Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Boys From The Brown Stuff.

Following on from my post last week about the value of education and young peoples' attitudes, watching television last night was like a breath of fresh air. On BBC2 was a documentary film by Ken Loach called "The Boys From The Brown Stuff" . This was a wonderful film about the work and lives of men who work for Thames Water maintaining London sewers.

What I found so refreshing was how content the characters appeared to be in their most unglamourous of jobs. Today we are used to young people stating just how special they are, how with the wonders of education they are embarked upon glamourous career paths. Young people can fool themselves into believing that they all have the wonderful X Factor and can succeed at any interview or talent contest.

With the Boys from the Brown Stuff you had a more honest appraisal of their chances in life. They accepted their lot in life and they knew that whatever some members of the public thought of their filthy job, they were in secure and properly paid employment. Compared to other manual jobs they were paid a premium and also enjoyed a security of employment. They did not fool themselves about their employment prospects and were modest in their personal and domestic ambitions. They knew what life was about and just how little they could achieve on the world stage. They were content and happy with their lot, not the moaning whingers that a lot of British people are today. They understood a good work/life balance, how generations can live and work happily together. How a day job is not the end of the world and to be grateful for what each day can bring.

Ken Loach has shown that it is not only professionals at the top of their ladders that can have success in life. The little man, who career advancement will always pass him by, can have a full and happy life. These Thames Water workmen were not suffering from stress or mid-life crises but were as happy as pigs in a heap of dung.
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