31 July 2005


My mobile phone has died. So why is it that a phone that cost £70, 9 years ago is still going strong, despite being dropped several times but the £300 one which is only 18 months old and has been well looked-after is dead?

Oh yeah, and whoever does those 'funky' versions of classical tunes to use as ringtones should be shot. Fur Elise is supposed to sound romantic, not like the accompaniment to a pissed-up 3 legged race.

29 July 2005


I was absolutely starving last night, so on my way home, I went to Domino's Pizza for a quick fix. I picked the smallest and cheapest pizza they had (apart from plain cheese & tomato) and it was £8.99! "Bloody hell that's dear!", thought I, I could have had a sit-down meal at the local Italian restaurant for that. At least having a takeaway pizza is better than having to resort to going to MuckDonalds though.

However, I have to say that it was a lovely pizza, even though 11pm is probably not the best time to be eating.

25 July 2005

Not-so-Quick Deposit

My bank has cash machines outside, which you can use to pay in cash and cheques. However, when I tried to pay in a cheque this, the machine told me to 'insert envelope'. As I didn't have an envelope, I had to cancel the transaction and the machine beeped at me.

I went in the bank and picked up a Quick Deposit envelope, marked 'For use in Quick Deposit Unit only'. So I went to the QDU and found it blanked off. Anyway, I put my cheque in the envelope and saw that it said "please fill in a giro-slip and place in envelope". So I looked for a giro-slip, but there were none to be found.

I went to the Customer Service Desk and waited in a queue. Eventually the woman said "we don't put the giro-slips out now, because kids scribble on them". So I asked why the cash machine no longer gives out envelopes, and she said "oh, it's the new system". So I said "why is the Quick Deposit Unit blanked off?". Apparently people were using it as a litter bin.

So, for a Quick Deposit, you have to go in the branch and get an envelope. Queue up at Customer Services to get a giro-slip. Fill it in, put everything in the envelope and then go outside again and put it in the machine.

It would have been quicker to join the queue for the counter service and hand the damn thing to a cashier.

Customer Service? Ha!

22 July 2005

summer is here...

and so is my boss. Having spent the past few months in London, he has now well and truly landed in my office.

He's spent the afternoon in a tidying frenzy, clearing his desk and that of a former employee. Unfortunately, his idea of tidying entails dumping everything onto my desk :o(

Roll on October and his return to London. 1 day down, 64 to go...

Top job!

For about three months now, there's been an electrical fault on my bike, which caused all the 'dashboard' lights to flash at random, the fuel guage to show 'extra full' all the time, and the tacho needle to bounce whenever the indicators were on. I figured out for myself that something wasn't earthing, but I'm no spark, so given that the bike is still under warranty, I took it back to the dealer. Three times. Each time, the dealers told me they couldn't find the fault and left me in no doubt that they had no intention of even trying to find and fix it.

Yesterday, on the off-chance, I called in at Tom Yates Autos in Cadishead (M/cr). Tom took off the headlight and, 20 seconds later said "is that working now?" It was. It was a broken wire. It took him less than a minute to fix it. The price? One pint of real ale at the forthcoming Autumn NABDness rally.

So, a lesson learned. Dealers don't give a stuff about vehicles still under warranty. I reckon they just held onto the bike for a few hours each time I took it in, and didn't even bother to try to find the cause of the problem.

Tom Yates is a star.

20 July 2005

Stupid bus drivers!

This morning, on my way into work, I was on a large roundabout doing about 35. I was just approaching my exit when a bus just came straight out onto the roundabout at speed - he never even bothered to slow down. Seeing as there was a car in the other lane, I had to slam the brakes on. If it hadn't been for the slave trying to yell instructions from the passenger seat, I'd have got the bugger's number. I really hate these 'my vehicle is bigger than yours, so I'll do what I want' drivers.

19 July 2005

The news as it happens!

The building opposite my office is on fire. Wonder if those nice firemen will reheat my baked spud for me?

Shame about the building though, it's a lovely place - big trade union history.

18 July 2005

Oz sez...

that I've got to put nice stuff on here too. So here goes:

Thank you Oz for being such a nice bloke and putting up with my rants! May the sun always shine on you and your good lady, and may you always keep the rubber side down.

