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citymike
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Postby citymike » Tue Sep 26, 2006 8:41 pm

Moving Soon wrote: Trouble is, any such "secretary" who ever existed (if they did really exist and it's not just a classic case of fond remembrance of how good things were in the olden days)
I agree, I don't think society was ever so golden as some imagine. I even hear say that Winston Churchill was an alcoholic, Gandhi a womaniser, but Adolf Hitler faithful in personal relationships, teetotal, rather artistic and a vegetarian!! LOL

Likewise, some believe that the apostrophe more important than it actually was or is.
Moving Soon wrote: Even in the late '70s when I was a secretary the spectre of feminism was already raising its head and I can remember many an office row about "it's not my job to make the tea, I'm not a servant" going on. And Ricky Gervais thinks he invented something new!

I think we have had extremes of both feminism and chauvanism through the decades but I feel that these days in general we've reached a dialectic.

If any hot babes don't understand what dialectic means then pm me. Gerrowl!!

Brigitta
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Postby Brigitta » Tue Sep 26, 2006 11:31 pm

This really doesn't have much to do with this thread... but I received the following from an English friend in an E-mail today, and it reminded me of some of the posts I have read on this forum, so I figured I would share it :)


Being British in the 21st century


Being British is about driving in a German car to an
Irish pub for a Belgian beer, then travelling home,
grabbing an Indian curry or a Turkish kebab on the way,
to sit on Swedish furniture and watch American shows on
a Japanese TV. And the most British thing of all...?

...Suspicion of anything foreign.

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kevin77
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Postby kevin77 » Wed Sep 27, 2006 12:17 am

You're having a go at the Costa del Sol residents, right? :o

Brigitta
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Postby Brigitta » Wed Sep 27, 2006 12:21 am

Well, I was hoping it wasn't THAT obvious :) Guess I was mistaken. You found me out !

sueb
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Postby sueb » Mon Oct 02, 2006 10:02 am

Come on give the kids a break, we are all responsible for the change in our language. If Will Shakespear walked into your local bar (in the uk obviously) no one would understand him and he wouldn't understand you. Life and language move on.

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peteroldracer
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Postby peteroldracer » Mon Oct 02, 2006 10:26 am

Whilst I accept that language is a fluid resource, and it does change with time, I do get a tad (modern americanism!) frustrated with folk saying that Shakespeare would not understand us. He lived centuries ago, when most of the population was illiterate, so as reading and writing spread, there was a gradual concensus as to how words were used, which words were used, and grammar (def: knowledge or usage of the preferred or prescribed forms in speaking or writing) started to be established.
What bugs me, and many others here by the look of it, is the drastic deterioration since the education sector found an excuse not to be teachers, with claptrap theories about "self-learning", "discovery" and so on.
If the same theories were applied to driving a car, and pupils were just sat behind the wheel and encouraged to "just go ahead, explore, find out what does what, learn by experience" as happens in formal education, we would soon have carnage. Of course it would also be forbidden to test the pupils with a test, only wanting them to hand in some course work, like crayonned drawings of a car, to qualify - and naturally nobody would be allowed to fail. The proponents would then wait a suitable period before claiming success, pointing out that there was far less traffic on the roads - ignoring that this would be due to a massive decrease in the living population!
In my working life I have successfully trained many people to operate printing machinery, from spotty-faced Youth Training Scheme teenagers through to one lady in her 60s, and found the Tell & Show/You Tell Me/You Show Me method to be the only viable one. That is, I demonstrate the task, explaining and verifying each step with the trainee, then get them to tell me how to do it while I carry out the actions (which implants the concepts and removes the initial fear of doing something wrong), then get the student to do the task - checking for thorough understanding and agreement all the while. It was hard work mentally, required preparation and concentration, and was effective - which is why the poorly-educated jumper-wearing call-me-by-my-first-name so-called teachers of today will not do it!
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Postby Grouser » Mon Oct 02, 2006 12:12 pm

Peteroldracer, your views do not reflect current teaching methods. As I outlined in a previous posting education has now returned to the three 'R's'. In fact children nowadays are tested under exam conditions far more than they have ever been and I'm sure would be relieved to go back to the bad old days of the eleven plus.

