Thursday, February 11, 2016

Gophers, gofers, muggles and magicians.

Gophers, cute dancing gophers.

I don't know about you but...

My disbelief is not suspended.

It's a bloody glove puppet isn't it?

Put the gopher down.

I suppose it might have thrilled the kids of another age.


We reach the university's hallowed halls in awe.

Wow, I am "coming up to" university.

Come upTo arrive as a student at Oxford.

For hallowed halls read HOGWARTS....


We will build Hogwarts franchises everywhere. 



Provincial universities.

Does one come up to a Kentucky University? (or is it only Oxford?)

Enroll here:

"You'll be a magician rather than a muggle."

"It'll be a great investment."

Who's the MUGgle now?


Too many degrees are a waste of money. 

The return on higher education would be much better if college were cheaper

Focus group.

"We have a great product..."

I gasped.

What was the professor talking about?

A broom? 
A wand?


He was talking about a program in the Hogwarts franchise...(the university).

"Of course," he went on...

"We need to look into the training of community managers..."

"There is a growing need for these guys in companies."

"Yes, they need to be able to handle the tools..."

Community management.

For a reason that escapes me, somebody passed me the microphone to speak.

"I hear the word community," I said, "juxtaposed with the word management."

"I hear the word 'product' to talk of 'education', " I went on.

"I am sorry but I do not consider education to be a product."

"I hear you talking about community management...
What are you doing to er 'manage' this educative community here?"

There was a rather long silence.

Focus group.

A student, perked up with another question:

"Would you say that this (y)our university program is obsolete?"

Someone spoke:

"Our knowledge, our education is constantly obsolete, it's the nature of the world we live in," he said.

"For example kids started playing basketball in the street in the town where I work, it was a nuisance so we ended up having to give them a space to play 'street basketball'. We are constantly having to adapt and we can never foresee how things will move."

I felt a cry of hallelujah emerge from deep within me.

I am not a religious man.

It was a bloody miracle.


I used to work flogging double-glazing. 

The conman, the 'sale representative' who 'trained' me explained:

"You'll see there are some people and we call them gophers..."

"Gophers," I said, not understanding what he was on about.

"Yeah, Gofers, they gofer this, they gofer that, they buy everything, they gob anything. Gobble, Gobble", he gaggled.

Speaking with the students standing around the hall, this story came back to me.

Students have long been treated like "gofers", we sell them a product - content.

They once believed that if they gobbed the prescribed content they would become one day a magician...

They would have powers that other mere muggles wouldn't have.

They would graduate into the elite with the privileges that their standing brought.

They are coming to realise that we have all been MUGgles all along.

Some of them are not mugs any more.

They are not buying it any more...except perhaps in the real Hogwarts (Oxford).

Let's drop the pathetic pretence. 

The bloody dancing gofer was a glove puppet all along.

Education is not a product.

You don't manage a community.

Magicians are muggles in disguise.

“We do not need magic to transform our world. We carry all the power we need inside ourselves already.” 

J.K. Rowling


  1. Let us not throw out the sock puppets with the bath water.

  2. Another magic moment was when a young blond student said: " Thank you Simon for connecting us to the world ..."