The Great British Ski Instructor Debate

Some of you may be aware of the Simon Butler case that has been going through the French Courts for several months. Yesterday Mr Butler was sentenced to 200 days imprisonment, or he can pay a fine of 30,000€, for teaching skiing illegally in France. He is appealing this judgement.

For anyone not up to speed, Mr Butler operates ski school in Megeve, France, and has done so for some years. He maintains that he holds all of the correct qualifications and has the right to work in France under EU Law.

While he may have passed a number of the modules required to achieve the BASI ISTD qualification, he does not have his Eurotest qualification. The Eurotest is a Giant Slalom speed test required by the French authorities in order for instructors to be able to teach in France, and is often referred to as the hardest one to pass. The Eurotest is a requirement of all French, British, Irish, Italian, Australian, New Zealand, Swiss, Austrian, Turkish, Swedish, Norweigian, Argentinian, in fact every nationality of ski instructor, before they can teach skiing in France. There are other countries which will allow instructors to teach with a lesser qualification, including Switzerland, New Zealand, and Canada.

For a detailed explanation of the BASI Qualifications, Planet Ski published this handy little article a couple of days ago.

Today UKIP have pledged their support for Simon Butler, along with Boris Johnson and a number of seemingly ill-informed journalists. They all appear to hold the view that The French Authorities are trying to prevent anyone who is not French from teaching skiing on their territory, and how very dare they do this to a British National.

Given the recent European election debates and the many issues that people in the UK would appear to have with the EU having too much power over what happens in the UK, some of those people think it’s OK for the EU to overrule another government in favour of a one of ours working over there.

If a Frenchman moved to the UK with a licence to drive a regular car, and set up a transport business where he drives an HGV, everyone would be up in arms about it.

There are quite literally hundreds of British (plus a good number of other nationalities) Ski Instructors teaching perfectly legally in France, often in pleasant harmony with their French counterparts. They have all trained hard and worked hard over a number of years to get their Carte Professionelle. And they ALL have their Eurotest. It is a tough one but it is achievable for those who want it enough.

The French Authorities take their ski industry and mountain safety very seriously, and their laws reflect this. It is irrelevant whether anyone else thinks that the Eurotest should be a requirement or not.

In the UK we expect foreign nationals to abide by our laws; we should show the same respect elsewhere. If you don’t agree with the laws of a particular country, go somewhere else.

David Cameron On Mickey Mouse Degrees

“Britain must end the “snobbery” surrounding degrees such as “music studies and golf course management”, David Cameron, BA hons PPE, has said”.

Mr Cameron said that for too long people have assumed that there “is something wrong” with the kind of higher education qualifications qualifications which have in the past been described as Mickey Mouse degrees.

He’s right. As the coalition government follows Labour’s lead and exports more and more proper jobs to low labour cost nations, people with degrees in golf course management, leisure studies, theoretical science with modern dance (I will now explain Einstein’s general theory of relativity through the medium of free dance) and Simpsonsology are going to be indispensible in advising the bulk of our sixty million people on how to fill the empty hours of their post industrial lives.

Can’t see much use for people with degrees in the in Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) however. After all there are only six hundred and fifty jobs available for such useless tossers.

The STEM Education and Scientism – the curse of modern education
Education Is Out, Indoctrination Is In.
Captive Minds And Cowardly Intellectuals
Some reality on employment prospects for young graduates.

Is Yoga Addictive?

OMG. The former self confessed sex addict and sometime comic, Russell Brand has announced that yoga is better than sex.

So now after conquering his addictions to drink, drugs and sex, no wonder he’s so thin, he’s gone and got himself hooked on yoga.

“I have 30 people doing it in my house,” he explained.

And added, “I had all the crew on my TV show doing yoga in the studio too.

He does it with young women but also names 50 year old Demi Moore, whom he ‘just sees at Yoga’.

The next thing you know he’ll be trawling the dark alleys looking for backstreet yoga dens.

Russell Brand and friends practicing the yoga ‘Corpse Pose’

Mid-Life Crisis

So some men, when they are feeling as if the brow of the hill may be receding. like their hairline, into the distance, go out and buy a big fuck off motorbike on which to bring forward their ultimate demise.

Others buy a fast car, see above, but at least if they get to pull in it they don’t have to lie on the damp grass, plays havoc with the old sciatica, mind you so does trying to get your leg over in a 2+2.

Others, perhaps in posession of all their material wants, turn to matters of grooming and dress. They might dye their hair, they might take to wearing a Breitling watch, they may sport a gold chain around their neck, perhaps holding a gold sovereign against their greying chest-hair. They might start to wear clothes that people a generation younger wear to underline their coolness and hipability.

None of this fools anybody, of course, we all know that here is a person afraid of growing old gracefully.

What, then, do we make of Roger Federer at the Australian Open.

The lilac shirt goes well with the grey shorts, (that’s what he’s wearing on his bottom and not the colour of his body hair) and Fed has always been quite partial to black tennis shoes,


WTF Rog, it’ll be odd socks and body piercings next.

