Friday, 26 July 2013

What If?

When I tweeted a link to my last bloglet, a friend set me the challenge to write weekly updates throughout the summer on topics of her choosing. Challenge accepted Tami!

My first topic: Explore how different your life might be if, instead of studying Latin, you had studied ice skating.

So, very briefly, I started learning Latin at the age of 12, then took GCSE, AS and A level exams in the subject before studying it (along with Classical Greek) at university. I now teach Latin to 9-11 year olds.

But how different could my life be now if, instead of spending my formative years learning about the ablative, I had been perfecting my arabesque? Well, to begin with at least, I suspect 'not very'. At our school we all had to study Latin in Years 8 and 9 (age 12-14) so even in a ridiculous universe where I ditched Latin, I would still have had to learn the basics.

Okay, once I got to GCSEs (and didn't choose Latin) I would have had the chance to study a different subject through to A levels, but because ice skating just wasn't/isn't/never will be on the curriculum, and because I very much doubt my parents would have let me leave school without qualifications, ice skating would have remained a hobby. Maybe I had ice skating lessons, caught the skating bug and even took part in some junior competitions, but the main focus would still have been on school work.

Fast-forward a few years to when I've got my A levels, though, and things start to get more interesting.

Having taken A levels in Maths, Greek and Physics (because 18 year old me, who is considering a career in ice skating, believes that understanding the forces in play during a shotgun spin or a bracket turn (Latin-lover 25 year old me had to look those terms up) will be useful), I head out into the big, wide world.

Now, because I'm just quite good at Latin - I'm no Virgil, but I can string a sentence together - I reckon I would be a quite good ice skater - not the next Jayne Torvil, but able to do a few tricks without falling over. So, after leaving school, I decide to join an ice show where I can skate every day and earn some money in the process.

I work my way up through the ranks and after a couple of years land the part of Mickey in Disney on Ice (I've never seen it, but Mickey's got to feature heavily, surely?) and spend a while touring the world with the show.

Finally, having had enough of international travel and fame (of sorts) I decide to head home and pass on my knowledge to the next generation, so I start teaching beginners' ice skating classes. That or become one of the professional skaters on Dancing on Ice.

Of course, if it's the latter, I meet Phillip Schofield, immediately befriend him and persuade him to reunite with Gordon the Gopher for a new chat show.

So how would my life be different if I'd chosen ice skating over Latin? Basically there'd be more sequins. And Gordon the Gopher.

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Blogging Again

I'm not very good at having a blog. It's okay when I'm given a strict timetable that I have to stick to (like the A to Z challenge) because then I HAVE to update regularly (Bad Things would happen if I didn't). But you remove that lovely rigid schedule and I get very lazy very quickly.

Only one bloglet since the end of the A to Z challenge (that finished two and a half months ago)? I rest my case.

You may, dear reader, be wondering why, if I thrive on having a fixed structure in my blog-life, I don't just set myself a weekly/monthly schedule. It's a good idea but unfortunately it just doesn't work that way.

In the A to Z (apologies for always using it as an example - it's the only blog challenge I've tried) someone else is the boss: someone else sets the rules. The problem with me coming up with my own rules is that I'm a very lenient boss. I'm more than willing to grant myself time off.

So for the next six weeks while I'm off work (school summer holidays) I shall endeavour not to be Laid-back Leader, but a Tough Taskmaster.

Will it work? Perhaps. Maybe I'll really get into the swing of things and wonder why I ever stopped blogging. Or maybe I'll just give myself the day off for the next 42 days.

We'll see.