Friday, 11 April 2014

#56 V-TECH PUSH AND RIDE ALPHABET TRAIN LETTER BLOCKS-HENGE - Friday Night Toddler Art Gallery

#56 - V-TECH PUSH AND RIDE ALPHABET TRAIN LETTER BLOCKS-HENGE



V-Tech Push and Ride Alphabet Train letter blocks, colours various

I think we’re nearly coming to the end of curating these pop-up art works.



Either The Artists are losing heart in the process, or we are getting better at hiding the writing and drawing instruments.

But still they keep coming, like this one.



The full gallery of toddler art is here...

Please feel free to send me your examples - I'd love to see any of yours if you leave a comment below with any picture links...

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Where the term “It’s a bit nippy” came from - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS


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Thursday, 10 April 2014

Explaining the concept of the United Kingdom to a 5 year old - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS

- Explaining the concept of the United Kingdom to a 5 year old -



I’ve fielded questions from my 5 year old on everything, from why do you always only see half of the moon through to asking if Darth Vader knows God
(because apparently, you know, they both made stars).

But the hardest thing I've had to explain is his nationality.

We live in Britain. You’re British.
Is what I want to say.
“Great Britain” is correct, but it sounds showy.
Piss-takey even.

And no-one else calls it that.



It’s the United Kingdom, but I’m told that doesn’t cover all of it, and it’s useless anyway because you can’t say you’re UK’ish.

And then everyone else in the UK (or British Isles) wants to call us English.

Which is balls - because that’s not even a country.
(I’ve tried, but crosses on pasty-faced white van men in red facepaint doesn’t yet make a regional administrative district a nationality.)

So now we’re up to 5 ways of describing what we are, and not one of them does the job.


I know the problem lies with me... I can’t explain it to my toddler.


Good luck on your vote, Scotland!



All my 2014 Dad Lessons For My Kids are here

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Why White 4x4 Drivers Are The Worst People In The World - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS


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Wednesday, 9 April 2014

Why White 4x4 Drivers Are The Worst People In The World - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS

- Why White 4x4 Drivers Are The Worst People In The World -

It was an earlier lesson that white 4x4s (or SUV’s) are the rudest cars on the road.

It only just hit me why we are pre-programmed to hate them.





They look like Stormtroopers.

Or maybe George Lucas modelled the Stormtrooper on your typical white 4x4 car and occupant.


[INSERT VIDEO OF ME WALKING PAST A WHITE 4X5 IN A CARPARK OVERDUBBED WITH MY SON SINGING "THE DARTH VADER MARCH FROM STAR WARS BY JOHN WILLIAMS"]




All my 2014 Dad Lessons For My Kids are here

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Getting 2 year olds ready for school, Ofsted? Stop Stealing Dreams by Seth Godin


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Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Getting 2 year olds ready for school, Ofsted? Stop Stealing Dreams by Seth Godin

"Too many nurseries are failing to ensure children are ready to learn when they get to primary school, Ofsted's chief inspector says."

I read this, "Nurseries not preparing children for school" and my heart sank.

Ofsted scathed about our nursery "not having enough real world items in its play area".

So we donated a kettle.

Like our kids haven't got enough "real world" items at home.

Anyway, my heart sank because it brought to mind this:



I know the guy can't spell "labour", but here are 10 random quotes:

"The plan: trade short-term child-labor wages for longer-term productivity by giving kids a head start in doing what they’re told. Large-scale education was not developed to motivate kids or to create scholars.

It was invented to churn out adults who worked well within the system. Scale was more important than quality, just as it was for most industrialists."

"If you do a job where someone tells you exactly what to do, he will find someone cheaper than you to do it. And yet our schools are churning out kids who are stuck looking for jobs where the boss tells them exactly what to do.
Do you see the disconnect here?
Every year, we churn out millions of workers who are trained to do 1925-style labor."

"As we get ready for the ninety-third year of universal public education, here’s the question every parent and taxpayer needs to wrestle with:

Are we going to applaud, push, or even permit our schools... to continue the safe but ultimately doomed strategy of churning out predictable, testable, and mediocre factory workers?

As long as we embrace (or even accept) standardized testing, fear of science, little attempt at teaching leadership, and most of all, the bureaucratic imperative to turn education into a factory itself, we’re in big trouble."

