Saturday, June 20, 2009

Utt(er)ly barmy

Authors routinely complain about boorish punters at book signings, but I don't think any of them tried the Uttley solution. The formidable children's author apparently didn't like the prospect of dealing with real children:
Dimly, she perceived an overwhelming mob running at her and with British pluck she unhesitatingly grabbed her duck-handled umbrella and waded into the attack, felling infants right and left. The kiddies paused, briefly regrouped, then broke up and ran off, screaming in terror. Uttley strode among them, lashing out freely.
I'm warming to her and her rabbits....

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Voluntary = Compulsory

In the brave new world of education, a "voluntary" contribution to the cost of a child's education is actually compulsory.
It read like a letter from a debt-collector. "Our accounts indicate you have not made a contribution," it stated. "Our records indicate you have not contacted us." In fact, it was a letter from a state primary school. And it was asking for "voluntary" contributions of £40 from parents to its annual fund.

"I recognise that you may feel unable to pay the full amount," the chair of governors went on. "We always invite parents to write to us to explain their circumstances and propose an alternative."