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Newsround and kitties

Oh, a few little titbits to get my teeth into today. First, though, my own news. Anni has found homes for both the cats, though it has involved splitting them up. Ed has gone to one of her friends who already has two cats. The eldest is blind, so harmless and the other gave it a bit of the old posturing (Ed tried, but it’s hard to make your tail bristle when you don’t have one) before they settled down and just ignored each other.

Anni then had a brainwave. Another friend of hers had recently had their cat – who they’d doted over – put down. It was black and white with long hair and loved attention… pretty much like KK these days! So she offered KK up, and it took them less than an hour to say “yes”.

Chances are I won’t see the cats again. I certainly can’t take them from their new homes after their umpteenth move. But I’m happy in the knowledge they’re both going to be well cared for. I just hope they don’t miss each other as much as I miss them. And it does leave me free to start the cycle over again should I ever settle my arse down somewhere.

And onto the headlines that have pissed me offcaught my eye today. First up, tales that the government are toying with ditching GCSE oral examinations in foreign languages as they’re "too stressful" for the little darlings.

For fuck’s sake. Frankly. They’ve already made the examinations in maths and science so easy that anyone with a TV addiction to 15 to 1 or Weakest Link stands a chance of a C-grade or better. But to remove the oral exam from a foreign language course? Madness!

As for stressful? It’s a fucking exam, of course it’s stressful. So is a written exam if you care about the result. So is a driving test. So is a job interview. Of course, at this rate none of the GCSE candidates will have one of those to worry about as they’ll all be too fucking thick and under qualified to be accepted for one.

One quote states that "whilst accurate in its awards against performance on the day, is not a reliable test of the candidates’ capability". So what they’re saying is that the exam result is only an indication of how good someone was at the subject at the point in time they sat the test itself. So… like any exam, then? be it Chemistry, Geography, a driving test, that job interview or the pub quiz on a Thursday night? Sometimes you have a shitter. The aim is to be good enough that it doesn’t happen very often.

The aim of learning a language is to be able to communicate. If you can’t manage for 10 minutes with an examiner covering specific areas of the language you’ve been learning for 2 years and a fair idea of what the exam with consist of, then how the fuck can you expect someone to handle being dropped into the country in question and dealing with a native speaker in a real-world situation?

And on to some good news. It seems that the plan to play a 39th Premiership game a season outside of the UK is "in tatters". Thanks fuck for that. Stupid bloody idea in the first place. Exhibition matches, fine if you can be bothered – but we already have them.

Quite a few teams take part in mini-tournaments abroad during the pre-season. I know Newcastle have done it, Everton I recall recently, as well as ManUre and Chelski. These tournaments usually involve a host team and another three from other countries so provides a real draw for the local fans. Their own team against big names from other countries. Do we really need to have League-sanctioned exhibition games as well?

Final story is about the suicide bombs in Afghanistan earlier today. The obvious finger is being pointed at the Taleban, but I think they could be mistaken this time.

The people killed were attending a dog fighting rally. There’s every possibility it could be the Animal Liberation Front or whatever the Arab world’s version of the militant RSPCA is. Personally, I’d happily kick fuck out of anyone sick enough to go and watch dogfighting. OK, blowing them up may be a bit extreme (did any of the dogs get killed?) but they definitely deserve having their teeth fed to them.

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