of 'banding', ie, overtime, if you're lucky?! A wage that most probably will be turned down by managers at Pizza hut, especially when you consider that, age for age, those hardly have any academic qualifications - or maybe the brightest ones did get a media degree from an ex Polytech, now University of b*gger all! The difference of course is that those graduating from the 'B all' unis, without even attending their valuable lessons, have spent their time at the 'university of life' instead, and know very well how to fight for their rights! ... or find ways to get what they are due from the job 'somehow'! Doctors don't! ;-)

That said, you then look at how young doctors are treated after all their hard work and commitment, and please pay attention to that word 'commitment' - they are then, even from before they graduate and while they are under intense pressure to pass those tough medical finals, are subjected to what can only be described as the 'cookoo land' of applying to their first job! A land that then rewards their life long 'commitment' with 40 marks out of 100 .. and decreasing! And the 60 other marks?, well, it's cookoo land after all, that you'd get part thereof if you are good at imagining things and can put what you can imagine on paper using a list of buzz words and seductive vocabulary! .. and if you've been good academically - and have a vivid imagination - or have someone who does and is willing to help you - you can actually score more than 100%! The laws of physics says this is impossible, but wise pointy heads believe it is! See! You can get and extra 6 marks if you have intercalated another degree and got a 1st, but that drops down to 3 if what you've intercalated was an MSc! Meaning, if you happen to have both, it is better t declare your BSc and forget about that useless MSc! ... that's 'pointy head' logic! The logic of cookoo land!

But that's not all! Once you've found someone to help you fill this 'rich' application form and you get full mark for it, a secretary somewhere may omit writing your academic score next to it and will award you 1 mark instead! Meaning, even after you broke your back studying for all your life, learned the linguistic beauty of the English language, and crammed in extra degrees and qualifications, your total score may still never exceed 78! .. and so, the monstrous system will just flip you to no man's land somewhere .. and there is nothing you can do about it! ... To those now lower down the scale because of 'their' and not your mistake', the pointier heads will send you an apology e-mail of course, because there is nothing they can do really since 'they' have already filled 'your' job! ... please read the comments on Dr Crippen's post in the above link. Of course your new alternative job in no man's land will lead you to no where ... but there you are! Take it easy, after all, you're 'committed', aren't you?!

... and then 2 years on, after living in no man's land, earning no man's peanuts and living in no man's house because you can't afford to live in a decent place, if you succeed in landing yourself a training post 'somewhere', you might be in for another surprise .. your hospital won't train you because they need you to serve Kafka style instead! ... and now, as a user of the NHS, I begin to wonder about your commitment myself! ... but that's not all ... it continues ... and the spending continues too .. hoards of professional examinations at excruciating amounts of money that you must put in yourself, and effort and with pass rates of 30 - 40% at the most .. because those examining you need to survive too, don't they?! ... but you're committed, so you spend your little money and you do go for them .. no other option and 'they' know it .. and when you pass them all, which you do because you have to, will they make a difference to your pay or conditions? No! ... but you can write them on a long card and enjoy looking at them! .. Because, after all this ... you may well end up in a no man's hope of a trust grade or a sub-consultant job!

Maybe that's why the young doctors of Remedy UK are questioning if medicine is now a proper profession! .. and if you ask me too, I'd say No, it ain't! ... and it may be, if you're a high flyer .. and you are by definition .. forget about high flying in medicine .. or even law or banking .. lots more worth it for those thinking of medicine to cut the journey 'very' short and go for a degree in English and commit to becoming a pointy head yourself instead ... and even avoid that 20 - 50 k dept too! Then even the sky has no limits to what where you can go ... and pay is way better so that you can live a decent, even a luxurious life ... and you work on a permenant contract too, so you'd be able to get that mortgage .. even without your parents help! .. and after all, that's what medicine wants you to do now ... be a 'committed' linguistic wizard .. in English!

... and you need nothing else, because, once a pointy head .. you needn't learn anymore .. even from your own mistakes .. and those doctor shortages everywhere ..

