End of marking, for now, in sight….

….but I have gnawed my left arm off and beaten myself, and the computer, with it.


I am now having to type in the feedback like my father would….one…..finger….at….a….time…..


It was, however, preferable to carving pentagrams into my stomach with the marking criteria……


Pluck my eye balls out and call me the devil

I am in hell.


And literal.


I am marking undergraduate course work.

I can feel the waves of your sympathy through the wifi….

I put together a very unique assignment which means that plagiarism is zero. Unfortunately, because Wikipedia isn’t any use for this assignment I’ve had to wade through dirge and shite for the past month.

I seriously considered hiri kiri. Edward II’s hot poker was looking like an option for a while. I was even thinking the Gunpowder plotters had a less painful ending than what I was experiencing.

I may even have been mesmerised by the imperfectly formed turds swimming past my eyes.

If only students would READ THE FLIPPIN’ QUESTION and stop vomiting lecture notes back onto the page to submit for marking.

To think, in 7 months these people will be graduates.

January is the last chance to rectify this imminent error and rig the basement in the exam venue with some sticks of dynamite….


Otherwise, they were a great class!

It’s my right to be ill at the weekend!

Yes, guys and girls, your weekends are not actually your days off. They are legitimate work days and you are all skiving.

So says the Government.

For the first time in my life I had to fill out a self certificate for illness. I was off ill for 6 work days.

But, apparently, not so.

According to the law, I was actually off for 8 days, which means an unnecessary trip to the GP to sign me back.

See, it is based on calendar days, not work days.

In effect, they are saying that your weekend off is legitimate work days.

So, it isn’t actually a self certificate for 7 days illness, it is actually for 5 days.

Perhaps those that are actually really ill might be able to get an appointment with their GP at some point before 2 weeks that everyone gets quoted by the receptionist if 7 day self certificates were actually for 7 work days.

What a complete colossal waste of everyone’s time.

And, Mr Cameron, my weekends are my own to spend how I choose. We should all rise up in a Red Army revolution and reclaim our weekends.

Play the REF song lyric game….

As I’m in the middle of marking and the thought of sticking chips in ketchup up me nose seems like a good idea right now, I started thinking about how you can replace key words in songs with “REF”.


For example, take the 90s anthem of mediocrity “Return of the Mac” by someone whose name I have repressed. I’ve changed “Mac” to “REF”. It doesn’t actually change the song in any way and, at the same time, is almost like this pop wannabe foretold the appearance of the REF nearly 20 years before it occurred:


Oooooh, come on, ooh yeah


Well I tried to tell you so (yes I did),

But I guess you didn’t know,

As the saddest story goes,

Baby, now I got the flow,

‘Cause I know it from the start,

Baby, when you broke my heart,

That I had to come again,

And show you that I’m with.


You lied to me,

All those times I said that I loved you,

You lied to me,

Yes, I tried, yes, I tried,

You lied to me,

Even though you know I’d die for you,

You lied to me,

Yes, I cried, yes, I cried.


Return of the REF,

It is,

Return of the REF,

Come on,

Return of the REF,

Oh, my god,

You know that I’ll be back,

Here I am.



Return of the REF,

Once again,

Return of the REF,

Top of the world,

Return of the REF,

Watch my flow,

You know that I’ll be back,

Here I go.


So, I’m back up in the game,

(Running things like my swing),

Lettin’ all the people know,

That I’m back to run the show,

Cause what they didn’t know was wrong,

And all the nasty things you’ve done,

So, baby, listen carefully,

While I sing my comeback song.


You lied to me,

Cause she said she’d never turn on me,

You lied to me,

But you did, but you did,

You lied to me,

All this pain you said I’d never feel,

You lied to me,

But I do, but I do do do.


Return of the REF,

It is,

Return of the REF,

Hold on,

Return of the REF,

Don’t you know,

You know that I’ll be back,

Return of the REF,

Oh, little girl,

Return of the REF,

Once more girl,

Return of the REF,

Up and down,

You know that I’ll be back (round and round).


Ahhhhhh SuperStarTM

Stop worrying about your big break


You lied to me,

Cause he said she’d never turn on me,

You lied to me,

But you did, but you did,

You lied to me,

All this pain you said I’d never feel

You lied to me,

But I do, but I do do do


Return of the REF.



See, there are some aspects that are rather spookily accurate…..

Judge rules: Wheelchair users aren’t equal to mams with prams

Judge over-rules previous decision that First Bus was legally required to give priority of wheelchair users over parents with buggies in accessing buses.

I think that says it all.

Another case of parents and kids coming out top, people with disabilities coming out bottom.

It’s strange. The bus driver can chuck you off for eating and drinking, smoking, causing mayhem. They can make you give you your seat to an older person or pregnant woman. But, if you are a wheelchair user?

No. You don’t count. Mams with prams can’t be made to shift themselves.

I wonder, though. What happens if the reverse situation occurs? Mam with pram can’t get on bus because a wheelchair user is already in the space?

However, I think it just highlights a major problem in this country when it comes round to equality for disabled users: Non-disabled people have to be forced to comply with the law otherwise they won’t. They scream Big Brother, they scream draconian laws, they scream bureaucracy, but when it comes down to it, for many people they have to be dragged kicking and screaming to comply.

Shame on the lot of them.

I don’t normally encourage this type of thinking, but disabled users should rise up en masse and sue every mother fucker that breaches their rights. The only thing that seems to change people’s way of thinking in this country is the thought of losing money. We should start using it against them.

Don’t underestimate the usefulness of trained monkeys….or dogs in student feedback

I have decided that rather than spending the next three weeks dutifully marking essays and providing feedback, which most students don’t even read, I am spending the time training my dog to do the task.

Last year, she contributed her own comments to some exam scripts, as evidenced by several dirty paw marks. Her general view was that they were of low quality, and this was evidenced by her trying to paw them under the sofa.

So, I think this is a promising start. She can recognise dirge when she sees it; I just need to get her to recognise the rare pink unicorn when it comes along. Given that this happens so rarely I don’t think I need be overly concerned.

Now, if only she could answer the inevitable emails I get once the marks are released complaining about how I have failed to recognise their genius and can I remark their essay…..