Always Remember



Beware of the Amphin who is prone to eat
Anything that should be worn on your feet

Likewise there is danger when Brones are around
For they can attack from their home in the ground.

Crumlins are harmless in contrast to these
Their only bad habits are swinging in trees

And causing mischief to the sweet Dumberlings
Who flutter by gracefully using their wings.

My own favourite is the Entoulijelly
Who lets out a squeak when he touches his belly.

He’s definitely preferable to the Fuloo
Who constantly looks like he’s needing a poo.

The Grumberland’s scary because of his claws
And loud gnashing sounds which come from his jaws

The contrasting Hafferlug’s totally great
He’s friendly and smiley, and everyone’s mate

His closest ally is the Inkyblink
Who trickles black ink, with every wink.

You would hardly notice the Joulig at all
It hides in the shadows curled up in a ball

Which can be a danger if Karubs pass by
As they kick all round things up into the sky.

Unlike the Lamite who just stands and stares
With enormous eyes; he simply glares

At anything, causing the nervous Maleeze
To react with a totally unrestrained sneeze.

The Nagalug has an interesting flair
For styling geometrical shapes in his hair.

Meanwhile the Olug will pass by with a whoosh
As he tackles everything in one big rush

The Phantel is hard to describe in a word
If I had to try, I’d simply say “blurred”

Quiribs are beautiful, just like a pet
They’re cute, and furry, but play hard to get

That won’t stop the Reelabub constantly trying
But tragically failing and ending up crying.

It’s difficult to get a view of a Smirl
Which moves in the style of a whirlwind swirl.

And then there’s the Tribble who only eats peas,
His hair can be seen overlapping his knees;

Whilst down at his toes is his servant, the Unt
Who obeys his master with a feeble grunt.

Avoid the Vigoob, whose bolts of lightning
Are dangerous, threatening and truly frightening

If you see the Welliburn, stay calm and still
For he turn his victims to frogs at will.

The Xylabog‘s body is just a rectangle,
With long arms that battle the urge to strangle.

The Yukaliese is a small hairy ball
Which trundles along on the top of a wall.

The Zumbig‘s extinct, a sad little creature
(The last one drowned in a water feature.)



We ploughed the  fields in springtime

We spread the seed upon the ground

Then we hoped for rain and sunshine

Which would let the seeds abound

To produce a wonderful harvest

Which wound satisfy our need

To ensure that our lives could continue

Hopefully without falling to temptation of greed

For when our essential needs are provided

With these we should be satisfied

And remember that to many throughout the world

That these blessings are often denied

And so at harvest time we should be satisfied

And thank god for the bounty we share 

And be prepared to share this with our neighbours

And to show just how much we care.

By Ron Martin

ben smoking



The microspeakers continue whispering their incantation throughout the city. The Harvest alerts play every day at routine intervals: six in the morning, twelve in the afternoon, three in the afternoon and then once more a half hour before sundown, whenever that is during the season. The message is repeated all across the steel continent; in every room, in every building. It is illegal to reside in a property not linked to VoiceComm.

You don’t need to be surface-side too long to catch the gist of Harvest. Every night is the same.
Lock the doors.
Bolt the windows.
Use only one light at any time.
Put in earplugs.
Draw the curtains.
Don’t look outside.

Of course, you peek out the window the first night you’re left unattended. You hear all that commotion start up outside when the sun goes down. It’s like a bustling marketplace starts humming through the walls.
But it’s true what they say – not even once.
All it takes is that first glance. You catch something unfathomable. Something that your mind simply cannot comprehend. There is no way to explain it. You might gaze out through the glass unto the strange hues of light vibrating on impossible spectrums. You may see the reflection of the red moon across a hulk of pulsating black chitin. Large mandibles covered in sores from which monstrous pupils peer out. Which peer back at you through the glass.

The first night, you’ll look away in fear and disgust. But then the next night, there you’ll be, clenching your teeth while you try not to draw the curtain again. While you try to just not eventhink of what’s going on out there. While you fail.
While you peek again. Night after night.
And what you see during the Harvests from your human accommodation room will start to change you. Even though they warn you back home not to play voyeur, not to give in to curiosity, you’re still going to do it. Despite the threat of a revoked PlanetVisa and deportation back to Earth for trial, you still peer through panes of glass, through cracks in the wall. Just to catch a glimpse of something else.

