Thursday, 29 November 2012

You couldn't make this up.....

Set the scene:

Boss is in his car and out of the office for the whole day. It’s a recent Friday and the web/email hosting supplier for my company plans to migrate it’s customer accounts as a result of it’s decision to merge with another company….Internutters…..[They are not really called that but it seems appropriate]. According to the existing service provider, merger is in the interests of it’s customers and will lead to improved service, but during the merger customers will need to take no action as it will be...........

s e a m l e s s

Camera lights action ! :


Boss: Hi Steve, what’s up ?

Steve: Hi boss, there seems to be a problem with the emails, as the backup machines are not downloading any emails.

Boss: oh, perhaps it’s to do with the merger of our service provider. Ring their customer support help line and see what’s happening. Get back to me and let me know what’s what.

Click…… call ends

Wife [in passenger seat]: problem at the office dear ?

Husband [neé Boss]: No, should be ok

A short while later……

Brrrrrng ……..brrrrng……brrrrrrng…

Boss: Hi Steve, what’s what ? did you speak to them ?

Steve: Hi Boss, I did…..

Boss: And ?

Steve: I got through to Tech support, but they have got that many problems they are manning the tech support help line with sales staff, and they couldn’t help at all……

Boss: Oh…… leave it with me I will give it a try…..

Click….. call ends…….

Wife [still in passenger seat]: problem at the office dear ?

Husband [neé Boss]: No, should be ok

Brrrrrng brrrrrng brrrng…….

Service provider [recorded message] :Thank you for your call, if your call is about sales please press 1, if your call is for tech support help, please press 2

Boss: presses 2……..

Help line [recorded message]: Your call is important to us. Due to the merger of our business, our tech support line is very busy, you are in a queue, please be patient and we will answer your call as soon as possible……

…….. a short while later

Help line [human being]: Thank you for your call, how may I help you ?

Boss: We have a problem with our emails and they are not down loading, can you please help ?

Help line [human being]: Our tech support is very busy today, have you checked our web site for the FAQ section

Boss: Can’t you help me ?

Help line [human being]: Sorry no, you need tech support

Boss: So what are you then ?

Help line [human being]: Sales…..

Boss: But I pressed 2 for tech support

Help line [human being]: Yes I know, but all our tech support staff are busy with technical problems with the merger, so they have put sales staff on the help line

Boss: So you can’t help me with a technical problem then ?

Help line [human being]: No sir, sorry, but you’ll have to speak to tech support or try our FAQ on our web site

Boss: I’ll ring back later….!

Click……. Call ends

Wife [still in passenger seat]: problem at the office dear ?

Husband [neé Boss]: No, should be ok

A short while later ……..

Brrrrrrng brrrrng brrrrrng

Boss: Hi Steve what’s up now ?

Steve: We are not getting any emails at all now, we’ve not had any emails for the last 2 hours or so, but worse still we can’t now send out any emails.

[with an annual email through put of around 20,000 emails {excluding viagramail} things are starting to seem anything but seamless]

Boss: I’ll try tech support again, I got the same response as you did. Leave it with me

Steve: Ok boss

Click…… call ends

Wife [still in passenger seat]: problem at the office dear ?

Husband [neé Boss]: No, should be ok

Brrrrrng brrrrrng brrrng…….

Service provider [recorded message] :Thank you for your call, if your call is about sales please press 1, if your call is about tech support help please press 2

Boss: presses 2……..

Help line [recorded message]: Your call is important to us. Due to the merger of our business, our tech support line is very busy, you are in a queue, please be patient and we will answer your call as soon as possible……

…….. a short while later

Help line [human being]: Thank you for your call, how may I help you ?

Boss: Are you tech support or sales ?

Help line [human being]: Oooooh, I am tech support sir

Boss: We have a problem with our emails and they are not down loading can you please help ?

Help line [human being]: What’s your customer number sir ?

Boss:recounts customer number and password”

Help line [human being]: That’s your old customer number and password  sir, your account has now been merged and we have given you a new customer number, could you please tell me your new customer number

Boss: I don’t know my new customer number, where will I get that information ?

Help line [human being]: We emailed it to you this morning

Boss: But I can’t get my emails, my emails are not downloading, that’s why I am ringing you, I need help to download my emails now that you have buggered up our emails

Help line [human being]: Oh. Can you please tell me your customer number and I will try and help you sir

Boss: “recounts customer number and password”

Help line [human being]: That’s your old customer number and password sir, your account has now been merged and we have given you a new customer number, could you please tell me your customer number

Boss: I don’t know my new customer number, where will I get that information ?