... and that made me laugh with the pigs tooo ... not surprising the similarities really! :-)

... and when will that computer wizard show us what a Billion pounds really look like ... Ah well!

I learned long ago, never to wrestle with a pig, you get dirty; and besides, the pig likes it.

Monday, 22 February 2010

Simply put, life always wins ...

Perhaps our eyes need to be washed by our tears once in a while, so that we can see Life with a clearer view again.

The Director of Public Prosecutions, Keir Starmer, is preparing to issue his final clarification on when people in England and Wales will be charged for helping someone to end their life.

"Newsnight has spoken to two people who have very different views about the new guidelines.

Barrie Sheldon's wife, Elizabeth had Huntington's disease and took her own life. Barrie hopes that the new guidelines will be as liberal as possible and allow people who assist others to die to be sure that they will not be prosecuted."

Over a 10 year period Alison Davis repeatedly asked friends to help her die, but when they refused she attempted to take her own life. She believes that the new assisted suicide guidelines should not make it easier for people to be helped to die. "

Barry's wife was able to end her own life, albeit, the harder way, because she was suffering from the incurable and progressive Huntingdon's disease, which would have killed her anyway ... and in agony. Barrie did not help his wife die because he was afraid of being accused and criminalised. He was away when she died in hospital following her suicide with a large dose of antidepressants. For a brief moment she was awake but declined the treatment to save her. She was surrounded by friends and other family members when she died but Barrie still feels guilty he wasn't there with her during her final moments.

Then there is Alison's story, a woman with multiple disabilities since birth. One who gave up on life and tried to kill herself many times, during her last attempt and after she was taken to hospital, she even told the doctors 'not to treat' but they did anyway. Following that she met Collin and became good friends and he is now her carer. With him being around for her, she visited India and is now involved in charity work to help poor and disabled Indian children lead a better life. She is grateful those doctors in that hospital saved her when they did. She is now happy to be alive.

So, to assist or not to assist? You see, stories like Barrie's wife are so moving, one tends to say Please, help them! But then one hears of Alison's story and is persuaded to say, definitely don't assist! Because, as Alison said in the video herself, she would have missed all the happiness she is experiencing now ... and we would have helped her end it too!

When I am faced with a complex situation, I usually get a pen and paper out, put a line vertically in the middle of the paper and try a 'for and against' exercise - then see which one 'wins' .. if you can call it that .. and Life won!

Only this time it was about numbers - how many will genuinely benefit from being assisted against how many endure their suffering willingly right to the end? .. and how many are actually grateful they were saved following an attempt to end their own life - and how many cherish every minute they can spend with their loved one when the end is near? - How many would abuse when assisted suicide is made legal? - and how many insist on ending their own life one way or the other because of physical or mental pain or both? And how many will suffer short/long term after assisting someone else to die only to find out there is a cure in the pipeline .. or just because they took part and can't cope? .. and how many other family members, like the children of a couple where one helped the other die cope and regard the living parent and the dead one? .. how will those cope with their own lives afterwards?

Too complicated .. and complicated is 'never' the right, or ideal answer .. to any question!

Balance it out yourself ... how many negatives against how many positives - then decide.

As for me .. simply .. Life won ... by far!

He lives the poetry that he cannot write. The others write the poetry that they dare not realise.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

Happy Birthday Gordon :-)

"Celebrate what you want to see more of."

It's our PM's birthday today! Gordon is now 59 ... and soooo

Happy Bithday Gordon

and many healthy and prosperous returns of the day

For you and for Britain


I like Gordon Brown. This is new .. because just a little while back I had very little idea about him. All I knew before is that he was Our Chancellor and is now our PM .. plus little bits of reading here and there that sort of gave me a general impression that he is a good man who works hard and is very bright, but the he occassionly gets frustrated quickly and is sometimes not firm enough when he should be .. and hence, allows some to get away with whatever, instead of having them sacked before they cause him, and us the public any harm ... no need to mention names but we all know about those who like rocking boats or enforcing policies on young unsuspected doctors .. to those who like to plot to upset the government ... etc ... etc

Only recently, I put his news on my side bar with some of his cabinet, those I think I can live with in office - and Mr Cameron, the opposition .. and I began watching ... and comparing ...

