Archive for October, 2011

What’s in a name?

Posted: 31/10/2011 in Bunny Chow

I’ve had a few people questioning the meaning behind my pseudonym and what it all means so I thought I’d have a go at explaining it and the tradition behind it.

I’ll begin with a little background when I was a young teenager we got two Siamese kittens and whilst trolling through the myriad of possible related names and having eliminated all of the usual contenders like Harley and Davidson, New and York, etc and etc 2 we settled on the names of a local delicacy which translated to porridge and meat but the die was cast and all family pets from thence forth were given food names like the next dog being relish and my own cats being Vino (wine), Wors (sausage) and Marula (an african fruit.)

When we got my beloved Staffie we again begun casting around for names and then inspiration struck me, we were at the time regulars at a sadly now defunct local South African Indian restaurant named 1860 and their signature dish was the famous and fabulous Bunny Chow, which is basically an early form of street food consisting of curry served in a hollowed out loaf or partial loaf of bread. The curry is traditionally mutton but commonly chicken, seafood or vegetarian curries are used too. Despite some personal research I have as yet been unable to track down a purveyor of bunny flavoured Bunnies. 

So anyway after gaining the restaurant owners blessing that is where my hound got her name and ultimately where this blog got its name.

Hope that clears things up for you

As always

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Sick Kids

Posted: 28/10/2011 in Uncategorized

So another week and yet again we have a sick child, The Monkey Boy or InfectaBoy as we’re now affectionately calling him has once again managed to get himself sick.

It all began when I collected him from nursery on Tuesday evening I was told that he had been coughing a lot (we’d noticed this too) it wasn’t that long since he’d last been on antibiotics for a chest infection, I forget the exact timeline but certainly since The Bug was born so in the last 6 or 7 weeks anyway.

The wonderfully attentive nursery team told me that they’d kept him indoors for the day and that he had been very dopey and cuddly all afternoon although not developed a temperature. They also told me that he’d fallen asleep in the afternoon something he never does with them although not that unusual when he’s at home (I guess we’re boring or tiring). He certainly did look miserable though.

By the time I got him home from the nursery though he was running a 39C temperature and looked even more miserable, of course we did what all parents of toddlers do, dosed him up with Calpol (baby paracetamol) and cough mixture and once knocked out on painkillers put him to bed. He certainly crashed hard but was awake and hungry by midnight and after a snack I moved into the bed in his room which thankfully is still there after my parents recent stay and he kicked snuffled and approximated sleep with me for the rest of the night.

Mrs Bunny Chow shuffled him off to the doctor’s surgery in the morning for them to confirm our suspicions he has bronchiolitis and Mrs Bunny Chow was dispatched to the pharmacy with a lengthy prescription for more antibiotics, steroid tablets and an inhaler with instructions to return and see another doctor that afternoon and the warning that if he hadn’t improved we may have to take him to hospital. Thankfully after he had been dosed with antibiotics, steroids and a few largely unsuccessful attempts at the inhaler he had improved sufficiently enough for that warning to have been removed by the time of the return visit.

That evening with me now able to assist Mrs Bunny Chow and I were able to deal with InfectaBoy’s numerous arms and legs and hold him down long enough to get him to inhale the prescribed dose of 10 pumps of the subutamol inhaler, I mean seriously who’s stupid idea was it to think that a toddler would hold still and calm while we pumped his lungs full of drugs via gas mask type spacer.

Still we managed to get it done and after more doses of the beloved Calpol he was put to bed and awoke yesterday morning without a temperature and although the cough is still there we’ve sent him back to nursery where he is at least happy. 

We will of course continue dosing him up as prescribed and I’m making yet another visit to the GP’s with him after work/nursery this evening.

I guess the reason I’ve decided to come and have a rant is purely because we’ve had such a run of sick kids and wondered if any of you dear readers have had similar experiences and how you coped with the exasperation, worry and concern around your kids being sick.

I’d love to hear from you.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Six weeks ago today The Bug came into our lives and has turned everything upside down all over again.

