Sunday, 9 October 2011

Um... A couple of things...

One thing I've observed as a teacher is that there are gender differences between how Men and Women deal with errors. I offer no opinion as to whether this is due to nature or nurture, and what I have to say is said using a big broad brush.

When Men make an error, they tend to blame something external. It was the other guy's fault. It was the traffic lights. It was the shoes they're wearing today. I've done it myself.

Women, on the other hand, tend to blame themselves, even if it's not their fault. I can even give you an example using google earth...

My pupil, Helen, came down the road centre top and turned right, following the curve of the building at the bottom of the picture. She then encountered a red light, and stopped. Meanwhile, at the junction behind her, someone misread the filter light, and went straight ahead when they shouldn't have done, and smashed into another vehicle. Big loud bang. Airbags out. Helen turned to me, wide eyed, and asked, "Was that my fault?"

That's pretty typical. It's by no means universal. There are men who will do this, and there are women that will point the finger elsewhere when they make mistakes.

My job, in a sense, is to make people make mistakes. This might sound odd, but while the repetition of stuff people can do is useful for reinforcing the techniques people have learned, once they can do it without thought, it no longer really needs reinforcement. So my job is to challenge my pupils - to put them into situations that they are not totally comfortable with, and which they are sometimes going to get wrong.
Mistakes also lead to a fuller understanding of what you're doing. Instead of just knowing what to do, you also learn how to get back on track when things go wrong. This is vital, because nobody gets it right all the time.
So it's far more important to learn how to get going again after you've stalled, than to try to pretend that you're never, ever going to stall.

What else? Well some thoughts about left wing reactionaries.

Over at Head Heritage, someone posted a post about a Spanish Duchess, who, now in her 80's, has married someone 20 years younger than her. The article linked to was accompanied by a less than flattering picture, and the post generated a whole lot of comments along the lines of "Don't think much of yours, Mate."

It was left to the board's residant tory troll to point out the ugliness of this behaviour.

As you might expect, rather than fess up, some perfectly reasonable people went on the defensive instead. "It's OK to take the piss out of an old woman because she's rich", said one class warrior. "If someone had "I love hitler" tattooed on his face, I shouldn't comment on it then" said another, beautifully proving Godwin's Law. in a lame and incorrect attempt to use reductio ad absurdum to justify his behaviour.

Ultimately, we on the left are trying to make the world a better place. I like many of the people making those comments, and I understand how difficult it can be to say "I was wrong, and I'm sorry", but a better world doesn't mean just redirecting the shit to a different section of society.
driving lessons in Wallasey?


Pete said...

This looks like just outside Birkenhead North station. If I'm wrong, it's because of the way you posted the picture. Or your socks.

Paul said...

It is indeed the North End of Birkenhead, Pete. The large building at the bottom is St James' Church.

When are you back?

Pete said...

Leave Bangkok Saturday, Arrive London Sunday, Arrive Neston Monday