Do you need to really ‘love’ what you do?

Kae Tempest

I recently read Kae Tempest’s short, but highly-thoughtful book On Connection. Not only are they searingly honest about their shortcomings, but they also explain how important it is to just be ‘creative’ and find a connection, at the expense of all the other trappings that may or may not come with the process.

Then I read Lauren Pope’s excellent post celebrating the last 5 years of her business. In it, she says: “work has been a joy. This time last year, I said that my business feels like a gift I’m giving myself, and I still feel the same way… I love what I do”.

Although slightly different, both these examples echo the same point – that ‘the thing you do’ should be something you enjoy, rather than a way of making shedloads of money or acquiring oodles of fame. Continue reading “Do you need to really ‘love’ what you do?”

The cowardice of the passive voice

Ex-Prime Minister, Boris JohnsonRegular readers will know that I’m a big fan of the use of language and how small changes can drastically alter the meaning or the tone of what’s being said.

In advance of Boris Johnson appearing before the Select Committee who will determine whether he misled parliament, I was struck by one particular phrase that the ex-Prime Minister used in the dossier of evidence that he presented.

In point 4 of the introduction, it says:

…I accept that the House of Commons was misled by my statements…

What’s notable about that sentence is that he uses the passive voice. Basically, Boris Johnson is admitting he told a fib/lie/untruth (whatever you want to call it), but the way he phrases it, means that he doesn’t explicitly take responsibility. Continue reading “The cowardice of the passive voice”

How ‘sweary’ do swearwords need to be?


When I was a kid in the 70s and 80s, I was brought up not to swear. If my mum had heard me uttering the ‘f’ word, I’d have been lamped and send to the naughty step.

I once remember using the word ‘prat’ and being roundly chastised, not knowing that it wasn’t just a word for an idiot, but also someone’s arse. Wash my mouth out with soap.

But as society has evolved, the ability of swearwords to cause offence has become far more difficult. My 77-year-old mum went to an adult pantomime this week – I can’t imagine for a second imagine it wasn’t full of cussing.

There is, however, one area of the UK establishment where swearing is still frowned upon. That’s the BBC. Yes, the last bastion of prudishness, where apologies are issued for any expletive within seconds. Continue reading “How ‘sweary’ do swearwords need to be?”