<rant> If you’re swimming in a pool where the lanes are marked out for speed – that is relative speed, compared to the rest of the people in the pool that day. It’s not a speed that you aspire to, or the speed that your ego says you ‘should’ be doing.
In our four lane pool this morning, at one stage there were about 12 people in the fast lane, but only 12 people in the other three lanes combined.
To be fair, most of the problem was caused by people being in the medium lane when they should have been in the slow lane. This meant that people that may have moved into the medium lane felt that it would be much too slow for them – so they stayed in the fast lane clogging it up.
But my most fervent rant today is saved for those people that swim a set of – 1 length crawl, followed by 1 length slow breaststroke – in the fast lane. That tells me that you’re perfectly happy to potentially disrupt a whole lane when doing your slow breaststroke, because you don’t want your [still not very fast] crawl to be disrupted in the medium lane. GRRRR! </rant>
My plans were disrupted by how busy it was, so I did a gentle 2km instead.
I was very quiet on social media about my politics in the run up to the election and since the result, however I had a little rant on Facebook last night and I think it’s worth repeating here:
“The fact that other countries don’t do it [social welfare] as well as we do is no argument for us to be less caring. Some people can’t look after themselves …, others could with just a bit more support.
However, the economic situation has been dramatically overplayed too. Labour did not ruin the economy – the global situation did. And while Labour could have made a few better decisions in the good times they didn’t cause the bad times. Nor have the Tories saved us – again the global position has improved. In fact many economists believe that the Tories have slowed down the UK’s recovery.
However, perhaps the biggest issue is that while people may have a couple of quid extra in their pockets the long-term costs – to the country and individuals – will be much higher. A two-tier health service that will need private payments to get the level of care we now take for granted; higher university fees; a lack of social care ‘insurance’ for those that fall on bad times; lower minimum wages; less tax paid by the rich (therefore increasing the tax burden on the rest of us).
I’m sorry I think the “look after ourselves” mentality is both worrying and very, very wrong. And Labour’s biggest mistake was not messing things up last time, but not explaining that properly this time.”
Rant over, smiley swimming stuff again from now on.
Last night I mentioned that I had to juggle things a little bit as my wife was going out in the evening and so I was looking after my son. As I was writing that I realised how many men would then call that “babysitting” – and that infuriates me.
Babysitting is what you do for other people’s children. If it’s your own kid, then you are just being a parent.
Yet in offices and pubs up and down the country you hear men talking about “babysitting” their own children. For many it’s a shorthand term to say that “I don’t really do all this stuff, obviously it’s the wife’s job. But I’ve been generous enough to let her go out tonight…”
I’m not saying I’m perfect in this and one that has surprised my wife and I is how quickly we fell into the accepted gender “roles” once we had a child. However, we try to both acknowledge and understand that we are both active parents, it’s just that most of my work is outside of the house in a paying job, while most of my wife’s is in the house in an unpaid job. Both jobs are just as important as each other to keep the house going and to be able to raise our son. And when I’m around I try to spend as much time as I can with my son.
When people (almost exclusively men) say that they are babysitting their own children it assumes that it is not really something they should be doing. And that is a terrible, terrible thing to think about the raising of your own children.
Fortunately I think it’s getting better as many modern fathers want to be there as much as they can.