Stupid Corporate High Heels policies, this is only half of it

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I fully support Nicola Thorp, the temporary receptionist who refused to wear high heels at her assignment at accountancy firm PwC. What a sexist and impractical policy.

In my experience as a receptionist,  I was told by a young twenty-something female boss to wear make up. Sometimes I did, sometimes I didn’t, after all, it is a free country and I had to be there for 7am after all, so getting up much earlier could be a real nuisance. I also felt that if I didn’t wear much make up, I would get less sleazy customers hanging round my desk and get less sexist comments. As a woman, it is up to us, not the company if we want to put on some slap anyway.

I generally wear flat shoes or one inch heels at the workplace, and I have never had a problem. My job involved doing a lot of walking, and going up flights of stairs.  One of my main reasons for not wearing high heels is safety. I can avoid tripping, getting my feet stuck in wooden floor boards, damaging carpets and I can run to escape things. I can’t walk in very high heels at all, and they get ruined so quickly whch is timeconsuming and expensive.  In over 30 years, I have never had any company comment on this issue. Only stupid companies would do this. I am very happy with my good quality Clarks shoes.

I was lucky enough to be allowed to wear smart trousers, and not get any grief from wearing these, though if I wore a skirt and didn’t shave my legs  I would have got my knuckles wrapped for that.

Working in companies is about now about image. In fact you could be a really horrible person inside, but the fact that you ‘look the part’ you are more likely to get that job.  I have seen some staff who look ‘good’, but have run away with the office cash. Integrity is more important than image.

Big companies are getting more institionalised, and our private lives are now ‘becoming part of the working life’ as staff get into trouble for posting unsuitable things on Facebook that their company may not agree with.

They are even encroaching onto your charity work too. One organisation I worked at didn’t like me having a Charity sponsorship form at the my desk, as he thought it may ‘upset’ customers.  I was asked to remove it. There was nothing in the contract telling me not to do this.

I would love to hear from others about what petty rules their workplaces inflicted upon them, and did you stand up to them?

It is time we did what Nicola Thorp did, and stand up to corporate bullies and petty rules.  

Please sign the Petition on  https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/129823. There are now over 100, 000 signatures  and I am pleased that this issue will now be debated in Parliament.

 

 

 

Grimsby Town FC fans celebrate Final Win

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RESULTS: Forest Green Rovers 1 Grimby FC 3.

Grimsby FC fans of all ages were out enforce at Trafalgar Square  celebrating their team’s fantastic win at Wembley on Sunday, 15th May.

Grimsby Town  have now returned to the Football League after a whopping six-year absence with victory over Forest Green Rovers in the National League promotion final.

I was  impressed by the great family atmosphere in London and that many fans even cleared up  their rubbish on Trafalgar Square.

These fans were a great example to other football teams, although some mini Grimsby fans were seen ‘battering’ each other over the head with their plastic fish.

The Ace Ring: A Symbol of Asexuality

Asexuality is a sexual orientation; a lack of sexual atraction to anyone. A study in 2004 placed the prevalence of asexuality at 1% in the British population.

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ABOVE: The Asexual Flag (Black: Asexuality, Gray: Gray-Ace, Demi-Sexuality, White:  Purple: Community

As more and more people discover they are  Asexual, through better online awareness, books and increasing media attention,  many of them  want to identify themselves as an Asexual by wearing a distinctive ring.

Wearing one of these rings helps Asexuals round the world look out for other ‘Aces’ too, increases visibility and it is  easier for them to ‘come out’ on a more subtle basis (though some may not always want to discuss to others).

Normally  it is a  black ring worn on  the  middle finger of  the right hand. It can be plain or attractive,  carry an Ace Symbol or the colours of the Asexuality flag (above). Some wearers will go further and wear the colours of their own particular Ace spectrum.

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ABOVE: A plain Ace Ring on my finger.

A word of caution!  The swingers’ black ring is on any finger on the right hand, apart from the middle finger.

 

For more information on Asexuality: The Asexual Visibility & Education Network:  See http://www.asexuality.org/home/

Podcast and Youtube Videos for Asexuals (Uk based) Pieces of Ace https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQhPrlKXl8ROL86xPSMHFow

Popular Youtube Asexual Campaigners-

Young Blossom talks about Ace Rings: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hvGQSZj0D7U

Ameliaace https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHAv1g2JODsrkUKfHh1nAwQ

Cookieemonster https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MnEC1Ek4MJs

Queerascat https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjgu8W7lB1k&list=PLWjQZKpsn86_24PKl52_OuOWFnwGeBLld

 

 

Deemed ‘unfashionable’

The fashion industry annoys me (and I have even worked in it, by default). I like clothes but I don’t like the fashion element of it).

I was brought up on a farm. We had the usual pigs, cows, goats and horses.  For most of my childhood, my clothes were practical.

When I rode horses, I wanted clothes to be waterproof, comfortable, and easy to clean. We bought stuff to LAST. Shops were miles away and we were far too busy to go shopping. The only clothes shop I remember going to are saddlers, where we could get practical country clothes, tack and feed. The style of clothes probably hadn’t changed much in years, although materials could have changed.

