A Memorable Day

Saturday 1143  1st September 2018

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Yes indeed here I am again 1 yr and 8 months since my past post, which I can barely believe!  Unfortunately the Saturdays did not stand still during my absence; they just kept on disappearing.  Of course the fact that I haven’t been writing my blog doesn’t mean I haven’t been doing anything or that nothing has been happening in the world. We’ve had Trump and the Brexit vote – least said about both of those the better!

Anyway here I am again.

This Saturday was the 1st September and that is a memorable day for me for 2 reasons and I wanted to record it in some way.

The first is that my father Albert, known as Bert, would have been 116 on this day. He was born on the 1st September 1902.  Seems amazing to me when I write that but then I remember that he was 23 years older than my mum and was already 51 when I was born. He always seemed old to me, hardly surprising as I believe he had been raised by his grandparents.

This is one of only 2 photos I have of me with him.  I don’t know who took this photo but I’m pretty sure the camera didn’t belong to us. There was no money for such luxuries in our poor , working class household.

It makes me happy that he seems so delighted.

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My father died a couple of months after my 17th birthday when he was just 68 and had only recently retired.  I went off to school as normal that morning and it was Home Economics day. I made a pineapple upside down cake which was one of my dad’s favourites.  When I got home later that afternoon he was gone.

He had died that morning of a massive heart attack whilst getting up out of his chair to get his cigarettes from the mantelpiece. He was a heavy smoker as was my mum then. In those days there were no warnings about the dangers of smoking and almost everyone seemed to smoke. I don’t remember anyone saying how young he was because 68 wasn’t considered young in the early 70’s. He’d already had a couple of minor heart attacks and I am very mindful that if that had happened today he would probably have had his coronary arteries stented ,just as I have had done, and would likely have lived much longer.

I am grateful that my mother made me go and see him, at the chapel of rest, as she wisely said if I didn’t see him I might not believe he had actually died.  Mum never married again even though she was only 44 when she was widowed. I don’t think it was a particularly happy marriage. 

It has been a sadness throughout my life that I never really knew my father and have hardly any memories of him, as he worked very long hours. Anyway I think you only really get to know your parents as you move into adulthood.  

The 2nd reason the 1st September is a memorable day for me is because 39 years ago I got married. It was a beautiful sunny day, just like it was here on this 1st September, and indeed seems to be so almost every year.  We got married in church because that was what you did then and my husband’s family were very religious. I felt pretty hypocritical because I didn’t then, and don’t now, believe in God. My mother gave me away in the absence of my dad.

Here is photo of me on my wedding day. I went from being a very chubby baby to a very slender 25 year old. Let’s not discuss where I am now 😉 

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Sadly the marriage ended after 20 years but we had 2 children that we both adored and, again sadly, my ex-husband died 10 years ago.  I am glad my children had time to get to know their father.

Life goes on.

I hope you were able to get to know and have a good relationship with your father. If you didn’t, and he’s still alive, maybe it’s not too late to change that? 

Your thoughts are very welcome as ever.

Saturday Girl signing off. I’m sure it won’t be so long before I write again ! 

You can find my photography blog Photomania here 

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Naming and Shaming 2 – Anything for profit it seems?

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Saturday 1373  – 12.04.2014

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I am going to do exactly what it says in the title and name and shame a company.  This is the 2nd time this year but this is a different company . You can see my original post from January here  which was about GAP the international clothing company having a baby’s garment for girls with FLIRT emblazoned on the front of it. Wholly inappropriate and thankfully this garment now seems to have been removed.

adhd%20energy%20drink%20produktyThis time I am naming and shaming a Polish company called Mobile 1 that, since 2011, have been producing an energy drink called ADHD which is sold not only in Poland but in the UK too and look to the left for an illustration from their website. Not hard to see who this drink is aimed at is it ?

Have you heard of ADHD?  No not the drink, but the neurodevelopmental condition Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder which is characterised by a short attention span, restlessness or constant fidgeting, being easily distracted, being impulsive, being hyperactive and acting inappropriately for the person’s age. Many children and adults with this condition have additional problems which can include learning difficulties, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, Tourettes Syndrome amongst many other conditions.

You can read about Wellcome Trust funded research into the condition here which has found a genetic link.

A quote from the article

“We hope that these findings will help overcome the stigma associated with ADHD,” says Professor Anita Thapar. “Too often, people dismiss ADHD as being down to bad parenting or poor diet. As a clinician, it was clear to me that this was unlikely to be the case. Now we can say with confidence that ADHD is a genetic disease and that the brains of children with this condition develop differently to those of other children.”  

Undoubtedly the condition has been given a bad name because it has been used by a minority of parents to excuse the bad behaviour of their children and the lack of control they have over them, but it is a very real condition. 

A friend of mine, who has  a son with a diagnosis of both Autism and ADHD , saw a billboard advert for the energy drink ADHD with a tag line No Stress and was rightly very disturbed by this and when she got home she thought about this more and looked up the drink on the internet. This is how they advertise it , their translation from the English isn’t great but you’ll get the gist of it.

“It is intended for adults who want to increase the level of their energy or concentration. It is recommended for great physical and intellectual effort. It accelerates the quickness of reactions and efficiency of the organism. It also counteracts the weariness and speeds up your metabolism. For these reasons it is consumed and valued by the drivers,the students and active people satisfied with their life. ”

So why have the company used this name ?  Well they seem to be suggesting that if you drink their product you’ll behave like someone with ADHD  and it seems they think that’s a desirable thing, which clearly it is not! An ADHD sufferer’s hyperactivity and excessive energy can cause very real problems for them, in school or work for example.. .so the drink having the tagline No Stress just adds to the insult because the condition can certainly be a stressful one for all concerned.  

I cannot imagine how the marketing dept came up with this idea and no-one stopped to think what effect it might have on those affected by the condition. To me trivialising the condition in this way shows a complete lack of understanding and empathy for those that suffer daily because of it.  

I think it’s just appalling to use ADHD to sell a product, especially one like this! 

It wouldn’t be okay to have Bulimia Biscuits or Cancer Crisps would it? The same rule applies to ADHD. So driven by my usual passion against injustice I encouraged my friend to start a petition and campaign with the intention of getting this company to show some respect and change the name of their product. 

The link to the petition is HERE  .

With your help maybe we could get this company to rethink so I hope you’ll read and consider adding your voice, no matter what country you are in. Thank you.                    

 As ever I welcome your thoughts and I am happy for you to share this post to get the word out.

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Saturday girl signing off.

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You can find my photography blog Photomania here 

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