"Take away the right to say fuck and you take away the right to say fuck the government."
- Lenny Bruce

Last week I went to the jobcentre, stood in line for half an hour, and told a hardfaced lady bureaucrat where she could shove her training schemes, because I'd finally got a job.

Then I went to the jobcentre, stood in line for half an hour, gave up and drank three glasses of cheap red wine, and told a hardfaced lady bureaucrat where she could shove her forms, because I just didn't care anymore.

The first time was in a cramped and dimly lit office. The second was in a spacious and bright art gallery, containing a recreation of the mindless tedium and officious oppression found in the former.

Relational Art is the creation/recreation of a social environment - as an aesthetic object. The viewers participate, act and react, conform or rebel, within the artificial situation - both controlled by the artwork, and contributing to it.

There were interview rooms, a queueing system, a tannoy summoning punters by ticket numbers, threatening notices...and hardfaced lady bureaucrats behind desks.

I took a few snaps.

I also took along my real "jobseeker" documents, and ripped them up in the ladies' faces with much shouting and rude gesticulating.

Just to add to the verisimilitude, you understand. It was quite appreciated.

Recently I jokingly suggested to a friend that a good day trip for Arabic student might be...a gay pride festival. I was roundly told this was not a good idea.

Guess what day trip had already been organised. Oh not to see the festival itself, but there was no suggestion of changing plans when the coincidence was discovered.

One or two students were nervous when they were told - before being reassured that "It'll be great fun, with lots of dancing and music. Gays always have the best music". This from a teacher with two marriages and three children. Heh heh.

Oh, and one devoutly Muslim student proudly came out, declaring "It's my freedom".

So, either the laid back British culture is infectious...or the offspring of the Saudi Arabian middle class vary as much as everyone else.

My insect bites are coming along nicely. I may be teaching with a bandage on my arm tomorrow.

What is the difference between a great uncle and and grand uncle? And just what is the system of numbering for cousins?

I read that George Bush is ninth cousin twice removed to John Kerry. He's fourth and seventh cousin thrice removed to James Garfield...and ninth cousin thrice removed from Osama Bin Laden. But what that means, I've no idea.

Kapitano's current favourite band: Cause & Effect. New wave, synthpop 'n' guitars, mellow dance a la Camouflage and Cetu Javu.

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