See! Not only did I say summat nice, but I said it about the bloke who suggested it. Howzat?!

My Associates are going to love me

I've acquired a new 'training aid' - a set of flashcards with pictures of road signs on them, so I can test their knowledge. OK, hands up, who's first?

Just wait until I get myself one of those sets of mini-road cones. Tee hee hee.

Forget the axe, find me a wall...

to bang my head against. Or more to the point, someone else's head.

I took an IAM Associate out on Sunday and I told him, when you stop on the road (e.g. at traffic lights) or before turning into a different road, you must do a lifesaver before moving off. He did it at the next set of lights, but failed to do it thereafter.

I pulled him over in a convenient car park and explained it to him again. He said "OK, yeah, I understand". He then set off and didn't do the damn lifesaver. I let that one go and carried on observing him. 10 mins later, I pulled him up again and said "You know the lifesavers we spoke about? Well you're still not doing them". He said "Oh, sorry" and then set off again, without doing the bloody lifesaver. Grrrrrrr.

He's been riding for decades and can't manage a simple thing like that. He's got his test next week. If he passes, I'll be gobsmacked.


A bloke has asked us for help in relation to a problem with a group of his employees. We told him that we would need his employees' names and addresses first, so he said he'd provide them. He didn't.

Then he whinged we'd not done anything to help, so we again explained that we needed his employees' names and addresses. He said he'd get them. He didn't.

So he whinged again, and we explained again. Still no names and addresses.

Then he sends a snotty e-mail to my boss complaining that we've not helped. So the boss sends one back saying "give us the names and addresses and we'll help".

So the bloke has now sent a whingey e-mail complaining that no-one is taking his complaint seriously, so he's e-mailed Jack Straw and Tony Blair. Perhaps they'll come round and make him a cup of tea and tell him to calm down. He's still not provided the names and addresses.

Someone get the axe ...

13 July 2005

Bloody marvellous!

Got a phone call at work:

Bloke sez "who do you have working today?"
I say "wot?"
He sez "who do you have working today?"
I say "wot?"
He sez "who do you have working today?"
I say "me".
He sez "that's not Mystique is it?"
I say "no".
He hangs up.

So I go to Google, punch in mystique and part of our phone number and hey presto - a local brothel has a phone number just one digit different to ours. Great. Just what we need. No wonder we get so many calls where people don't leave messages.

Wonder if that bloke realises he left his number on our caller display?

11 July 2005


I've been at work all day, whilst the slave has been at home (he's got a week off). When I got home, the house was a complete tip and he was sat in the garden, enjoying some chilled fruit juice and reading New Statesman.

I went upstairs to discover that he's had all the windows closed all day and the bedroom and my office are like ovens. I now have all the windows in the house open (except the one that is gaffer-taped shut) and all the fans I can muster are now trained on me.

My hand-held fan is, sadly, no more, after next-door's dog tried to eat it.

08 July 2005

Quotation of the Year 2005

""We're more at risk from dying of bird flu than we are of being blown up by any terrorist."
Ken Livingstone, 13 March 2005.


Thanks to Guido Fawkes for spotting that one!

06 July 2005

London Olympics

So, London is getting the Olympic games in 2012. It'll be great for the economy but I wonder how all the regular commuters will feel about it. The tube trains are already filled to bursting, so it'll only get worse.

It's about time that central government departments were moved out of London and further up North, where it's cheaper to build, cheaper to employ, cheaper to buy houses and less traffic congestion.

03 July 2005

Stupid councils

The GLF sign (and the corresponding 30 sign on the back of it) on Beacon Lane at Upholland has been missing for four weeks now. I've reported it to the Council twice, and I know a few of my friends have too. In the meantime, cars and bikes are teararseing through the housing estate at 60, and people are pootling at 30 on a lovely open country lane. Don't you love bureaucracy?

Stupid car drivers

I was on my way home this evening when some stupid dickhead in a souped-up blue Nova tried to kill me, overtaking a line of traffic by coming on to my side of the road. I was forced into the gutter whilst laughing boy ran a red light. I hope he crashes - but that he doesn't hurt anyone else. W****r!