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‘My Cultural Life’ – Mrs E Ware

‘My Cultural Life’ – Mrs E Ware

Mr Mark Zacharias, Head of English at Stamford High School, has started our latest lockdown project  – ‘My Cultural Life’. Inspired by the Times newspaper, amongst others: the Schools present interviews from individuals across our Stamford community, considering their cultural interests, loves and shortcomings.

We hope that these interviews help you to find inspiration during the unusual circumstances we find ourselves in, and that you enjoy learning a little more about us here at Stamford!

View all of our entries here.

 

Mrs E Ware, Head of Psychology, has provided her answers for our next ‘My Cultural Life’ submission. Keep reading to find out more…

The box set I’m hooked on…

‘Sex Education’. My reaction was in equal measures both to laugh out loud and to gape open-mouthed in shock! The setting and the costumes are reminiscent of a 1950s USA coming-of-age film, and I loved the utterly divine Gillian Anderson and found myself coveting all of her jumpsuits. Of course, witnessing our homegrown George Robinson steal the show at the end of Series 2 was also rather wonderful.

I did also manage to consume the entire box set of “Prison Break” in two weeks … now that’s stamina!

My favourite play…

I am a musicals girl at heart. I adore the old classics like “Les Mis” and “Phantom”, but also some of the more recent offerings such as “Everybody’s Talking About Jamie”.  “The Book of Mormon” was an interesting experience; it is completely irreverent and not one for the easily offended. I kept expecting the cast to be shuffled off the stage at any moment.

My favourite author or book…

Anything by Kate Morton, who wrote The House at Riverton. She manages to switch between historical timeframes with ease and I love the atmosphere and tension she creates.  The House at Riverton is a story about secrets and war and is reminiscent in style of a Daphne du Maurier novel.

The book I’m reading…

“Hello” magazine. My guilty pleasure! My husband bought me a weekly subscription for my birthday many years ago and just hasn’t got around to cancelling it. I love seeing the glossy homes – it’s pure escapism.

The book that saved me…

Despite being a Psychology teacher, I’m not usually one for self-help books but “The No-Cry Sleep Solution” (which gives advice about how to get your baby to sleep through the night) literally saved me. I was very unwell with Post-Natal Depression when I had my first child and was also experiencing severe sleep deprivation because my son would not sleep for more than 20 minutes at a time. Thanks to that book we are all still here and (mostly) sane….

The book I couldn’t finish…

“A Child Called It”- The harrowing tale about the abuse of Dave Pelzer at the hands of his mother. It is page after page of description of the systematic and brutal physical abuse Dave endured until he was finally rescued. He has gone on to be an incredible inspiration whose testimony is one of “survival” rather than abuse, and he is a beacon of resilience. I started reading it when I was 16 years old after it had been recommended by my Psychology teacher, but I only got halfway through. I wish I was able to give Dave Pelzer the justice he deserves by finishing his book but now with two children of my own, I cannot bring myself to pick it up again. I do, however, reference his story in my Psychology lessons when teaching Attachment.

The book I’m ashamed I haven’t read…

Too many to mention. See answer to question 4

My favourite film…

“The English Patient” starring Ralph Fiennes and Juliette Binoche. The cinematography is legendary, and the soundtrack is divine. It is essentially a tragic love story set in WW2. I always sob uncontrollably when he carries her into the cave and she mutters the immortal line, “I’ve always worn it, I’ve always loved you.”

My favourite TV series…

“Grand Designs” – I love to live vicariously. I am currently in the middle of a house renovation but nothing like the scale (or budget) of the ones on this series.

My favourite piece of music…

Staying in: Elgar’s “Nimrod”. This is spine-tingling stuff and is so evocative.
Going out-out: “Waiting All Night” by Rudimental ft. Ella Eyre – this never fails to have me dancing round my kitchen. I have a pretty eclectic taste in music! I also have a soft spot for The Cranberries, which was the soundtrack to my teenage years.

The last TV programme that made me cry…

“One Born Every Minute” and “Long Lost Family”. I’m usually an emotional vacuum but these two get me every time. You can’t help being affected by the visceral nature of these programmes.

The lyric I wish I’d written…

Not from a song, but dialogue from a film: “I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti.” It’s an iconic line from The Silence of the Lambs that everyone knows.

However, most people don’t realise Dr Hannibal Lecter is making a medical joke. Lecter could be being treated with drugs called monoamine oxidase inhibitors – MAOIs. As a psychiatrist, Lecter knows this. The three things you can’t consume with MAOIs? Liver, beans, wine. Lecter is both cracking a joke for his own amusement and admitting he’s not taking his meds.

Apparently. This film sparked my interest in Psychology, although I decided I didn’t have the constitution needed for Forensic Psychology and thought that in teaching Psychology I would encounter fewer psychopaths….

If I could own one painting…

Anything by Banksy. His work captures the zeitgeist and always contains a prudent message. I particularly enjoyed his recent offering, “Game Changer”, which was a gift to Southampton General Hospital and is a painting of a small boy playing with his toys. Two of them – Batman and Spiderman – are suddenly ignored, because the boy has a doll of an NHS nurse, his new superhero.

The instrument I wish I’d learnt…

I did play the piano and flute and even took music A-level; sadly, my interest in boys displaced my interest in music practice! I do, however, envy those who can play the guitar and spontaneously have a jam session round a campfire.

The place I feel happiest…

At our family’s holiday let on the west coast of France. It is right on the beach and the sunsets are incredible. I detest the sand but love to see the sea and gaze at the horizon….it contains endless possibilities (especially when fuelled by a local bottle of Bordeaux).

The film/play I walked out of…

I haven’t. If I’m paying, I’m staying!

Underrated…

Frozen 2, which is far better than the first one. Olaf’s comedic interludes are sublime (and the songs are better).

Overrated…

My belief that I have a cultural life (see question 4)

Read all of our ‘My Cultural Life’ entries here. 

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