Sunday 26 June 2011

Quote of The Week #61

I've no interest in schools. They have no relevance in the 21st century. They were a Victorian idea to get kids off the street. Who decided that putting 30 kids with only their age in common in a classroom with one teacher was the best way of educating? At my school there were 52 kids in the class and all I learned was how to pass the 11-plus. Testing is the death of education. Kids should leave school at 11 and go to work. Not down the mines or up chimneys, mind, but working with computers or something relevant. Everything I learned after 11 was a waste of time. Trigonometry, Boyle's law: it's never been of any use to me. They should have been teaching me the life skills I was going to need, such as building relationships, parenting and managing money. I didn't have a clue about any of these things at 18. Schools need to change.

Terry Deary

Thursday 23 June 2011

It's The Apostrophe Summer 2011 Giveaway!

Hello everyone!

I've finished my exams, and the summer's here! What does this mean? It means I'm doing a blog giveaway!


This is not a normal blog giveaway. Really, it isn't.

There are two sets of prizes to be won:

The Blossom Parcel is dainty and feminine, and very summery... It's just really really cute.
  • Ring-bound notebook from Monsoon Accessorize (matches pen).
  • Ball-point pen from Monsoon Accessorize (matches notebook)
  • Set of five badges from Monsoon Accessorize
  • Lilac Waldo Pancake bookmark from SWALK - text: 'Bookmark (as in actual bookmark, not one on the internet)'
  • 'Warning: When I Am An Old Woman I Shall Wear Purple' by Jenny Joseph from Dubrays Books
  • Fabric bunting from Bridie's

The Rainbow Parcel features lots of bright, vivid colours - isn't colour blocking a trend this summer? - and is inspired by the rainbow, which hopefully we'll see a lot of this summer!

  • Orange Waldo Pancake notebook from SWALK - text:'Writing things down is the new thinking them'
  • Purple Waldo Pancake ball-point pen from SWALK - text: 'Tap on stuff annoyingly'
  • Rainbow bangle from Oxfam
  • Red Waldo Pancake bookmark from SWALK - text: 'I know how it ends.'
  • Rainbow beaded necklace from Oxfam
  • Hanging charm from Butterslip

Each parcel will also contain a lovely letter from me! (Not pictured - I haven't written them yet.)

'But Eleanor,' I hear you ask, 'How do we get the chance to win such fabulous parcels?'

Well, this is not a traditional blog giveaway. Tweeting or blogging about this does not equal an entry - although if you do want to tweet or blog about it, feel free to do so. Since this giveaway is celebrating the end of exams... You're getting a QUIZ! Aren't I the best?!

Question One: Where is the Sea of Tranquility?
Question Two: What is the only word in the English language ending with the letters 'mt'?
Question Three: Which company is the biggest toy distributor in the world?
Question Four: In the Hans Christian Andersen story, which female character was found inside the petals of a flower?
Question Five: After the King/Queen, which comes first: Earl or Duke?
Question Six: Name the month I (me, Eleanor Roscuro) was born.

If you want to enter:
  • This giveaway is open to all followers of this blog, because I love you all, and it's all because of you guys that I love doing whatever it is I do here at Apostrophe! Also, you'd have to be following to read this post.
  • To be eligible for an entry, you must be following this blog. (Just in case.)
  • You must email your answers to me at, or drop them in a comment on this very blog. If you do leave a comment, please leave your email address or another form of contact like a Twitter username, in case you win.
  • The people who get all the answers right will be entered into the draw. One person cannot win both parcels. The winners will be randomly selected from an extremely cool hat, by an impartial and neutral outsider (i.e. not me).
  • 'But Eleanor, this quiz is hard!' Google it. You can find the answer to Question Six on this very blog. 
  • 'But Eleanor, why are you doing a quiz?' I could have just gotten you to tweet or blog about the giveaway, but I never liked that. I know you're all smart, or have the ability to use the internet, and I respect that. That's why.
  • The giveaway closes on WEDNESDAY 29TH JUNE 2011 at 12 noon GMT. That's next Wednesday. 
  • It is open internationally.
I do hope you all enter, and best of luck to you all!