But then you’re doing it every night you’re on the planet. You start forgoing sleep to spy on Harvest, soon you have to watch the Harvests just to feel normal. The alien nights lose their strange lustre. You become familiar with them.
However, you will almost never realise how familiar Harvest has become with you.
Before you know it, you’re not looking away until sunrise. The images of last night’s Harvest burn in your head, keeping you awake until the sun falls once more. Then, you have no choice but to watch the next Harvest lest you go insane – clinging onto the wild hope that somehow tonight’s Harvest will be different, that tonight will be the night you figure it out. You keep your face pressed up against the glass for another whole night until the scenes outside go dim and it hits six o clock and the Harvest alert of a new dawn breaks the silence.

And then, Harvest comes for you.

That’s when it happens. That next night, when you’re too deep now to come back up for air. You haven’t slept in days, you’ve lost an unhealthy amount of weight. You are losing your mind trying to process what happens each night. Trying to figure out what the fuck it all means. And then you see your Mother in your head, heartbroken and disappointed. Her words of caution replaying ad infinitum directly to your conscience:
“Don’t experiment with other planets. It’s not natural.”
And then they knock at the door.
You hear that wet, rustling noise they make when they talk.
Your shaky hand clasps the faux stainless-steel door handle, sweat rolls from your tear ducts, your mouth is dry. Your tongue sandpaper. You open the door and the red moonlight spills in the room. You are no longer behind glass.

Not that I would know any of this, though.
I don’t peek during Harvest.

E-MAIL:  jondvdsn@hotmail.com


21 year old student from Australia. Determined to move overseas. Enthusiastic about writing. Will write for enhanced readership, recognition or even money.




The cornucopia can be a bit of an attention hog: proudly spilling its bounty across the dining room in a way that borders on needy. As harvest-time icons go, we much prefer the simple beauty of corn-husk dolls: They’re understated, easy to make even for children, and truly ingenious — requiring not much more than some husks, twine, glue, and felt.

Resources: Square-cut corn husks — the ones used for tamales are sold at international grocers and surfasonline.com.

  • kids-036-mld109174.jpg
  • materials-078-mld109174.jpg


  • Square-cut dried corn husks
  • Wool felt, in assorted colors
  • Yarn or raffia
  • Paper towel
  • Buttons
  • Scissors
  • Glue


  1. STEP 1


    Start by soaking the husks in water for 10 minutes, and then blot excess water with a paper towel.

  2. STEP 2

    Lay 4 or 6 husks (always an even number) in a stack.

  3. STEP 3


    Using thin twine, tie husks together, about 1 inch from top.

  4. STEP 4


    Separate husks into equal portions (2 and 2, or 3 and 3), and fold halves down, covering twine.

  5. STEP 5


    Using thin twine, tie husks about 1 inch down, creating head.

  6. STEP 6


    Roll a single husk and tie at ends to make arms.

  7. STEP 7


    Position arms below knot at neck, between equal portions of husks.

  8. STEP 8


    Tie waist. For female doll, trim husks to an even length.

  9. STEP 9


    For male doll, separate legs into equal portions. Tie at knees and ankles. Trim evenly.

  10. STEP 10

    To make hair, glue yarn or raffia to the heads. Fashion clothes from pieces of felt: Cut rectangles, and snip slits or X’s in the center; then slide over doll’s head, and secure around the waist with a strip of felt or yarn. (Glue on buttons, and use scissors to make fringe as desired.) Create hats and bonnets by cutting felt to fit, and then gluing in place.



Deciding w
hether to give a baby a dummy remains a hotly debated topic.

There are good reasons both for and again, so it all comes down to parents’ choice. We look at the facts in the dummy debate.

The pros: A few reasons to use a dummy

There are many good reasons to use dummies — just ask any parent who’s managed to get a moment of peace with the judicious use of one. But a bit of peace isn’t the only plus. Others include:

  • Protection against sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). The Department of Health advises that giving your baby a dummy at the start of any sleep period may reduce the risk of SIDS. Use the dummy when putting baby down to sleep — don’t put it back in baby’s mouth once he’s already asleep.
  • Helping babies pacify themselves. Infants need ways to help soothe themselves and a dummy can be a source of comfort for a crying or colickybaby.
  • It satisfies the suck reflex. Some babies have a need to suck that exceeds the time they get on the bottle or breast. For these infants, a dummy can meet this very real need.
  • Easier weaning. When you’re ready for a child to stop, it’s much easier to wean them from a dummy than off their thumb.