"5. Column A and Column B
Aware
Caring
Committed
Creative
Goal-setting
Honest
Improvising
Incisive
Independent
Informed
Initiating
Innovating
Insightful
Leading
Strategic
Supportive ———————————- > or Obedient

Which column do you pick?
Whom do you want to work for or work next to?
Whom do you want to hire?
Which doctor do you want to treat you?
Whom do you want to live with?

Last question: If you were organizing a trillion-dollar, sixteen-year indoctrination program to turn out the next generation of our society, which column would you build it around?"

"Mass customization of school isn’t easy. Do we have any choice, though?

If mass production and mass markets are falling apart, we really don’t have the right to insist that the schools we designed for a different era will function well now."

"Here are a dozen ways school can be rethought:

Homework during the day, lectures at night
Open book, open note, all the time
Access to any course, anywhere in the world
Precise, focused instruction instead of mass, generalized instruction
The end of multiple-choice exams
Experience instead of test scores as a measure of achievement
The end of compliance as an outcome
Cooperation instead of isolation
Amplification of outlying students, teachers, and ideas
Transformation of the role of the teacher
Lifelong learning, earlier work
Death of the nearly famous college"


"Dreamers don’t help with either of these problems. Dreamers aren’t busy applying for jobs at minimum wage, they don’t eagerly buy the latest fashions, and they’re a pain in the ass to keep happy. "

Stop Stealing Dreams by Seth Godin
http://www.sethgodin.com/sg/docs/StopStealingDreamsSCREEN.pdf


Or maybe this Uncle Buck clip does it better: (0:56 secs in)




All my favourite Seth Godin quotes are here


All my 2014 Dad Lessons For My Kids are here

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2 Night Minimum Stay Hotel Hilarity - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS


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Monday, 7 April 2014

2 Night Minimum Stay Hotel Hilarity - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS


- 2 Night Minimum Stay Hotel Hilarity -



Had this conversation with a hotel a few weeks ago.

I need to book a hotel room for a night, which happens to be a Saturday night.

It’s a popular town, and good hotel rooms are at a premium.

So hardly any hotels rent out their rooms for the Saturday only - they insist on a 2 night minimum.

I completely understand that - that they’d want to maximise their profit.



ME:
(ON THE PHONE)
So I’m checking availability for April 5th.

HOTEL:
(ON THE PHONE)
Yes, we have only one room available that night - it’s our Queensize double.

ME:
Great, can I book it please?

HOTEL:
No, we have a policy of a 2 night minimum at weekends.

AT THIS POINT I’M THINKING I MIGHT BOOK IT FOR 2 NIGHTS.

ME:
Right, so is it available on the Friday or Sunday?

HOTEL:
No. You’d have to move to a different room on either day.

ME:
But the room’s available on Saturday though, right?

HOTEL:
Yes.

ME:
So can I book it?

HOTEL:
Only if you book another room for a second night. It’s our policy, to fill the hotel.

ME:
Sorry, I’m confused - I have to book for 2 nights, but the room isn’t available for 2 nights?

HOTEL:
No, you’ll have to move rooms on the second night. It’s our policy.

ME:
Huh.

One month on, and still can't think of an hilarious way to end this conversation with them.


All my 2014 Dad Lessons For My Kids are here

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Sunday, 6 April 2014

Late Night with David Letterman - FAVE TV #26


I've had this draft post sitting on blogger for years...

David Letterman announced his retirement this week, so here I've set up a retirement home for some favourite clips.
I'll add to it as I go along.

All I know is that very late one night in 1989, during a strike that blacked out all advertising on Channel 4
(TV strikes! I'm so old, I remember those).
I was recording something on VHS and the tape ran on to this weird American show.

It was completely unpublicised and unannounced.

"Do you have a clip"



I didn't get the references, and that almost made even more unspeakably cool. Most teenagers seem to have music or an album that suddenly for no apparent reason clicks and resonates. They describe it as chiming with how they are wired - that's what happened when I saw this.

Here's Late Night Monkey Cam



Lesser shows think a segment has to be 'good' or 'work', but for Dave (and Steve Allen before him) it's not about the segment... it's about the host's reaction to the segment.

13 cameras instead of 4



Alka Seltzer Suit



Hal Gurnee's Network Time Killers



Camera goes nuts and runs amok






My full Top 100 TV list is here...

