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Jodie Young - University of Salford

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History Repeats at McDonalds Cup Regional Heats

Posted: May 04, 2012

On Thursday 12th April 2012, a bunch of us from the Leighton Buzzard McDonalds store headed off to Goals Soccer Centre in Northampton to compete in a regional heat of McDonalds Cup 2012. We had two teams of lads entering into the competition. The A team, known as The Chest Nuggets had Nick Sibley, Chris Vernon, Richie Chatterton, Tom Batchelor, Chris Haybizzle, Matt Haybittle, Matt Yates, Joe Gajewski, Jay Patni and Kieran Townsend. The B team consisted of Andrew Battams, Curtis Paine, Jamie Money, Gregg Budgen, Martin Price, Karl Paradine, Louis Meaning and Carl Pickard.

They started off lucky with both teams not being in the same groups, unike last year. As the tournament continued into the afternoon, the B team unfortunately did not place 1st or 2nd to be put through to the next round. The A team were playing really well. They suffered loses as well as wins, but made it 2nd in the group, so they moved on to the next round.

However, one of their matches in the groups round was er rather dramatic, to say the least. It started off well. I'd say that The Chest Nuggets had more possession than the other team. Although in the second half, its when it all started. Vernon took a turn when he was slammed into the wall. Minutes later, Patni got taken down by two players and a fight started. Patni got sent off, so The Chest Nuggets were down to four men. Soon after that, a rival player squared up to Chris Haybizzle, so he was sent off, so it became 4-a-side for the last 5 minutes. 

Lucky for The Chest Nuggets, they came out winning. A break was then given so other teams could finish off their games and the draw for the next round was decided. The Chest Nuggets won their game and awaited who they'd play in the quarter finals.

Faces dropped. The team were to replay the team that caused drama in the group round. A sudden rush of de-ja-vu fell upon us. It turned out that the rival team were who we lost to in the quarter finals the previous year. Last year, the A team lost out after playing a ten minute game, surviving penalty shootout but then lost sudden death.

So the game began. Successful passes were working well for The Chest Nuggets and Vernon scored the first goal. Not losing sight of what could be theirs, the team kept playing to their strengths. Tremendous saves were made by Sibley, with many spectators saying "Oooohh" and "Good One". Then a goal came from Yates, making it 2-0. Half-time approached and we believed we had it in the bag to reach the semis. In the second half, The Chest Nuggets kept possession. They could have played it cheeky and just waste time passing the ball around so when the whistle blew, they won. But I'm proud to say that was not the case. The Chest Nuggets kept on playing their hardest, but with the time remaining, the rivals ended up scoring 2 goals and the game finished 2-2. Part one of last year repeated itself. The game had finished tied at 2-2, just like last year. Quick discussions were made between each team, to pick their strikers. Nick Sibley was up first as goalkeeper. ITS SAVED. Vernon's up as our first striker. HE SCORES! giving us a goal up advantage. The rivals score next. Yates scored. The rivals scored. Chatterton missed. Its equal at 3-3 on penalties. Time for sudden death - history repeats itself again. Every shot counts. One miss and it could all be over. Vernon scored again. Rivals scored. Matt Haybittle scored. Rival scored. Batchelor hits the crossbar, just like Lee Tyas did last year.... rivals scored. Thats it, it was all over. Just like last year, we lose in the same round, with the same score, against the same team, for the same reason.

The lads that played for our store deserved to win, but unfortunately lost. The Chest Nuggets are all talented, especially Chris Vernon, whose nickname is Torres. It was unfortunate that Batchelor hit the crossbar, as he's talented too. It happens to the best of us. They should keep their heads held high and I'm really hoping that when they play next year, they take it one step further, or hopefully even more.



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High Street Fashion: Is It Worth It?

Posted: Mar 30, 2012

At the weekend, I went shopping in The Centre MK and Midsummer Place in Milton Keynes, Bedfordshire. I had not been shopping there since before Christmas, so it felt different to be back there. A lot had changed. Shops had closed, others had taken their places.


My main aim was to find a dress to wear out in the evening for my birthday. I went in New Look, H&M, Jane Norman, River Island, Internacionale and Krisp. When I went in Jane Norman and River Island, I felt like walking back out. Their products were just too expensive. My budget for a dress was £30 but the ones I found in those two stores were at least £40.


When finding a specific item, I find I always have to search all stores because some of them have the same item but cheaper. I do not understand why this is. Surely if stores are selling the same item, they should cost the same or at least have not that much difference in price. At the end of the day, they will still make a profit and they will still have rival companies.


When I go on a shopping spree, I find that I always have to set a budget for myself; otherwise I will end up spending £250 without realising.


At the end of the day, I find that stores that have higher prices won’t survive. Last summer, Jane Norman went into administration and now, as you all should know, the Game Group have now too, thus closing 277 stores.

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Wicked - Theatre Review

Wicked - Theatre Review

Posted: Mar 30, 2012

I have previously seen Chicago, Grease, and more in theatres, and I honestly think that Wicked is my favourite. I went to see the production at the Apollo Victoria Theatre in London. Wicked is a musical that tells the story of Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West (Rachel Tucker) and her time at Shiz University and her friendships with Glinda the Good and Fiyero, who are played by Gina Beck and Matt Willis.


