Thursday, 31 March 2011

Wellie Boots And That

The wife bought some wellies on eBay the other day. Green ones. For gardening.

Thing is, our garden isn't even the size of a tennis court. You don't need fucking wellies. You're hardly likely to go down in quicksand or mud, up to your neck. Even if you do manage to get past the dead gazebo - which is still dead and lying on its broken metal back with its legs in the air.

The wellies were never really a necessity. Just an eBay thing...again...

Anyway, the good lady wife, the trouble and strife, is forever banging on about how she's a country girl who used to help out with the harvest on farms for pocket money - but she doesn't know how to put a pair of wellies on.

Me, I was born in Salford and to a large extent brought up in Burnley - I didn't even know what a field was till I was about twelve years old, and wellies were just something your parents bought you because they were cheaper than proper shoes.

But at least I remembered how to put the bastard things on.

"I can't get 'em on!" she wailed. "They're my size but I can't get 'em on!"

Resisting the urge to tell her that it's probably because she's got fat legs, coz I love her really, I asked her to demonstrate.

After much grunting and gasping, she still couldn't get the first wellie on. She got her foot stuck in the heel area. But what she was unaware of, is that I was studying her wellie wearing technique. She had it all terribly wrong.

Now - I've got bigger feet than her, but the wellies looked like they might fit me.

"Give us one here..." I sighed. Before proceeding to put the wellie on in one flawless manouevre. A bit tight, admittedly, but on never the less.

"How did you do that?" she asked.

Now, I haven't donned a wellie for many a year, but I remembered how to do it. So I told her: "You point your foot down the welly, grasp the top at the back, and wiggle...bang. Job done. Welly donned."

"Ooh aar" she said. (Or some similar country expression) "I see."

So then she did it. An expression of pure contentment crossed her visage without comparison since she beamed like the morning sun when we were honeymooning in Rome, the morning after a smarmy Italian waiter made a fuss of her the night before.

Was fuck all to do with me.

Where was I? Oh yes...she's happy now that she can get the wellies on. Although she'll probably never wear them again. She'll probably go on eBay again to buy a box to keep the wellies in, then a wardrobe to keep that and all the other bastard boxes she got off eBay in. With all the rest of the shite.

I'm not quite sure what the point is of me telling you all this...but when I started out, it was intended to lead up to something relating to carbon footprints.

Funny that, and a bit ironic - because in the days I wore wellies I had not the slightest idea what a carbon footprint was. Or is.

I'm tired now. She's gone up. I just hope she hasn't taken the wellies with her.

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

Me? A Social Worker? Are You Taking The Piss Or What?

It's true.

The wife wants me to take a 12 month course to qualify as a bona fide social worker.

Maybe she has a point - it makes more sense than working machinery - plus I've done it before, working with brain injury patients in one job, and the homeless in another.

Sure, I can do it, but I don't want to get into a situation where I take my work home with me all the time.

In all honesty, I'd rather round up the trolleys at ASDA or TESCO or whatever...

But there's this thing inside that keeps saying - maybe you can make a difference...

Having read about that Baby P case, I really don't know. Maybe I can make a difference, but then if I do, do I get condemned for it? The people handling that Baby P case were naive beyond belief - I think I can say with some degree of confidence that I wouldn't ever get sucked into that kind of crap.

But then you look at the bitch who was in charge of an episode that left a baby dead because her department didn't do its job properly, and she's suing the taxpayer for tens of thousands - and the rampant insanity which governs our country...

Makes you wonder if it's worth it...

Rules, regulations and bullshit don't save lives, don't rescue families, and can I live with that kind of responsibility all over again?

I'm not sure. I have the experience and the know how, but there's just so much corporate bullshit floating around these days (the homeless are an industry that pays a lot of people a lot of money - trust me on that)

I really don't know which way to go.

Feel free to comment, because for once in my life - I'm just not sure what to do for the best.