Well, I've always respected and appreciated Alan's abilities as an honest and able politician, but he seems to favour a bit more peace and quiet now .. and Harriet, she sometimes speaks too soon but she's my out spoken, want to do things and thriving on a challenge type of girl, my type of girl .. and then, I like Mandy, now that his kidney stones have been attended to, he's actually proving to be a valuable asset and a very bright one at that .. and I like Andy, he's trying excruciatingly hard at health sooo ... but was great at culture - then maybe in the Foreign Office later on in life, where I think he would have that office fit like a glove - because he has that charisma very much needed for the job ;-)

And did you know? There is only
3 years difference in age between Andy and Dave .. Cameron! ... And I didn't know much about Big Boss until now that I read a bit .. and I like him, more than his opposition, if only for the experience because now is the time where this experience is very much needed - in every office in government including the top!

See! The best way to also judge a character is either by first impression and that gut feeling when you first meet them, by their achievements and deeds throughout their lives - or - by how many similarities they have with yourself, either in ideology or in real life.

And so off to Wikipedia's entry on Gordon Brown - and is it impressive or wot! An early age doer and a rebel who skipped two years at school and graduated at 21! .. and so did I, you know - 4 year course at uni too! Only he is extra bright and he studied much harder, and I didn't .. and he didn't think skipping those years was a good idea, but I do, despite is being my parents wish and not the school ... many reasons why he's so serious and I am no as much! And maybe the reason too that my eldest will be over 30 years old when I am 59, while Gordon's kids are still very young children, bless them .. and that's perhaps why he is a PM and I am not :-)

Many similarities but different priorities .. still the same goals .. to do whatever we each do to the best of our ability .. such that our work then speaks for us ... and not us for us!

And Gordon has a whole PhD in history - and I had the love of history in my heart from high school .. and I like that he believes in having a moral compass and not a pendulum. And they say he is impatient and loses his temper sometimes, but that's a typical of the star sign Pisces if you ask me! .. and does that matter?! That he shouts sometimes because he wants to get things done how he wants them done? Not in my book unless you show me who is perfect - and I'd rather a little shouty leader than a sleezy charmer! .. know what I mean? Only I had hoped he would lose his temper more when losing temper is due! And act upon it, when action is in order - for those who defy common order! .. and it doesn't pay to be a gentleman when there are no ladies around, you know! ..

And I think Gordon can win the coming election, albeit, he should've started his campaign much earlier because people are currently so confused with the current economic climate and what took place in Ali Baba's house last year. But all is not lost, where there is a 'real' will, there will always be a way you know? :-)

And if I were Gordon, I would play on the similarities between myself and the people I lead .. albeit we all have differing priorities, but we join in many common goals, the good of family and country. So, Gordon's election senario should be; you work hard, I work hard too - you want the good of this country, and me too - you want to protect, educate and feed your children, and me too and I will do my best to give you that - and give you hope! .. and Gordon is not really a social animal as such, but that's fine by me - only I would not stress that he liked his wife when they first met because, in part, she was 'elegant' but I would keep that to myself .. simply because lots of those listening maybe aren't - and you want to aim for similarities that would draw you closer to the people, not further away - like I am one of the family and I do care. Not in a Hello magazine style but the person, his abilities and his humanity, meaning, that there are some family incidents and the resulting deep emotions in each and every life that should and is best kept private. And although people sympathise, they would probably have thought even a leader has his right to his and his family's privacy too. But overall that programme did bring Gordon closer to the people and that is good.

And I would emphasise how experienced I am too - I mean 'me' not the Labour Party for that whole duration in office. And as a member of my family, my leader, like my family members, should take part in looking at my problems and do his best to give me some solutions - and when you can't give that, then give me Hope - Hope - Hope! .. and mean it! and I would concentrate on those above, rather than attacking my opposition - 'let my work speak for me' .. because that does not sound fake - like some .. we've all had enough of that!