Eleanor Roscuro

Sunday 19 June 2011

A Day - Friday the Seventeenth of June, Two Thousand and Eleven

I woke up at four o'clock, then went back to sleep again and woke up at half eight-ish. I didn't need to be anywhere until two in the afternoon, so after a lot of tossing and turning I went online. @Evy_Lynch tweeted about the new Deathly Hallows trailer so I went and saw that.

And then, I can't remember how, but I came upon Pottermore. OH MY GOD POTTERMORE ONLY 3 DAYS 20 HOURS 31 MINUTES AND 45 SECONDS

And that's all I'll say on that matter.

Then I went onto J.K. Rowling's website and concentrated on finding the last two easter eggs that I hadn't found yet. I know, I'm so slow, but I don't go on it very often. Then it was half past eleven and I had a shower then put on my school uniform because I had to do my last exam of the Junior Cert, Home Economics. I had breakfast, then I went into school and did the exam. I finished at half four.

When I left, I went back home with my mother and my brother and I changed into normal clothes, had some food and showed my mother the new HP trailer and Pottermore. Then the song I Am A Rock came onto the radio by Simon and Garfunkel and me and my mother danced to it. My brother didn't dance to it because we were embarrassing him.

My mother told me that when she was my age, she sang this at her school concert and danced. She still remembered most of the words. I liked the story.

After a while, my mother and I got in the car and drove up to Abbeyleix in Laois to go to a cemetery mass. Before that we went to my grandfather's house, my mother's father. He and my mother's sister were there, and we ate some sweets and talked about the exams until it was time to go to the cemetery mass.

My mother and her sister and I decided to walk down to the graveyard from the house. We brought umbrellas. Halfway there, I tripped and stained my white trousers, but I didn't mind really because stains means adventures. Usually. I was just surprised.

As we got nearer to the graveyard, we met the cars. Oh, the cars. The traffic jams. We tip-toed in between them to get to the top. Cars were abandoned in the middle of the road. My grandfather was in a black jeep driven by my mother's other sister, who owned it. A minute into the service, it drove in and parked at the back. My grandfather isn't a great stander.

So me, my mother, my mother's sisters, their husbands and my cousins all stood around my grandmother's grave as the priest at the far end of the cemetery gave the service, from microphones and speakers. Ten minutes in, it started to rain. Umbrellas ballooned simultaneously and those who had forgotten theirs got drenched. The rain didn't stop until there was only two minutes left into the service, at which point the priest said 'If it's raining at quarter past seven next year, we can assume the cemetery mass will take place in the church...' It was so long since I'd been out in the rain with an umbrella, and it was fun.

The mass ended and it promptly started to rain, at which my mother and aunts yelled at me to get into the black jeep as it was driving away, so I did. We had to navigate through all the cars again, and the people walking navigated over us. A forty second journey to my grandfather's home took fifteen minutes at least. Eventually we got back.

My cousins had brought with them lemon cheesecake, chocolate biscuit cake, and rhubarb tart. These were devoured over wonderful conversations. I cried from laughter.

At quarter past ten o'clock we left for home. We got back at half eleven. In the last five minutes of our journey a very good short story was read on RTE Radio One. It was called 'Don't Start Listening To This Story' by Patrick G. O'Connor, shortlisted for the Francis MacManus Short Story Competition. It was excellent, but hasn't been put online yet.

When I finished listening to the story, we had returned home, so I dropped my things in my room and went into my parent's room. My mother was there, and we lay on the bed and started talking. Then I went into the kitchen where my dad was and he asked me about the HE exam. Then I went to bed.

I see lots of posts on lots of blogs describing a day, and I don't do that. So I thought I'd try.