Sorry - not miserable at all - just being realistic.

Bit of a bitch situation.

Any advice gratefully received. I'm willing to help out but I don't really want to kill myself in the process.


You're Fired

Ah, it's not the end of the world.

I got fired on Monday, but as they say - one door closes, another opens. Bit of a honeymoon period right now. Not sure what I'll do next - probably some agency work to keep me ticking over until something more suitable turns up. Until then, I'm gonna put my feet up for a couple of days.

On a positive note - no more 15 hour days, I don't have to answer to idiots or spend my days working robots in the most tedious, soul destroying job I've ever had the misfortune to be engaged in, and at least the wife speaks English, albeit in a Midlands accent. It's easier to understand than Polish.

The rank stupidity of some of those I've had the "pleasure" of working with can't be overstated. Just one example of this came after 9/11 - I commented to a colleague how terrible the whole thing was. She said that she didn't care, because it wouldn't affect her. I swear to God if it had been a male who trotted out such a fucking stupid statement, I would have punched him in the face.


Conversation at break times usually consisted of little more that Big Brother, or whatever crap Simon Cowell talent show happened to be airing at the time. I'd just sit and read the paper, or do the crossword. I'm no snob - don't get me wrong - but the machinations of some of those people's brains beggared belief.

In all honesty - I got fired because that's the way I engineered it. Deliberate non-cooperation. They kept tossing me lifelines but I ignored them. I wanted to make a point about something which bothered me greatly. The only way to do that was to invoke disciplinary proceedings.

If anybody's reading this and they worry about being fired - don't. Life is made up of phases. This particular phase in my life had ended. I had to bite the bullet or I'd have gone quietly insane.

So, there we have it. It ain't the end of the world. Life goes on.

Not my usual inane waffling on, this entry, but if it makes anybody feel better, then it's job done.

Thanks for listening.


Sunday, 27 March 2011


There's a lot of it about. I suppose it's human nature, an extension of the survival instinct - from wars to petty arguments about something and nothing. The competetive spirit looms large in the house of conflict - aggressive driving, the aggressive supermarket trolley push, the scramble to be top dog. Whatever the cost. It's interesting. Moreso if you're an observer. I witnessed a conflict last week from inception to conclusion. It was bitter, and hate filled, and yet all over something which isn't really all that important in the greater schematic. Yet by the tone, anyone would have thought World War Three was imminent. The mind boggles... Anyway - I've got a conflict of my own to attend to tomorrow. This one is important, possibly life-changing (at least I hope it is!) and although I don't really stand a cat in hell's chance of winning, I'll give it my best shot. Afterwards, I shall be hoping to put conflict of any kind on the back-burner. At least for a while. It's just such a waste of time and energy. Got to go - the wife's putting the boxing gloves on... Shuttlecock. (Mr)

Friday, 25 March 2011

Friday 25/03/11 The Census And All That

Filled in the census form today. The wife said she couldn't do it because she's allergic to pens.

It's funny that, but this 'pen allergy' only usually manifests itself when there are letters to be written, forms to fill in, cards to write and what have you - but she experiences temporary remission if she's doing a sudoku, orwriting telephone numbers down on the backs of old envelopes.

She's a bit weird like that. She doesn't store details on her laptop, or her iPhone or even in an old fashioned address book - she fucking scribbles shit down on the backs of envelopes.

She calls it "My system" and insists that she knows where everything is. Which is an absolute load of old bollocks. If I ask her where the number is for - say a Chinese or Indian takeaway, she'll say:
"It's on the back of the gas bill."

"Where's the gas bill,"

"On top of the telephone bill."

And so on.

Confused? I know I am.

Anyway - it was me who filled in the census form. She reckons it's so 'they' can spy on us, but I reckon that's just another shitty excuse she uses so that she can get me to fill the fucking thing in while she looks at yet even more shite on eBay.