Get a grip man.

But Some People Are Just Batty

A follow up to the story I posted earlier.

On having a shufti through The Currant Bun there’s a full page story on a crackpot dog owner who spends £500 a month to kit herself and pooch out in matching outfits.

Yes she’s female, well you could work that one out for youselves, but most surprisingly she’s a good forty years shy of picking up her pension.

Boggartblog’s resident shrink thinks it could be a case of arrested development, after all little girls are notorious for dressing up anything thet will keep still long enough.

To the young lady in question the shrink has this advice: find yourself a bloke and have a good shag, leaving the dog out of the room.
Although stockings and suspenders are a big turn on for the average male this doesn’t apply, in most cases, when the wearer is one foot high, sports all over body hair and smells of PAL.

To the blokes he says,
“Avoid this one like the plague. A latent bunny boiler if ever there was one.
If you start a relationship with a girl like this not only will she have a pet name for your todger, she’ll be buying little cosies to keep it warm in the winter.”
Colour co-ordinated with your undercrackers obviously.

Dogs Feel The Cold Too – Not

Sometimes you think that perhaps it is time for the world to come to an end, – shame for Kate though who would just be getting over the morning sickness by December 20 oddth.

Out walking yesterday, in rural Barnsley, a place with a strong mining history; think flat caps, whippets and “Trouble at t’pit. Indeed I was walking above the former mine workings where 12 children died in a flash flood in the ventilation shaft they were sheltering in, way back in 1832 or thereabouts.

It was a bright sunny day, chill, obviuosly, but quite warm enough one would have thought for, say, a small dog, with a shaggy coat.

But obviuosly not.

Said pooch was wearing a sheepskin lined puffa jacket – with a red, fleecy lined hood.

A word to my canine friend, piss in her slippers and crap on her bed, that’s if you can work your way out of your doggy onesie.

Pissed as a Fart, Good; Chuffing Legless, Bad

So Cam the Man, having side lined the former Health Secretary or whatever he was who was definitely not in favour of this policy, now feels free to push through his idea of minimum pricing for units of alcohol in an effort to stop binge drinking and subsequent unruly behaviour, spewing and shagging amongst the poorer classes.

What, you thought it was going to affect everybody the same?

Personally, these days I wouldn’t touch a bottle of vino at less than £6.00 which works out at more than 45p per unit, on the grounds that most of them taste like paint stripper or cheap cough mixture.

And lets just cast our minds back to some recent notorious incidents of unruly behaviour which you can bet your bottom dollar were not fuelled by Tesco’s ‘2-for-1’ 2 litre bottles of White Lightning.

Mike Tindall, son in law to HRH and England Rugby player, brawling, dwarf throwing and snogging strange blonde beauties?

Freddie Flintoff, former England cricketer, 2am pedallo trip off the coast of Australia necessitating being rescued by the coastguard?

Joey Barton doing his best Inspector Clouseau, oh hang on, he was sober that time, but he certainly wasn’t when he first came to notoriety for duffing up a heckler in Leeds City centre in the small hours.

Prince Harry, strip snooker.

The entire squad of a premiership football team, as good as gang rape.
plus the women who put themselves in those situations, you can’t tell me they are fully compost minty.

Even our dear old Cam the Man himself and fellow Bullingdon club members, Boris and George, they weren’t nipping down to the local offie to pre-load on Scotch Mist before they indulged in getting drunk, having food fights, breaking things and quite possibly collapsing in the gutter telling their own pool of vomit that it is the only one who understands them and they want to have its babies.

All of the incidents above will have been fuelled by expensive beverages, champagne will have flowed freely, along with a decent case of Claret if dinner was served, probably rounded off by the finest cognac before hitting the bubbly again.

Nah, pricing units of alcohol has sod all to do with stopping binge drinking, but a lot to do with stopping the great unwashed binge drinking.

Says Who?

Driving home from Sheffield last night after an enjoyable evening watching Alan Davies, well worth the £25 if you get the chance to go along,however SezJez says she’s never felt so young since she took her Dad to see The Stranglers for his birthday a couple of years ago, I elected to go along the A61 as opposed to the cross country and much more fun B roads that I usually use. It’s donkeys years since I drove along that stretch of the 61 and the bastards have made it a 50 mph speed limit. Not only that, at seemingly every kink in the road they have put up “Maximum Speed 40 MPH” and at one point 35 MPH.

So there are all the goody two shoeses, driving along at 39 mph then slowing dramatically to 25 mph at every slight deviation from the straight and narrow. Of course when they get to the street-lit 30 mph zones they all speed up ro at least forty, I presume because they can see where they are going.

And I’m driving along, calm but frustrated because even the sharpest bend on this stretch can be taken, at worst, at a good fifty, 60+ in the Polo and probably well in excess of 70 in the GTi, without straying over the white line or ending up in a ditch.

