Wednesday, 19 January 2011
It's pretty obvious that ema is hugely flawed.
Judging how much a kid gets based on their parents earning is ridiculous; for someone who's parents earn say £1000 over the means testing threshold, the system effectively assumes that all of that £1000 will be spent on that child's two years at college, regardless of other familial overheads and bills etc that the parents (whose income you test after all) have to pay for. Even though whose parents are further over the threshold have those things to think about! Having parents who earn above the means testing threshold does NOT assure that money goes to the child's education.
And extolling ema as an incentive to get kids to go to college? Rubbish. Give a kid £30 a week and tell him "you must spend this on books and paper etc, but we've got no way of checking whether that's what you're actually using it for, or if the tax payer's are giving you a night out, so have fun" and what do you expect to happen? There are plenty of people out there who see high school as a chore, and as soon as they hit 16 want to get out of the system, so why drag them back in with a hand out? So they can sit on classrooms, if they ever turn up, an distract those of us who want to work hard, who want that education? So they can be the 'problem' kids? Give them something more worthwhile to do! Don't give them 'something for nothing' to the detriment of others who actually want to remain in the education system.
I truly believe there is merit in a meritocratic system, and to be honest, the abolition of ema is a first step to that - it's harsh but it's true. Some people aren't built for college, and academia. But that's not to say they aren't 'worth as much' or 'less human' or any of this other foundational equality mirth - those not cut out for academia have other skills that society should by now have learnt how to utilise, for our sake and theirs.
I'm all for equality of opportunity, which is why I believe any ema-like system should not judge just on monetary grounds but on some degree of academic ability: every one has had the same opportunity at high school, so those that can show they actually want to continue with education should obviously have that chance.
So in essence, I agree with the scrappage of ema. It was an unfair system anyway, implemented poorly.
How did people manage to get through college before ema? Ask my brother and sister. Ask me. Or get a job. Thrift. Save and don't spend. Don't assume you 'deserve' a handout - life is hard and everyone has to to work at what they want. But as I say, removing ema should theoretically mean that the money previously used for it should be used in some other educationally beneficial manner, most importantly, for those most willing to learn and apply themselves.
God I sound like a Tory :P
And another thing: the British public really piss me off.
You vote for someone that isn't Labour because you blame them for every problem under the sun, voting for 'change', then you moan like a banshee when anything actually is changed!
Most of the people up in arms about all the reforms being made are those that don't understand them.
I do not for one moment proclaim to be an expert on any such reforms, which is why I'm keeping my mouth shut. I have initial opinions based on the little knowledge I do have, but I'm not going to push that down anyone's throat til I actually have all the facts and know more what I'm talking about.
Sure, if after consideration and possession of the facts I don't like it, then I'll say so, as everyone is so very entitled to do. But what bothers me most about a lot of the British public (vast generalisation I know) is how fickle and ignorant they are.
"We don't understand this, so we'll disagree and shout about it."
You wanted change? You got it. At least find out what that change is before you go running around with your juvenile name calling and partisan bullshit.
One thing the British do well is turn on what we have created.
Saturday, 1 January 2011
Note; as per usual, this started as one thing and then sorta... developed a life of its own? I know I haven't written anything on here for a while, but that might change this year, who knows! Anyway, yeah, this is more or less a stream of consciousness.
I'm the kind of person who thinks so far ahead. Too far ahead maybe.
I want to be in a relationship with someone by the time I go back to Australia, and I want them to come with me. While I was there, I'd go off on little walks on my own every now and again, at dusk or at dawn, or even in the middle of the day, and I'd find these little spots and be like… "wow. I want to share this with someone." The path down the spine of Palm Beach/Summer Bay approaching dusk, when the light swam and glittered through the leaves of the trees and danced on the colder sand in the shadows, that led to a little sandy clearing on the edge of Barranjoey Head, nestling into the cliff and sloping down towards the gorgeous stretch of Palm Beach, where I could see one couple silhouetted in the distance walking along holding hands. Uluru at sunset, naturally. That little boat house by the river in Perth, that I drove or walked past nearly every day; I want to walk down the little jetty and sit in there, dangling our feet in the water while we have a picnic, then when the sun gets high you can fall asleep on me in the corner or we'll cross the road and doze under the huge trees, draped across roots as thick as my legs. Busselton - the winding streets and the parks, and the jetty, jeez that jetty at sunset. And all these other little places just dotted along the Great Ocean Road that so obviously could be romantic, and would have been… if I wasn't with my parents :') like Apollo Bay, to wake up and just open the door right onto that beach. And oh god, how could I forget Monkey Mia? The views, the beach, the sea, and the dolphins. (Everything there just seemed so… full, and happy. Naturally I'm sitting here getting mega nostalgic for Australia now and totally wanting to be back there, and not just for the romantic bits!)
It's like I look into a version of my future, more like a wish, a dream or whatever, and I can see so clearly how I want things to be with 'my girl', but everything else is blurry. My face is blurry, and my body is barely there; obviously this is reflective of my desire to look different, to lose weight and transform my body but my lack of confidence at my ability to ever do so. Age is indeterminate, neither of us are any age at all, it could be tomorrow I'm seeing, or 5 years away from now; maybe because I've never actually been in a relationship, only 'nearly' ones or whatever, and because I've never had anyone in my life as more than a friend really, because of all this I am so ready to be in a relationship - all of this probably affects this 'dream' in so far as I could happily do all this stuff now (in theory) but know its not likely to happen for years aka ever.
