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Sunday 19 September 2010

Then and Now revisited.


Home Security

Then: We could leave our houses unlocked.

Now: Double locks, security alarms, gated compounds, and we still get burgled.

Air Travel

Then: Even though we had an active campaign by the IRA, boarding a plane from arrival at the airport to sitting in your seat only took one hour at the most.


  • Arrive at the airport three hours before the flight.
  • Questioned at length during check in. “Did you packs these bags yourself” (No it was my Islamic Butler).
  • Passport scanned at passport control whilst facial recognition technology scans your every twitch.
  • Arrive at security and take belt, coat, shoes and just about everything else off.
  • Take everything out of pockets and place everything in a little tray to be x rayed. hand luggage as well.
  • Pass through full body scanner.
  • Asked if I packed my hand luggage. (See above).
  • Numerous announcements incessantly telling us to look out for suspicious packages. (We’re lucky if we can get non suspicious packages through. I.e, our luggage). And what is a suspicious package anyway. Does it have a sticker on it such as, “May contain Bombs”.


Then: You could smoke almost anywhere. Except the lower compartment of a double decker bus for some reason. But fair enough.

Now: Well, I don’t know where to begin. I can still smoke in my own home for now. How long that will continue to be case is unknown. There’s bound to be some faked up study in the near future that will attempt to outlaw that last little essence of freedom.


Then: Every village had a police house and a resident Policeman. Our Policeman was called Kevin, was 6ft 3ins, and built like the proverbial brick shit house. Kevin was by nature a sociable chap and used to wander around the village and chat to all and sundry. He was also very clever, in that he built up a mental database of who the miscreants were, and what was their modus operandi. Crime and antisocial behaviour were no problem.

Now: Kevin was moved on and the police house sold. The village is now awash with litter, vandalism, and no-one has a personal representative of the police to talk to. (Except a useless, brain dead, PCSO). The only police I see are going mach1 in their souped up Skodas.


Then: I was taught the traditional way. In maths you learnt the tables. In English I was taught using synthetic phonics. For writing I had to write each letter over and over again. It worked for me. And all supported by discipline in the classroom.

Now: Teaching is now ruled by a fear of upsetting the cheeeeldren. Maths is a joke. My sister asked me for help with a simultaneous equation (New maths was being taught), and I solved it in six lines of working. Oh no. The new maths needed 2 pages of reasoning.

Spelling is now not taught by assembling words. Oh no, that is too demeaning to those who can’t straight away master the technique, so instead pupils are taught a basic vocabulary instead.


No I’m not going to go there, apart from saying that there are no discernible difference between the parties. Now I can’t get a fag paper between the coalition and labour.


Then: They were the Johnney  foreigners and we seemed to manage without them. In fact we enjoyed thrashing the french when we could.

Now: We’re seriously fucked.

Global warming

Then: No such thing. All the rage was global cooling

Now: This skeptic rages against the machine.


Ok, do I make myself clear? Or do I need to be carted off to an old peoples home, under the mental health act?

Sssh. Now he’s gone.

The pope that is.

One for the Golfers.


A nun walks into Mother Superior's office and plunks down into a chair. She lets out a sigh heavy with frustration. 

'What troubles you, Sister?' asked the Mother Superior.. 'I thought this was the day you spent with your family.'

'It was,' sighed the Sister. 'And I went to play golf with my brother. We try to play golf as often as we can. You know I was quite a talented golfer before I devoted my life to Christ.'

'I seem to recall that,' the Mother Superior agreed. 'So I take it your day of recreation was not relaxing?'

'Far from it,' snorted the Sister. 'In fact, I even took the Lord's name in vain today!'

'Goodness, Sister!' gasped the Mother Superior, astonished. 'You must tell me all about it!'

'Well, we were on the fifth tee...and this hole is a monster, Mother -540 yard Par 5, with a nasty dogleg left and a hidden green...and I hit the drive of my life. I creamed it. The sweetest swing I ever made. 
And it's flying straight and true, right along the line I wanted...and it hits a bird in mid-flight !' 

'Oh my!' commiserated the Mother. 'How unfortunate! But surely that didn't make you blaspheme, Sister!'

'No, that wasn't it,' admitted Sister. 'While I was still trying to fathom what had happened, this squirrel runs out of the woods, grabs my ball and runs off down the fairway!' 

'Oh, that would have made me blaspheme!' sympathized the Mother..

'But I didn't, Mother!' sobbed the Sister. 'And I was so proud of myself! And while I was pondering whether this was a sign from God, this hawk swoops out of the sky and grabs the squirrel and flies off, with my ball still clutched in his paws!'

'So that's when you cursed,' said the Mother with a knowing smile.

'Nope, that wasn't it either,' cried the Sister, anguished, 'because as the hawk started to fly out of sight, the squirrel started struggling, and the hawk dropped him right there on the green, and the ball popped out of his paws and rolled to about 18 inches from the cup!'

Mother Superior sat back in her chair, folded her arms across her chest, fixed the Sister with a baleful stare and said... 
'You missed the fucking putt, didn't you?'