Angry Bug

 How such a little bundle of angry humanity can inject itself so deeply into your soul is something that fascinates me. Mrs Bunny Chow and I debated at length the wisdom of having a second child, we both grew up as only children and are relatively well-adjusted adults, I was certainly spoiled, Monkey Boy already had a dog and two cats to keep him company, we already loved him more than we believed it was possible to love anybody, how wise was it going to be to bring somebody else into this already chaotic and busy little home.

In the end poor prophylactic practice (i.e. no prophylactic) made the decision for us and we found ourselves quoting our mothers with the line we now know for a fact, it only takes once. This is of course not something that we regret happening we were both delighted if a little daunted at the news that the decision had been taken out of our hands and made for us in a fit of drunken passion and dog eviction.

Now of course the dog is back in the bed and I’m too scared to kiss my beloved wife for fear that this may happen again, but that is of course besides the point here, The Bug has arrived and in his six short weeks on the planet he has caused heartache, terror and huge amounts of sleep deprived joy. His presence has in no way caused our love for The Monkey Boy to diminish in any way shape or form but our hearts have simply opened up even wider to receive this new addition.

Last night I was gifted the ominous chance to learn for myself that one tired and hungry toddler who misses his Mummy plus one angry hungry little Bug is not in fact two children but that the amount of noise that they can creat multiplies exponentially with the addition of one. Now those of you out there that know me know full well that I am not a patient man, in fact judging by my ranting in these very pages even those of you that don’t know me know that I am not a patient man.

Yet here I found myself alone with these two beautiful little beings who were both wailing their heads off at the same time and whilst I fed and comforted the older boy the dog, the sweet bouncy stupid dog understood that she could help and began to lick the back of The Bugs head to try to comfort him and gosh darn it it actually worked and here I was in sole charge of these little people who moments before had been wailing their heads off and between the Dog and I we managed to make their lives happy and quiet again and  my heart just melted. I am not ashamed to say that I began to cry too, but mine were tears of joy that I have been blessed with an amazing wife who has blessed me with two beautiful children and a stupid dog.

It is at times like those when I cannot help but think how lucky I am and how through all the trials and tribulations that a young family brings into your life there is nothing else that I need other than to be surrounded by those that I love.

Thank you family and stupid dog for being part of my life.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

I’m getting there.

Posted: 19/10/2011 in Uncategorized

I had a little bit of time in the middle of last night while The Bug (my youngest son) wasn’t wailing to be fed/burped etc to have a fiddle with some of the design elements of the site and it’s begining to have the feel and look that I want from it.

There is still a ways to go and it will take me some time to get it perfect but I must admit that so far I’m very happy with the wordpress platform and glad to have made the step across from blogger.

I apologise to all of my subscribers for having to make you go through the effort again and hope that I haven’t lost too many of you, I hope that the process is suitably simple and that you’ll all be back again in no time.

As before the site is broken down into a couple of elements, my space to rant and praise and generally let off steam, my Amazon Store wherwe you can buy stuff that I recommend and my review site where I will be posting reviews on stuff that I think you might like to know my opinions on. These will mostly consist of book reviews but could also include other things I’ve been particularly impressed or unimpressed with.

Please do let me know what you think of the new sites design and content in either the comments section below or via email rantingmrbunnychow@gmail.com

Thank you all again for your support

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

 

So the first proper post on the all new MrBunnyChow.com is going to be a guest rant from one of my old friends writing under the pseudonym of Chuckles.

I can’t personally vouch for how bad this company appears to be but Chuckles has certainly convinced me that I don’t want to give them the benefit of the doubt.

I’ll leave you in his capable words.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

I’m a big chap (38/40 inch waist) so I thought I’d give Jacamo a go. I called their 0800 number to ask for a catalogue, after giving all my details the lady at the other end went quiet for ages. After a while I said “hello”. She said, “please hold on, I’m just doing a credit check”. “WHAT?, Why” I asked, I didn’t want credit. She said they do a credit check regardless. I explained that I didn’t want that and left it at that. She was going to perform a credit check without my permission.

A few weeks later my wife tells me she has ordered me some jeans from them, it turns out Jacamo is not a company in itself but is run by a company who have 26 catalogues and my wife already had an account.