Cons: Reasons to avoid a dummy

While some parents hope to avoid dummies altogether, many experts don’t think that’s necessary. Yet there are a few issues to watch for when using a dummy:

  • Research has suggested that there may be a link between use of a dummy and recurrent ear infections in young children.  Researchers aren’t sure why this happens, but suspect it may be due to a change in pressure between the middle ear and upper throat. The Department of Health advises that parents who give their child a dummy should not be overly concerned by these research findings. It was not clear, it notes, whether parents participating in the research had a tendency to use dummies to soothe young children who were prone to recurrent ear infections.
  • If a dummy is introduced too early, there’s the risk of nipple confusion for a baby who’s just learning to suckle. When a baby is being breastfed, it’s best not to give a dummy until breastfeeding is well established, usually at about one month old.
  • Parents can mistakenly offer a dummy when the baby really needs nutrition-based sucking, such as a breast or bottle.

Babies who are overzealous suckers, or who use a dummy for long periods, may have problems as their teeth grow and develop.  Overuse of a dummy can also hinder speech development, which is why it’s recommended that you try to limit the times your baby uses a dummy, and to wean your baby off the dummy completely by the age of one.

Ripped Off



I love it when someone
Starts to steal from you
Just like you don’t even matter
Just like they don’t even care

But, they had better watch out
Because they could find out
How I’m actually feeling
About being ripped off

Jerry Abrahamson (May 14,1957 / Madison, S. Dak.


VIDEO: How Woman Won Battle Against Mechanic Who Tried to Dupe Her

Have you ever gone to an auto repair shop for an oil change, only to have the mechanic say your car needs a new transmission? Has the “check engine” light come on, and suddenly the mechanic says you need expensive new engine parts?

One seasoned auto mechanic is warning consumers to be well-versed in how a car works to avoid being ripped off at the auto repair shop.

“Joe,” who has been a mechanic for 40 years, agreed to reveal the secrets of his trade to ABC News’ “20/20” on the condition that his identity would remain concealed.

He said some mechanics may try to squeeze more money out of customers by doing unnecessary repairs. What drives mechanics to cheat or push unnecessary repairs, Joe said, is the tiny profit margin at many repair shops. Most mechanics are honest, he said, but many are pressured by their bosses to perform unnecessary work.

“The shop has to stay in business,” Joe said. “There are pressures to do things that maybe you wouldn’t do normally.”

Joe admitted that he has used shady tactics, himself, in the past.

“I’m ashamed a bit to admit it, but when your boss tells you … ‘Either you do it here or the door’s right there,’ what are you going to do?” he asked.

The Automotive Service Association says the majority of the service repair industry is ethical and only charges the consumer for necessary work.

“20/20” went undercover at several auto repair shops in New York and New Jersey to see if mechanics would add unnecessary repairs and fees to service a “20/20” producer’s car, which had been given a clean bill of health by two licensed mechanics beforehand.

One of those licensed expert mechanics was Giuseppe Mendola, owner of AutoTech Diagnostic in College Point, New York.

“If they found a problem with this car, it would probably be a problem they invented or that didn’t exist at all,” Mendola said.


How did I let this happen?
What happened?
This can not be?
Not me?
How I may be 13, but I am not stupid I know how!
I didn’t know what was happening.
It was like 2 seconds long!
Then I was late!
I couldn’t even face my parents.
When I told them their barely 13 year old daughter
was going to have one of her own?
They couldn’t face me.
They are disgusted.
They tried to send me away.
Now I am living with my sister.
How could can I go on with my life?
Slut they call
I know I’m nothing at all
How could the priest daughter be pregnant at age 13?
My sister says I should get an abortion because I am too little to have a baby!
She says that a 13 year old 5 foot 1 90 pound girl can not have a baby!
The options are clear to me I am going to give her up
or I keep her.
It’s going to be tough, but I have to choose between a life I once knew
It’s gone; it’s so far away it’s hazy
How did I ever think I would be cool if I did that stuff
it made me cool for like 3 months
And now I am being called a SLUT
How can they say that?
They are doing the same thing I did.
I am the only person who is going to pay
Pay and even an innocent little girl that could’ve gone to anyone
anyone else
someone else
please take her!
I love her, I can’t keep her when she’s out
she’s going to someone who can give her a good life
Because that’s how strong my love is for her
She will always be mine
But I know that I can’t keep
if I could I would
but I need her to get a good life
that’s all I can give her

© Elizabeth


Young mothers

Support for young mothers

Having a child when you are young doesn’t mean you can’t get on with your own life.