Help line [human being]: We emailed it to you this morning

Boss: But I can’t get my emails, my emails are not downloading, that’s why I am ringing you, I need help to download my emails now that you have buggered up our emails

Help line [human being]: Oh. Can you please tell me your customer number and I will try and help you sir

Click………. call ends…….

Boss brings car to rest at next layby and then slowly bangs head against dash board whilst sobbing quietly…….

Wife [still in passenger seat]: problem at the office dear?

Husband [neé Boss]: please open the glove box and pass me the medicinal compound……..

Todays SoD is dedicated to the idiot management at Internutters……..

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

W!ZZ Air redux....

..... as the plane landed on the tarmac at Luton airport, the passengers erupted into spontaneous clapping.....

Were they clapping because they had left behind a cold wet country ?....

....only to arrive in a cold wet country ?

Were they clapping because the plane hadn't crashed ?

Were they clapping because the plane arrived on time ?

Noooooo........... I think the most likely reason why they clapped, is because no one f@rted on the plane........

Let's all clap* to that one ..........

So this calls for a jingly jangly Wednesday song....... an unlikely combination I know, but soooooo soooo much better than the combination of farts and planes don't you think ?

*[ and for those of you having trouble clapping, see my first ever blog in the whole wide world]

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Nice Parking......

..... it's not easy to park one of these things you know

Looking at the name of this ship did get me thinking.......Hina....ummmm,  Hina I thought...

What did we do before googlepedia ?...... and so it is I now know that Hina is a goddess....

But what say this happened in the ship naming meeting at the Offices of MSC.......

MSC Boss......Ok guys, the new ship is about to be delivered and we need to think of a name..... times are hard and we are having to cut back so we need to think about this one carefully..... China is a country that has lots of money to spend so perhaps we could name it after China, and they will like MSC more.....

MSC Office junior .....Boss ! Boss ! Boss !.... If you really want to save money, how about we name the ship after a goddess and not a country.......

MSC Boss.... so how will that save us money ?

MSC Office junior..... well boss, it will use less paint, so we could save money by not having to paint the C !....and boss, boss, boss this is the best bit, get this........ the Chinese will think the ship is called the MS China...... ta dah !

MSC Boss..... Hina it is then...... I name this ship the MSC Hina.

My SoD for today has nowt to do with China or ships as such but as the Hina was in Latvia, and the fact I'd never been to Latvia before, I thought I would pay thanks to my Latvian hosts and treat them to this.....[it is about the only thing they are famous for.....without the power of googlepedia..... try and name one famous Latvian......erm thought not]


Monday, 26 November 2012

Welcome to Latvia..... know you are in a safe hotel when you are transported in a Schindlers lift...

I know you shouldn't make light of such things but it did make me smile after a long and tiresome [read fart filled for tiresome] journey

But to end the day here is the wonderful theme tune to that magnificent movie

The thing about budget airlines is that they are.....

...... to the budget market....... but wizzair were very wizzy......except for one thing.... and to be fair it wasn't wizzair's fault and it can and does happen anywhere, even Ben Howard concerts....

There is one thing that drives me nuts, and that considering planes are confined spaces at the best of times, but oh my god, when someone decides to share with the rest of the plane the aroma of their f@rt !!

Why oh why do they think that we all want to share it......because for sure we do not want to share it !

One day, when in a confined space and I whiff the bouquet of some ones ar$e, I am going to stand up and declare that I do not want to smell them farting and would they please keep it to themselves. I already have my speech prepared.

I have not done it yet, and I think I will need to use the "3 strikes and you are out principle", except I shall apply the "3 farts and I stand up principle"

And yes this did happen at the Ben Howard concert and I very nearly stood up, but I didn't want BH to think I was referring to him.

So today and today only I shall rebrand WizzAir* to WhiffAir......

And as there already has been a SoD, as a homage to my un-identified passenger who thought he would share his f@rt......this is for you my friend

*[sorry wizzair, it really isn't your fault other than for the daft name]

[Fart Postscript: since posting this entry, I saw this on youtube....... I need a policeman to travel overseas with me next time me thinks.....]

Not only was Friday not......

........ black....... but Monday is not Cyber either.....

Cyber Monday ? ....... Black Friday ?........ Cyber Monday .....who meks this bullox up ??

No, this Monday [or any Monday for that matter] is not Cyber......but in fact this Monday is therefore declared by ME, to be..........

 Latvia Monday

And so as Latvia beckons, whilst I look for me passport.... I will say.....Bob belt us out a SoD please   .......a Latvia Monday SoD no less.....

