Monday 20 December 2010

My Winning Speech in the Speaker Competition

How would you react if one of your friends had a mental health problem?

Because it happens, one in three people are either born with or will develop a problem with their mental health. So to think about it, that one in three people sat in your row, in the classroom, in the cinema, at a concert or on the bus. Consider this, every single one of you here today who has sat next to me, well I have news for you. You have sat beside someone with a mental health problem.

I was diagnosed when I was 13, I was then told I have had this problem since I was born and I’ll live with it until I die. I was also told by my doctors not to tell a soul of my problem because the guaranteed me that people would react badly. That terrified me and it took me 2 weeks to tell even my closest of friends, but to be honest I shouldn’t of been so frightened. When I told them they were like ‘It’s Alex, so what if she has this problem, she is still our friend’ and to this day they still support me and look out for me. So I think in that way I have the greatest friends in the world. So I would like to thank Laura Todd, Keeley Middleton, Karla Leyden, Sammi Nicholson and my long standing best friend Sarah Baillie.

So why can’t everyone react as well as my friends, why do some people react really badly. Because having a mental disorder is just like having a disability, only you can’t see it, it’s locked up inside your head. Imagine one of your mates saw a guy in a wheel chair, and started saying ‘he’s weird’ or trying to exclude him, well you’d turn to your mate and go that a wee bit sick a little disgusting. Well it is. So why is it somehow ‘acceptable’ to be like that with someone who has a mental illness? I know from my own experiences, that even though I have this problem upstairs, I am still proud of who I am. I have nothing to hide anymore. 

So I am going to ask you again and this time I want you to really consider this, otherwise I’m just wasting my breath.

How would you react if you found out someone had a problem with their mental health?

Monday 29 November 2010

Reminiscing About Scottish Conference

When I got up at 5am on the 10th of October did I know what was going to happen that day? Heck no! If I did I would have made sure I would have gotten more sleep. Going to conference on 4 hours sleep is not a good idea! It didn’t help when my alarm clock failed to go off and I got up 10 minutes late. Still I met Joan in Newton Stewart in time and 3 or 4 hours later we were at the conference venue (after about ten minutes searching for it).

Joan and I parted as I had the first timer’s induction session. They gave us these yellow bags (which for the rest of the day marked us out as newbies). Soon it was the opening session and I remember being overwhelmed at the amount of people Joan knew and the amount of people I didn’t. Still that feeling of being apart from everyone else didn’t last long.

What possessed me to fill out that speaker card I don’t know to this day, all I know is that I had to borrow Joan’s pen because I forgot mine which was ever so slightly embarrassing. I quickly handed it back to her and handed my speakers card to the steward. I watched with a mix of anticipation and dread as my card got passed up. Half of my brain was crossing its fingers that I would get called and the other half was screaming what did you do that for?! Then I was told to stand by. I think that was one of the scariest moments of my life. I didn’t have a clue what I was going to say, I hadn’t even read the pre-manifesto and to top it off Danny Alexander entered the room. So no pressure then.

I thought my pulse could be seen in my neck from a mile away. The blood was thundering up and down my blood vessels as I got called up to speak. My head was so frenzied that I didn’t see the steps leading up to the stage, so I just stepped up on to the stage in my high heels. I was petrified of falling. When I got to the lectern I began to talk.

What I said I really don’t know. I know people laughed at a joke and at the end there was brilliant applause. I stepped carefully down from the podium still not quite aware that I had spoken in front of Tavish Scott, Michael Moore and Danny Alexander. When I sat down Joan enthusiastically congratulated me and the rest of the day felt like a really brilliant dream.

Sunday 7 November 2010

Mr Clegg isn't the whole of the Lib Dems.

I won’t pretend I like what the coalition is doing, I won’t pretend to agree with most of the coalition agreement and just because we’re in government doesn’t mean I agree with what Mr Cameron says.

The Liberal Democrats are not like the Tories, let’s make that quite clear, but in Westminster and in the cabinet the lines that separate the two parties are becoming hard to see. This is not true in the grassroots. In fact the grassroots of the Lib Dems are so different from the Tories that you could measure the gap in miles. So to say, as Harriet Harman did, that we have become genetically modified into Tories, is a complete and utter farce.

I couldn’t be further from a Tory yet I have people say to me I must be at least a Tory sympathiser because our leadership is working with them. That’s true but the leadership isn’t the be all and end all to the party. The parties grassroots is so defined and its own identity that to call an ordinary member a Conservative would gain you some harsh words.

I know some of the coalition plans are totally against Lib Dem principles and I’m not going to defend them, yet to call all Liberals Tories is a massive over reaction. Our party has a distinct identity and the press seem to be ignoring that. May I remind the likes of the Daily Fail and the Torygraph that the Lib Dems grassroots aren’t in coalition and we are still our own party. I think they’d do well to remember that.

Ok rant over. Back to school tomorrow yippee... not.

Thursday 28 October 2010

Aha an idea!