Quote of The Week #60

'That is Blogging Bianca,' Gary said, pointing to a girl who had her fingers curved as if she was ready to type at any second. 'Her blog was her life.'
'Whose isn't?' Scarlet smirked, one of her pet peeves being the amount of valuable time people waste blogging and pushing mundane personal observations in their own little cyber sweatshops for mass consumption.
'Unfortunately, that's what it cost her,' Gary explained. 'She got a DVT, you know, a blood clot from not moving around enough.  Too many snarky entries, too little stretching out.'
'Too much information.' Scarlet squirmed, pun totally intended. 'Talk about logging out.'

Tonya Hurley - Ghostgirl: Homecoming

Sunday 12 June 2011


Evening everybody!

So a few hours ago I started going through the entire The Vintage Vixen archive so I could write her a cool email, and let me tell you - the chirp. God, the chirp is infectious. I mean, it isn't there all the time, but when you start reading a post and it starts with something like 'Hey cupcakes!', your life is automatically better. Everyone should follow The Vintage Vixen. If you ever fall ill, and you go to the doctor, he or she will just tell you 'Ah, you need the Chirp...' and on your prescription, in his or her doctor's scrawl, they'll just write The Vintage Vixen... only it'll look like faaThed;agh;aj;alk/vintaagh;agjgeVixkgjklden. Well, the cool doctor will.

So I'm one week into my exams! I finish on Friday, so this will all be over soon! When that happens, I might arrange something special for you all. Maybe. 

I love my hair at the moment. It's not short, it's not long, it just fans around my face. Also, it's very bouncy, especially when I jump high! Like this! *jumps very high on the spot for thirty seconds grinning maniacally*

Is this a post about anything? Who cares! I'm happy! Yes!!!

Honestly, I'm so chirpy at the moment. I shouldn't really be, since first thing tomorrow I have Maths Paper Two, but then I have CSPE. So that's fine so.

You know what I'd really love now? A pizza. Yeah. Pizza...

I have been listening to this song non-stop since last Tuesday...

Oh my God Richard III is the sweetest thing ever he's so smiley don't you just want to take him home and hug him forever?! Also, Jim Howick is brilliant.

Quote of The Week #59

I became a highwayman, was daylight robbery
I was no Prince Charming, nothing dandy about me!

Horrible Histories - Dick Turpin

Originally that was going to be my Quote #59, but then I was watching an old Horrible Histories sketch, and now I must honour this gem from Henry VIII...

Oh, why has God forsaken me with only lady babies?

Wednesday 8 June 2011

Between The Barlines - Little Comets, The Lonely Island, Horrible Histories, Sleigh Bells

Hello, and welcome to Between The Barlines! If all goes well, you are reading this right as I'm starting my first Junior Cert exam, English Paper One. And I'll be wringing my hands and gnashing my teeth (worse case scenario) while you'll be listening to awesome music in the comfort of your own bed/garden/exam hall/palace/rock. You lucky things. Anyway, on with the show!

Little Comets - Joanna

Well, if you like catchy tunes, musical changes, and songs about girls, Joanna ticks all those boxes. Is it vain that I'm a girl with a three syllable name and I keep listening to this? Or am I really easy to shame? Anyway, let's have a listen, shall we?

The Lonely Island - Jack Sparrow

So last week Daydream Believer posted this music video on her blog, calling it the 'Funniest Thing Ever', endquote. Honestly, you don't argue with Ms. Believer. Besides, why would you? Even though I have absolutely no idea who Michael Bolton is (Who is he? A singer?) my fascination with pirates and my adoration of Pirates of the Caribbean (haven't seen the new one yet, is it good?) make this one of the funniest songs ever, even if a little too obscene for my taste. Plus, it's catchy and clever.

Horrible Histories - Dick Turpin

Oh, Horrible Histories. See, I've always loved your books, ever since I was a kid, still do, and then you bring out a TV series? And that TV series turns out to be the best thing on television I have ever seen? Oh, you spoil me. And then, in the very first episode of the third series, your musical number is an Adam and the Ants take on the life of Dick Turpin, the famous highwayman? And when that musical number turns out to be so good? In the past few days, I have listened to it almost one hundred and fifty times. Seriously, this song is slowly but surely taking over Tumblr, and soon, the WORLD!

