The Point of Pointlessness

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When I was in secondary school, I was expected to go on a short work experience placement. Lest I spend too much of this work experience placement unquantifiably experiencing work, however, I was equipped with a booklet demanding that various sections be filled in. These sections were of often dubious but generally discernible relevance to the actual work: I was expected, for example, to find out whether the person in charge of me was a member of a trade union. On one page, however, the thing went entirely off the rails and commanded me to draw three road signs which I had seen on the way to the placement.

It’s on the basis of experiences like this that I think it misses the point to complain that the Life In The UK test for immigrants is a mess of trivia disconnected from what life for British citizens actually involves. Those of us who were born and raised here seldom know who opened the first British curry house, but we certainly do know about dancing to the tune of pointless bureaucracy.

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