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Teddy Pendergrass dies aged 59

January 14, 2010 1 comment

Teddy Pendergrass passed away yesterday following a difficult recovery from colon cancer surgery.  He was 59 years old.

He is survived by his wife, his son, two daughters, his mother and 9 grandchildren.

He will be remembered not only for his music, but also for his courage in the face of adversity.  May he rest in peace.

Teddy Pendergrass – In my time (1984)

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Theodore DeReese “Teddy” Pendergrass, Sr.

Teddy Pendergrass

March 26, 1950 – January 13, 2010

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Bullying in the public sector

July 3, 2009 1 comment

I have just finished reading The Bullied Blogger’s blog and, though part of it is fictionalised to hide her identity, it is riveting stuff.  The Bullied Blogger, a UK university lecturer, was being victimised and fought to bring her bullies to justice.  Once I started reading, I couldn’t stop though I already knew how it would end – no matter what happened, she would lose.  You see, her situation is one that is played out very often.PD*996698

In the UK, the public sector is supposed to be where all the employment laws are rigidly followed but this is often not the case. Working in the public sector can be a positive and rewarding experience if you work in an organisation or institution that actively discourages unacceptable behaviour in the workplace and protects employees from any reprisals for reporting inappropriate behaviour.

In recent times, bullying in the public sector has taken on a new form:  it is now ruthless, relentless and increasingly becoming commonplace.  I am not referring to one-off episodes of unacceptable behaviour but to a pattern of behaviour which, over a period of time,  is designed to demean and humiliate the target and make them feel worthless. It is awful to witness and even worse for the target. I have seen hard-working, enthusiastic, assertive colleagues reduced to broken, quivering wrecks due to victimisation. When I was going through my own experience, I read as much literature as I could on bullying –  “Stand up to the bully”, “Complain to someone higher up”, “Take out a grievance” they all said.  ‘Fight back’ was the general advice given.  You see, fighting back is okay when you are a child being bullied in the school playground but when you are an adult in the workplace, it’s gets a bit complicated because office politics come into play.  When the target approaches HR for help, HR all too often tries to cover up the bullying and if  the target continues to complain about the bullying, they suddenly find that spurious allegations have been made against them which require  ‘disciplinary action’. Those spurious allegations will pre-date the date of the target’s complaint about bullying to give the illusion of any disciplinary action being fair in the eyes of the law.  It is a tried-and-tested formula used to shut up the target. 

My suggestion to anyone in that position is that if you value your mental health, family life and career then don’t bother fighting. Put all that energy into finding another job instead. Get out of there before your sickness or employment record becomes so tarnished that no other employer will touch you. Some may see this as a coward’s way out but I see it as an opportunity to change your job while your life and health are still intact. You can fight your case all the way to an employment tribunal if you wish but even if you win the battle, you still would have lost the war. The  experience will adversely affect your health, your family life and your career and no amount of compensation or justice can make up for that. And after the ordeal, while you are busy trying to put back together the tattered remnants of your once happy life, the bully has already moved on to their next target, with no remorse for the damage they have caused in your life.

After-effects of bullying

I now refer to that employment as the place where my career almost died.

Everybody needs good neighbours

March 14, 2009 Leave a comment

Ever had a neighbour who plays music at all hours of the day and at full volume?  If it were classical or jazz, perhaps it would be more bearable but it’s usually rock or rap and it drives me mad because I can’t even hear myself think.  Only a cretin would start blasting music at 8am on a weekday! I think he’s either deaf or inconsiderate. If this carries on, he’ll find the noise nuisance team at his door step before long because he’s now getting on my last nerves.

Rant over!

Not so secret…

June 11, 2007 Leave a comment

While doing a clearout, I stumbled across ‘The Secret’. I had forgotten I had it. In a nutshell, it’s about using the law of attraction to attract good things into your life. I am for all things positive but found ‘The Secret’ too commercialised. 20 mins into the DVD and I still had no idea what the secret was. Eventually, I found out that the secret was the law of attraction. Was this a secret? Didn’t Napoleon Hill discuss this in his book ‘Think and Grow Rich’ 70 years ago? There are also other publications prior to Napoleon Hill’s book, ‘The Science of Getting Rich’ being one that springs to mind. Methinks ‘The Secret’ wasn’t a secret afterall.

The general premise of The Secret was good but too much focus was placed on the acquisition of material wealth. A great marketing ploy, I thought. More emphasis should have been placed on ‘hard work’. Unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth, you aren’t getting anything if you don’t work for it or bug someone until they get you want you want (even that can be hard work!). The law of attraction opens up opportunities to help you achieve your desires and it’s up to you to take advantage of those opportunities. The Law of Attraction can help you buy the home of your dreams by providing opportunities for you to work and get the money to buy the house but it is not going to help you win the lottery.

One comment in this DVD made me think: “We make our own reality”. This is not always the case. Sometimes decisions made by others affect our lives. Think about people in wartorn countries. Did they create that reality? I think not.

Overall, I thought ‘The Secret’ made good viewing but I will take ‘Think and Grow Rich’ over ‘The Secret’ any day.