Tag Archives: London

Trading places – Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans

“Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans” – apparently. So it’s best not to hang around too long making them.

Seize the dime and all that.

Like Emeka Egbuono. Here he is getting east London inner city youth together with police officers in a role reversal exercise – to build mutual understanding and trust. He started as a participant and now he helps run them – as described in this excerpt from Emeka’s blog.

I remember being part of the pilot session…  I was 15 at the time and to be honest all we wanted to do was to have our weekly table tennis competition.

The police turned up in two vans. There were at least 9 of them for that first session.Everyone seemed uneasy with their presence, looked more like a raid to be honest.  They came with their plain clothes.  The session was not how I imagined, Janette project manger for The crib had to stimulate the discussion because she could sense  that none of us wanted to talk to the police.  Eventually after a few games that broke the ice, we started discussing issues that affect us, this was our chance to get our voice heard and if anything would happen after this was yet to be seen. We spoke about police tactics, stop and search, profiling, stereotypes, legal rights, and the justice system.  It was very interesting talking about all these things and seeing thing from a different perspective. It was all done in a respectful manner as everyone had equal say.

This was then followed by role reversal role playing between us and the police. An example of a scenario we had to do was that a group of young people were hanging around on the stairwell in block on the estate, a concerned resident calls the police to come and move them along because of the noise and what looks like fighting. So now we have the scenario, we now had to act as the police who turned up to deal with the situation, and the police were acting as the young people who were only play fighting with each other and having a laugh.

A Trading Places session – youth and police – pic from Emeka Egbuonu.

As the police officers we started off with the nice approach, but the police officers acting as young people did not go easy on us, they made it extremely difficult to resolve the situation. I think they have vast experience dealing with scurrilous youth because they were doing a good job. Eventually we had to use force and make them move along.

The second day was really interesting because the police now had to come in with their full uniform and the dynamics of the session changed.  There was a sense of animosity between us and the police, even though it was with the same officers from the day before Continue reading

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Street Art 2: Famous faces

Amy Winehouse – She’s saying: “Oh no, I couldn’t eat another thing. Well… Maybe one more chocolate eclair. Just to be polite.

Ever walked down the street and felt that you were being watched?

I’m not talking about that time you forgot your trousers or had your skirt tucked into your knickers. You were being watched that time. Gawped at in fact.

But I’m talking about something more surreptitious.

Something you sense but can’t quite be sure of.

As if people aren’t moving turning their heads – just twitching their eyes. Like a ghostly portrait in haunted mansion.

So back to the street and the feeling of being watched.

Do you try to carry on as if you hadn’t noticed. Whistling maybe. Swaying in an attempt to look casual. Fighting the urge to speed up.

Samuel Beckett: “You looking at me? Huh! Beware or I’ll zap you with my laser eyes.”

Whilst beneath cloth your buttocks are clenched. Your back is straighter. Your own eyes are swivelling while you force yourself not to look back over your shoulder.

Then imagine that the eyes following you are not just anybody’s eyes. That round each corner a new famous face confronts you.

Do you feel intimidated? Scrutinised? Weighed and measured?

Or Continue reading

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Africa Express

The Africa Express

Some nights are magical. Saturday was one of those nights.

The Africa Express completed its British journey in London, disgorging a unique and wonderful band of African and British musical stars at the back of Kings Cross station.

Then they began to play Continue reading

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Cool Dog 100k

Cool Dog – Alfie – Deptford, London

COOL DOG is here to mark a small Blackwatertown landmark. You – dear readers – have visited this blog 100,000 times and brought the comment total above 5,000.

Thank you.

You’re as cool (if not even cooler) than Cool Dog.

Meanwhile, thank you also to anyone who has downloaded a copy of my ebook The Obituarist. I don’t know who you all are – but I’d love to hear so that I can thank you personally – so let me know if you do – email me at paulwaters99 AT hotmail.com

But I can thank Michael J Lawrence (author of The Aphrodite Conspiracy) for this review:

Got absolutely no work done that afternoon as I opened the first page and the story just kept me engaged until I finished it. Tally ho chaps, bandits at twelve o’clock. A ripping yarn! Continue reading

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Street Art 1: Happy people v worried dog

This guy was loitering down the road.

Looking cheery.

But he was a man of straw.

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Unlike this happy couple Continue reading

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Olympic security dilemma solved

It took a soldier with a huge brain inside an outsized head to solve this security problem.

Last Saturday I set you a puzzle to solve. It was a security dilemma that sent a military guard at one of London’s Olympic venues scurrying off to find his sergeant. I laid out the scenario for you here, and asked you to guess what the sergeant decided to do – or what he should have done.

And I offered a prize for the correct or best answer – a CD single, I love the noise it makes by Declan Sinnott.

If you haven’t already, you can still have a guess. The original dilemma is described here.

But it was basically whether or not a spectator could/ would/ should be let into an Olympic venue with bottles inside which the water was frozen solid – keeping in mind that it’s forbidden to bring in liquids.

Here are some of your suggestions as to what happened Continue reading

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Editing

Editing live TV or radio is about knowing when and how to shut people up.

Here’s an extreme example from the Olympics basketball.

BBC commentator Mike Carlson gets cross after being clobbered Continue reading

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Olympics part 3 – Backsides, bottoms and bums

Before you get hot under the collar about all the pictures of backsides, bottoms and bums – not to mention the odd crotch – please keep in mind that this is an important feminist argument, relevant to sports fans, Olympic watchers, media workers and er… you.

Also, I stole it all from Nate Jones at www.metro.us. A lazy flicher, that’s me. But think of this larceny as homage to his piece (ooer madam).

It was so effective, I thought you deserved to see it all. And I mean all! (But don’t worry . It is safe to read the rest at the office. As long as you’re willing to risk outbreaks of female giggling, some loud whooping and a dip in productivity.)

What if every Olympic sport was photographed like beach volleyball? (by Nate Jones) Continue reading

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Olympics Part 2 – Can you solve this security dilemma?

Pic from InsideThe Games.biz

The security at London Olympic venues is now being provided by soliders. As far as I’ve heard, they’ve been polite, reassuring and quite hot. Phoarr! (That’s according to one Olympic volunteer anyway.)

But here’s a security dilemma that left the soldiers scratching their heads. And there’s a prize for the best (or correct) solution supplied by YOU.

It was like this: The first military searcher could not decide. He called in his sergeant. The sergeant pondered a while, before eventually coming up with a verdict.

The puzzle is coming up in a moment. But your challenge, dear reader, is to tell me in the comments below, what you think the army sergeant decided. (You’re also welcome to say what he should have said or done.)

So here’s the scenario:

A parent with accompanying children arrived at the entrance to the Olympic venue with two full plastic water bottles.

The rule is that no liquids are allowed to be taken into the site. (For security reasons. Free water is available inside. Empty vessels are permitted.)

But this resourceful parent, anticipating a hot thirsty day, had frozen the water bottles overnight. As it happened, the day was overcast, and chillier than expected – and the ICE HAD NOT MELTED Continue reading

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Olympics Part 1

Not sure who’s behind this graffiti – Criminal Chalklist or Maximilian Holden Perchik.

The Olympics has seeped its way deep into my day.

A typical business call goes like this:

ME: Hello, It’s HH from blah-de-blah.

THEM: Hello….

ME: Oh wait, Tom Daley and the other guy are about to dive.

THEM: Yeah, we’re watching too.

…time passes, splosh.

ME: Hmm, not sure. (Or other learned judgement.)

THEM: I think little baldy went too soon. Anyway… Continue reading

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