Month: June 2009

A Public Service Announcement

I know that we, the British, are extremely well educated about the EU, it’s work and policies and procedures so we probably don’t need access to the EU’s printed material BUT c’mon hiding it deep inside the Oxford University Law library is un-necessary!

Whether this is a scheming plan by the EU to ensure that everyone, including those with an MA is European Studies have no idea what they’re doing there in Brussels or, whether this was a short-sighted, cost saving, ignorant and annoying decision by local authorities is unclear but I’m pretty sure it’s the latter.

Has anyone considered that maybe we don’t know anything about the EU because of this? Is putting public information in easy reach of the public such a crazy idea? Love it or hate it, you should still be able to understand it.

Anyway, for those who are interested (and I guess that’s none of you) there IS an EU information centre in Oxford and we, the humble public, are allowed to access it. This is what you need to do.

1. Find the Bodlian Library, home of Oxford Universities staggering 11 Million Books.

2. Ask the incredibly posh porter where the admissions department is

3. Listen in amazement as he uses words you don’t understand to describe the square you have to cross and the ‘neo-classical’ building you need to find.

4. Cross the square, enter the neo-classical building and work your way through the maze of windowless, locked-looking doors and present yourself to the nice ladies in Admissions.

5. Pass the interview, plead guilty of being interested in the EU, give your most intimate details and sign on the dotted line.

6. Groan as you now have to find the Law Library

Easy huh? I just hope you don’t have a job (or a life) that makes this time wasting a …waste of time! However (here’s the useful part that makes this whole thing worthwhile) there is a silver lining to this cloud. If you want access to those 11 million other books I mentioned earlier – just ask them and hand over £15. You’ll have almost two million books to read per month before your subscription expires. That’s an insanely small cost per book.

Failing that, you can use public library in Oxford. It’s pretty good (and free) but don’t drink anything because although it’s a huge (3 storey) public building, provided at public expense, for the public to read, work and study in – there are NO public toilets. Bhs across the street have to provide these. Don’t expect any wireless access either. Yes, I know you can get wireless access in Koszeg town centre, in your grannies flat and (let’s face it) everywhere else in the world right now – you can’t get it in Oxford Library. Toilets and technology are two things the Oxfordshire Library Service haven’t mastered.

Also (I know, I should be working but…) on my way here today, two students (University Students I assume) walked passed me and one was wearing a red hoody, a black suit jacket, bright pink Bermuda shorts and shinny black shoes! He looked like the love-child of Boris Johnson and Timmy Mallet. Is this what’s cool these days? Is it? Is being stupidly un-cool the new cool? Please tell me we’re not going back to the 80’s….

Your friend and self appointed civil servant,

Me …who now, after wasting too much time, needs a trip to Bhs …sheesh

Oh, and I almost forgot – a huge congratulations to Mrs Helen Miller and Mrs Sarah Addison who, last week, gave birth to the two cutest things I’ve ever seen. Well done and I hope for their sakes fashion moves on before they get to Uni!

Also, If anyone knows of, or can reccomend any good European (not English) films please let me know. I’ve become addicted to wierd European cinema, the darker, quirkier – the better. Fanks

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Bearder Power

Well, whilst I’ve been hiding away in foreign lands, avoiding paid work and neglecting my responsibilities, it seems that the rest of my family have been quite busy achieving great things…

Dad won the Queens award for excellence in Higher Education, last month Pete (the youngest Bearder) won the UK Poetry Slam championship and now, to top both of them, Mrs Catherine Bearder (mum) has been elected to represent the UK in the European Parliament! Mrs Bearder MEP I no less 🙂

So, I dedicate this post to their victories and hard work and give them all a big Internet style ‘virtual’ slap on the back.

Oh, and whilst I’m here – here’s a link to a very interesting website:

Oh, and for those who don’t know, I’m back on the Island (Great Britain) and back in the Shire (Oxford).

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