Throughout the production, I was enticed. The performance was entertaining. The cast were brilliant. They each brought something to the show. I enjoyed seeing Gina Beck play the role of Glinda because she portrayed the character well, bringing personality on the stage. The way she flicked her hair to attract boys had the whole audience in hysterics. Rachel Tucker has also certainly made a name for herself by playing the role of Elphaba, for she originally auditioned for the BBC show I’d Do Anything, where she reached the semi-final for the role of Nancy.


The character Fiyero was Glinda’s and Elphaba’s love interest and was played by ex-Busted singer Matt Willis. I congratulate Matt on his transformation from being in a boy band to acting in theatre. Fiyero was a typical bad-boy at Shiz University; self-fish, obnoxious but then showed kindness and loyalty. One of his highlights was swinging onto the stage to save Elphaba.


I very much liked the use of props in the production; especially Glinda’s ‘bubble’. It was also referenced in an argument between Elphaba and Glinda: “Well not all of us can fly by bubble”. Other props included a broomstick, a spellbook, a wand, a statue, an overhead bridge and many more. I felt that each and every prop was used very well.


Another highlight of the show was the unison between Elphaba and Glinda. Their singing was remarkable and I was ever so glad when Elphaba (Rachel) held the top note in the song “No Good Deed”, as it is this song that brings her to keep the name The Wicked Witch of the West.






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Diabetes: What Exactly Does The Public Know?

Posted: Mar 30, 2012


I have had type one diabetes since I was seven years old. By having diabetes, it means that I have to watch my carbohydrate intake and I have to take insulin injections 3-4 times a day to control my blood glucose. There are risks with having diabetes, such as; damage to the nervous system, eyes and kidneys are caused if the blood glucose levels are poorly controlled.
I believe that having diabetes has pros and cons. A pro is that it can help me to eat healthier, because it means that I cannot eat as much sugar as other people. However in some cases, I find that sugar-free versions of food and drink are much nicer than the originals. There are a few cons. These are: injections every day, unable to drink a range of alcoholic drinks, a very weak immune system, my driving license has to be renewed every three years, and blood glucose levels always have to be checked before I get behind the wheel of a car incase of hypoglycemia.
Hypoglycemia occurs in diabetics when their blood sugar levels are too low - usually below 4.0. Symptoms include: dizziness, erratic behaviour, difficulty walking and sometimes unconsciousness. Thinking back, I can remember a bad hypo. I was 11 or 12 when I was shopping with my Nan when I wasn’t feeling well in a shop. I needed to sit down so I sat on the floor and lent against a seat. People were staring and even stepping over me. As I was close to collapsing, my Nan couldn’t leave me. Soon enough, a lady asked my Nan what was wrong and the next thing I knew, the woman had returned with a bottle of coke and 3 types of chocolate. If it wasn’t for her, I reckon my Nan would have called an ambulance.
Over the years, I have always wondered what people actually know about diabetes, considering that it is becoming more common in the UK. There is an increase of type two diabetes, as this type is caused due to lifestyle choices; whereas type one is when the pancreas shuts down or it’s inherited. There are millions of people in the UK with diabetes, and thousands who have it but don’t know it. There are also people who don’t know much about it, or even nothing at all. Some famous people have diabetes, e.g. Sir Steve Redgrave, Nick Jonas and Randy Jackson.

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Posted: Feb 06, 2012

To an extent, my life is no different to the average teenager. I can drive, go out clubbing, play sports, play video games and eat what I want. I just have to be more aware of it. I have had Type 1 Diabetes since the age of 7.

For those of you who are unsure what that is, it is an incurable disease that prevents the pancreas to work the way it should. So as treatment, I have to inject myself with insulin 4 times a day. Earlier, I mentioned that it is type 1 diabetes that I have. This is because there are 2 different types. Type 1 is pretty much based on the fact that your pancreas has shut down or that you've inherited it, just like you inherit green eyes from your mum or dad. This could just be an unlucky situation. To control it, you inject insulin to control your blood glucose levels. In type 2, you take tablets to medicate yourself. This type is usually diagnosed based on your lifestyle. And it is this difference that I feel everyone should know of.

I remember back in upper school, my science teacher was teaching us about diabetes. I didn't really pay much attention because I knew all about it. Then she mentioned that a key reason why people get diabetes is because of the high rise in obesity. That exact second, all eyes were on me, because my whole class knew I had diabetes. I even overheard a girl say that I was big enough as it is. I raised my hand and said that wasn't always the case. My teacher seemed to disagree. Then the debate began: "I've had diabetes since age 7 and I can assure you it was not because I was overweight. I was an absolute rake. I weighed barely anything. You could see the outline of my spine and ribcage. My school photo that year even showed how thin my face looked." She then had the nerve to ask, "Are you sure?" That did it for me. I was in such a rage, I walked out.

This is why I feel so strongly about talking about diabetes. People aren't informed enough about it. The number of diabetics is increasing by the day, but it is not just because of the rise in obesity levels. That may apply to type 2, but not both.


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