Or... heres the last few...
#25 Fave sketch show sketches
#24 Alan Johnston Vigil
#23 TV News sucks
#22 THE GOOD WIFE
#21 ALL TV MUSIC PERFORMANCES FROM THE 1970'S
#20 Tiswas

#19 The Cinema Ads
#18 Mystery Science Theater 3000
#17 Space Ghost, Coast To Coast
#16 The Adverts

#15 Ron Swanson on Parks and Recreation
#14 LE TOUR DE FRANCE
#13 Engelbert Humperdinck on the BBC VT Xmas tape 1979
#12 My favourite clip about writing TV sitcoms


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Hates - People who deliberately hold their glasses to pose for photos like Martin Sorrell


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Thursday, 3 April 2014

Where the term “It’s a bit nippy” came from - DAD LESSONS FOR MY KIDS

- Where the term “It’s a bit nippy” came from -



Went out with a girl once who, when trying on clothes in shops, knew exactly what to buy.

"I can tell, because when I try something on, I know it's right if I can tell that my nipples have gone hard."

How great are nipples.

Not only can they sustain the newborn,
they can also guide you through the sales at H&M.

(And that is where we got the term “a bit nippy”.
Because this is what the cold weather does to them.)


All my 2014 Dad Lessons For My Kids are here

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Fave sketch show sketches - FAVE TV #25


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Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Fave sketch show sketches - FAVE TV #25


Working through my top 100 favourite TV moments...
This is where I'll put the favourite sketches...
...bit difficult because they appear and disappear online as the rights ebb and flow...
and nowhere seems to credit the specific writers for specific sketches...
But here goes...

Dickens Fruit Corner


Kenny Everett 12 Days of Christmas


George Michael. Stars in your eyes. Or Stars For His Eyes. (Vic & Bob)



...and a tonne of Saturday Night Live stuff...

Disney Channel Acting School - Saturday Night Live


Bein' Quirky With Zooey Deschanel (Featuring Zooey Deschanel) - Saturday Night Live


Obama... "I keep it cool" (with Fred Armisen)


24 Hour Energy Drink for dating an actress



My full Top 100 TV list is here...

Or... BEHOLD!
#24 Alan Johnston Vigil
#23 TV News sucks
#22 THE GOOD WIFE
#21 ALL TV MUSIC PERFORMANCES FROM THE 1970'S
#20 Tiswas

#19 The Cinema Ads
#18 Mystery Science Theater 3000
#17 Space Ghost, Coast To Coast
#16 The Adverts

#15 Ron Swanson on Parks and Recreation
#14 LE TOUR DE FRANCE
#13 Engelbert Humperdinck on the BBC VT Xmas tape 1979
#12 My favourite clip about writing TV sitcoms


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Hates - People who deliberately hold their glasses to pose for photos like Martin Sorrell


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Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Hates - People who deliberately hold their glasses to pose for photos like Martin Sorrell

Hates - People who deliberately hold their glasses to pose for photos like Martin Sorrell.

(source)

It’s not fair, and it’s not right, and I don’t believe in violence, but this picture really winds me up.

For some reason, I have a primal hatred of people who deliberately hold their glasses to pose for photos.

And I think this man started the whole thing.

I believe he is a “marketing expert”.

This stupid photo, by itself, is already having me imagining that he’s deliberately applying a theory that holding your glasses in photos will deliver some “key messaging” that this will make you look ‘pro-active’. ‘Engaged’.

It’s not an accident. He’s got form.
It's his 'thing'.

(Source)

Agh. Why?

It’s like you can’t look at me without being distracted.

Why do I know deep down that you are about to speak very slowly.

At me.

(WHILE DOING MEDIA TRAINING HAND GESTURES)
With some finger-jab half-points to punctuate your politician hand jiving while you emphasise your one-way conversation.

You don't neeed to touch them.

I promise you, they'll stay on your face even without your surefooted Alpha guidance...



No! Stop it. Everyone's at it!

I need to calm down.
Let me pause for a moment while I just hold my pen and stare into middle distance while I gather my great thoughts.

[INSERT AFFECTED SELFIE HERE]
I'm thinking:
"I need to add this to my list of hates."

All my 2014 Dad Lessons For My Kids are here

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The theme to Toast by Matt Berry


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