Thursday 31 December 2009

Year zero

I think without doubt I am becoming a grumpy old bloke. Why else would I get so irritated by the stupidity of others?

Time does not exist! It is merely an invention of man to measure his passing, a mathematical ruse. The calendar is nothing but a mathematical chart. It is not determined or guided by some cosmic being or force. A calendar starts at year 1 and carries on until people get fed up with it. It’s as simple as that.

Given that it is that simple why on earth are there so many idiots that can’t grasp the concept of a decade? I suppose they are the same idiots that thought the millennium started in the year 2000. Everybody has the right to be stupid but so many people seem to want to abuse the privilege.

So for the retarded out there:
Years 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 equal a decade.
Years 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010 also equal a decade.
Easy hey?
All you have to do is ‘do the maths’!

If there were a year zero, then this would indeed be the end of a decade, but as there wouldn’t be then this isn’t.

Wednesday 30 December 2009

Room 101 won’t work forever

The recent so called attempted bombing on a US aeroplane and the subsequent comments by US political figures does make me wonder if there is any hope for our colonial cousins. The idea that they or anyone else can ‘win’ a ‘war on terror’ is laughable if it wasn’t so sad. What is wrong with these people?

You can’t win at war let alone one ‘on terror’. Violence, suppression and or alienation will do nothing to improve any situation. I don’t care much for capitalism, but if the USA want to use the ‘weapons’ they have at their disposal that are likely to be the most effective they should be utilising Coca Cola, McDonalds, Nike and Starbucks et al. As a country the USA needs to secularise, stop trying (but miserably failing) to take the moral high ground, and then start a consumer goods and services charm offensive.

If capitalism has one redeeming feature it is that it has the capacity to eradicate religion. Personally I’d like to eradicate capitalism as well, but one thing at a time. Religion is after all ‘the opiate of the people’. So first things first!

Monday 28 December 2009

Nowhere Boy

Boxing Day saw us toddle of to the pictures to see Nowhere Boy, a film essentially about John Lennon’s teenage years up to the time he leaves Liverpool for Hamburg. The film charts his emotionally tumultuous upbringing abandoned by his mother, Julia, brought up by her sister, his Aunt Mimi, being reunited with his mother for a short while until her death, and his musical upbringing. It is I suspect a fine line between success and failure when you come from such a background.

The film charts the early beginnings of his musical career. His first meeting with Paul, there subsequent friendship, and then George joining the band are most definitely covered but a lot of the other musical history is a bit vague. Director Sam Taylor-Wood, in this her debut feature, concentrates on the 'tug of love’ battle between Mimi (played by the delicious Kristin Scott Thomas) and Julia (played by Anne-Marie Duff), giving a flavour of the musical history rather than it been centre stage.

All in all it’s a bloody good film, and a must see for Lennon aficionados, but don’t go expecting to see a Beatles documentary!

If I have one complaint there was no mention of Strawberry Fields.

Tuesday 22 December 2009

A moving story

After two years of trying we have finally moved permanently to Norwich; our house in Bury St Edmunds sold a month ago, our matchbox of a rented flat in Norwich went last week, and we are now exclusively and firmly ensconced in our new singular abode. Boy are we relieved. Living in two places is no fun.

We have gone from a three bed 1930s semi to a modern maisonette and the moving experience has been akin to fitting a quart into a pint pot. The feeling that we had been moving forever was also upon us. There were dark days when it seemed as if we would never be settled, but thankfully it all came good in the end. It is all still very much living out of cardboard boxes but we are moving forward.

The pain and the stress of moving has meant that I’ve not blogged for some while. This situation has been exacerbated by that well know bunch of shysters that masquerade as a telecoms company, namely BT. BT currently standing for British Telecom, when it should really stand for Bastard Twats!

