Saturday, December 31, 2005

More Fantastic Foreign Uses of English


If you, like me, find non-English speakers making a mess of the English language funny, you should check out www.engrish.com, because it's hysterical.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Today I Hate Excel!



I have spent the last 6 weeks designing a spreadsheet to perfection. Last week I "rolled it out" to the ENTIRE COUNTRY only to discover that the copying and pasting that I've set it up to do doesn't work in versions of Excel that aren't 2002 / 2003.

How sh*t is that?????

Now I'm going to have to re-jig the entire thing, at ridiculously short notice, and all because of Microsoft.

Monday, December 26, 2005

Birmingham!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

A Couple of Cool Articles from the BBC

So, the JCB Song has blasted into the number one spot. here's the BBC article covering it.

And also here's a sad story about an 84 year old Polish man who saved up from his pension enough money to afford a ticket to England, then ran away from home to try and set up life over here, only to get sent home again by the authorities.

Friday, December 16, 2005

Fascinating Article on the Emotional Process of Giving Up Spending

The BBC News site have recently started running columns written by readers. One of these is by a guy called Dan Thomas who has attempted to give up spending for a week. I can really relate to the struggle he has with this; the cravings and the boredom.

Check it out here.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

It's Nearly Christmas!!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

It's Tuesday



and I've had too much sugar!

Friday, December 09, 2005

Oh Sorrowful Day. :(

For the last 3 1/2 months there has been a new girl working a few desks away from me. I've called her French Looking Girl (FLG). She often wore a red jumper, much like this one:

Now I'd been formulating many half-hearted yet concrete life-plans around this girl for quite some time, despite never having actually found out her name, or what she does, or indeed having spoken to her. But today, while I was innocently working away I noticed the team who sit a few desks away gather into a team and an uncomfortable manager was giving an awkward speech about how this girl hadn't been there very long but was now leaving to get, of all things, "married"! She's going off to South Africa for her "honeymoon", which just so happens to be the place where Someone is going. Then she's going to settle down to "married" life with a new job in "London".

Isn't this appalling? Doesn't this go against all the rules of how things should happen? At least in films anyway. I was only the other day discussing with Paul the idea of sending an anonymous Valentine's day card to her in February. But No!, she's not getting one now for she has betrayed me with this "fiancee" chap of hers.

I'm sure I'll battle on somehow though guy, so don't worry, despite my workplace having now taken on a slightly more drab and colourless quality. As it's now 5pm she has actually left now forever.

Anyway, feel free to be more supportive than Paul.

Foo Foo Fee-Nooble Moobles

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Pappy Cack, Pappy Cack, Where Shalt Thou Roam?


Oh what a crappy night out!

Last night was our first work 'Christmas "Do"'. After a meeting in the morning we all had a buffet lunch followed by a "fun" quiz in the afternoon. This was OK, and I did very well and carried my team for most of it, apart from the questions that related to things like the X Factor and Come Dancing.

It all went a little wrong though when we couldn't get one of our questions, and when it came to swapping our sheets of paper with the team sitting next to us for marking purposes, one of my team members found out the correct answer to this question from their sheet and insisted that they give us back our sheet so he could put the answer on it. He wrote down the answer (Deacon Blue) and gave them the sheet back. They then started to kick up a fuss about the probable cheating and he got very very aggressive and started shouting at them, which was obviously well out of order seeing as he had cheated.

After the quiz several of my colleagues got together for another meeting and so I slipped off to check into the City Inn hotel. At this point I got immensely tired and, after watching an episode of Columbo, fell asleep for a bit. I then woke up and met a few colleagues in the bar in the Copthorne Hotel where we chatted for a bit about how sad it is that someone is leaving the company. Then we slipped off to All-Bar-One in Brindley Place for a crappy, loud and crowded drink before going to our expensive restaurant booking at Le Petit Blanc.

The meal was "only OK" considering how great this place is meant to be. All the portions were TINY and everything tasted like salt. But the meal was completely and utterly ruined by the conversations. The first 1 1/2 hours was full of hunting talk. A couple of my work colleagues are avid hunters and "regaled" us with story upon story of the entertaining ways they've killed various animals, and how lovely tasting several extremely-cruelly-killed animal dishes are.

Lovely.

Then the conversation turned to sex. Lurid, foul sex. Lots of stories of brothels, lap-dancing clubs and gay bars. Loads of internet porn and sexual harassment. Lots of racism, sexism, homophobia, illegality and general nastiness.

Which is why I disappeared at 11pm back to my hotel room and left them to stagger round Broad Street until 3am, vomiting and urinating. However, for some reason, they've all woken up fresh and breezy and I feel like I'm barely functioning this morning.

I suppose the worst bit was one guy (let's call him Les, for 'tis his name) taking the 'p' out of my vegetarianism, as he always does, trying to tell me that there's probably meat in my apple chutney. He soon shut up though after a few choice words and psychotic looks.

Anyway, I only have to do this one more time this year at our main 'Christmas "Do"' a week on Saturday. And for that one I'll have Bob with me to stab people with forks.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Rocky VI In Production


Erm...

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Nastiness in My Locality

Yesterday morning I was awoken just before 5am by a ringing on my doorbell. I didn't believe it and so I rolled over back to sleep again, only to be reawoken by a very long and insistent ring. I checked the time, leapt out of bed and started dashing around totally naked, in the dark, looking for my dressing gown. After not finding it for a few seconds I went and checked out of the window and saw that the street was full of police cars, vans and officers. Realising that it wasn't therefore a nutter at the door, I shouted down "I'm coming", eventually found a pair of work trousers and went down to answer it, still barely able to see.

A young police-bloke was there who told me that there had been "some trouble" over the road and asked whether I had a) heard anything or b) opened the door to any strange cold-callers recently. I stood and thought as hard as I could, considering I was still basically asleep, and had to admit to neither.

Now, a few months ago I watched "The House of the Obsessive Compulsives" where one of the guys there had an obsessive fear of accidentally confessing to crimes, or in someway incriminating himself for things he hasn't done. I've got to admit that I felt a little bit of this while I was standing in front of the policeman thinking really hard. I kept getting distracted by the thought "I hope I'm not looking suspicious, or like I'm making things up". Anyway, that's by the by.

Anyway, I went back to bed and, as usual, completely failed to get back to sleep. When I then left the house at 8.30am there were still a couple of police hanging around, and a couple with two kids standing and watching the house. I didn't want to ask the police what was going on as a) they're usually quite cagey about things like that, and b) I don't like to be nosey. So I asked the couple and they told me that, as far as they knew, the guy who lived opposite had been murdered by a burglar.

Please note that this isn't what happened. Now I don't mind people theorising about what might have happened, but they do tend to sell their theories as fact rather than say "I've no idea, but....". Anyway, what actually happened is no more pleasant. Nor is it less awkward to deal with when said victim gets out of hospital. I don't suppose your ordinary run-of-the-mill etiquette books have sections that cover how to deal with recent elderly victims of rape.

I suppose all I can do is send some flowers with a message of support. But in these circumstances it's hard to tell if even that's appropriate.