Saturday, 7 November 2009

Mashable Open Web Awards 2009

I would love for you to vote for me in the Mashable Social Media Ad Campaign category for Sarah's Story This film just won a British Television Advertising Award for Best Crafted Commercial. It has been passed for cinema viewing by the Advertising Standards Agency, yet banned from TV by watchdog Clearcast. Strange but true! Is my pain really too shocking for TV? Sunday Telegraph

Please help me to reverse this ridiculous decision by voting for to win the Mashable award. Just click on the blue Mashable box above and vote away! You can, and hopefully will, vote every day until 13 December. I made the voting round in one week, which shows how many people are affected by this horrific disease. Please share on Facebook and retweet on Twitter. I know that Social Media is an incredibly powerful platform and I can win this with your help.

I believe that if Sarah's Story is shown on British TV, we will raise more awareness of motor neurone disease, which will lead to a cure. We can save lives...

Thanks to everyone who nominated me. Let's put MND/ALS on the Social Media map!

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Whatever Happened to Guy Fawkes?

Here is a seasonal tale from my childhood. I've dragged this old chestnut out three times now in various places, but have some new friends who may like it. Speaking of chestnuts, where have the street chestnut sellers gone? Roasted chestnuts in brown paper bags were so amazing! So, on with the story...

We didn't celebrate Halloween in the UK when I was young. At this time of year all of the kids were excited about the 5th of November, bonfire night. A celebration of British history, when Guido Fawkes failed to blow up the Houses of Parliament. You may have seen the fantastic film, 'V for Vendetta', which takes it's inspiration from this tale.

Walking home from school, it was dark and cold already, you'd see kids huddled up in doorways with their homemade effigies of Mr Fawkes. Young cockney voices calling out 'penny for the guy!' My dad always gave them a few bob when I was little. As I got older they started buying cigarettes instead of fireworks; when my dad realised that he stopped giving.

So on the 5th of November, whether it was dry or pouring with rain, the sky lit up with amazing colours. I loved it! We lived in Stepney Green Dwellings which were ancient red brick, spooky flats. My dad always bought sparklers which we lit on the balcony. I still remember their smell and the bright, flickering lights.

I can't leave out the toffee apple man, who came around the back of the Dwellings with a cart full of delicious red and orange toffee apples. I don't remember him ever speaking; maybe he didn't?

It's all gone now, my dear dad, the kids calling out and the guys. Fireworks are usually only seen at organised displays and I can't chomp those delicious, sticky apples anymore because of MND. Red was my favourite....

Remember remember the fifth of November
Gunpowder, treason and plot.
I see no reason why gunpowder, treason
Should ever be forgot...