Jacamo do next day delivery as standard so I waited to see what my wife had chosen. Nothing arrived, no biggie, I’d wait until the next day, nothing arrived and my wife received an email from Jacamo out of the blue saying delivery would be 3 working days. Odd but no fuss, they’d be here the next day. Nothing arrived. At this point I called Jacamo. I found out the reason it was 3 working days was because my wife had used this other account and that the 3 days starts from 2 days after the order??? (clearly bull but Ho hum) the order would be here the day after. Nothing arrived.

I called Jacamo again a week after the order. I spoke to a manager who assured me the order was coming that day and that she would call me tomorrow to check it had arrived. Nothing arrived. I waited for the promised call back but it didn’t happen. The next day I called again, I was told that as a gesture of good will the order would be there by Thursday. I was dismayed that they would use the expression “gesture of good will” to describe offering to deliver the order 8 days late.

Thursday came and went and nothing arrived. I called Jacamo again and was told that the service reconciliation team would call me straight back. Half an hour later I called again, at which time I was told they would call but it would be within 48 hours.

On Saturday my wife called Jacamo again and was told the same team would call her back on Monday, now they have promised to call us both. You won’t be surprised at this point to learn they called neither of us.

My wife called Jacamo again (yesterday) and they said they would send the order again for next day delivery. Today I called Jacamo to enquire as to why they did not call me as promised, they couldn’t tell me but promised me the service reconciliation team would call me back.

A short while ago my Jacamo order arrived. One of the pairs of jeans fits fine but I don’t like them. The other 2 pairs, however, are a good 6 inches to small at the waist and are obviously mislabeled. Now I have to go to the trouble of taking the package to the post office and returning them.

A few hours later they turned up again with another parcel containing the same items. I explained to the lady at the door, in a polite tone, “I’m not sure we actually want this”. The response was “You ordered it” snapped back at me. At this point I said “no, we ordered it over two weeks ago and we really don’t want it” and handed it back to her. She had the cheek to tell me off for being rude. 

Further to all this, Jacamo have a freephone number, but only for ordering their catalogue, after that it is 0871 only (10p per minute) and a lot more from a mobile. They go to great lengths to make sure you call this number and the geographic equivalent (got from saynoto0870.com) has a recorded message telling you to call the expensive number. Their staff seem very apt at taking things slowly. At £6 an hour to phone them they are probably employing their staff at a profit.

This firm seems to me to be a con and nothing more. I suggest giving them a wide berth.

TTFN

Chuckles

Welcome to the new site

Posted: 18/10/2011 in Uncategorized

Hello and welcome to the all new www.mrbunnychow.com I promise to keep it as irreverant and cheerful as the old blogger site with lengthy rants about people who annoy me, things that move me and stuff of which I approve.

Please bear with me while I get everything in order.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Apologies if you got the wrong post the first time to my email subscribers I’m having some technical issues brought about my my incompetence.

What you should have received is replicated below.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Dear Mr Bunny Chow,

Just a quick update on two issues:

1.       Learning the appropriate lessons from the riots

Yesterday, the Backbench Business Committee granted me a three hour debate on the response to the riots that scarred our town and other parts of the UK in early August. You can read my full speech here but in essence my argument was that two months on we have a much clearer picture of what happened and what the appropriate lessons are for public policy.

In the immediate aftermath, there were two competing narratives of why the riots happened. The first, most bluntly articulated by the former Mayor of London Ken Livingstone, was that the riots were a spontaneous reaction to Government cuts (“If you’re making massive cuts, there’s always the potential for this sort of revolt against that”, Newsnight, 8th August). The second, articulated by much of our media, was that they were the result of a feral generation of teenagers.

The evidence doesn’t support either of these narratives. Far from being spontaneous, there was a significant degree of organisation behind the riots. 19% of those arrested in London to date are known gang members. According to the Ministry of Justice, 73% of those who came before the courts before midday on 12th September had a previous caution or conviction and the average number of offences they had committed was 15. So the riots were not a political protest by people with no previous criminal record that got out of hand. And in Croydon only 15% of those arrested have been under 18, 38% have been under 21 and 7% have been over 40. So the riots were not solely, or even primarily, the work of teenagers.

