Saturday, December 19, 2009

Yes, I am a Guardian reader

I was on the early wake up with the kids this morning. They're both very excited about Christmas, so we spent most of the morning putting the finishing touches to their papier mache Santa masks, and making snowflakes from folded paper.

I'm now sat in my local coffee shop, reading the paper and I've come across this article by Chris Cleave ( The first paragraph says it all:

"Nothing says more about our families than the way we decorate our homes for Christmas. A ife-size inflatable "burglar Santa", hanging by an arm and a leg from an upstairs window says that Mum and Dad have a certain sense of humour. Fifteen thousand watts of Disney animatronic lights, festooning the outside of a dilapidated hovel with a new Beemer parked outside, say that your uncle's drug-dealing business is going great guns and Mam might et him stay for another year. Paper snowflakes in the windows, made by the children folding a circle three times and cutting careful diamonds into the folded edges using age-appropriate safety scissors, say that Mummy and Daddy read the Guardian"

I guess he knows his readers pretty well :-)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Little donkey

Jonah's first role as a king - in our local nativity play.

of course, Lucas decided to press the off button half way through, so here's part 2:

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Cut the sandwiches

I went to a talk today by Colm McCarthy - the UCD economist who advised the Irish Government on how to tackle the current economic crisis. He's a smart guy, but what I appreciated the most was his down to earth, no spin delivery.

He made a very compelling comparison between the current economic situation, and that of Ireland in the 1980s. He also pointed out that welfare, healthcare and education accounted for almost three quarters of public expenditure, and that if you weren't willing to reduce spending in those areas then you would have no real impact. Or as he put it...if you don't cut those areas then all you can do is reduce your spending on tea and sandwiches.

I'm one of those screaming liberals that would always support public cuts in spending, as long as it didn't touch welfare, healthcare or education. But Colm's talk today really made me question myself. He obviously focused on the macro-economic approach, and when you get down to the micro level, education, welfare and healthcare are about sick people, schools and kids - all highly emotive subjects. I'm left wondering how to reconcile this intellectual belief in the macro-economics with my social views at the micro-level. For as Colm pointed out, a bounced cheque is no help at all.

Colm's talk was worrying, and I don't think anyone left the room feeling in high spirits, but I'm really glad that I attended, and feel infinitely better informed and even a little more prepared.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Friday, June 12, 2009

Changing tack

I changed the title of my blog today. Why? Well for starters, I haven't posted here for a while - in fact let's face it, I've been pretty slack since moving to Ireland two year ago (yes TWO YEARS!). I've also noticed, then most of my tweets and online conversations revolve around three things (1) living overseas (2) the kids (3) consumer technology.

While I was living in Seattle, most of my thought and posts were about my professional interests - specifically how the sales and marketing groups of large companies make use of technology. I'm still fascinated by the subject (sad I know), but it's now occupying a smaller part of my brain, so I thought I'd do a swap for a while, and post on what's going on in the rest of my head.

Hopefully I'll manage more than one post every year!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Ireland loses AAA status

Hot off the heals of the Times article on Ireland this weekend, S&P have reduced the rating of Ireland from AAA to AA+

I don't pretend to be a financial analyst, and this reduction has been widely predicted for a while, but I guess they may be in good company, with GE and Berkshire close behind!

Monday, July 30, 2007


I foolishly thought that I'd get a chance to blog about my international rellocation. However, all of my time has been spent on the move, and I haven't had much chance to put virtual pen to paper. We'll be moving into our new house in Dalkey, Dublin this weekend, and our belongings should be turning up the week after. So hopefully I'll be able to draw breath and write something with a bit more substance soon.