... and Gordon .. are you sure that animal the Middle East somewhere tried to gift you was a 'pig' and not a lamb .. or a mutton .. or even a camel?! .. it's just that .. well, you know! ;-)

Again, Happy Birthday to you Prime Minister - and, here is some happy music to dance to on your happy day .. may we always have a cause for happiness and celebrations .. For All .. and I like that smile too :-D

"Let us celebrate with them, or strive to emulate them, hope, happiness and prosperity should be our desire and determination.”

Main musical instrument, Mezmar

Played by Egyptian peasants in upper Egypt during their happy occasions.
They believe happy music brings good luck.

Thursday, 18 February 2010

The modern Marseillaise .. :-)

"To arms, citizens! Form up your battalions! Let us march, let us march. Let their impure blood water our furrows! What does this horde of slaves, of traitors and conjured kings want? For whom are these ignoble trammels, These long-prepared irons? Frenchmen, for us, ah! What outrage! What fury it must arouse! It is we whom they dare plan, To return to ancient slavery!"

This is La Marseillaise as sung by Edith Piaf, . I am a big fan of Edith [or non Edith version here] .. but this 'song' makes you want to punch the person next to you in the face, doesn't it?! It's that military style! Those drums of war, the quick repetition of those short musical sentences and that use of a large synchronised group of high pitch wind pipe instruments repeating and repeating between the strokes of the drums that give you that irresistible feel that there danger .. a matter of great urgency at hand or the consequences will be dire! .. Then there is that vocabulary ... and those determined voices too! Edith with her soft but full of expression and determination voice .. " Liberte .. Liberte .. Marchons .. Marchons" she chants decisively emphasising the words in her calling her audience to arms ... and the crowd behind oblige, emulate her calls in similar short but decisive singing, then explode in their loud chants "To arms citizens! .. ya brave!" ... and everybody is so angry! You can even visualize them gritting their teeth and clinching their fists!

The whole piece urges the listener to stand right up and do 'something'! Anything is permissible par keeping quiet! .. It plays on that adrenaline rush! With full intent to stir fear in in it's audience, that something horrible is going to happen if you stand by and do nothing! .. and you're only human and so, up you rise! .. you have no other option but to take up your arms .. and march! .. and they did! They had no other choice, you see .. they were seduced .. and so off they marched!

This was a very successful song for that time - it did exactly what it was intended to do! The French revolution of nearly two centuries ago!

I can understand that such a song was relevant, even needed, at the time it was composed; to urge the French to revolt against oppression (Some of the lyrics above and below, but history, translation and poetic English version in link). But even then, it was first sung by a young doctor, whose name was François Mireur. He sung it so well, it gave him the uncontrollable urge to fight! ... and Napoleon heard how good he was in stirring emotions in the crowds, how feverishly those chanted behind him .. so, despite having no military training, Napoleon made the young physician a General, no less, in the French army .. and sent him to Egypt .. where poor Mireur died aged 28!

And I can't understand why, in our modern times, is France still keeping La Marseillaise, or 'the Song of war of the Rhine army' as it's national anthem?! ... But there you are! ... It probably acts as a reminder of their struggle and of what has passed .. and although one needs to remember one's history and roots, it is no good giving more importance to the past than the present and the future .. no good to dwell on the past! So ...

The moral is; learn your lesson .. but move on to live your present and build your future.

And the moral is; nothing stays the same forever. The world moves and revolves .. and to survive, you need to adapt and move with it too ..

If only they remember!

In our modern peaceful times and in the absence of a cause similar to that of the French at those times, such composition will not only crush those who stand against the tide, but will divide people and cause friction instead of drawing them together to live in peace and work hand in hand to build a brighter future ... for all!

I almost find it unethical to incite innocent people to rise just to try and solve what 'some' may perceive as their problem when it may just be that the world is doing what it has always done and will keep on doing eternally .. turning and evolving ..

