Archive for April, 2007

Tweet from the safety of the information rescue copter, knackered downunder views an eerie chaos unfolding among the surfers below:- If reactions worldwide to the mystery surrounding the yacht found abandoned off the Australian state of Queensland prove anything, it’s the human propensity for speculation, spinning tales and explanations free of the boundaries of facts […]

Tweet from the pen of the knackered hackette Question: when is a violin shop not a violin shop? Answer: when the floor’s fallen in. For a small business, with an expensive stock of delicate instruments, you could call this a black swan event, after the

knackered downunder reporting from behind the tv remote

In a commentary on the latest American Idol contest, MSNBC contributor Andy Dehnart offers some very insightful remarks about how expectations surrounding a performer, rather than his/her actual abilities, can prove decisive in a competition where public voting is involved.  The advantage lies, if anywhere, with the underdog, while the more talented need to keep performing perfectly and avoid the risk of boring the audience.

In his article, Dehnart compares the prospects of Sanjaya Malakar, known for his weak performances and outlandish hairstyles, for winning the sixth Idol competition against those of Melinda Doolittle, who is, as he puts it, Continue reading ‘undersell, overdeliver – a strategy for idolness?’

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Bound to a computer (or some other technology) most of the working day, even though the web is full of variety and stimulus, there is ample opportunity for us to get into a rut of bad habits and inefficiency. We’re not designed for it. That I’m sure is what Art de Vany, evolutionary fitness expert would say. With that in mind, not least because it has been the school holidays, I’ve made a conscious effort to do a variety of different things the past couple of weeks, on my own and with the children. And within that, I’ve tried to bring variety within variety.

The best example of this was Continue reading ‘variation is the spice of life’

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Earlier this year, the UK government announced a plan to invest £10 million on an initiative to promote singing in schools. The government’s so-called singing ambassador – composer and broadcaster Howard Goodall - will spearhead the project. Today on Aled Jones’ Radio 3 programme The Choir Goodall, who has penned theme tunes for Blackadder, Vicar of Dibley and others, explained how an organized singing programme i.e. singing incorporated into day-to-day classroom activities including learning of times tables, can improve behaviour and drive dramatic improvements in struggling schools.

The programme is worth hearing in its entirety (it will be gone after seven days), not least for Continue reading ‘singing improves behaviour in schools’

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