The blog of a travelling psychiatrist and football lover. Who happens to be a halfway decent photographer. Takes a cynical view of the world

Archive for the tag “cancer”

The Fault in our Stars

The Fault in our Stars is a wonderful film on many levels. The acting is superb, as is the casting as is the music.  The use of a narrator helps the story flow. As most people know the story relates to cancer in young people.  The film is undoubtedly sad however oddly very funny as well. Go and see it. I am not going to spoil the story by telling you what happens but suffice to say a fast moving film that never dwells on any single part, issue or character for long. This story could happen and to that extent is a real story. The music provides a great background and is thoughtfully chosen with a minor complaint. What happened to the song by Birdy T-shirt? A great song and although on the playlist seems to have fallen off the film somewhere. Wrong decision. Not everyone agrees with me. I am a fan of  The Economist but cannot agree with their view that the film is ” too sweet and self-absorbed”. Cancer if you have it is very self-absorbing. It certainly absorbed me when I had Malignant Melanoma a few years ago and after my treatment a letter arrives telling me my percentage change of surviving the next 7 years.


On the other hand I agree entirely with the views from the BBC, not always the case


This is cancer and this is real and this can happen. For background information visit the website for the Teenage Cancer Trust. Until I saw Suede at the Royal Albert Hall in March 2014 in one of the sponsored concerts for Teenage Cancer Trust, I had no real knowledge of this issue, problem nor solutions. Just had not thought about it. Cancer is a sad illness with often a sad ending but when this happens in young people just embarking on their lives this makes it worse. At a minimum their lives are interrupted and at worst finished far too early.  The work of the Teenage Cancer Trust is impressive and although individuals like Stephen Sutton MBE are very visible there are many thousands not only of patients but helpers and supporters that remain less visible. If this film does achieve something, it will be that it makes teenage cancer something that people talk about, consider and perhaps try and prevent or cure.


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Concern over Breast Cancer Charity Value

We all would like to rid the world of cancer and most of us donate to some forms of cancer charity. Marie Cure and Cancer Research Uk are amongst usual options. I am slightly troubled by the constant flow of plastic envelopes through the door collecting clothes etc for charity. A quick look at the front cover says ” Recycling in support of AGAINST BREAST CANCER”.  We are then asked to donate our unwanted clothes. This would be instead of going down to the high street to donate to any number of charity shops there. The registered charity number is 1121258. All looks an option. Turning the envelope over there is another more troubling story. “Recycling clothes company Ltd, will donate £75 to AGAINST BREAST CANCER  per tonne of goods received”

A quick search as to how much exactly a tonne is,finds this.

The number of tons a car weighs, depends on the size of the car. Compact cars can weigh from one ton to one and a half tons, while SUV’s can weigh upwards of 2 and a half tons

So donating clothes, which is what this company actually want, will donate 75£ for a ton of clothes, the weight of an average compact car. Does it not seem that if that amount of clothes were donated directly to the charity shop, the amount raised would be considerably in excess of £75.

I leave it to you to judge. My preference would be to give clothes and donations directly to the charity shops in the high streets.

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Teenage Cancer Trust and Suede

A few times one feels really privileged to be somewhere and last night at Royal Albert Hall was one such time. Suede playing a concert for Teenage Cancer Trust. The two priviliedges were learning about Teenage Cancer Trust, a trust that does what it says. Looks after teenagers with various forms of cancer and they need this. And hearing Suede do essentially two sets. The first set was Dogmanstar delivered in a a respectful way, followed by a separate concert of the multiplicity of Suede songs. The place rocked and folks enjoyed every note. The best concert I have been to? Almost, Suede in Paradiso last November wins that one. If you have a few minutes go and look at the Teenage Cancer trust website, and learn about what goes on behind the scenes and then imagine if your teenager needed that help, then donate, please.



Peregrine Falcon eating a chick.Copyright chris Bushe

Peregrine Falcon eating a chick.Copyright chris Bushe



for reasons that are almost inexplicable the local school have deemed that all children in Year 6 ( these are 11-12 yr olds in our parlance, but currently this time of year mostly just 11 yrs) can wear costumes to be a book character to school tomorrow monday. What does the 11 yr old want to be? A highwayman. Maybe this is a career decision and if so not a bad one. Enjoy. My eldest daughter asked a most reasonable question as to why I had photos of  her sister in these outfits. My initial response was the the new headmistress had decided the school should be a progressive school and children might wear what they wanted. this was treated with some distain but sadly the truth of the matter was that my wife has a fancy dress shop at her work. this is strange enough anyway, but she works in cancer research in a hospital environment and I do not feel that I have totally convinced my eldest daughter that this part is indeed totally true. The idea of highwayman comes from two angles. Firstly they are doing the poem the Highwayman at school and i would recommend you to type in highwayman into  youtube and watch the videos. Secondly, a great book called Jack Bolt by Richard Hamilton. i have read a number of books to me daughter over the years and this one is in the top ten and based on the story of a Highwayman ending up in the 21st Century. go read it.

highwayman - a career choiceHighwaymanHighwayman

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