Not for me! I wouldn't take part in singing a song like that! and I hope France would move on too ....

"Tremble, tyrants and you traitors, The shame of all parties, Tremble! Your parricidal schemes, Will finally receive it's price! Everyone is a soldier to combat you, If they fall, our young heroes, The earth produces new ones, Against you, all ready to fight! .. To arms citizens!"

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

No relation?

The more you explain it, the more I don't understand it

Sir David Nicholson, the Chief Exec of the NHS was interviewed by HealthExec TV. I watched the video .. did he mention PPO in there? .. Or I misheard?!

And 'No relation' .. I think ...

But there is this here ... sensational, isn't it? ... it must be!

You see, I am just recording history ... and I do not want to make mistakes!

But the problem is ... I don't understand .... Fully ..

Care to explain anyone?

.. and No relation again .. but here is some music ...

I know that you believe you understand what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Love ...

Happy Valentine

There has been a lot of talk about love around the blogosphere lately but it seems that the meaning of love has become confused. Possibly because we don't use the word enough. I don't understand why many people hide their emotions, especially such positive and pure ones like love. Indeed, I can't .. and wouldn't want to any way. Perhaps this is because I originated in the Middle East, a hot in climate and temper region that uses the word love much more often than we do here, bearing in mind the differences in culture and the impact of that on attitudes to romantic love of course.

The Middle East cherishes it's right to be in love .. always .. albeit naively. And I am yet to meet a Middle Eastern man or woman, of any age who, hasn't resided on planet Platonia for a long while, staring at the moon while pulling the petals of a rose in a 'he loves me, he loves me not' mode for aaages. Then again, the meaning of the word love, when applied in any sense, including romantic love, is so pure, so .. thank The Lord for planet Platonia, don't you think? After all, in the absence of promise, there is no agony .. and no pain? .. oh no! ... there is always that sweet .. sweet pain ... of course .. and so, the Middle Eastern maybe use the word love more often too? I personally think so .. then again, I am no researcher so, who knows?!

And then again, again .. maybe I just wish we would all strive to use the word 'love' much more often .. and on time too :-)

... and back to the Middle East and to their obsession with love, below is a sung romantic poem, as is the habit of the Arab world, that really depicts the pain of loving in a typical Middle Eastern way. It was sung by the late Om Kolthoum, 'the' most famous ever Egyptian singer whose voice spanned seven octaves, no less. It was known around the world back in the 60's that when Om Kolthoum sang a new song, the streets around the whole of the Arab world became empty as people glued themselves to the radio, or TV for the lucky ones, to listen. It was also common to find most Arab heads of states arriving for the evening in their private jets and sitting at the front row in the venue where she sang to hear what new gem of a song she had to offer her esteemed guests. It was also fact that she became a centre of power in her own right, sometimes hugely influencing policy as she was able to influence most leaders of that region. She brought those together many a time ... no Om Kolthoum now .. the singing ambassador for peace ..

The music was by Riad El-Sunbati, one of Egypt's most talented musicians and composers and, most importantly, the poem was written by Dr Ibrahim Nagi (1898 - 1953, English Wikipedia very limited, Arabic version better :-). He was an Egyptian physician who specialised in internal medicine. But that healer and scientist was also an incurable romantic and hence, a talented poet of the highest possible rank too! He wrote more than 300 famous pieces - always in classical Arabic, or the equivalent of Shakespeare's language in Arabic .. and so, on another note, yes, romantic medicine does exist, Dr Nagi is proof! .. and it is not too blue either .. but piping red hot!

.... On Fire! ...

... and I have translated the poem below as best as I can, so please excuse any errors. I have also highlighted the part sung in the video clip by Souma, as we Egyptians neck name the amazing legend Om Kolthoum .. and you know, I never used to like her when I lived in Egypt, but now that I am here, I am probably her most obsessed fan! ... Notice all her 'Aahs' and the crowd's reaction ... Typical! .. Enjoy ..

... and remember; life is too short, so, never leave it till it is too late ....
.... tell someone you love them today ...
.... Happy
Valentine ...