So it made me wonder, was it just a knee-jerk reaction to a bad accident involving an uninsured, teenage drunk, driving a car too powerful for his limited capabilities and showing off to the gaggle of peers in the passenger seats?

Or did somebody, an 84 year old, flat cap wearing, pipe-smoking, short sighted grandpa perhaps, actually go out and drive along the road at gently increasing speed until they were either too scared to carry on, or they lost control and crashed, or thier nose started to bleed?

Either way, if there is a vacancy for a road test driver can I put myself up for it, I can even supply 3 very different vehicles to do the test in. C’mon that’s got to be worth £50 grand p.a. of any highways agency’s money.

The Greatest Love

Skip To The Loo

Off to Penistone Paramount last night, the local cinema cme theatre, for the Comedy Club. It’s very civilised at the Paramount, the seats are comfortable and well spaced, plenty of leg room, good clear view of the screen/stage from wherever you sit. And they’ve got a bar. When they are in cinema mode they still have an intermission so that you can get a half-time pint.

So out show was due to start at 8pm, the doors opened at 7pm and the bar was soon doing a roaring trade, pre-show drinks, orders for interval drinks.

At 8.15 the lights went down and the compere, Toby Foster, local radio DJ, arrived on stage, getting the audience in the mood for the first turn, a young man by the name of Christian Reilly, and his guitar. Christians act centres around his music and we found it tear inducingly funny.

However something was up with the locals. There was fidgeting down our row and then a man made his way past and dashed into the toilets. He was quickly followed by two others.

“The Penistone Cottagers?” I mused to hubby, but no, very soon, while Chris was stil up there on stage singing a song about fellatio, there were streams of men going to the loo.

“How rude,” (as in bad mannered) I thought. But then I reasoned there must be a cause.

Undiagnosed diabetes? Most of the chaps were in their forties and some of them quite stocky.

Prostate problems? That makes you chaps pee a lot doesn’t it?

I resolved to mention it to my doctor friend when next we meet.

By now nearly every male in the place was going to the toilet, Chris had taken to playing a little ditty,
Skip to the loo,
skip to the loo,
will it be a pee or
will it be a poo?
but these guys were unabashed, as they queued, shuffling at the toilet doors – and ladies I can’t tell you what a gratifying sight that was.

Then Chris called it a day and we went to the interval.

It was then that the mystery was solved. The Paramount has gone metric, it now sells its ale in 1/4 litre glasses, for the girlies, 1/2 litre glasses for the lasses and puffs, and in 1 litre glasses for the real men.

Yep all the blokes were drinking litres as opposed to pints and consequently having to go for a pee twice as often.

Health and Safety?

So this week I have read an article where a US lifeguard was fired for saving a swimmer’s life, as the swimmer was out of the proteted area and they have liability issues.

I also heard that a local landowner not too far from me in France has started to charge 2€ for access to his land which also happens to be a popular river beach. This is because he was recently sued by a holiday maker (punter as they are known among local workers) who had jumped off a high rock and injured himself, and therefore sued the landowner. And won.

Had said landowner had a sign up saying ‘Jump off the rock at your own risk’ (or preferably, ‘if you jump off this rock, you are a dick, its well high and you will more than likley injure/kill yourself’, as I have ever decreasing trust in the common sense of the general public).

Another story that came to light in the same conversation was that a female punter had broken her back jumping off a bridge. Her insurance company said they wouldn’t pay out as clearly, she shouldn’t have jumped off a bridge (dick). In her defence, she actually said ‘there wasn’t a sign saying ‘don’t jump off this bridge”. See? Clearly suffering from common sense issues.

I have no love for insurance companies in general, and I would have liked to hear that they put up more of a fight in the instance of the lady with the broken back. Clearly her mother never said ‘…and if Jenny jumped off a bridge, would you to the same?’. Mine did, and of course I thought ‘No, because if I jumped off a bridge I’d surely seriously injure or kill myself’. However, I do feel a tad sorry for them these days. I agree they will do their absolute damnedest to find a loophole in your policy and avoid paying out in lots of cases, but I think now we have reached a stage where health and safety, risk assesments and liability issues have gone so far that they are fucked if they do and fucked if they don’t.

When I was a kid, we had a sandpit in the garden, and I used to eat sand by the handful. Nowadays I could do that, but if I contracted any kind of illness within the few days following, I could potentially sue my parents for allowing me to eat it.

Everyone is so paranoid about everything today, kids don’t go outside because its not sterilised. Workplaces have a health and safety team whose sole purpose is to perform risk assessments and potentially disrupt the work of others. Don’t even get me started on school trips or the world of activity holidays.

Lets go back to letting people be responsible for themselves and their own mind. Make your own risk assesments. If you decide to jump off a bridge and survive, uninjured, then happy days. If you decide to jump off a bridge and injure yourself, or worse, accept the consequences knowing that while you may be a dick, you would always accept a dare.

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