Lesson one then is that we need to tackle gang culture and lesson two is that we need to reform our prison system so that it does a better job of addressing prisoners’ underlying problems – few if any educational qualifications, mental health problems, drug and/or alcohol abuse – because at the moment a high proportion of those released go out and re-offend.

The next issue relates to the police response. The Met have been honest enough to admit that with the benefit of hindsight they didn’t have enough officers on duty on the Sunday, Saturday and Monday (the figures, if you are interested, were 3,380 on Saturday, 4,275 on Sunday and 6,000 on Monday). On Tuesday, we saw a massive increase to 16,000 – and it worked. So yes the police can’t be immune from the need to save money and yes we can reduce bureaucracy so that a higher proportion of the officers we have are on visible duty but numbers matter. The Government and the Mayor need to work together to make sure we make savings without reducing frontline policing.

I have spent the last few weeks visiting schools and colleges in and around my constituency to talk to young people about what happened and what we need to do to stop it happening again. On most issues, they agree with their parents and grandparents but on one issue – attitudes to the police – they have a very different view. Many young people – particularly young black men – don’t feel the police are on their side. When they are stopped and searched, they don’t feel they are treated with respect. I am sure that many police officers feel young people don’t treat them with respect either. The Met has come a long way since I was a teenager but clearly there is more to do. We need our police force to be more representative of the people they are policing and we need young people to understand that the police are there to protect them and police officers to understand how it feels to be stopped on a regular basis.

The final lesson relates to how we punish people. According to the Ministry of Justice, those who committed offences during the riots were more likely to receive an immediate custodial sentence and to receive longer sentences than those who committed the same offences a month earlier. I support the decisions the courts have taken – I think it was important to send out a clear message that this kind of behaviour is unacceptable and that it has done a lot to restore some faith in our criminal justice system. But there is also evidence that it has helped to reduce crime. If you compare the four weeks from 17th July to 14th August with the four weeks from 15th August to 11th September, property crime in Croydon is down about 30% and violent crime about 20%. You would expect to see a significant reduction in property crime because clearly a large number of property crimes were committed on 8th August and you would expect to see some reduction in both types of crime as a result of the extra police on our streets. But the reduction in violent crime in Croydon is larger than elsewhere suggesting there is something else at work. The answer appears to be that, in the short term at least, prison works – a number of prolific offenders have been put inside and that has reduced crime. As is often the case in politics, we are being offered a false choice by those who argue the way to cut crime is to be tougher and those who argue that the answer is to reform our prisons to reduce reoffending. Why can’t we do both?

2.       The national independent Riots Communities and Victims Panel public meeting

The national independent Riots Communities and Victims Panel will be holding a public meeting in Croydon Braithwaite Hall on Tuesday 18 October.

The meeting will be held at Croydon Braithwaite Hall, Croydon Clocktower, Katharine Street, Croydon CR9 1ET and will start with refreshments from 6.30pm.

If you would like to speak to the Panel about your experience of the riots then please come along to this open public meeting. All views will be welcome.

This Panel is separate from the Local Independent Review Panel that has been set up in Croydon. Panel members are Darra Singh OBE, Simon Marcus, Heather Rabbatts CBE and Maeve Sherlock OBE. The Panel will deliver early findings by November, and present a final report by March 2012.

The Panel will look at:

·         the motivation for a small minority of people to take part in riots;
·         why the riots happened in some areas and not others;
·         how key public services engaged with communities before, during and after the riots;
·         what motivated local people to come together to take civic action to resist riots in their area or to clean up after riots had taken place;
·         how communities can be made more socially and economically resilient in the future, in order to prevent future problems; and
·         what they think could have been done differently to prevent or manage the riots.

If you can’t attend the meeting on Tuesday and would still like to speak to the Panel, they can be contacted by:

Email: riotspanel@communities.gsi.gov.uk
Twitter: @riotspanel
Post: Riots Panel, 6th Floor, Eland House, Bressenden Place, SW1E 5DU

You can find out more about the independent Riots Communities and Victims Panel at www.riotspanel.independent.gov.uk.

Gavin Barwell
MP for Croydon Central


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As promised here is an update.