A little quiz question for you: How many points to a pica? Remember points mean prizes.
Grouser

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peteroldracer
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Postby peteroldracer » Mon Oct 02, 2006 12:26 pm

Ah, back into the (good?) old pre-everything-decimal days! The answer is of course 12, and I claim my Crackerjack pencil!
"the bad old days of the eleven plus" ?
fear I must disagree with you there Grouser - it should have been an excellent way of sorting out the most appropriate form of schooling for the individual concerned.
If schooling has truly moved on, it should by testing at 11 be simple to segregate children according to potential and suitablity, and put them in appropriate schools. It is not a question of "Pass" or "Fail" if done properly, with practical and written/oral examinations. A good technical school could have top training workshops for the more manual skills best suited to a dextrous child, academic schools focus on a high level of theoretical study, and the junior schools concentrate on instilling high standards in English (with extra tuition available for non-ethnic English pupils) and Maths at least, with the American system of not progressing up a year until the current one is passed....
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Geraint
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Postby Geraint » Mon Oct 02, 2006 1:07 pm

[quote="peteroldracer"] The answer is of course 12, and I claim my Crackerjack pencil!
quote]

CRACKERJACK!

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Postby gavilan » Mon Oct 02, 2006 1:44 pm

not just an American system of holding children back until current year grades are passed ... schools around here do it too ...

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Postby blondie » Mon Oct 02, 2006 5:16 pm

please , no swearing here!! just the mention of the word Amer&ca winds me up, we´ll all be taking out the trash, with our *beep* bags on in a minute! :D

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Postby Grouser » Mon Oct 02, 2006 6:46 pm

Peteroldracer, that sort of happens anyway, with streaming within large schools. In cities with schools taking on specialist status there is also some sort of choice available, although this is much less true of rural areas where there is usually only one school anyway. I'm not sure how good an idea limiting options by making children make choices at a young age is in any case. My youngest son who is now doing A levels still doesn't really have the foggiest idea what he wants to do. His older brother had the same problem and took three years of floundering around before he found his way. By the way I am an ex grammar school boy and I would say the education both my boys have had equalled or possibly excelled anything I got except in one area. Hands on use of machinery. In this age of litigation, schools are dead frightened of letting children anywhere near a lathe or similar tools without one to one supervision, which, due to costs, is almost never available.

Your virtual pencil is winging its way to you as we speak. Now tell me what is the next size up from a pica, is it an em?
Grouser

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peteroldracer
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Postby peteroldracer » Mon Oct 02, 2006 7:39 pm

An Em in movable type is the width of the upper case letter M, and was the standard measure for type. A 12 point em is a pica. And before you ask, an En is the width of.....the upper case letter N !
Maybe schooling is not as bad as I feared, at least in theory, from what you say, and maybe it is the increased access and interest in communicating that has come with the internet and the mobile phone text that has shown up what has probably always been a poor general standard. So people who would never write a letter, now or in the old days, will text and email all over the place - on balance it is probably a good thing, but it is up to prospective employers to test the level of competence if (ok citymike?) it is an important part of the job function of the candidate. For sure, possesion of GCSE or A level certificates means nothing, as these are dished out by schools to keep them in the right place in the league tables, not as certificates of competence.
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Grouser
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Postby Grouser » Tue Oct 03, 2006 11:51 am

Excellent.
Grouser

Moving Soon
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Postby Moving Soon » Tue Oct 03, 2006 12:53 pm

I've just read an article in the Manchester Evening News about Marks & Spencer being forced to withdraw children's pyjamas from sale as they carried the words "Baby Giraffe's" and a customer complained.

The piece quoted a spokesperson from The Apostrophe Protection Society - I didn't know such a thing existed, some people are obviously even more obsessive (or sad) than me.

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peteroldracer
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Postby peteroldracer » Tue Oct 03, 2006 1:00 pm

The only sad thing about this is that no one at Marks & Spencer understood that they could say that the slogan meant that the pyjamas belonged to a baby giraffe!
As I and many others have said, nobody proofreads any more, or they read their own output which is fatal!
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peteroldracer
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Postby peteroldracer » Tue Oct 03, 2006 1:34 pm

Following the comment on the Apostrophe Society, I had a peek at their site, which has an active forum. For those who enjoy wordplay and language, there are some witty threads there too!
One on phrases and sayings came up with the following, which at least is relevant:-
"Have you heard about the coach party from San Sebastian in northern Spain, who all tried to go through a revolving door together, and ended up horribly mutilated. Never put all your Basques in one exit."
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Grouser
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Postby Grouser » Fri Oct 06, 2006 12:12 pm

Peteroldracer your virtual Crackerjack pencil has arrived, not quite at the speed of light as it had to be hand crafted in Cumberland

Image
Grouser

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peteroldracer
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Postby peteroldracer » Fri Oct 06, 2006 12:29 pm

Grouser - you are a star!!
:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:
The only problem now is that the nice man in a white coat who gives me my breakfast and colonic irrigation will not let me have anything sharp, so rather than use it, I will preserve it in its virgin state.
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silver
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Postby silver » Fri Oct 06, 2006 12:36 pm

Geraint will be wanting his now :)
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