My telecom hell is detailed in my letter of complaint below:

Dear Sirs,

I have been appalled and upset by the shoddy treatment and total lack of customer service that I have received from your company recently. Here is the catalogue of your failings:

● We advised you that we were moving house and that we wanted to move our line. You gave us a date of 4/12/09 and a time of between 8am and 1pm saying that someone needed to be on the premises during that time implying that a BT engineer would arrive to connect the line and that we would be fleeced ┬ú122.03 for the privilege. Just before 1pm, rather frustrated that no one from you organisation had arrived I called to find out what was going on. Rather arrogantly I was told that the line had been moved without the need to send out an engineer. The line was not working, and I had wasted five hours because you can’t be bothered to keep your customers informed.

● After spending 23 minutes on my mobile trying to point out to your fault service that there was no line to my flat I was told that an engineer would be with me between 1pm and 6pm the next day (5/12/09). At every opportunity I stressed that this was a new build and that I suspected that the wrong flat had been connected. On the 5/12/09 I waited in for five hours. Guess what? No engineer turned up!

● On Monday, when I had access to a land line I phoned to complain/find out what was going on. I was told that the engineer turned up and that no one was at home. I understandably hit the roof. The BT story then changed to ‘the fault was closed’ and, which is the biggest insult, ‘I would be credited the missed visit charge’ - Oh how generous! - I continued to stress that this was a new build, that it had probably been connected to the wrong flat and that someone needed to actually get in a van and come out to us. I was assured that this would happen on 11/12/09. Why did I believe what BT was telling me, when I should have known that it was a lie?

● 11/12/09 arrived, BT didn’t!

● The 11/12/09 is my wife’s birthday. We planned to go out to lunch to celebrate but cancelled because we were keen to get the telephone line sorted. Another 5 hours wasted and my wife’s birthday ruined, and again no real reason given for why BT had failed yet again. Clearly at this point I was getting very agitated and managed to get through to a supervisor that did actually start to help. The best that she could offer me was another 8am to 1pm appointment the next day 12/12/09. I was told that it couldn’t be any narrower a window than that but that she would try and make it a priority.

● 12/12/09 arrived, and the first hour passed, but no sign of BT. I phoned to speak to the supervisor and after much agitation I was told that the job had been issued to an engineer. He turned up and the problem was sorted quite quickly - the line had not been connected up to the correct property (what a surprise) - by 11.30am we had a working phone

This is some of the worst service that I have ever experienced from any organisation. I suspect that it is only the fact BT is a near monopoly that keeps you in business, as it certainly isn’t anything to do with the way you treat your customers. This might come as a shock to you but contempt is not an effective sales tool. Not that anyone will care but we were considering switching to one of your broadband/television packages. As you can imagine, that won’t be happening now. We also intend to switch phone providers as soon as possible.

To sum up:

● BT has cost us a great deal of time and money - please see the invoice herewith
● BT caused us a great deal of stress - not good for two people with high blood pressure
● We had to wait in for a total of 18 hours
● I had to top up my mobile twice (┬ú20 total) to report this ongoing problem
● BT staff are very quick to tell the customer at every available opportunity what BT will charge in the likely event that it is the customer to blame.
● At no time (apart from the 12/12/09) did you even consider keeping me informed.


Rearrange the following words to form a popular phrase to describe BT:

‘arrange’ ‘brewery’ ‘couldn’t’ ‘BT’ ‘piss-up’ ‘a’ ‘in’ ‘a’

Yours faithfully,

P Garrard

Not having a phone connection meant that I could not arrange for my broadband to be moved (as it is with Orange). Last night it returned. Oh happy days!

I’m not holding my breath over even getting a reply from them let alone paying my invoice, but we shall see.

Monday 21 December 2009

End of the decade my arse!

Why is it that ‘the media’ seem to be under the impression that we are just over a week away from the end of a decade?
Don’t they know we have got another year to go before that happens?
Of course I know the answer:
They and the vast majority of people that consume their nonsense output are too stupid and mathematically challenged to realise any different. They are the same morons who thought the last century ended with the dawn of the year 2000. Tossers!

The current decade ends on 31/12/10 - it’s very simple maths!