Are you claiming Asylum or on an All-Inclusive Beach Holiday? Let’s find out!

A Cardiff-based housing firm has been forced to drop a policy which required Asylum Seekers under their care to wear coloured wristbands as a method of identification.  And quite right, too. Like the recent “Red Door” controversy in Middlesbrough, where security firm G4S deliberately placed Asylum Seekers in homes with distinctive red doors, it was a move which singled out those claiming asylum and made them easy targets for harassment and abuse.

Was it deliberate? Clearsprings Ready Homes claim that it was not, stating that the wristbands issued to the refugees under their care were intended to help them claim the three meals a day Clearsprings provide to their residents.  Just like, as some commentators have pointed out, an all-inclusive Holiday resort.

Yeah.

The asylum seekers, most of whom are African men, were told they had to keep them on at all times or they would not be fed

Look, if you are the sort of person who can equate refugee status with two weeks on a Thompson all-inclusive package deal, then I am deeply sorry that your previous holidays have sucked so badly. If you are not, and are having trouble getting all this straight in your head, I have come up with this handy little quiz designed to help even the most casually awful person tell the difference between a hotel and a hostel, between good customer service and casual discrimination, or being treated like a human being and…well, not.

QUESTION A.

Who arranged your trip?

  1. A travel agent who offered you a really good deal
  2. A human trafficker who took basically everything you own and is not above holding members of your family as “collateral”.
QUESTION B.
How did you get here?
1. A plane or well-furnished cruise ship
2. A rubber dinghy or under a Lorry that you could be thrown off at literally any time by border guards.
QUESTION C.
When you arrive at your destination, what can you expect to find?
1. A nice room with a television, shower, and access to a friendly holiday rep who will answer all your questions and issue you with a wristband you can put on at any time to get stuff from the bar.
2. A poorly heated dorm you have to share with eight or nine other people and a Security official who demands to see some form of identification and threatens to send you back to the hell from which you came if you happen to have left your wallet at home whilst fleeing for your life.
QUESTION D.
How are you treated by the people who live where you are staying?
1. As an honoured guest-after all, you are their livelihood!
2. As a sponging, job-stealing potential rapist or source of cheap labour, depending on where you wash up.
QUESTION E.
It’s time to go home! What are you most likely to say?
1. “I can’t wait to come back next year!”
2. “Please don’t send me back. They will kill me.”
If you answered mostly 1s, then I hope you enjoyed your stay. If you answered mostly 2s, I am deeply ashamed by the attitudes and behaviour exhibited by some of my fellow UK citizens toward you.

 

 

 

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An Open Apology to the Norwegian Whaling Industry

To whom it may concern;

Over the past couple of days, you may have noticed in the news that one or two dead Sperm Whales have washed up on the shores of Eastern England.  I think that it is clear that they have not been simply caught up in the “wrong type of current”; however, these are not, as some animal-hugging liberal types are suggesting, anything to do with you. How could they be? Norway has led the world in the noble pursuit of whaling for hundreds of years. The idea that the country that pioneered the harpoon, the whale grenade, and the extended middle finger to Greenpeace could be so careless in disposing of any Whales that their sailors encounter is laughable.

No. Norway is not to blame for the deaths of these proud, majestic sources of oil and weird-tasting meat. I am the one who is at fault here. I am responsible for the five dead whales that are dotted up the east coast of England. And I am deeply sorry.

Whale

Why did I do it? Why did I attempt to start my own Whaling enterprise with little practical experience and in an area which has clearly been Norwegian territory for hundreds of years? I suppose it could be attributed to a number of factors, specifically my despair at being turned down for yet another job and the fact that I had just finished reading Melville’s Moby-Dick and I assumed that what I did not know about obsessively hunting and killing Sperm Whales (especially white ones) was not worth knowing.

I will not bore you with the details of how I built my fledgling business; I doubt that anyone would be interested in the kind of boat I stole in the dead of night, the names of the disgruntled Fishermen I recruited as my crew, or the type of loan application I needed to fill out to buy things like Harpoons and eye patches.  Nor will I trouble you with what happened immediately after the fishermen realised what I had hired them to do and promptly mutinied.  Suffice it to say that I found myself alone in a life boat with nothing but sixteen harpoons and a box of Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference Shortbread in the middle of the North Sea. I had already given up hope of being rescued when my boat was nudged from under the waves by the majestic snout of a young sperm whale.

There was a small school of them-adolescents, judging from their size, exploring new and exciting hunting grounds. Here is where I made my first mistake. Instead of letting them pass, which would then of course mean a true Whaling Vessel could claim them as their prize, I leapt up and began throwing Harpoons every which way. The haunting Whale Song became screeches of pain and anger, and in retaliation the Whales rammed my boat, capsizing it.

