Challenge Cup Final- here we come!

Such a great match!

A View Over Kingsholm

What an evening! There’s no doubt we could have made it easier for ourselves, however, we thoroughly deserved that victory.

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Harvester: A family eatery for all the family, unless one of them is disabled.

When I opened The Black Dawg blog, I thought The Tweeter also Blogs was dead, as dead as the duck my wife had in her Chinese meal a few weeks ago, deader than the lost episode of Tom and Jerry committing joint suicide, deader than Harvesters ethics in the Ham Farm branch Eastleigh… That was not the subtle way of getting on to this subject but for crying out loud they have annoyed me.

Once in a while you decide to read a paper due to the fact I’m of the socialist persuasion so have a habit of reading the Guardian, Independent & maybe the Mirror if I’m forced too; when this story came to light this time round I was perusing the Metro on my tablet computer, my emotions were rampant first utter unbelief, then sadness ran through me which lead to anger for the family involved, it was a disgusting treatment towards them and certainly unwarranted.

In the liked articles above I read that not one customer who were around this family had actually complained, In fact after working in the similar industry I can almost guarantee it would be not an issue with any staff members who are more than likely on minimum wage and it’s not worth their jobs; the manager though I bet you he/she took issue with it as big boss person!

You see when your manager at the Ham Farm Harvester decided to pick on a family with a disabled child you made me wonder how many people with disabilities have been refused service by your company, but out of embarrassment didn’t complain.

My wife has a disability called Multiple Sclerosis and coincidently works with people with disabilities at the National Star College and donates time to Glos Young Carers two groups of people your company, Harvester, may have offended with these actions.

I had a weak reply on twitter when I had questioned you about it, maybe this time less of the spin but more detail, what are you going to do to ensure that this NEVER happens to people ever again?

• Has the person or persons who perpetrated this ignorant and callous act at Eastleigh Harvester been brought to justice?
• Will you apologise and correctly compensate (no measly £100.oo vouchers) the Brennan’s so they can finally have the goodbye meal they deserve in a restaurant of their choosing?
• Will you be sending ALL your staff on a course in which they will learn the correct way of treating disabled persons, including ones who may have disabilities they cannot see?
• Will you put a system in place where people with disabilities can give feedback about their personal experience of their treatment at your eatery?
• And will you promise that it will take less than 7 days to get all of these things in place so no one has to be victims of ignorance again?

I am personally no longer taking my business to Harvester, we have a couple in the area of Gloucester and the Quedgeley branch is one my parents have frequented many times. I’m going to ask all of my friends, family and twitter followers not to give business to their local Harvester until we hear or read about a huge change in the company. In six days since this story broke I think that your company has been trying to be sweep this under the carpet with weak political like answers and I also believe after all this coverage no change will be enforced, ball is your court prove me wrong.

James Hoddy.

A new future with Gloucestershire Young Carers

This evening my eyes were opened when I attended Gloucestershire Young Carers volunteer training. We know that if anything happens to either one of us, we may have a child who will become a young carer, with this Emily and I are proud to have become volunteers with GYC.

Their are 700 known young carers in Gloucestershire and Gloucestershire Young Carers have made themselves open to all of them. GYC arranges buddies, forums, days out, camps and have also gone to festivals all to provide vital respite for young people who find it difficult to have a childhood due to having to care for someone they love.

With initiatives to go in to schools to raise awareness of what they can do to help those who need it, this is a charity Emily and I are proud to volunteer our time for we are looking forward to having a long relationship with this charity.

We support many charities including The MS Society, Therapy Centre, British Legion and Movember all of whom are vital in changing the lives of many people in the UK and will continue to raise and donate money to all in one way or the other!

Ben Affleck and other geeky things

Ben Affleck is a good choice, something not heard often recently.

Affleck has long departed the company of Damon and Kevin Smith but with that he has learned well, his acting has dramatically got better over the years and fitted well in the driving seat as a director and writer and with that comes a head which is ready to fit in the cowl.

Reading the Dark Knight Returns you can see this role is not “comic-like” in the way other Batman Comics are set, if they truly want to go this way structure will be set on how Batman gets over hurdles which prevent him doing the things he could do in the past, also a hard crust of politics surrounds the story line which I think Affleck can portray easily enough.

He will have to bulk up and he with have to become haggard and grumpy and republican but if he gets the character right and pulls off a great performance he will be in the role for a long time to come, a missed opportunity for Christian Bale in my mind.

Superman is not my favourite hero, I have yet to see Man of Steel but I shall do it as I am now truly interested on how they have revamped the poster boy scout.

Superman is a difficult character to support, he has all this power, he can jump and flout in the air and is almost impossible to defeat unless you get a certain colour stone *yawn* he does everything the government wants him to do without hesitation and I find him irritating. I hope this gets the right Nolan touch and we will see a hero truely re-resurrected.

Punisher needs a new movie! I have recently got into the Max published Punisher comics and simply put AMAZING and I believe this comic can have a series run of films and a cult following please make this happen!

Libraries, you and why they shouldn’t close.

“Perhaps no place in any community is so totally democratic as the town library. The only entrance requirement is interest.”
Lady Bird Johnson

It is not common knowledge but I had severe hearing difficulties when I was quite young, by proxy I started reading from an incredibly young age and never really stopped since.  My favourite author was Roald Dahl I’ve read every single one of his books, of course with the amount I read books they were not cheap, so my parents used to take me to the local library every week from around the age of around  five which in that point  of time was in the Gloucester city centre. Over the years I lost myself in many, many books and learnt so much and now I’m disgusted that we will be not only losing libraries but with the ones we have left are going to have gravely reduced hours.

“Reading aloud with children is known to be the single most important activity for building the knowledge and skills they will eventually require for learning to read.”

Marilyn Jager Adams

The latest argument has been that libraries are a relic of the past, no longer needed in this day and age, everyone can afford books and computers. Firstly I say that anyone who believes this has never seen some of the more deprived areas of Britain and in these areas how much it is used, loved and cherished by its citizens. Secondly I will also say that some libraries provide more services to the community than just books and internet, there’s also books readings, educational lessons, toddler groups and more.

It is impossible to enter a large library… without feeling an inward sensation of reverence, and without catching some sparks of noble emulation, from the mass of mind which is scattered around you.
James Crossley

No library ever goes unused I don’t think any person who has been educated to BTEC, NVQ, Degree, Doctorate or Master level has never used a library and the only thing that comes to my mind with these closures and the reducing of hours is the great Tory hope of a giant gap between the poor and the rich, a higher education system that will only cater for the people who can afford it and finally plummet the part of society that we need to nurture the most into true desperation.

To limit the press is to insult a nation; to prohibit reading of certain books is to declare the inhabitants to be either fools or slaves.
Claude Adrien Helvetius

The library has the ability to open doors to endless possibilities we can learn about space and time, theories and science, explore worlds we could only dream of and learn of places we could one day go. My head and my heart are a million miles apart but on this issue I stand before you and can honestly say that taking these opportunities away from any generation let alone the future generations should surely be a crime?

The only true equaliser in the world are books; the only treasure-house open to all comers is a library; the only wealth which will not decay is knowledge; the only jewel which you can carry beyond the grave is wisdom.
J. A. Langford

The Library used to be a shining beacon to everyone that this is a first world country, that we believe that the greatest wealth is knowledge and that knowledge is power. It’s free, I believe it’s our right to have it and it certainly is not the governments, the councils or any individuals right to take away.

James Hoddy.