And you never have a face. Now this is fairly obvious, because I can't possibly know who you are. Every now and again when I literally do dream anything like this ie actually at night, if I've been thinking about any one person in particular their face will usually be there, but only sort of, like a half face that I can kind of recognise but isn't entirely who its supposed to be. But you've all had dreams, you know how I mean with people's faces and stuff. But by and large, you're there, but not physically there. Well, you cant be really can you, because you don't exist there. But you know what I mean.
In those dreams, and whenever I think about things like that, or whenever I'm somewhere and I think "I don't want to see this place again unless I have someone to share this with", or whenever I see couples in town and wish I could just twine my fingers with someones, you just don't have a face. I can see you, I can look right at you though. I can look right into your eyes that aren't there and drown in them. I can run my fingers over the lips that are never there and smile and the softness. I can kiss the nose that isn't there, everything. Its strange.
I don't know. Im 18 years old, overweight, unfit, socially struggling (although no longer practically a recluse like last year), and lonely. I'm so bored of my own company. And in the nicest way possible, I'm really bored of my family's company too. They literally still are the only people I see. Obviously its been different these last few months as I've physically been in college and so see people in the day, but I come straight home after college all the time. I don't socialise. Over this Christmas holiday I've seen Hannah once as she's back from Uni for Christmas, and that was when her and her parents came round for christmas nibbles and what not. I may have plenty of people to talk to on twitter, but I don't have any other physical people in my life. I knew it'd take time once I went back to college for the social side of things to happen, and overall its gone well, in that I half expected at this point to still be a nervous wreck if I had to so much look at anyone in college, but some days I feel almost like I used to again, like I'm emerging from my feet thick shell. But its still a little galling that I don't have any 'friends' as such. I find myself comparing it to when I started college the first time and getting sad, but I know thats stupid because its completely different. Then it was the first year of college, AS, and so we spent like the first 3 days of college just having like tutor group induction so by the end of the first week we'd all gone for lunch and what have you together already, plus I already knew a few girls in my tutor group. Also it was a drama tutor group, and somehow they're always a bit more immediately social and what have you. So yeah, the only physical human beings I see most days are my family, and even thats gonna change soon when my sister goes back to Australia :(
It really is the holidays that do it to be honest. Like I say, the last few months I haven't thought of any of this so much because in the day I am seeing other people, but being off of college and having no one to see feels way too much like how I spent the majority of last academic year, so its throwing my off kilter I guess.
I just feel ready for life again in the most basic sense. Ready to have friends again, ready to smile, ready to laugh, ready to do nothing but with someone, ready to talk, ready to live, and ready for love. But then obviously, at the same time I'm still so not ready, and running scared. But then I think; who's really ever 'ready' for life? No one chooses to be born, and once you're alive you don't exactly have much of a say in it do you? Who's ever really 'ready' for anything life throws at them? Yes, of course I have an 'excuse' etc in that I've been through the mill these last two years, been through more than most people my age blah blah, but still. Every time I say I'm scared of something or annoyed at myself and my life, someone always says that; "you've been through this blah blah" and its like, while it may be true, it doesn't help. Its like… I don't know… its like if you've broken your arm and its in a cast and a sling, and you're trying to reach something and you cant so you get really frustrated because it feels like you're not you, and someone asks whats up, you tell them, and then they say "well you have got a broken arm." "Oh really? I hadn't noticed. Tell me, how does telling me that help me reach that jar of biscuits at all? Exactly." You see what I'm saying? While some days I feel so sorry for myself about everything and want to scream to the world "Pity me! Love me! Buy me things!" etc (which is utterly ridiculous and only lasts a second or two, but you know what I mean), for the most part its just so frustrating that I still feel so held back. I know that I'm the only one holding me back now, that its my insecurities and paranoias and stuff that is all thats stopping me from doing the things I want to do, being the person I want to me… but like the broken arm, knowing that doesn't change anything, not really.
I don't know. I think far too much, I know that. You know that! I cant switch off ever and I hate it. I overthink, overanalyse, overwatch, overreadinto, whatever you name it i do it. I know I'm the only one that can do anything about any of the things that get me down, and I know everything is still a gradual process, and I know its still, in the grand scheme of things in this 'recovery' process (which I apparently am still in) that its still early days. I've seen cases of other people who have had similar experiences to me taking tens of years to 'recover', if they do, if they don't become a shadow of their former self and never really get back to 'normal'. But sometimes a shadow isn't a bad thing, its just a new thing. Sometimes a shadow can fit where we cant. So I guess what I'm saying is that while I accept theres no way I'll ever get back to the me I was before all this, I don't have to see that as a bad thing. Even though I'm now in this limbo state where I feel like I don't know who I am, what I am, when where and why I am, I have to remind myself that its ok to feel that, daily. I can see the last two years as wasted, ruined, soiled and marred, (which I always will in part) or I can see them as transition. Transition into this new me, whoever the hell she is! The transition is still going on, and maybe it will for another good few years, and maybe one day I'll wake up and realise 'I'm there' - happy. Maybe one day I'll wake up beside someone, and realise I've been happy for months, I've found the me I was always looking for inside myself, and I finally like myself. And love the one beside me.
Or maybe I'll wake up and push one of many cats off the end of my bed and begin yet another day as a lonely cat lady. Only time will tell. Time that I am so bored of waiting on, but what can you do? Push on, power through, soldier on, breathe in, breathe out, rinse, lather and repeat.