Friday, 23 November 2012

what the frick is ...........

..... black friday ??? who writes this crap....

we had super tuesday......super saturday......the first 100 days in office.....

and now they peddle black friday ..... its not black friday !

It's Friday 23rd November 2012.

so to all those writers in the press and on line and the traders who talk about black Friday.......well guess what, its not 


Cue DB's SoD............. take it away Davey

Thursday, 22 November 2012

Word of today is.......

...... ephemeral......

for which I offer my thanks to Mr David Byrne......

a fitting word for blogging me thinks..... 

so in honour of DB here is the SoD to go with it....... 

[this song could never be called ephemeral]

And when you see and listen to that song 
which is almost 32 years old 
you soon begin to realise the talent that is 
Mr David Byrne

Like a fine wine he gets better with age. Seeing him live 3 years ago was something else. 

When he was this good 32 years ago, then you realise the genius of the man now. 
Still doubt me ?......well this bonus SoD track is proof were it ever needed 
that this man is a higher being than most........ 

It will of course mean that for the next 5mins and 18 secs 
you should do nothing but look and listen. 

Extend the play to full screen and crank up the volume, 
and for sure you will not have wasted 5mins 18secs of your life, 
but before the song ends I guarantee 
you will be nodding your head and taping your toes.

So waddya waiting for, hit the play button & take it away Davey Boy

........and let's get noddin and a tappin.......

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Fighting with wolves.....

.......I had planned today to do a short post about seeing Ben Howard live* at the Cambridge Corn Exchange and the SoD would of course been the highlight of the night........ The wolves from his debut album ....Every Kingdom..... [every candle lit dinner should be enveloped by the sound of this album playing in the back ground]....... but as it is/was, last night I sat there watching the 10 o'clock news supping me horlicks** whilst finally winding down the end of another day.....and so it was the news announcer said.....and we now go over to Gaza but I must warn you some of these images might be distressing.......

So before you lower your head down the page, I must warn you she was right, the next image is for sure distressing......

How in gods name [or allah you choose] did we end up here ?

I am not naive, I am not a fool, atrocities occur during conflict and wars I know that, but in this picture it is said that man shown dead was an Israeli spy in Gaza [1 of 6 so called spies treated in this way],  and those who are alive in this picture were extracting revenge on the man who was once alive but is now dead. I make no judgement on the individual persons shown either alive or dead, I cannot say whether the dead man was an Israeli spy or not, but as I saw this image last night I was minded of something else I saw on TV a week or two back......

It was about conservationists trying to save from extinction what essentially is nothing more than a mouse......

This link gives you a feel for it.....

There are people out there, as I type putting in their heart and soul in to saving this creature from extinction..........and I make no judgement on these people either......

But last night as I sat proudly in my ivory tower, the juxtaposition of these two images, given to me via the magic of TV, made me wonder...........

Just how the hell did man evolve to such, that on one side of Africa he is doing his damnedest to save a mouse and yet at the same time further north up the coast he is dragging a human corpse behind a bluddy motorcycle whilst he offers up his salute ?

I shake my head in utter disbelief......

So for my SoD, I turn once more to the mind offerings of the great Paul Buchanan.... take it away Paul......... whilst I lie down in a darkened room......

*[ on a slightly lighter note returning to Ben, should you ever find yourself at a Ben Howard concert  in a student place like Cambridge and are the age that I am, you do at times ask I at a Ben Howard concert or a Jack Wills annual convention !]

**[I actually dislike horlicks {I nearly wrote hate....but today there is too much hate in the world} so it was in fact hot chocolate I drank but I wrote horlicks for poetic licence.....god {allah} knows why......and on reflection the more you say the word horlicks in your head...if you keep repeating the sounds more and more like something you have to pay for .......thats a man thought by the way]

Monday, 19 November 2012

...and for those of you....

.... still looking for the lemon counter in tescos, here is a bonus SoD* offering for today

Listen & Love

*[I know its a repeat offering, but it is just so beautiful it deserves to be listened to more than once]

Have you tried sucking a lemon ?.....

I didn't really want to write a blog........ about me or my ordinary life......... because quite frankly there are enough blogs written by people and their lives already and anyway who wants to read about my life, when its hard enough living your own life as it is....but I will say this to anyone who is interested in reading..... no matter how dark your days get...... there are sunny days to come..... they are there but be patient...........

Its been a funny week, full of sad memories about my dad, and then the memories of cancer and what it does. During the early days of my wife being told she is/was ill, naturally I sought out what I could. I read about blogs by people who are fighting Cancer, I read blogs by people who are living with Cancer sufferers,  I read blogs by people who refuse to give in to Cancer..... [thats how I found Ryan] .....

