Daily Prompt: Fierce

Sometimes love can be quietly comforting, gentle and tender like a mewling kitten. But sometimes the best of love can be fierce as a roaring lion. Passion can be aroused in all sorts of ways – mothers protect their chidren with a fearsome ferocity, lovers couple with a savage lust, artists create with an exquisite intensity. Fierce love burns like a blazing fire glowing everywhere around us, and I for one think the world is a far better place for it  ❤

Daily Prompt: Fierce

Discover Challenge: Open-Minded

As someone who has been judged and found to be lacking all my life due to being different from the norm, I try hard to be tolerant myself of all kinds of difference in others. It’s not always easy, but I do my best. I’m a natural introvert at heart, and have spent a lifetime struggling with recurring bouts of depression that remained undiagnosed until my early twenties yet caused a lot of upset and distress within my immediate family during my teenage years and beyond. Growing up I was always labelled ‘the difficult one’ because I simply didn’t fit in with everyone else’s expectations of who I should be.

And it seems that once you’ve been labelled as lacking by your family, that label sticks no matter what comes afterwards. Even now there’s a better understanding within my family of depression and just how debilitating it can be, no-one has bothered to update the labels of ‘difficult’ and ‘awkward’ as applied to me. So although others within the family who are suffering from depression are now given some basic level of familial understanding, and more importantly allowances are made for their fragile mental state and the sometimes erratic behaviour that arises from that, it seems that basic understanding is not to be applied retrospectively.

I do try to correct that misjudgement whenever possible – my mum will be recounting a family tale and will say ‘Well of course, Ruth always had to be so difficult’ in her usual indulgent smiling-but-disparaging way, so I pull her up on it and remind her that I was depressed, not deliberately being difficult. But it seems it doesn’t suit mum’s life narrative for me to be anything other than the teenage thorn in her side of her memory, so sadly I’m still remembered as being a recalcitrant and badly-behaved child rather than a young adult who was struggling emotionally, completely out of her depth.

Anyway, the point of this post is to explain why I try so hard to be as open-minded and fair as far as possible, and not to be immediately judgemental of others straight out of the box. I always like to get to know each individual or group’s invisible back-story before I make any decisions on their actions or their worth. The bottom line for me is that I truly understand the unfairness of difference being judged as being deliberately difficult and by extension dangerous, and I understand the frustration felt by (through no fault of your own) being deemed a potential threat to the status quo within each familial, cultural and societal norm so many of us take for granted every day.

Discover Challenge: Open-Minded

 

 

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Frame

Water-tower-1Water-tower-2Water-tower-3Water-tower-4Water-tower-5

Much as I love photographing nature, I also find myself drawn to ugly urban industrial constructions with their solid utilitarian-looking unfinished frameworks – this water tower at our local hospital is still painted black on the open to the elements side, yet has a beautiful lichen green patina on the damp side that sits permanantly shaded by the tall tree canopy behind it.

No prizes for guessing which side caught my attention 🙂

Weekly Photo Challenge: Frame

Daily Prompt: Expert

Waiting-room

Another day, another waiting room…

My husband and I are getting to the age where we seem to be spending a lot more time in waiting rooms… GP waiting rooms, hospital waiting rooms, waiting for the resident health expert of the day to advise as necessary.

So far this year we’ve sat in many such waiting areas, biding our time, and I’m sure there’ll be several more to visit before the year is out… 🙂

Daily Prompt: Expert

Daily Prompt: Cheat

One of my many job roles in life has been to work as part of a team of administrators dealing with Breaches of Academic Regulations within a London University.

The most common breach of academic regulation we came across was that of plagiarism, the taking of someone else’s words and/ or ideas without acknowledgement and passing them off as your own – otherwise known as cheating. It never ceased to amaze me that so many university-level students saw absolutely nothing wrong in copying and pasting whole swathes of text direct from the internet without even trying to edit them in any way, as they seemed to have formed the impression that if it’s available online, it’s free to use without censure, and therefore a legitimate method of resource gathering.

Another common form of cheating was paying someone else to write your essays for you – again, many students simply understood this as a way to get through life. If you don’t have the knowledge to fix your car, you pay a mechanic to fix it for you. In the same vein, so their thinking goes, if you don’t have the knowledge to write your own essay, you simply pay someone else to do it for you. Many were outraged that having ‘legally’ bought written-to-order unplagiarised essays from what they considered to be a ‘reputable’ source, they were being ‘unfairly’ penalised through being failed by the academic marking the work.

The written evidence provided by the students in their defense was sometimes amazingly naive – one even provided the receipt from the online essay-writing service he had used to prove that his essay wasn’t stolen from anyone, which he would consider to be immoral. But he felt that having paid for it, all was above board. In his book, stealing was bad, but buying an essay and handing it in as his own work was perfectly OK…

Another student was only caught cheating when he complained to the academic who had marked his essay, saying that he had handed in an exact copy of his friend’s essay from a previous year for the same subject (although taught by a different tutor), yet had received a lower mark than his friend, and he felt this disparity in marking was unfair, so he wanted the work to be remarked. Suffice to say, despite his continued indignance the work was summarily failed…

Just to say, only a very small proportion of students cheat their way through university – but it was certainly a lot more than I’d expected before taking on that particular job role 🙂

Daily Prompt: Cheat

 

 

 

Daily Prompt: Obvious

One irritating by-product of today’s overly-litigious society is the stupidity of some of the No-Shit-Sherlock warnings on everyday items that seem to have originated in the Department of the Bleedin’ Obvious for the sole purpose of annoying the hell out of grumpy old gits like me. For example, I buy a hot coffee in a takeaway cup and the cup states ‘Warning – contents may be hot’ and all I can think is ‘Well I should bloody well hope so, that’s why I’m buying it!’ Grrrr… 🙂

Daily Prompt: Obvious