I remember very little of what happened next. I must have been caught in a riptide, for my next clear memory was being hauled from the ocean, choking up seawater. The Greenpeace ship which found me drifting alone in the ocean was on the hunt for “some utter fuckwit” who had apparently stolen a boat and set up an illegal Whaling business. They were clearly out for blood, which led to my second-more grievous, you would probably argue-mistake. This  was to feign ignorance of any Whaling but to suggest that it sounded like something someone from Norway would do, as “they hate whales, ammiright?”

The Greenpeace boat was kind enough to take me back to England. I put the whole experience out of my mind and attempted another series of job applications. However, when news started coming in of Whales being washed up on East Anglia coastline, I knew that some of my Harpoons may have actually found home. But what a disaster! Not only could I not claim the gallons of sperm that were rightfully mine, but also I knew that due to my dishonesty, blame for the quite frankly shoddy work would probably be laid squarely at the feet of the proud Norwegian Whaling Industry.

At the time of writing, no connection has been made between Norse Whalers and the five dead whales in Lincolnshire and Norfolk. In fact, it looks as though Nuclear Submarines may be blamed, which would suit us both if you really think about it. Nevertheless, I feel I need to apologise to you, Captains of the Norwegian Whaling Industry. Your fine efforts to keep the oceans free of Whales and sometimes Dolphins do not deserve to be linked in any way with my shoddy effort. I apologise wholeheartedly for avoiding being lynched by Vegetarians by blaming you for my clumsy, wasteful killings and hope that you can find it in your hearts to forgive me and to return any Harpoons you find drifting out there to my home address. Those things can be pretty expensive.

Regards

Adam Langley

The War on Enjoying Yourself rages on

Before we start, can I just say sorry for the tone of yesterday’s blog? I probably shouldn’t write on days when I am not feeling 100%, or if I do (as, admittedly, it does help) I certainly shouldn’t publish. Or at least have someone read through my work first so that they can point out any instances when I am being a raging twatbag.  I’m quite proud of myself for realising this, actually, considering it’s only taken me almost a decade to figure this out.

Speaking of being slow on the uptake, the Royal Society for Public Health has finally figured out that most people do not actually read the nutrition labels found on food. Or, if they do, they spend on average about six or seven seconds looking at the information before slapping themselves for actually bothering to read a nutrition label.

This ground breaking bit of research has not stopped the RSPH from suggesting this week that as well as the amount of carbs, fat, etc.,  food labels should also show the amount of physical activity it would take to burn off the calories consumed. The idea is that people will either be put off their food by the amount of exercise they have to do to make up for it, or be encouraged to actually do more exercise, thereby becoming extremely fit and svelte like the members of the Royal Society of Public Health no doubt are.

A selection of food and drink products and the exercise needed to burn off their calories

Fear not , gentle reader. This is only “an idea worth considering” at the moment, and even if food labelling is updated to reflect the proposals, no-one will pay the blindest bit of attention to it anyway. Except maybe the people who don’t need to know how far they would have to run to burn off their breakfast. People like those with eating disorders, or exercise addictions, or just those who spend their lives miserably yo-yo dieting. People who would obsess over the new information like they do with all the other numbers and weights and use it as an excuse to make their lives more miserable in the name of health. Meanwhile the new labels intended audience-the ones with BMIs in the unhealthy range-would just be led to feel worse about themselves by a society that already seems intent on destroying what little fragile self-esteem they have left. Be honest-would you like to be constantly reminded that you are a drain on society or an ugly blob that will die soon all the time?

Like I said, the new food labels suggested by the RSPH will probably never materialise. But the fact that it came up in the first place suggests that our society’s attitude to food and eating is getting worse, not better. The idea that you need to work for what you eat is wrong. Simply wrong. And if our Public Health bodies believe it, then something is clearly not right.

 

All-New Giant Sized Adam’s Blog #1

Tumblr keeps deleting my blogs.

Don’t get me wrong, my work wasn’t exactly on par with Virginia Woolf, but even so. It is fairly frustrating to keep having to write out the same thing again and again and again only to be told that the page is not responding and will restart itself regardless of how long you have been sitting there typing.  Which is why I have scrapped the whole thing and created a new Blog which I am fairly certain no-one will read anyway. Huzzah!

Now I know what you’re thinking. You don’t like change. You freaked out and started throwing paint at random passerby when Tesco changed the box of your favourite non-brand cereal, how are you expected to cope with me changing my blog format? You’re a sensitive soul, you can’t handle this bullshit, who do I think I am?! You ought to get the boys together, kick down my door and have a good old-fashioned Nerd Beatin’ is what you should do.

Well woah there, padre. Put down your Cricket Bat or length of pipe and read on. While the website has changed, Adam’s Blog is still the same as it always was, complete with self-loathing, laughable attempts at taking a stance on the issues of the day, and jokes that are weaker than a half-starved kitten.

I might try something new every now and then. Maybe do a video or something.