Look on my works ye mighty and despair by Angela Caldin

A corpulent man with an orange face stood on the Truman balcony at the White House wheezing after a slow ascent of the steps. He pulled his shoulders back and puffed out his chest, telling the world not to let the virus dominate their lives. Little comfort for the families and friends of the two million who have died. He peeled off his mask in a gesture that might have been rehearsed several times in front of a mirror, before going inside to let droplets of infection fall freely on members of… Read More

Wordplay by Trevor Plumbly

As she is spoke Since losing most of my operational sight, I rely heavily on language to gauge reactions. Blindness, despite the myth, hasn’t improved my hearing capacity, just forced me to place more value on word use. I find it hard to accept the current trend of cutting perfectly good words in half without comment, though every time I moan about someone butchering language, I get the same chorus, ‘language is constantly evolving’. If it is, then surely it’s preferable that the process is tailored to improve it rather than reduce… Read More

Seeing clearly by Angela Caldin

My husband has had his cataracts removed and a whole new world of light and detail has opened up before him to his delight and wonder. It had all got pretty bad over the last year or so. He had given up driving, especially at night, because he couldn’t judge distances. Things appeared blurry with milky overtones. In order to read any writing on the TV, he had to perch right in front of it sitting on the coffee table. Successful surgery He was nervous about the surgery which was to be… Read More

Education, creativity, life and death by Angela Caldin

I was sad to see that Sir Ken Robinson, educationalist, author and speaker, had died on 21 August 2020. One of his core beliefs was that education should encourage creativity rather than stifle it and his career was focussed on unlocking the creative energy of both people and organisations. I remember a few years ago watching his TED talk ‘Do Schools Kill Creativity?’ and finding it both inspirational and funny. Apparently, Sir Ken was the most watched speaker in TED’s history and this talk was viewed online over 60 million times and… Read More

The Bigger Picture by Susan Grimsdell

We’re in the midst of one of the Biblical afflictions we were warned about in Revelations – floods, locusts, fires, pestilence, darkness, and in our case here and now – plague.  Covid can’t be described any other way. A plague on the Earth Governments everywhere were caught unprepared. Most dealt inadequately in the early days of the virus, resulting in literally hundreds of thousands of people dying.  New Zealand was one of the countries that did pretty well, through a combination of good luck and good management, and for a while we… Read More