Every time I decide to ignore the HE-UK list and leave them to their own devices, some fool on there twists my tail by recounting a silly and untruthful story about me. Sooner or later it will dawn on these people that such behaviour is counter-productive. The latest example of this occurred yesterday. I have described the reaction to somebody asking for information on HE-UK in a post earlier today. Somebody commenting here on that post reproached me for not mentioning that an explanation for the bizarre response to a few questions had later been made. I must of course put this right. What was the true explanation for the barking mad accusation, that she was asking too many questions, which was made against the mother who wished to find out a little more about home education before she knew if it was the right decision for her and her children? Could it be that some members of that list are paranoid schizophrenics who have been a little remiss in taking their medication? Might it be that some home educators are always looking for a row and are glad of an excuse to have a go at anybody? Or could the churlish and ill mannered reaction be caused by a massive social skills deficit? It was apparently none of these very plausible reasons. It was my fault!
Some readers are perhaps scratching their heads at this point and asking themselves how this could be. I left the list in July 2009, whereas the woman who posted that the request for information had 'set alarm bells ringing' for her, did not even join the list until earlier this year. How could there possibly be a connection between me and the response of this person? Fortunately, Roxanne Featherstone was on hand to explain everything. She told the original poster that, 'There has been at least one example on this list alone of someone pretending to be someone they weren't' Since she follows this up with mention of newspaper articles and select committees, it is not hard to decode this reference to myself. What a mercy that this helpful woman has cleared the matter up so neatly. But hang on a minute, something isn't right here! When I joined the HE-UK list in 2007, I represented myself to be a middle aged home educator called Simon Webb who worked part-time with children with special needs and wrote occasional articles for magazines and newspapers. I have just checked and that is still who I am! The question is, who was I pretending to be, if not this person? I emailed Roxanne to clear this up, but she is evidently too busy to reply.( She is probably writing scripts for Jackanory). I am forced therefore to throw the question out to a wider audience. I claim now and have always claimed to be Simon Webb, a parent who home educated his daughter until she was sixteen. If this is not, as Roxanne claims, who I am then perhaps somebody could help by telling me who I am pretending to be. It is all very perplexing and as an explanation for the awful rudeness displayed to the new member on the HE-UK list seems to be wholly inadequate. If anybody knows who I am pretending to be, or whether or not I am actually pretending to be Simon Webb and am really somebody quite different, perhaps they could share the information with us. I for one am very eager to find out!