In June/July or somewhere around there, all of 3rd year do work experience. Some go off to the army, the police, the local primary schools or the solicitors. That’s all well and good but what if you want to do something a bit different? What if you want to do, I don’t know let’s say politics?

Well I would like to do politics and until recently it looked pretty certain that I would not be able to get the chance. Yet thanks to the excellent brains of Ms McVicar (all credits for this brilliant and obvious idea goes to her) we came up with a ground breaking solution.

How about I ask say Jim Hume (Lib Dem list MSP for the south of Scotland) to see if there was a work placement scheme? What a revolutionary Idea! I actually use the tongue nature gave me for good use instead of licking lollipops!

No but seriously, work placement is a great opportunity for teenagers to get a taste of working life and I really do hope I get in. All I need now is to find out who to contact. Wish me luck.

Mr Sisi.... I am sick of theory already!!

Graphic Communication (A.K.A Tech Drawing) is a class centred on drawing. So why on earth did I just spend nearly my entire lesson copying from a text book? Sure my class won’t shut their mouths but c’mon, some people like me do get their work done when they get the chance.

It’s not even like this is a onetime occurrence, it keeps happening over and over again. I am beginning to suffer from crippling loss of morale and a high intensity of boredom. I could go on for hours, moaning about how my hand hurts with the writing and what we are copying out is something I learnt in Computing studies, but I won’t because I have a mother for that.

So keeping this short and sweet, Mr Sisi give me and my hand a break and let me finish my drawing please.

Friday 22 October 2010

Why I'm Going with Tim

There's high tension, high apprehension, high drama, hustings and conference appearences. Yes it must be an election.

The Liberal Democrat Presidential election is gripping the party! Yup you may not have realised but it is. It's between Susan Kramer and Tim Farron and it looks to be a close one indeed.

Now I saw Susan on Question Time and I met her at conference so I have a lot of time for Susan. Yet I'm afraid Twitter swung it for me. Tim was far more accessable and he seemed far more passionate. He is confident, charismatic and a great communicator. That's what we need in this party especialy now we are in coalition with the Tories (now I say that through gritted teeth).

So as soon as I got the ballot paper I placed my X next to Tim's name and sent it off. I wish Tim all the best of luck and will be crossing my fingers that he wins.

Still the expectation on him if he wins will be great and I hope he knows that. He will have to stand up for the party members and make sure Nick Clegg and others don't forget the grass roots. He will need to criss cross the country campaigning and look after his own constituency. Yet I think he will manage all that and I think he will succeed at it with flying colours.

So all that is left to say is good luck Tim!

Epic BBC Fail

I love Question Time. I love the tweets that come from it, I love seeing government ministers squirm, I love hearing all the different accents from around the country and I adored when Nick Griffin was totally owned on the show. However I have a bone to pick with the producers at the BBC. Where was the Lib Dem representative?

In a week that the Lib Dem's have faced critism Question Time would of been a perfect way to show our veiws and to make people see that really we aren't Tories. Well BBC you failed again.

I would like to remind the folks at the BBC that the Lib Dem's are still a seperate party with seperate views and they need to be represented. I would hope that if there was a Lib Dem then that he or she would do better than Philip Hammond.

Oh how can I explain the awfullness of Hammond's preformance. He got utterly annihilated. It was painful to watch. I think the people of Middlesbrough are far to clever or cynical to be charmed by his smile.

The only redeeming feature of this week's edition was that it came from my home town and I was pleased to see they weren't going to let their town be talked down. One man tried in the audience but the panel quickly shot him down.

So yes this week's Question Time was an absolute BBC fail if you were to ask me and I hope next time it is better and there is a lib dem there.

The This Week Review

Ah what can I say. The sight of Micheal Portillo accompanied on the couch by Alistair Darling and his hypnotic eyebrows is enough to scare even the most seasoned of this week viewers. Perhaps it was made even more of a shock to the system that Micheal was wearing a rather bright pink shirt. Yes, very scary indeed and it was not lessened by the fact that his trousers were far too tight. Alistair however was very laid back and wasn't even wearing his tie. This was quite a shock as I am used to the former chancellor looking quite formal. He even remaind quite cool as Micheal was squashing him up against the other side of the sofa.

We had contributions from Robert Peston who looked rather shockingly at home in a bar going on about hangovers? Do you think he has much experience. I always find it very hard listening to Mr Peston, his voice is very flat and drawn out.

Christine Hamilton also graced our T.V screens with a segment on Wayne Rooney. I did find myself questioning if she was the sort to be doing the work of football punditery.

Also on the sofas was Lembit Opik and Jonathan Powell. Jonathan had just done a peice on how it was important for the chancellor and the prime minister to get along. Well he should know he did have to put up with Brown and Blair bickering like two year olds.

So all in all a quite good program once you got over the shock of that hideous pink shirt (believe me it was quite awful). Next week I will have to record the show as well as Question Time because I'm back to school yippee (not).


Well hello folks. This is just a short welcome blog. One will follow it up soon and then we shall start it proper. If you want to follow me on twitter and facebook you can. The urls are below:



Thats all for now hope to update soon.