Celtic Illumination, part 392, Bona to vada your dolly old eke!
It has been interesting to keep an eye on the media over the last few days and read about the shenanigans surrounding the former public relations guru Max Clifford. Clifford always admitted being a self-confessed liar and I don’t know how I feel about the fact that I tried to get him to represent me against the thief Paul O Grady. He seemed to have some form of control over the media and that is where many of his successes were pulled off. We all know that Freddie Star never went near a hamster, never mind bite its head off, that David Mellor did not have sex with his mistress while wearing a certain football club top and that the Hamilton’s were in fact innocent of his claims that they raped Nadine Milroy-Sloan. When we discovered that Clifford would want between ten to fifteen thousand pounds per month to represent me, both Jeffrey and myself thought that it was a bit steep.
Well ‘steep’ would be the wrong word. I really thought that the, ‘litigation expert’ I was consulting in Liverpool was just as big a con artist as Paul O Grady so Clifford with his monthly stipend certainly surpassed the pair of them. And now we see that he wasn’t a public relations guru, he was in fact a liar and he must have been quite a good one as people like Simon Cowell paid him two hundred and fifty thousand pounds a year to keep certain stories out of the media about them. I often wonder what stories Simon Cowell, once described at the beginning of his career in pop as the biggest Queen in London, would want kept out of the newspapers? It would appear that the fun might just be starting as Clifford has been pestering his old celebrity mates for cash to help pay his legal fees. It’s not just the women who have successfully had eight guilty counts upheld against him and seen him convicted and sent to prison for eight years that he has to pay for, but according to the police more women have now come forward. Clifford is threatening to spill the beans if his celebrity mates don’t fork up the cash. Come on Cowell get your purse open ducky.
From a public relations aspect I was doing quite well, I attended the second session at big school and was pleasantly surprised to find that the American delegation knew all about me and wanted me to participate in their discussions. It was nice to be recognised but I still wanted to make it as a writer and only viewed the world of learning disabilities and mental health as something that interested me and where I could actually make a positive contribution. NWCS had noticed how effective I seemed to be and even Delia gave me career advice, which was basically I would proceed no further unless I had some sort of university degree behind me. They actually suggested that I could attend John Moore’s University in Liverpool and they would pay for my course, the unfortunate thing was that it was a degree in social work. It made sense that as the recruitment process I had experienced so far in the learning disability world would not get any better the further up you travelled, so a degree it would have to be.
But I wasn’t convinced that a degree in social work was the answer, Richard was an accountant and the further up the greasy pole you moved the further away from people you were and the more business orientated you became. So I felt that rather than just get any old degree I should study subjects that would actually contribute to my career. If the truth be told I would have gone to Manchester and studied creative writing with Carol Anne Duffy but I think that even the most brain dead social worker might see a flaw in that plan. Instead I opted for the Open University which meant that I could study in my own time and I would study accountancy, management and English. It certainly meant that I would be busier than ever, but as it was all new ground I was covering thankfully I found it interesting and threw myself into the work.
The other service managers in Manchester had become bored with the course at Lancaster so gave up attending, the hope was still that I would complete the course work and they would receive a qualification. I thought Delia had a bit of a cheek saying that I could complete the initial essay on my own and the others could benefit but I now discovered that a new qualification, that had been brought in for the team leaders, an NVQ, a National Vocational Qualification, was my domain also. One of my own team leaders approached me and told me that she had a problem with her course work but that Delia had said I would help. We were approaching a point where there simply would be far too much work for me to handle. For example the new accounting system I had introduced in to both Manchester and Liverpool wasn’t complete.
The system was in place and it worked, in fact it worked very well, but I still hadn’t decided the best way to store the documents once they had been received and checked. I was positive that I had managed to stop most of the cons that had been going on and that the new system was simple and straight forward but I needed a system to store all the receipts. At the moment they were stored in a brown envelope with the house name and relevant month written on the outside. It would have to do until I decided whether to have a special storage case constructed or find some suitable filing cabinets. I hadn’t given up on the writing either and was still approaching celebrities through my agent Jeffrey. Although I detested anything to do with Simon Cowell I realised that his shows provided some good fodder for what I was up to.
I had heard Susan Boyle sing once and thought she was terrible, there was no depth in her voice at all but the sheeple refused to believe me. Cowell was a genius as far as music was concerned. I was quite embarrassed to approach the clients we were after, but sadly I was pushing a book deal for Jedward, the two young Irish boys managed by Louis Walsh. They were so cringe worthy it was difficult to watch them prance about however the sheeple followed them in droves and it was up to Jeffrey and myself to try and divert some of the huge stream of cash that followed them in to our own bank accounts. The Irish situation didn’t help either. Not that I was getting any hassle from Ireland, in fact there was still zero communication from my family, either of them. I was told that my cousin who had a holiday flat in Warrenpoint would visit my mother on Sundays after attending mass and sit and talk with her. It would have been nice if one of them had lifted a telephone and told me how she was.
I had to get my old girlfriend Pat to visit my mother and report back to me. Luckily most of the girls who worked in the home where she was, knew me so they all helped and kept me in the loop as they say. So for a period things seemed to settle out, I was back to playing the waiting game. Waiting to hear from Jeffrey, waiting to hear from Ireland, waiting for the next ‘situation’ to erupt in Manchester. As her newly created deputy Delia kept me informed of any new developments as and when she thought fit. I was called in one day to be told that we were going after some contracts in a place north of Manchester known as Chorley. Delia wasn’t sure if she should go to Chorley and supervise the setting up, or if I should be sent, either way, one of us would be supervising Chorley and the other Manchester.
I think most people in Manchester prayed, myself included, that Delia went to Chorley. If I was to say that she was full of surprises that would be the understatement of the year. Many of the people supported in Manchester wanted to stab her, which I think spoke volumes about the way she treated them in Caldertsones. I was invited to sit in with a meeting between Delia and a senior female social worker. She was a nice woman, and I would have said a little bit above the ability of the average social worker. Delia was sitting behind her desk and I brought the social worker in, we both sat down but the moment our arses hit the chairs Delia launched herself at the social worker. She was spitting and screaming, I’d never seen anything like in in my life. It was all verbal, but such an attack I had never seen before, really, really, vicious.
I think the worst she did to me was I had a team leader who was not very good, she was going to have to be replaced so I was going to have to ask her to step down. This would involve a loss of money for the girl although I have to say that I found disciplinary decisions very easy to make on behalf of people with learning disabilities. If I was right, I was doing my job to support and protect them If I was I the wrong then; sorry. Delia suggested that I bring the team leader to the office and she would fire her. The house where she worked was twenty minutes away so I went and picked her up. All the way back, she kept asking why Delia wanted to see her and I lied through my back teeth saying I didn’t know. The moment we walked in to Delia’s office, Delia said “She’s your team leader you can deal with this.” If that wasn’t bad enough that I had to dismiss her, I had to spend the next twenty minutes driving her back to the house so she could collect her things. The only certain thing you could say about Delia is that she kept you on your toes.