There was one blog my wife pointed me to...... I was overseas on business and she sent me a link........she'd headed it up .....only a bloke could write this !!

Well I read it....written by a bloke in his forties, living in Suffolk, with two daughters and then it was that his standard template life was interrupted by a diagnosis of cancer for his wife... So he chose to write about his journey with his wife into the unknown..... at first it was interesting.... but then it suddenly hit me..... this could be me writing this...THIS IS MY LIFE.....I didn't read any more.

Living it for reality was/is enough for me I didn't need the vicarious pain of others, to know what my new life in the cancer husband club is like.

I have read other blogs of soldiers from all walks of life fighting the war on cancer, but oh so many times how painful it is to read their words written of confidence, only then to read on and find that they lost their battle....... it is surprising how many times people write with such stoicism in their battle, only then to loose their fight within weeks of writing such words..... So I've stopped reading about people writing about how they are beating it, because quite frankly its too painful. Even seeing Ryan Woods loose his battle [even though he knew he would] is hard to read about it, because everyday I know that my wife faces that same fight*.

But today is different, because she is winning that fight, she is a fighter.

So how do we go from sucking a lemon to sunny days ?

It was probably the darkest moment in my life and I never want to go there again, but I shall be haunted by that moment and the image of how tough an opponent cancer is. My wife was gravely ill in hospital and I sat there useless, an incompetent husband, but I was there and as yet another doctor came along and pronounced my wife was gravely ill, I pointed out to the latest doctor to see her, that I didn't have a medical degree and yet I could see she was gravely ill.......

have you tried sucking lemons ?....... he asked 

......5 years at medical school, at least another 5 years getting proper doctors certification and his treatment advice was to suck a of course it is only after the event that I think maybe he was suggesting it for me and not my wife !!

But at that moment I would have done anything, so there I was at midnight, driving around Chelmsford looking for a Tesco to buy lemons/oranges/limes.......

My wife had not eaten a thing for a week, having spent most of that week on an operating table....but armed with my lemons and other well known fruits I returned, and so it was she sucked on a lemon.

That was the turning point and from thereon she started her recovery........ and so some 7 months later, and we had the family all round the dinning table, enjoying a traditional sunday roast, wine flowing, me sporting a black eye from whacking my self in the face with a plank loaded with nails, our daughters laughing and joking, my new handy man** laughing with us, and to think all of this joy down to one thing.......sucking a lemon........

Normality was restored.

So if things get tough, if your world gets dark, try sucking a lemon...... it may not be a cure for cancer, but it will make you laugh 7 months later, when you are sat around the dinning table...... if nothing else, me with a black eye and how I got it, probably helped the laughter flow as well.......but whacking ya sen in the face with a plank is not recommended !

So my SoD is this one
 simply because it's such a fun jingly jangly 
monday morning song on a sunny day

* [ Another thing about cancer is people often ask.... so have you/they been given the all clear ? often hear people say they are in remission........but the reality is you can never say you have beaten cancer until you die of something else...........what a cruel never truely get to tell people........ I beat cancer !...... thats how tough an opponent cancer really is....cancer gets the last laugh !

**[my new handyman is actually eldest daughters boyfriend.....he now dreads the words...hey Matt are you coming round to ours next weekend.......] 

Friday, 16 November 2012

The perfect note......

.... this is my song of the day*...... 
Ryan this one is for you 
God bless ya fella

*[All musical credits go to Sunny Promyotin who wrote this wonderful tune]

Thursday, 15 November 2012

where did that......

....year go ?

There I was November 2011 going about my life and then suddenly things changed. The comfort of living with both my parents still alive changed with one phone call, that fateful call to say the big man had gone, he was at peace. Broke me bloody heart it did, still does....but it was not the only thing that got broke....

I came home from Australia after 3 weeks of sadness and what did I do ?.....gue on guess,'ll never guess...... gue on guess....

See, I knew you'd never guess, I broke my wrist falling down the stairs carrying a bed*. This was the first time I'd broke a bone properly as I don't count breaking the end of my finger bone when I nearly chopped my finger off, as counting as a proper bone break.

*[I realise that beds are meant to stay in bedrooms and not be on the stairs otherwise when you got in to bed to go to sleep, all the sheets would fall down to the bottom of the bed each time { and of course the clue is in the name of bedroom as opposed to bedstairs} but I thought moving a bed from upstairs, down the stairs would be wrong was I....... last time I had an accident on the stairs, I ended up in A&E with a Dyson embedded in my skull.....note to self -stay away from stairs]

So there I was hoping that the end of one year and the start of a new one was just a blip in things happening......

