Friday thought

Too many politicians keep their spouses in employment while screwing the electorate.

It should be the other way around.

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Stop Tesco in Stirchley campaign

Another Stirchley is Possible is a local campaign opposing Tesco’s plan to build a superstore in Stirchley. 

 
The campaigners, who aim to promote real, locally based regeneration for the area, are holding a public consultation:

Stirchley Community Centre
Saturday 12 July
10.00 – 14.00

to ask residents what developments they’d like to see in their neighbourhood.

They say:

“There are many reasons why we think that another Superstore in Stirchley is not needed:

  • Massive increase in traffic in already jammed Pershore Rd
  • Tesco’s buying power (4th largest retailer in the world) means it will force all other local retailers out of business
  • We want a Stirchley which will attract visitors and people to live here, not drive in, shop and drive out.”

They don’t appear to have a website (hey guys, set up a blog!) [Edited:  they have:]

Another Stirchley is Possible

Email:  anotherstirchley@live.co.uk 

This is what Friends of The Earth say about the Tesco scheme.

And here is some detailed planning stuff from Tescopoly.

Last chance to catch Jarvis

I’ve just realised that Jarvis Cocker’s Musical Map of Sheffield is about to drop off the BBC’s iPlayer.

It’s as much a musical map of Jarvis as of his home town.  Shot through with his laconic humanity and with some nice impressionistic audio – as well as some blindingly obvious Steel City tunes, of course.

Engels, The Sweeney, preparing for interplanetary travel, tenacious bits of tree and a cut-price Apocalyse Now.  Well worth a listen.

You can hear the programme here, until 10.30 this evening, 8 July (the link may be broken after that time, sorry).

Oh, don’t be frightened by the organ music at the beginning.  Jarvis’s programme starts about four minutes in.

Parents’ not-really-an-evening

Tonight I went to what was desribed as a “parents’ evening” at my youngest son’s school.  I say tonight, but the so-called “evening” started at 3.30pm and finished at 6.00pm.

I’d guess that most people  would describe that as an afternoon.  Doesn’t the evening actually start about 6.00pm, not end then?

Don’t get me wrong.  My father was a teacher and I have several friends who are teachers.  I know how hard they work. On more than one occasion I’ve known a teacher go home after an evening out, to carry on with their marking while I was happy to get home and crash into bed.

But when they schedule an event so that most working parents will have to take time off work to get there, and then call it an “evening”, it does rather play into the hands of those who reckon that teachers normally clock off about 4.00pm

Just a suggestion – why not call it a parents’ review meeting instead?  Or maybe you can come up with a better suggestion.

This week’s Archers – I take responsibility

I wrote the episodes of The Archers which go out this week: Sunday 6 to Friday 11 July, plus the omnibus on Sunday 13 July.

They pick up from an exciting cliffhanger last Friday, when it became absolutely clear to Fallon that her boyfriend Ed was still in thrall to his former partner (and brother’s ex-wife) Emma.

On a more comic tip, it’s the moment that David’s been dreading, as his 15-year-old daughter Pip takes part in a “Moulin Rouge” parade. Voulez-vous watchez avec Pa?

You can hear The Archers on BBC Radio 4 (1900 hrs and 1400 hrs), or via a plethora of trendy methods such as streaming and podcasts.  All via the BBC’s Archers website, which also has a lot of useful background if you’re thinking “Fallon?  Ed?  Who are these people?”

Twitter art

I’ve become a patron of the arts.

In a very small way, using that smallest of communication tools, Twitter.

If you don’t know Twitter, it’s a means of sharing short messages with friends and contacts around the world (or around the corner).  The effect is rather like working in an open plan office, where you chat briefly about what you’re doing, or ask for help, or recommend something that you’ve seen or heard.

You can also overhear the discussions that your friends are having – and contribute to them if you want.  Or you can have the equivalent of a private convesation in the stationery cupboard. My latest “tweet” (sorry, but that’s what they’re called) is in the right hand column of this page.

But where does the art fit in?

twit2art9
twit2art#9

A Belgian artist called Jan Leenders has had a brilliant idea. You send him a tweet.  (This seems to be called a “twit” in what I presume is Flemish, which is just as bad a name, I think you’ll agree).

And he turns it – the actual words of the tweet – into a work of art.  A real, physical piece of art, on canvas – the picture above is of one he did earlier.

Even cleverer, the first one he did, he charged one euro.  The second, two euros, and so on.

Mine is number 39 in the list, so I’ll be paying 39 euros. 

I think it’s a really imaginative way of combining social media and art.  And, of course, if it catches on he’ll be selling later works for thousands of euros.

You can see the full list of tweets, and the works he’s completed at Twit2art.