Just imagine the silent roar of the Fratton End! – Lesley Keating

Imagine if clapping was banned at Fratton Park?
Imagine if clapping was banned at Fratton Park?
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Have your say

Apparently, Manchester University’s student’s union has decided clapping fosters a disruptive and disrespectful environment which sometimes prevents people from attending events.

It is therefore allegedly banning ‘clapping’ in favour of using sign language so those who cannot clap, are distressed by clapping, or are unable to hear clapping, will not feel upset or excluded. Another option suggested has been using ‘jazz hands’.

I really don’t know what to say to be honest… and it’s not often I’m left speechless. 

Union officer Sara Khan said clapping ‘encourages an atmosphere that is not respectful’. So surely the issue is about making students more aware of respect, not completely banning clapping?

The move has already been criticised as pandering to the ‘snowflake’ generation. 

By all means ‘sign’ or make ludicrous hand flaps if you want. But shouldn’t everyone just be free to do whatever they wish – even clap?  How on earth have they managed before?  Surely preventing them doing so is discrimination in reverse?

Can you imagine actors, presenters, public speakers or musicians all taking their bow to a standing ovation of… well, nothing, actually? 

‘Let’s have a big round of silent hand signals’ just doesn’t have the same ring as a ‘big round of applause’, does it? How the hell would you not burst into uncontrollable giggles watching everyone doing jazz hands and silent clapping? I know I would.

What about blind students? Isn’t it just as confusing for them when everyone around them breaks into an enthusiastic round of jazz hands? Have they been told in advance this will happen?

Sorry, but the world’s gone bonkers. We keep trying to be politically correct and not offend anyone but in doing so, we’re still merrily excluding, offending and discriminating against others regardless.

It may sound tough, but the world is full of events and, unfortunate as it may seem, not every one of these will be rounded off with an enthusiastic round of silent hand flapping.

University is meant to prepare you for ‘real life’ not wrap you in cotton wool!​​​.​​​​​​​​​​

Leek and potato soup and coleslaw that will last forever

Had to smile at a bizarre news story on BBC1 which featured people who’d won competitions for growing huge – and I mean ginormous – vegetables.

The winner of the Biggest Leek contest  –  a chap from Newcastle – was on camera, looking ridiculous while clutching a leek the size of a toddler. He seemed baffled by all the attention. To his side stood last year’s winner of the Biggest Cabbage, which weighed in at a monstrous 23kg.

The presenters had trouble keeping straight faces while serious vegetable growers discussed the merits of supersized courgettes.

What do you do with a 23kg cabbage?  Make lots of coleslaw?  Or a giant leek?  Soup? The mind boggles​​​​​​​.

What every discerning woman should have in her wardrobe

Falling leaves, misty mornings and that ‘back to school’ excitement makes autumn my favourite season. It’s also a good excuse to buy new boots and jackets. Not that I really need an excuse.

I decided the old rag I wear to walk the dog just won’t cut it for smart weekend breaks anymore. So, trying to wean myself off head-to-toe black, I found two really gorgeous, lightweight padded jackets; one in scarlet, one in mustard.

‘Looks like you work for Royal Mail’, laughed Mike when I tried the red one. Undeterred, I showed him the yellow. ‘Don’t tell me, I look like lifeboat crew?’ I quipped.

‘I was going to say the AA,’ Mike responded. Why do I bother? I bought both.​​​​​​​​​