Monthly Archives: March 2007

I am probably going to regret this….

Today I ordered 10 metres of workwear twill in ‘cypress green’ to recover some chairs for the less-formal breakfast/dining room on the ground floor of the hotel. The plan is to lift the carpet, paint the floorboards, and offer it as a place for families to eat where there won’t be constant tutting from guests who object to children enjoying their food. Washable floor, washable tables….

Well, I hope it’ll work.

Anyway, this evening saw me having a fairly frank (yes, that’s a polite way of describing it) discussion with a much-loved male family- member (no, not the husband!) around the idea of gender and gender identity.

His argument was based on the biblical/religious masculine/feminine divide which basically precludes a woman from ever having any position of power or leadership over a man, because ‘it just doesn’t work.’  Men, by contrast, are apparently naturally embued with all the qualities of a good leader – particularly over women.

As you can imagine, this didn’t go down terribly well.  On most of the personality tests I’m so far down the masculine side that it’s really not funny.  I’ve been told that I ‘think like a boy’ (Maths teacher at secondary school), that I’m ‘a martinet, cold, scary…’ (assorted hangers-on), that I really ought to grow my hair and so on and so on.  Fortunately for me, being a thinking-type woman is a lot less problematic than being a feeling-type man in our society.

Generally, my experience can be summed up by this blog posting. She puts it a lot more clearly than I ever could – and infinitely more clearly than I can do at this time of night!

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Grumpy sod

That we me yesterday, so I was unceremoniously kicked out and told to have a day off.

I went to Melrose, and found some lovely quilting cottons in a more-than-half-price sale at The Fabric Shop as well as lemon cake and tea at Papa Jacks.  I had lunch at a place which will remain nameless: perfectly nice, but definitely in a hurry to get the table back….  Back home to prewash the cottons, and dream about having time to sew.

My apologies for the radio silence over the past fortnight or so – very little to show for my time except lots of clean laundry, happy customers, and more clean laundry….

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On a grey day

It’s lovely to find a post full of spring.

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Unexpected consequences

The course I’m studying is supposed to enable me to return to the world of paid employment in Science.  What it’s actually doing is making me think very hard about the position of women in society, and the whole feminist idea.  Like many my age, I suspect, I had thought that feminism had fought and won all the major battles in the 60’s.

I’ve bumped into a blog posting which is making me think a lot – and I would appreciate input from anyone who knows more about it.

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Jed in the spring

Well, almost.  I went for a walk along the riverside on Sunday afternoon in between the rain showers and took my camera with me for company.

The trees are still bare on the skyline above the Headrig:
bare_tree

but the crocus carpet around a boarded up house on the Bongate is stunning!
crocus_carpet

On my way down the river I spotted a trio of Goosanders (Mergus merganser) which I’ve seen off-and-on this winter.  They are diving ducks and eat fish, so that’s a good sign in terms of the health of the river.

goosander_on_jed

And on the way back I got a lovely view of sunshine on the cauld.
jedburgh_cauld

I also spotted some old winding gear on the bank above the cauld – I’ll need to do some asking around to find out what used to be there.
winding_gear

Today the Jed is bank full, brown, and there isn’t a bird in sight. Sensible creatures. The duck I saw walking up the cauld yesterday would have been half-way down the river if it had tried that trick today! The river must have risen a good 30 cm overnight – unsurprising as it’s one of Scotland’s fastest-rising rivers.

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Committed

According to the UK govt., that’s what they are about basic science and research:

The Government’s long term vision, set out in the Ten Year Science & Innovation Investment Framework, is to make Britain one of the best places in the world for science, research and innovation – the successful exploitation of new ideas incorporating new technologies, design and best practice. Our challenges to achieve that vision include sustaining and developing the UK’s world-class research base, strengthening its links with business and other users, enabling knowledge transfer, and promoting innovation in products, services and processes.

http://www.dti.gov.uk/science/

According to me, that’s what should be done to the numpty at the DTI who’s decided to nick back £68 million from our research councils to cover the fact that they tried to shore up a failing car company for far too long (privately owned, might I add) and completely miscalculated the associated costs of our nuclear energy program (also private, I believe!).

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