The Council and other organisations like The Point can help you with:

  • supported housing
  • education, training and employment
  • groups for teenage parents  
  • free childcare to help you get back into education or training.


You can get practical and financial help if you are pregnant, or have had a baby, and want to continue with education.

Under 16s

If you are under 16 we can work with your school to allow you to continue your education. Contact us for more information.

16 to 19

There are a range of further education and training options available to older teenagers.

You can also find out about learning resources at the The Point.


Our childminding scheme, Care to Learn, is for parents aged between 16 and 19 who want to start, or continue, a course in a school sixth form or sixth-form college.

Up to £5,000 is available for childcare with a registered childminder without affecting your own, or your family’s, benefits or allowances.


If you are over 18, contact the Housing Options service for general advice about your housing options.

If you are interested in renting a property from the Council you can register for Greenwich Homes, our choice-based lettings system.

However, there is a long wait for Council housing and you are also advised to consider private rented accommodation and our housing advisers can discuss this with you.

1st Base

If you are 16 or 17 and have a housing problem or are worried about becoming homeless, you can get advice from 1st Base Housing Options and Support Service.

1st Base can also offer housing support to young parents up to 21, to help you gain the knowledge and skills to manage on your own.


You may also be able to get help with housing costs.




What she needs from you now

Teen pregnancy is not something parents wish for. Even if you are aware that your teen may be sexually active, news of her pregnancy will be shocking.

Once you are over the initial reaction, how do you move forward and help? Parents need to know how to help prevent tragedies like the 14-year-old accused of killing her newborn baby.

The news story was sobering — a pregnant teen delivered her baby at home and strangled it because she “didn’t know what to do with it.” While two of her aunts suspected she was hiding a pregnancy, her mother remained in denial. Could this story have had a different ending if the teen had more support? When you suspect — or confirm — that your daughter is pregnant, she needs your support, regardless of how you feel about the situation.

Are teens playing it safe, or still taking risks? >>

What now?

So your daughter is pregnant — now what? Especially in the early stages of the pregnancy, emotions are high. This is a life-changing situation for your daughter, for your family and for the father of her baby. “Regardless of the complicated emotions that will most certainly arise during the pregnancy and once the baby is born, teens need parental support during this time,” says Katie Hurley, LCSW. “Without parental support, they are less likely to receive adequate prenatal care and maintain a healthy pregnancy diet.” It may be difficult for parents to step up and be supportive when they are upset, but this is crucial for your daughter and her baby. “Teen pregnancy is scary, isolating and can increase the risk for depression,” adds Hurley.

Dr. John Duffy has worked with many pregnant teens and their families. “I’ve found a few truths through these experiences,“ he shares. “Pregnant teenage girls do not need lectures about ‘carelessness’, ‘stupidity’ or ‘disregard for family rules or values.‘ I have witnessed a lot of this type of shaming from parents, and it makes things worse.“

Making your daughter feel the shame of her pregnancy — rather than dealing with the situation — does nothing to help her. What does help is to model good regulation on your emotions. “This is not to say that parents are not allowed their own feelings or disappointments,” adds Duffy, “but the bulk of the discussions should be warm, supportive and progressive in nature. I find that parents who are open and available can serve as trusted, badly-needed advisors to pregnant teens.”

Getting their facts wrong, clueless teens are getting pregnant >>

Moving forward

Teen pregnancy affects your daughter right now, but also has a major impact on her future. Plans for finishing school and going to college may be in jeopardy, and she needs guidance to navigate her future. “With parental support, they will be better prepared for the arrival of the baby,” says Hurley. “The fact remains that 50 percent of teen moms do not finish high school and teen moms are less likely to attend college. If parents work together with their teens to help plan for the baby, establish childcare and routines, and provide social support, those statistics can change,” adds Hurley.

A teen’s perspective

SheKnows writer Jessica Watson remembers her experience as a teen. “When I found myself pregnant at the age of 16, my parents were understandably very disappointed. It took time for them to process the news and all of the changes this meant for my life but they never turned their back on helping me reach my goals,” she shares. “They knew I needed to go to college and ultimately become a self-sufficient adult so they helped me make that happen.”

What does Watson think, now that she is the parent of a teenage girl herself? “I think not giving up on your teenager is the key,” she shares. “Letting them know you are there for them and they can still have a future even though it may be different than what either of you planned is the most important thing you can do as a parent.”

Teen pregnancy is something no parent wants to deal with. Talk to your teens often and keep the lines of communication open, so if your family is faced with a pregnancy you can provide the support your daughter needs.

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