Horrible Histories - Literally: The Viking Song

As we all know, the Vikings liked pillaging monasteries, stealing gold, killing monks, that sort of thing. Another thing they liked was belting out soft rock classics, as shown in this Horrible ballad. Dare I say it... LITERALLY!!! *headbang* Also, a nice Queen homage in bits. I think I will do a Horrible Histories post soon! Yes!

Sleigh Bells - Rill Rill

For the first minute and a half of this video, I couldn't stop thinking 'Why the HELL is she driving on the wrong side of the car?!' But I suppose that's how they do it on the other side of the world. But anyway.
Compared to other songs on Treats, like Kids or Riot Rhythm, Rill Rill is a lot more paced, but doesn't really lose any energy that Treats had previous. I mean, it might make you feel more lethargic, but that's not the point. It's a good song!

And that marks the end of today's Between The Barlines! If I am very lucky, I might write a post about Horrible Histories before the exams end on June 17th. Might. Anyway, see you on the other side!

Eleanor Roscuro

Sunday 5 June 2011

Quote of The Week #58

The castle grounds were gleaming in the sunlight as though freshly painted; the cloudless sky smiled at itself in the smoothly sparkling lake; the satin green lawns rippled occasionally in a gentle breeze. June had arrived, but to the fifth-years this meant only one thing: their OWLs were upon them at last.

J.K. Rowling - Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Friday 3 June 2011

More Stuff You've Always Wanted To Know!


Evening all.

I've gotten some new followers recently, I do believe. Hello everyone!

One thing I believe about blogging is that for the first few days or weeks of reading someone's blog, you don't really know them, and it can be hard to get excited when their posts pop up on your Dashboard. I am going to try and fix this now. I did this before, almost a year ago, so I will try not to repeat myself.
  • On my bedroom door hangs a Horrible Histories poster, inscribed 'DARE YOU ENTER THIS ROOM OF DOOM?' It's magnificent, but I can't find a picture of it online unfortunately.
  • This week, I have mostly been thinking about superheroes and evil villains, and how they can represent what people are most scared of at any particular time. Oh, and they're really cool too.
  • I'm re-reading Philip Ardagh's Book of Absolutely Useless Lists and thinking of some useless but interesting lists of my own, then thinking about how often I'm using lists here on Apostrophe and wondering if that means my attention span is lacking in something. I hope not, although it probably is lacking in something.
  • I still think that Treats by Sleigh Bells is one of the best albums ever.
  • I think Tyranny by Leslie Fairfield is one of the scariest books ever, and this is because even though Darren Shan is scary too, I know that there are no demons out there really that are coming for me when I am tucked up in bed, but Tyranny could get me easily. I hope not.
  • London Classic Theatre are touring Ghosts by Henrik Ibsen in the UK and Ireland and came to Kilkenny for one single night, Wednesday night. I do not exaggerate when I say it was amazing, but as I sat waiting in the audience during the interval, having already gone to the bar, I kept thinking 'Why am I the youngest person here by about fifteen years?' The exception to this was my almost twenty years old friend, but he was doing techy stuff and wasn't a member of the audience. I didn't regret going, but it did make me wonder 'On a Wednesday night, what is everyone else my age doing that's more fun?!' It also made me wonder why most of my friends are older than me, either doing the Leaving Cert, in college or even older, but I already knew the answer to that. I just like older people.
  • My hair is now an inch below my ear, the longest it's been in a year. It feels weird!
  • What am I doing now? Besides typing this, I'm looking at Friends pics on We Heart It. What are you doing?
Also, a lot of my friends have blogs now. It's fun. I'd tell you who they are, or even dedicate a whole post to them, but I don't know if they'd mind or not. Tell me, will ye?

Eleanor Roscuro