Saturday, 1 February 2020

Ramblings Of A Silly Old Man - CHAPTER THIRTY


In my day they were called O Levels - General Certificate of Education Ordinary Level. Today we have the same difference with GCSE - General Certificate of Secondary Education. Whatever - how many have you got ?

Do you have any A Levels - General Certificate of Education Advance Level ?

What about degrees, have you got any of them ?

Ooohh you boffin !

All this stuff, may i suggest, does not say how clever you are. Are you clever by the way ? Have you been clever enough to trad through this one before the penultimate chapter in The Ramblings Of A Silly Old Man ?

When I worked in Leon School as a senior member of staff by boss, the headmaster, said I reminded him of Blondin.  Are you lever enough to know who Blondin was. Hangon, hang on I'll tell you and spare you the need to ask Google. Charles Blondin was an acrobat and a tightrope walker. He  is famed for walking across the 1,100 ft Niagara Gorge on a tightrope. Half way across he pauses, pulled out a number of tennis balls then began to juggle. My boss said I was never happy taking the easy pathway and was never happy unless I was juggling half a dozen ideas at the same time.  Nothing has changed.

I could never live a life doing one simple thing, a nine to five job then coming home and switching off, how boring would that be ?

At my advancing time of life I should be retired and doing noting. What is retirement ?  Retirement is nothing more than waiting for god and as I explained in an earlier chapter there is not such thing as god so what's the point ?

As you have meandered you way through my ramblings you may well agree with my former boss and his assessment of my silly old lifestyle.

Stop and think for a moment. If you are an expert in one specific area then you can be of great help, support and influence within that area but outside it you will be completely useless. If you are a member of a local authority and an expert in managing the pot holes in the road what use are you when it comes to running schools in your local authority ?

Yes, we need experts - we need transplant surgeons but they need but then need to understand the wider aspects of medical care. Importantly there has to be an active engagement with people, patients, families and friends. A transplant surgeon can not operate without every other area of expertise supporting his operating table.

Only a fool can lead a blinkered life. A life that shuts out everything aside of his folly. If you want to make a positive impact in this world, a positive impact impact within your family, a positive impact within your community then you need to know a little about a lot of different areas. You can not succeed knowing a lot about just one thing.

Geeks ? Oh dear ! We need the products they develop but we need every geek to apply common sense which includes includes awareness of those who will become users of their systems.

To be a success in this world there is the need to take a global view, both literally and metaphorically.

It is better to know a little about a lot of things than it is to know a lot about one single thing.

I am a former school teacher. I am a radio DJ.  I am a local Councillor. I am a community worker and activist. Oh yes, I am also a writer. Unlike Blondin I could never walk a tight rope and I a scared silly of high places. Give me five balls to juggle and I'll drop six of themn on the floor.  I promise.

Wiz me back to my youth and sit me down with today's life experience and a series of GCE O Level papers in front of me. Sit me down without any revision which subjects would I pass and which would I fail.

ENGLISH - Yep, I'd pass that no problem.
MATHS - Fail, oh dear what a shame never mind.
SCIENCE - Fail big time but who cares ?
HISTORY - Yep, easy peasy.
GEOGRAPHY - Rubbish at school but I would pass Grade A today.
MUSIC - A walk in the park.
ART - Rubbish at school, rubbish now.

So I have only four to juggle on my Blondin tightrope of life.

How about you ?

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