I have now met with Mr Litebeer and his two oiks for a session of what they call restorative justice. PC Fred was there too although mostly silent. Unfortunately it was a complete waste of every bodies time. The two youths listened to me rant at them sullenly refusing to meet my eye throughout, they mumbled apologies to each other and to me after initially trying to deny that anything had taken place and professing to be the best of mates despite their body language displaying a mutual loathing of each other.

They obviously have more distrust of figures in authority than their hatred for each other though as they stuck to their guns, seemingly not caring about their school, their education or the general public’s perception of them or their school.

I explained to them that I was just as unimpressed with their schools handling of the situation as I was their behaviour which went someway to softening them up before they were dismissed and sent back to classes by Mr Litebeer.

I then set about Mr Litebeer, a surprisingly young man (my age at a guess) explaining my utter distaste for his handling of the situation and his lack of consideration in getting back to me in a timely fashion. He tried to head me off by explaining that modern Head Teachers are like CEO’s and that if I had been trying to contact the head of any other business I would have been faced with similar setbacks and delays.

Of course I didn’t point out my history of dealing with the boards of plenty of big businesses in my recent crusade against poor service, but I did explain to him that whilst business may indeed put in place barriers to stop the general public from harassing their boards, this may have helped him in dealing with nutters but did nothing to improve the reputation of his school which he held so dear and that if he had bothered to head me off early with swift and decisive action he may well have saved himself lots of embarrassment and even more wasted time.

If I’m entirely honest I don’t think any of this went into his head blocked as it was by all the grease emanating from the slime bag that he was as he continued to spew soundbites about improvements that his wonderful self has made since he took over the running of the school and how great and wonderful his shiny new building will be once it’s completed.

I gave up and took my leave, but if you’re thinking of sending your child to a high school in the Coulsdon Area email me at rantingmrbunnychow@gmail.com for more details of this school so that you can avoid it.

I’ll bid you all adieu

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

The trouble with the system

Posted: 07/10/2011 in Oiks

How an earth do I get myself into these situations, I’m not entirely sure if it is because I care more than most or if I’m just unlucky or just stubborn but I have become one of those people I always swore I wouldn’t. I have become the interfering, grumpy old man.

I’m going to give a bit of background information here before I launch into my full blown rant mode.

My older son the Monkey Boy attends a day nursery which is located within the grounds of a local high school, this high school is publicly funded but privately run as a business and here lies our first problem, they have targets to achieve in order to continue to receive the government funding required to make them profitable.

Anyway that’s the very basic background of why I have become involved in a local high school so I’ll go into my story of why I am shocked and displeased with the education system.

I didn’t know much about the school or academy when I decided to send my son to the the nursery, they are unrelated to each other in any way other than sharing the same premises so didn’t think it all that relevant.

The school itself is undergoing extensive renovations so large parts of it are closed off while they knock down old buildings, erect new ones etc and the administration block and a percentage of the classes are taking place in prefab temporary structures and there is a large presence of site traffic and builder types.

None of this is a major issue other than The Monkey Boy’s obsession with diggers, which he will shout repeatedly whenever he sees one and if they leave his vision or he thinks about them he will instead shout digger gone or digger all gone which is actually quite sweet even for the millionth time. His vocabulary is now expanding daily and the digger obsession is easily distracted by something else he sees now anyway be it a neenaw (fire engine) or copter’ (pretty much anything in the sky but better if it is actually a helicopter)

I’d initially been quite impressed with the school with staff on the gate in the mornings checking the state of the students uniforms and contents of their bags etc. etc. but since this current term began I have been forced to report two instances of groups of pupils fighting outside of the nursery block and then on Monday morning having dropped off The Monkey Boy and about to head back to the hospital to look after The Bug (see my previous post) that I witnessed a young man and he was a young man well over six foot and although gangly not a kid by any stretch of the imagination punch a female pupil in the face.

I was incensed, I was enraged, I very nearly punched him on her behalf but instead what I believed to be common sense prevailed, note the use of the past tense there. Anyway I instead frog marched this young man across the playground in front of all of his friends berating him on his behaviour and handed him over to a member of the faculty who I later learned was called Mr Northern County, well he isn’t but it’s close enough and will do for the purposes of this narrative.