But how I look back at that/this year that has nearly gone and yet so much more did happen.

We had a house with a swimming pool and yet it got knocked down.........we had money in the bank, that was until our builder decided to help himself to almost all of it, when he was only supposed to have half of it.

And then came the big one.........

My wife got cancer, ....... now I can tell you, I didn't see that one coming.... to be fair nor did she... but I will tell you this, once you get your membership card to the Cancer Husband Club don't ever worry about forgetting to renew your membership, because you don't have to ....... it's a life time membership.

Cancer is shit..... wanna know why......well I will tell you....... its shit for the cancer patient and it's shit for all those around..... the spouse, the kids, the parents, the work colleagues  the friends who you bump into in the street, who don't want to share your shit, but they are your friends thats why we call them friends and they listen patiently and intently as you off load on them and your eyes are welling up and still they listen intently and offer words of support, and thats why we have friends.....but should they have to share it ?

And then theres your wife..... the treatment is worse than the illness.... trust me it is....cancer must be one of the few illness that you go into hospital feeling fit and healthy and yet come out of hospital feeling shit.

Of course it's not the NHS fault, they think they are saving your life....its no ones fault really........ but how do you tell your wife she looks great, and some 6 months after seeing her so frail in hospital, she does look great . She looks well, healthy and alive.....and yet your words sound so facile.

All she sees are the scars that she will always carry, scars that say look..... you're a member of the cancer club. You know how on a passport application form it says any distinguishing marks ?..... well with cancer me thinks you're gunna need a bigger form !!

But as bad as it was/is, it wasn't all bad [although I would add cancer is not worth experiencing just to have the good things] but in all that pain and angst, humans are incredibly resilient**

........and so knee deep in this shit, [did I mention that cancer is shit ?....shit, shit, shit, shitty's shit I tell ya, shit it is.......] anyway as I was saying, our eldest daughter had her dissertation to complete, and complete it she did, but not just complete it, she came out with a 1st class Honors degree, and she is now completing her MA, having been awarded a scholarship to do so.

As for our youngest, well whilst knee deep in this shit with her mum, [see I told you it was shit],  she had her A level exams to complete, and complete them she did, but not just complete them, she passed them and is now at University studying for a degree in Bio-medical science [which of all things covers cancer research ~ ironic really].

So there they were, these two young ladies, watching the pain and suffering of their mum, my beautiful daughters, at an age when they should not have been at risk of loosing their mum. They should have been out shopping, dining, and having fun with their mum, but instead were stood by a hospital bed wondering whether this would be another sad ending.

But it wasn't, it isn't........

......... and this weekend we are all back at home together to see Ben Howard in concert in Cambridge.....

so my song of today must surely be this song....

I love this song.....

**[ to see just how humans are resilient in the face of cancer, then check out Ryan at his blog here....

.......but Ryan got a one way ticket with his membership card..... of course in any life we all have a one way ticket, but Ryan shouldn't really be getting off this early should he ? .......... I hope Ryan is one of my 5 people I meet in heaven]

and this is the reason why.....

Ryan Woods died on 7th November 2012

God bless ya Ryan

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

On this day.....

...... Last year, my dad died.

And here I am one year later and the pain of losing him feels no less. He lived one side of the world and I live the other, but that distance never changed the bond I felt with him. ....Ya awrite lad.....he'd say....

My dad was not an ambitious man driven by greed but he was a good honest man. He was a gentleman.

He did not force his opinions on you or try and force you to see things his way
That’s because he didn’t need to, he was a man who had his own way of charming you. Everyone who came into contact with him liked him

As a dad he never tried to interfere or rule our lives from growing up through to us being adults. But he was always there for you, he knew how to say the right thing at the right time. He taught us all how to believe in the good in ourselves.

Sometimes just sitting with him, not saying a word between you was as rewarding as any spoken word could be.

But the funny thing is, I love music, it plays an important part of my thinking, but for the 49 years that I knew my dad, I cannot tell you what was his favourite song. So I can't even post his favourite even if I wanted to.

But I will post this one. Every time I hear this tune, I think of my dad.

Where ever you are dad, I will always love you x

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

it must be the dyslexic in me.....

.....but I suddenly find my self praying to dog ! 

*[courtesy of the Dr phil hammond web page]

So it was going to give me a great excuse to trot out another PB for my SoD 

but alas for some reason there is not a single web vid out there......

Anyway the track can be heard here: