Month: February 2016

Under 25? You Don’t Deserve To Live!


It’s not news that the UK’s new “National Living Wage” that arrives in April only applies to workers over 25 years of age. It doesn’t seem fair, does it? It means that, legally, someone aged 24 could be paid significantly less than their 25-year-old colleague for doing exactly the same job. Presumably under-25s don’t need to live? Simply unbelievable.

But here’s my prediction! Companies that employ minimum wage staff will start to ONLY employ people under the age of 25, saving themselves loads in wages. Those over 25 will be vilified by younger colleagues for earning more for the same work and the national workforce will get younger and younger. Why employ someone over 25 when you can get someone under 25 cheaper?

The inevitable surge in employment of under-25s will usher in a round of preaching, manipulative bragging from the Tories; “Unemployment is DOWN!” they’ll say, “there are more under-25s working now than ever!”. What they won’t say is “This is because you can pay them less than anyone else and they can’t do anything about it.” In the meantime over-25s will be slowly pushed out of the workplace as companies “make necessary cutbacks due to the added costs of this new Living Wage…”

It’s a con and I’m sure I’ll have more to say about it when people realise just how much of a con it is. Until then I will read everything I can on the topic. Best to be well informed when you plan on arguing a point, I find.



♬ Altogether Now! ♬


Today was my mother’s birthday. She was 39 again. And in celebration of the occasion the whole family got together for a drink at hers. It’s rare that my mother gets all four of her children together – my elder brother lives in Bristol, my younger brother and my sister have families of their own, so getting everyone in one room at the same time gets tricky. But today it happened.

There was me and my wife Aimee; my big brother John and his partner, Greta; my big sister Helen and my nephews Jared, Ashton and Rohan; my little brother Stuart, his partner Sarah and my niece Grace; my mam Ann and my dad John, plus our puppy, Digby. We ate, drank, laughed and cried. We took the time to share old memories and make new ones. I think it’s fair to say we all had a great day.

Obviously we took the opportunity to get a family photo, even though it’s not the best one of some of us. Now my mother has something to put in the “Family” photo frame she got from us a while ago (2+ years ago), which has sat empty just waiting for this kind of snap. And, to be honest, we should all get together more often. It’s just tricky, because we’re all doing our own things.

But, as today proves, it’s not impossible. It’ll happen again soon, that’s for sure! We’re already plotting a family road trip to Bristol for the next boozy weekend. Happy Birthday to Ann, my mother. I know she had a wonderful day, as did we all! Here’s to more of the same.

I’m No Columbo, But I’m Better Than Goodman!


Well, it seems my talent for working out the who, how and why of the murders in BBC One’s wonderfully upbeat Caribbean murder mystery Death In Paradise isn’t waning. We just caught up on the episode from this latest series where the chef was stabbed and left in the freezer. I am proud to announce I worked out who killed him, how he was killed and the circumstances surrounding the murder within the first ten minutes.

What I love most about this show is how much it makes me feel like I could be a top detective if I wanted to be. It tricks me into thinking I should join the police; surely it’d be only weeks before they noticed my talent for sleuthing and fast-track me to quirky Murder Squad Chief. My gimmick – because all top murder cops must have one – would be something like “I’m always snacking” or “I’m addicted to Emmerdale”.

Death In Paradise is almost over (it may have already finished for all I know, we’re watching on a month’s delay on iPlayer) and I know we’re going to miss it when it’s gone. It’s not the grittiest or most challenging crime show but it is a hell of a lot of fun. It cheers me up and I always enjoy trying to workout “whodunit” before Goodman does. I hope they keep making it for years. It’s like a sun-soaked Jonathan Creek or something. We love it.