The following morning with The Bug still in hospital and my blood still up I decided to make a formal complaint to the school which I did and asked for the head teacher to contact me to discuss what was being done about these levels of violence. Remember I am on school premises for a maximum of twenty minutes a day and only walk through the very public areas. I dread to think what is going on in the quieter corners of the school. The school secretary assured me that she would pass my complaint on the headmaster Mr Litebeer and he would be in touch to discuss my concerns.

Later that morning I received a call from Mrs Dragon, Mr Litebeer’s PA, she began getting my heckles up by saying that Mr Litebeer was too busy to call me personally but that the school had a policy of restorative justice  which you can read more about in that link and that because the pupils were confined by the building works etc. etc. they are going to play up and that once these building works were finished they would become sweet and lovely children and that they were not doing anything different in this time as it was all going to be hunky dory once the builders were gone and all the kids would love each other and become decent and upstanding members of society.

Rather impolitely I explained to her that she was talking bollocks (I know I don’t normally swear here but I’m really angry so sorry) and that Mr Litebeer had better call me with a better explanation as to what his plans were to get his pupils under control or I would take my complaint further.

Surprise surprise, by the following morning Mr Litebeer had still not bothered to call me despite me following up again the previous evening so on my way to the school I called and said that I was on my way down and would like to meet with Mr Litebeer and that if he couldn’t find five minutes to call me then I would be forced to knock on his office door and interrupt his very important meeting with my complaint.

Instead of this happening though I was met at the school gates by a very nice policeman who we’ll call PC Fred again a psuedonym but you’ll notice not an unflattering one, PC Fred walked with me while I dropped off The Monkey Boy and then invited me to his office to discuss my complaint further. Office, OFFICE, OFFICE I hear you ask, yes his office, PC Fred is permanently based at the school.

PC Fred explained some more background to me, he is not a school spokesman and in reality wanted more info on my complaint but we spoke for an hour or so during which he was extremely frank, fully agreeing that when he first joined as a beat policeman it was the good old days and misbehaving kids were given a clip around the lughole by the Local Bobby which actually gave them respect and fear for the constabluary something that is sorely lacking from todays youth culture. PC Fred being based at the school is copied in on all communications relating to violence and other potentially criminal behaviour at the school. He explained to me that the school had originally been a government school funded by the local authority but had been so unsuccessful that a contract had been given to a private company to try things differently.

All of the senior management had been replaced and this profit making took over changing the school name, it’s uniform but not it’s nasty pupils which it ships in from all over South London and not just the local area. The School is set targets by central government and has to adhere to them in order to keep it’s contract. Key to these targets is they need to reduce the number of permanant exclusions that the local authority had to make. In order to achieve this they use different measures of punishment and have different policies to more traditional schools (read they don’t exclude the kids because that costs them money) and instead do things like separate problem children into a different part of the school and onto different timetables etc, they also as mentioned regularly search the students not only for contraband but to ensure that they have their stationary, books etc as required and ensure they are in the right state of mind to learn.

PC Fred explained to me that as an independant he could not force Mr Litebeer to call me but did agree to attempt to chase him on my behalf. He also obviously had little belief or faith in the softly softly methods employed by the school (which the schools PR Team call “Tough Love” by the way) despite him on the surface backing up their policies. He explained to me that the punching I had witnessed the previous day had been dealt with by the school but that as both parties had independantly denied anything other than horseplay taking place they were unable to place any sanctions on either child despite there being an independant complaining witness.

He did say that the school was meeting with both pupils and that they would be undergoing the afformantioned restorative justice sessions where they would have to sit and explain to each other how they feel about the incident and hopefully prompt an apology and feelings of guilt from him to her. I have my doubts of course. PC Fred also showed me the schools incident report which included the charming quote from Puncher, “why is this man even getting involved it’s none of his business, she kicked me so I pushed her it was just messing around, stupid man” The girls report was similar but said that they had just been messing around like they always did and it was no big deal.

I know I have already said it but this is not what happened, she may or may not have kicked the puncher as I didn’t see it but the punchee received a severe fist punch to the face, why does no one care what I actually saw.