Oh yes! .. I love you all ...

The Ruins
(Arabic words)Poet: Dr Nagi Ibrahim
Music: Riad El-Sonbati
Singer: Om Kolthoum.

Full song

يا فؤادي لا تسل أين الهوى

Ya fouadi la tassal ayna alhawa
My heart, don't ask where is love,

كان صرحا من خيال فهوى
Cana sarhan men khayalen fahawa

It was a citadel in the imagination, now fallen,

اسقني واشرب على أطلاله 

Essqeni washrab ala atlalehi
Pour for me and let us drink upon its ruins,

واروعني طالما الدمع روى

Waro any talama adamo rawa
Let flow like tears many a time flew,

كيف ذاك الحب أمسى خبرا  
Kayfa zaka alhobo amssa khabaran
How did that love became past news,

وحديثا من أحاديث الهوى
Wahadithan men ahadeeth algawa
And yet another narrative of passion?


لست أنساك 
Lassto anssak

I am not to forget you,

وقد أغريتني 
Waqd aghritany

When you seduced me

 بفم عذب المنادة رقيق

Befamen azb elmonadati raqiq
With a tender sweet calling tongue,

تويد مد نحوي 
Wayaden tamtado nahwi

And a hand extending towards me,

كيد من خلال الموج مدت لغريق 
Kayaden men khelal elmog modat le ghareeq
Like a hand stretched out of the waves to a drowning soul,

وبريق يظمأالساري له 

Wa bareeqin yazma'o essari laho
And a shine that stirs the thirst of those begrudged.

 أين في عينيك نياك البريق 
Ayna fi aynyka zayaka albareeq
Where has that shine in your eyes gone?


ياحبيبا زرت يوماأيكه 
Ya habiban zorto yoman aykaho
My love, I once visited your shrine,

طائر الشوق 

Ta'era elshouqi 
My longing flying before me,

أغنى ألمي 

Oghani alami
Singing my pain, 

لك إبطاء المذل المنعم 
Laka ebta'el mozl elmon'mi
But you possess the slow pace of a holder, and a giver,

اوتجني لقادر المحتكم

Watagani elqader elmohtakemi
And the imposition of an able tyrant,

 و حنيني لك يكوي أضلعي 

Wahanini laka yakwi adlo'i
My longing for you pains my ribs,

والتواني جمرات

Wthawani gamaraton
And the seconds are like ambers

في دمي

Fi dami
Burning in my blood. 


 أعطني حريتي أطلق يدي 

A'teni horyaty atleq yadaya
Give me my freedom, release my hands, 

 إنني أعطيتك ما استبقيت شيئا

Enani a'tayto ma estabqito shaya
I've given all, kept nothing

  آه من قيدك أدمى معصمي

Ahy men qaydek adma messami 
Ah, your chains have bloodied my wrists,

 لم أبقيه وما أبقى عليا

Lema obqihi wama abqa alaya
Why do I keep them when they won't keep me? 

ما احتفاظي بعهود لم تصنها  

Mahtefazy behoudon lam tassonha
Why hold on to promises you don't cherish? 

وإلام الأسر والدنيا لد يا 

wa elam al'assro wadonia ladia
And why the captivity when life is before me?


أين منعيني حبيب ساحر
Ayna men ayni habibon saheron
Where from my eye, a magical lover,

فيه عز وجلال وحياء 

Fihi ezon wagalalon wa haya'a
Full of pride and majesty, yet shy,

 واثق الخطوة يمشيملكا 

Watheqo elkhotwati yamshi malakan 
Sure-footed with a king's stride,

ظالم الحسن شهي الكبرياء

Zalemo el hossni shahio ekebria'a 
With oppressive beauty, delicious in his pride

