Monday, April 30, 2007

The shame continues...

It's little surprise that I spent much of my return to work this morning trying to keep finding original excuses for the cosmetic consequences of my less-than-impressive gymnastics display Friday night. Even less surprisingly, my varied tales were all met with a very similar response - "Pissed up then?"

It's a fair cop.

However, something I hadn't anticipated was the nurse at the blood donor session this evening taking one look at my black eye and swollen grazed nose and deciding that they would decline my donation today in case there was the slightest chance of any infection.

Bloody marvelous. Or not, as the case may be...

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Hardly rocket science...

I'm sure you already know that if you're planning a few beers, it makes sense to get a hearty meal inside you first.

You are probably also aware that in a competition between a paving slab and a nose, it's quite apparent which will come off worse.

It all seems so obvious now...

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

This week I be mostly...

At this point I was supposed to write "doing sod all" or something similar, but I appear to have become a receptionist imprisoned in my own home.

It was a conscious decision to do very little at all this week in an attempt to recover from recent stresses and strains of the day job and to date, I have held my part of the bargain pretty well. I've spent loads of time gawping in awe at the variety of on-demand telly rather than watch the scheduled junk they continue to belch out throughout the day. I've wasted endless hours on You Tube having finally discovered it's not entirely full of teenage would-be Jackass contributors, but probably constitutes the biggest video jukebox on the net. Not to mention some very talented individuals committing their own interpretations of the same tunes to screen.

What has taken me by surprise is the barrage of telesales calls made to my house and more so by their persistence despite my best attempts to politely tell them that I'm not interested. I appreciate that these poor souls are only doing a job and no doubt suffer enough verbal abuse without my adding to it, but my continued firm but fair approach is clearly not working.

I politely stopped one girl a few minutes ago saying, "Sorry, I'm going to have to stop you there because I'm rather busy right now and don't really have time for telesales conversations".
At this, I would have expected "OK that's fine, could we arrange another more convenient time to call you", but she surprised me with "Oh, I think you've misunderstood, this isn't a telesales call, I'm not trying to sell you anything". OK, I was intrigued.

She continued, "I wanted to discuss insurance cover for your contract mobile phone as we are currently offering three months free cover". How kind.

I felt obliged to stop her in her tracks again "And after the three months I'm guessing you will start charging me for this cover?"
"Well, yes"
"Which albeit three months away, means you are trying to sell me something. Thanks for your call but I'm really not interested. Bye"

Chances are she will have ticked my name on her attempted sales call list whilst muttering something along the lines of my being a miserable git.

In which case, I would have lost nothing by just telling her to piss off from the outset...

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

By George...

Despite a somewhat dubious start to the day with my having to go to work on what was meant to be a holiday, I'm pleased to report that I finally escaped just after lunch.

I'm equally pleased to report that Dave did us all really proud with the St George's Day Celebrations in the Tap. I suppose you could describe it as a Batemans Fest with a variety of their ales on sale (and a few free tasters) accompanied by a fine selection of roast meats, pork pies and ale infused sausages, chutney and mustard.

At 10:45 (ish) we raised our glasses with thousands of others in the national toast to our patron saint and although I didn't stop late, they kept the bar open for an extra half hour.

I'm still disappointed that it remains such a low-key celebration throughout most of the country and I keep hearing reports that people are being encouraged to keep it that way in the name of political correctness. For some reason, we don't seem to have similar concerns around St. Patricks Day, although personally, I'm more than happy to celebrate both...

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Catch up post...

Wow, can it really be two weeks since I last stopped by the place? Well I can't say it's changed an awful lot. So if for no other reason than to stop people dashing out to buy new hats, I thought I'd better drop in, say hello and explain that I have been very busy, although not in the galloping around on a white horse kind of activity.

How do I summarise two weeks worth of activity? Here goes:
Made it out to the date (with new specs); won beef joint in meat raffle; roasted joint for Easter Sunday lunch with the folks; enjoyed a superb 60th birthday bash for an old ex-school teacher who's now a good friend of the family; slept; worked; lots; Friday's date told me she was leaving the country; alright it was just for a couple of days; turned out she couldn't go after all (long story); football team presentation night; drank; lots; visited Cleethorpes nightclub that I've probably not frequented for 20 years or more; won more meat in raffle; won a tenner on the national; should have bought lottery ticket; surprise visitor from Middlesborough; drank; lots; slept; worked and that's pretty much brings us back up to date.

Having worked almost an entire weeks worth of additional hours for nothing over the last fortnight, I make no secret of the fact that I am looking forward to tomorrow night when all being well, I leave the place behind for a much anticipated week off. That is if I can resist the temptation to bring a laptop home "in case of emergencies".

Oh, and finally a second date tomorrow night...

Friday, April 06, 2007

The eyes have it...

As it was a pseudo Friday night last night, I took the opportunity to go out on what would otherwise have been a schoolnight and took part in the quiz for the first time in ages. Between Steve, Mum and I we managed to score 38 out of 50 which I didn't think was at all bad. Unfortunately, the competition was so important for most of the entrants that they felt unable to participate in teams of less than seven or more. That said, special mention to Mr and Mrs Delcatto who scored 41 between just two of them.

Even with the prospect of a few minutes lie in this morning, I chose to go easy on the ales and left the Tap feeling quite sober, if considerably more relaxed then when I'd arrived. So, you can probably understand my amazement when I woke up this morning to find my glasses on the bedside table with one of the arms snapped clean off.

No great deal, it was just a case of calling into Vision Express, waving my insurance card about and getting a free replacement pair within an hour or so. However, for the second time, I was told "I'm afraid we can't replace those as that model frame has been discontinued". After a trying a few alternatives, I finally relented and agreed to upgrade the frames to a more indestructable version for another 31 quid.

The second punchline? "I'm sorry, we won't be able to get them done today." What happened to replacement specs within an hour? Despite my pleas that I needed them for driving and I had a very busy weekend ahead of me, the best they could commit to was to mark it as high priority and to ring me as soon as they were ready. No option really unless I wanted to spend over 200 pounds on replacements from elsewhere.

The real reason I wanted them fixed today? I'm out on a date tonight for the first time in several gazillion years and I really didn't want to have to choose between wearing prescription sunglasses all night or looking like a Jack Duckworth wannabee...

Update16:55: Call from Vision Express "Hi, just thought you'd like to know your new glasses are ready for collection". I think that deserves a link seeing as they are good people after all...

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

A site for sore eyes...

Little Sis and I were chatting last night about Easter eggs, the price of Nintendo DS and the like when I heard her better other half laughing away in the background. It turned out he'd been greatly amused reading Brian May's Soapbox and in particular, his reactions to some journo's criticism of Mika.

I've long been a fan of Brian May's; partly for being one of the most gifted guitarists to walk the planet but also because in interviews he's given and articles he's written, he always comes across as a genuinely nice bloke. I therefore felt compelled to track the site down for a read and suffice to say I was not disappointed.

Perhaps it's quite widely known that before the days of Queen he was studying towards a Ph.D in astronomy and the site reflects his maintained interest, but I'd completely forgotten about his collection of stereo pictures which are scattered throughout his posts. It's rather like a grown-up version of the magic eye things that were all the rage a few years ago. I'm not going to publish any on here, instead I'll just re-direct you to someone else who built quite a collection here.

Right, I'm going back for another look now while there's nobody around to say "stop that - you'll go blind"...