Surprise surprise Mr Litebeer again did not phone me and I placed a call to the schools head office (they run a number of schools for the government around the country) speaking to the HR Manager for the south east who again promised to follow up on my behalf. She agreed with my assesment that it was unlikely that someone could be so busy as to not have five minutes to spare in their day to phone a concerned and upset member of the public, not to mention the welfare of the children.

I also left further messages with Mrs Dragon requesting that Mr Litebeer contact me as soon as possible. One of the above methods obviously worked though as first thing (before 8am) the following morning Mr Litebeer finally saw fit to call me and whilst not apologetic for his lack of earlier response he did take the time to listen to me rant and does agree that the current position is unnaceptable.  He still cannot place any sanction on either child because they both deny the incident but he will be adressing an assembly on violence and meeting with both students to discuss the incident further.

He agreed with me that perhaps there can be further consequences for their actions without official sanctions being placed, I have suggested that perhaps letters of appology and even essays on the problems with acceptable violence in youth culture may be appropriate especially given the recent events in the town in which we live. He said that he will consider this and has also agreed for me to meet with him and the pupils concerned in the near future. An appointment has been made for next week and I will report back my discussions with both Mr Litebeer and the puncher and punchee once this has occurred.

I fully intend to be bluntly honest with the students and Mr Litebeer that the actions of the students and Mr Litebeer are unnaceptable to a civilised public and that I am dismayed by the lack of courtesy shown to me as a visitor to the school both by the faculty (by Mr Litebeer in his failure to return my calls in a timely fashion) and the students themselves in thinking that it was acceptable in engage in acts of violence in front of members of the public.

I realise that this post has been longer and more disjointed than many I’ve been composing it in dribs and drabs over the last few days between hospital visits and short breaks in my day, but I’ll come back to my original point that there has to be something wrong with modern society when the government can take control away from a local authority and give it to a profit making business who achieve results by fudging the books to make them money and the government look better with reduced school exclusions because they instead just don’t take any actions.

This school has a police officer permanently based on the premises for gods sakes, I know that I just sound like a cumudgeonly old man but why not bring back proper punishment and teach these kids that there are consequences to their actions, what happened to every action has an equal and opposite reaction, I certainly learned that in school. Yes I fought, I realise that kids do, but I never hit any girls, and if I was caught doing anything wrong, which I innevitably was as the schools were run properly by proffesionals, there were consequences.

I have no objection to running schools as profit making organisations, every school I went to was a private one and yet ahead of these profits there was a deep underlying care for the welfare of the children and how those children in adult life would become better people and in turn bring their kids back to make them more money, as well as reflected glow from high flying pupils who went on to greater things. Now I realise that they largely failed in my case but that doesn’t change the fact that their ethos was right and that this current way of thinking in my mind at least is grossly wrong.

I have ranted on for long enough now, I’ll let you know how I get on next week.

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow

Diary of a sick baby

Posted: 06/10/2011 in Uncategorized

I apologise that I have been remiss of late in keeping this blog up to date but I will endeavour to explain why below.

Last Friday I was designated the duty of driving my parents and older son Monkey Boy to Heathrow so that they could return to their home in a tinpot dictatorship and allow Mrs Bunny Chow and I to try get some level of order back into our lives following the arrival of our younger son now christened The Bug in reference to his resemblance to an angry woodlouse. (I do love my kids but find their ever changing appearance endlessly amusing)

As is often the case of a Friday afternoon or any other afternoon for that matter the M25 was gridlocked and I found myself humming Chris Rea’s The Road to Hell and setting out after the two and a half hour journey to Heathrow with a fractious toddler and a feeling of dread. Mrs Bunny Chow called several times to let me know that The Bug had a really high temperature and that she thought we should take him to hospital to be checked out (he was 22 days old at this point) although slow the return journey was much better than the outward one and I was able to make it back to the M23 within an hour which should have seen me within 30 minutes of home.

Annoyingly though as soon as I pulled off the M25 the traffic ground to an inexplicable halt, literally going from 70ish MPH to zero, if the traffic reports had made any mention of this I could have driven on to the next junction and around the problem but of course they hadn’t and I was now stuck with an extremely fractious, hungry and screaming toddler and a wife who was becoming understandably anxious on the end of the phone. Despite that fact that I was now only a few miles from home, I could see that we were stuck for the long hall and suggested to Mrs Bunny Chow that an ambulance was summonsed to come to her and I rummaged around to find snack goods to sooth Monkey Boy.

Mrs Bunny Chow and The Bug were ferried to A&E at Croydon University Hospital with my journey taking much longer and no explanation as to why it took an hour and a half or so to drive the length of the M23 before it cleared to relatively empty smooth roads. I of course observed all speed limits and drove as only an Audi driver can with extreme patience and courtesy to the hospital to meet up with my sick child and beloved wife.

On arrival at the hospital it became apparent that A&E was business as usual and despite having been there for some time and being brought in by ambulance Mrs Bunny Chow had seen no one but a Triage Nurse and we were in for the long hall wait. Our dear friend Mrs T (thank you) kindly agreed to come to our home to babysit the now sleeping older child so I was sent to take him home to his bed returning to hurry up and wait.

Eventually things started happening with various worried looking doctor types arriving and prodding The Bug and it was decided that he was indeed a very sick little boy although they did not know what was making him ill so they would need to conduct various tests to establish what was wrong whilst agreeing that until then it was best to get him started on intravenous antibiotics and fluids. The exams included conducting a lumbar puncture to extract a spinal fluid sample, a Chest X-Ray as well as blood and urine samples. I watched the Lumbar puncture take place against the advice of the doctors and was very proud not to faint and only felt a little queasy, in all honesty although it was a touch distressing to see my little boy in such an unnatural setting I found the procedure fascinating.

I eventually went home leaving Mrs Bunny Chow and The Bug at about 4am knowing that I would have to be up early to deal with older child and also to relieve the duties of the wonderful and lovely Mrs T (thank you again we owe you one or several) Mrs Bunny Chow tells me that after the chest X-Ray they were taken to the Rupert Bear Ward and checked into an individual room with still no one any the wiser as to what might be wrong with the little man.

The following day I was stuck at home with older child whilst Mrs Bunny Chow and The Bug had to endure lots of hurrying up and waiting for doctors to come with little or no news and The Bug continued to supper from discomfort and high temperatures. That afternoon I managed to arrange with another friend who we’ll refer to as The Kiwi (thank you too) to babysit older child so that I could get to the hospital and support the exhausted Mrs Bunny Chow, the doctors had at this point let her know that they had not managed to track down the source of The Bug’s illness and as some of the symptoms he was presenting were consistent with Meningitis they were going to do a second Lumbar Puncture as there had been blood present in his first sample they had been unable to rule this out.

Still the test continued to come in with no conclusive results not really showing anything other than that the little mans white blood cell count was up and he was fighting off a massive infection of some sort whether it was viral or bacterial though they were unable to say. I sent Mrs Bunny Chow home so that she could try and have a decent night or at least some rest.

Sunday came and went with little change other than myself and Mrs Bunny Chow swapping places again and more tutting and confused doctors, they must have been doing something right though as The Bug began feeding again and his drip was removed in the wee hours of Monday morning retaining only his cannula in place for the IV antibiotics to continue.

We swapped places again on Monday evening by which stage he was looking better and better with his temperature coming down to relatively normal levels and demands for food rising in tempo and pitch.

I stayed with him again through Tuesday and Tuesday night and he was eventually released on Wednesday lunchtime following five days of antibiotics and no one having any real clue as to why he ended up where he did.

Before I go though we’d like to once again thank our friends and family for all their support in this difficult time especially the wonderfully kind Mrs T and The Kiwi we honestly don’t know what we would have done without you. Chuckles your support and kind words were also a great help as were the wonderful and lovely messages we received through face book and twitter. We Love you all.

We would also like to express our sincere thanks to the staff of Croydon University Hospital and the Rupert Bear Ward, yes it was a hospital stay which is never pleasant but the ending was a happy one and with a few minor exceptions you were kind patient and healed our Bug.

I hope that none of you readers never have to experience what we have just been through but rest assured that even when things look grim there is not always a sad ending.

thank you for reading, normal grumpy service will resume with my next post

TTFN

Mr Bunny Chow