 عبق السحر كأنفاس الربى

Abeqa essehro ka'anfass erroba
Redolent of charm, ike the breeze on the hills, 

ساهم الطرف كأحلام المساء

Sahemo etarfi ka'ahlam elmassa'a
Dipped in the eye, like an evening dream


أين مني مجلس أنت به 

Ayna meni maglesson anta behi
Where from me, a gathering you attend,

فتنتة تمت سناء وسنى
Fetnaton tamat sana'an wa sana
A sedition complete with enlightenment and light

 وأنا حب و قلب هائم وفراش 
 Wa ana hobon wa qalbon ha'emon 
I am love, a roaming heart and an empty cover

حائر منك دنا 

Wa farashon ha'eron menka dana
Unrestful, devoid of your sharing,

الشوق رسول بيننا
Wamena alshowqi rassoulon baynana
And a longing that is between us a messenger,

ونديم قدم الكاس لنا

Wa nadeemon qadama alkassa lana
And the drinking companion offering the cup

هل رأى الحب سكارى مثلنا
Hal ra'a alhobo sokara methlana
Has love seen drunks like us?

كم بنينا من خيال حولنا
Kam banyna men khayalen howlana

So many dreams we built around us,

 ومشينا في طريق مقمر 
Wa mashina fi tareeqen moqmeren

And we walked in a moonlit path,

تثبالفرحة فبه قلبنا
Tathebo alfarhato feehi qablna

With joy skipping along ahead of us,

وضحكنا ضحك طفلين معا

Wa dahekna dehqa teflyini ma'an
And we laughed like two children together,

 وعدونا فسبقنا ظلنا
Wa adowna fassabaqna zelana

And we raced, till we surpassed our shadows.


وانتبهنا بعد ما زال الرحيق
Wa entabahna ba'ada ma zala alraheeq
And we woke up when the euphoria was surpassed

 وأفقنا ليت أنا لانفبق 

Wa afqna layta ana la nofeeq
And we woke up, if only we never did,

يقظ ةطاحت بأحلام الكرى
Yaqzaton tahat be ahlamo el kara

A wakefulness that ruined the dreams of slumber,

وتولى الليل والليل صديق
Wa tawala al laylo walayli sadeeq

Then night passed, and night is friend 

 وإذا النورنذير طالع
Wa eza enoro nazeeron sate'on

And light turned into a merciless warning,

وإذا الفجر مطال كالحريق
Wa eza alfagro motelon kalhareeq
It's dawn, towering like a raging fire,

وإذا الدنيا كما تعرفها
Wa eza aldonia kama narefoha

Life again as we know it,

وإذ ا الأحباب كل فب طريق
Wa eza al'ahbabo kolon fi tareeq

with lovers each in a different path.


 أيها الساهر تغفو

Ayoha assahero taghfo
Oh sleepless one, you doze off,

 تذكر العهد
Tazkora al'ahda wa tassho
Only to remember that promise and wake up,

وإذا ما الأم جرحجد بالتذكار جرح

Wa eza ma elta'ama gorho, gada betazkari gorho
With one wound healing and another gushing open,

   فتعلم كيف تنيى وتعلم كيف تمحو 
Fata alama kayfa tanssa wata alama kayfa tamho
Learn how to forget and learn how to erase!


يا حبيبي كل شيء بقضاء

Ya habibi kolo shei'en beqada'a
My love, everything is fated,

 ما بأيدينا خلقنا تعساء 

Ma be'aydeena kholeqna to'assa'a
It is not by our hands we were created to sad,

 ربما تجمعنا أقدارنا ذات يوم ا
Robama tagma'ona aqdarona zat youmon

Perhaps one day our fates will cross,

بعدما عز اللقاء فإذ

Ba'ada ma aza el leqa'a
When we thought reunion is dear,

انكر خل خله 

Fa eza ankara khelon khelaho
If then lover denies lover,

وتلاقينا لقاء الغرباء 
Wa talaqina leqa'a algoraba'a

And we meet like strangers, 

ومضى كل إلى غايته 

Wamada kolon ela ghayatoto
Then go each to their own way,

لاتقل شئنا 
La taqol she'na

Don't say we wished,

فإن الحظ شاء
Fa ena alhaza sha'a

But that fate ... willed.