As for teenage clothes for socialising, we just wore anything comfy . We could easily get away with wearing these at country discos and barn dances.

Of course, we were dragged to go to really boring school uniform shops, but it wasn’t about being fashionable, we just wanted clothes that didn’t make us look like idiots. The teenage fashionable clothing hysteria   totally passed me. However, I was happy with all the clothes I had. My mother used to say that I should have had more clothes – I hadn’t even noticed I didn’t have that much. I was very happy with my hardy wardrobe and it had all my favourites. It was enough.

As I got older and have a dual country / city life existence, I only  think about this ‘fashionable nonsense’  when  people bring things up.  For example, this week, I did some floristry and some hipster quipped, “Orange is in”. Then, later on in the same week, I was in a haberdashery as I wanted to upcycle a black and white top, ‘Black and white?’, the slick woman customer next to me disturbingly said, “That’s on trend!  The poor woman needs to lie down I thought. It can’t be normal to get bug eyed about black and white.

It is like being in a parallel universe. I feel like an alien in the City.  Why can’t I wear comfy things like  I can in the country?  And fashion is so pointless.

I had to see this for myself last weekend, as I had to get some emergency shoes from Primark in Oxford Street which is my worst nightmare. (I did say it was an emergency). Lots of aisles of fashionable, cheap stuff, a Minimalist’s nightmare, stuff that would be out of fashion in weeks. I was surrounded by frowny, but trendy teens, all looking the same. All I wanted was a practical pair of boots, something waterproof, comfortable and easy to clean. I didn’t find anything of course. Most of this stuff would be broken within a week in our British weather or my ankle would break instead. I couldn’t walk more than 100 metres in any of the shoes, but they were fashionable so that must be ok then? Even if I did buy them, I would have to wait in a dreary 20 minute queue at Primark,  and time is short, so why waste it?

I ended up going to Clark’s in Oxford Street,for some real leather boots, ones that could last years, with a bit of looking after. So, I still haven’t changed.

I am very happy being unfashionable, it saves me a load of money and I even get loads more compliments, which does  a great esteem., particularly if I make my own stuff or upcycle things.

I think there ought to be some kind of Unfashionable Pride, it’s time we came out!

 

Anti-Austerity Protesters leave a trail of litter

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PHOTO: Trafalgar Square

On 16th April, 2016,  anti-austerity protesters gathered together for a protest and left a massive trail of rubbish, some of it dangerous, in their wake along Trafalgar Square.  I saw protesters from groups  such as  the People’s Assembly, Unite and the Green Party. There were others, but I could not identify them.

The mess included beer cans and broken glass bottles. I saw several protesters’ dogs walking along their rubbish despite the shards of broken glass. It didn’t seem that  anyone who took part was bothered at this. Tourists who had come far to visit London, and help boost the economy, had to wade through all the rubbish.

Several young protesters were dropping litter as if it was the most normal thing to do. I handed them their litter back, which they probably thought very strange. They didn’t seem to care about the environment, let alone animals using the area.

I didn’t see any protesters help pick up their litter, leaving it up to the one or two low paid workers, struggling to cope with it all. The protesters seemed very happy for money to be wasted on people clearing up their rubbish. The tourist attraction looked like it had been visited by a load of flytippers.

 

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If people want Cameron to resign, than trashing  tourist attractions isn’t exactly going to win support. Even as  Green Left, this was appalling and I question my own politics. Sometimes I don’t think any of the parties can run the country. Will I end up being a Non Voter?

London: 9/4/16 Protesters call for Cameron to Resign #panamapapers

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Protesters turned up at Downing Street today calling for the Prime Minister to resign. Most of the people there seemed to be  ordinary members of the public, rather than a bunch of politicians,  many of them having  personal stories as to why they were there, and the recent video that Cameron had showing that ‘he was not in it together’, added fuel to the fire. Large crowds shouted “Resign!, Resign!, Resign!”.  Iceland’s Prime Minister toppled a few days ago, after a huge protest.

The protest had a tropical theme, many people wore garlands, Panama hats and Hawaiian shirts, some brought large beach balls.

 

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One man,  a Green Party supporter, said “vulnerable people experienced such massive cuts in support.  It’s galling to find that the Prime Minster has benefited from offshore tax avoid schemes and has blocked EU moves to regulate offshore funds. That unpaid tax could have helped fund much needed services”.

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PHOTO: Cardboard ‘moving’ boxes with a “I will help you pack! placard

I also met a man, a media student, who said that one of his friends actually managed Cameron’s Panama account. Although he was aware of this five years ago, he didn’t think much of it at the time.

Another man from who was in a wheelchair was extremely angry, “Mind my language”, and he said  he was facing huge cuts under Cameron, and huge pressure from ATOS despite him going blind and becoming more severely disabled with his arthritis. He was one of the many disabled people who barricaded himself in Parliament a few weeks ago.

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People here clearly had no confidence in the Prime Minister and protesters from all round the country will be continuing to protest outside Downing Street as long as it takes.

There will be a Panama Carnival on 10th April, at Trafalgar Square at 2.30 pm.