She got us tickets today for the stage production of 'Mrs Brown's Boys' - the sweary Irish telly thing with Brendan O'Carroll - except the stage show's called 'Good Mourning Mrs Brown.' Should be a laugh. There's a trilogy of books by Brendan O'Carroll about Mrs Brown - I read 'em years ago. And if memory serves, there was a movie too, with Anjelica Houston as Agnes. The stage show's more of a farce though, like the recent TV series. O'Carroll's milked the MRS Brown character for all it's worth. Still, it should be fun.

No footy this weekend - unless you count England. Don't think I'll be watching that. Watching England is like watching fucking paint dry. All patchy. Boring as arseholes.

Got to go - it's my turn to put the kettle on.

She's on eBay - of fucking she's got the tape measure out...


Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Tuesday The 22nd - Why Are Tuesdays Weird?

What is it about Tuesdays? I mean, most people kind of hate Mondays, but since I stopped working rolling shift patterns, I don't really mind Mondays - it's Tuesdays that I can't seem to understand.

They're neither here nor there. Or so it seems to me.

Anyway, I had loads of things to do today, but as usual, I didn't do most of them. I did feed the cat though. It may not appear to be overly significant to most people, but I would imagine it was pretty important for the cat.

Pleased to announce that I made two new friends over the past year - internet friends. Except they aren't really internet friends any more because we've met up a few times and they really are great guys. One of them's a scientist and the other is - not sure what really, but he's worked in the media and all that.

You wouldn't think - at least on paper - that we'd get on, but we do.

I digress again. I'm always digressing. It's a fatal character flaw. I tend to get all excited about something when I'm in the middle of something else, and shoot off on tangents.

Did I say I'd been offered a pair of tickets to see the TV comedian John Bishop at the Royal Albert Hall? I'm not going. He's a Scouser, and he has one of those really nasal voices that get on my nerves.

Where was I?

Oh, yes - earlier tonight, the wife and I were sitting watching the telly and chatting, and we watched the biggest two hours of junk TV I think I've ever seen.

One was about two kids - an obese boy, and an anorexic girl, and the startling conclusion was that he needs to eat less, and she needs to eat more. Some fairly interesting psychological experiments were undertaken in order to help these kids. There were obviously familial issues going on there, which is sad and should be addressed with appropriate assistance, but the overwhelming feeling was one of intrusive voyeurism.

Then it was Katie Price. Reality TV my arse! I've never watched any of her shows before, but as I write for a spoof news website, and she's been a staple, I thought we'd have a look. Harvey at the Christmas tree, Harvey in a bubblebath, (What happened to protecting the kids, Katie?)Katie goes to LA and Vegas, gets her hair done, has a row with that Alex chappy, gets her hair done again and signs some books. I pity the cameramen assigned to that show. How mundane must that be? Eight hours in an LA hairdressers with the divine Katie's head in a sink? WTF?

I'm sure they'd rather be filming Ross Kemp in Afghanistan or something. I know I would if I was in their shoes.

All in all - two hours of my life I'll never get back...

Sunday, 13 March 2011


Sunday 13th March

Nothing happened in my life. Nothing eventful anyway.

United won and we'll be playing City at Wembley in the cup semi finals.

Looking at a new job tomorrow - anything will do for now - I'm getting bored just sitting around killing time, but anything's got to be better than the ten years of purgatory I just endured.

Anyway - I don't want to bang on about that.

Terrible thing, that earthquake and tsunami in Japan - and what was unbelievable was the way the media connected everything and anything to it, and the sickly-sweet messages in the newspapers.

And the doomsayers - ah yes, the frigging Nostradamus merchants and their ilk coming out of the woodwork to tell us we're all doomed. That it's all the beginning of the Mayan prophecy.

Fuck off!

The Mayans lived up mountains and carried out ritual human sacrifices to appease the Gods. And they died out. Who better to listen to than the Mayans eh?

What a load of old bollocks.

Since I stopped working I've been watching 'Deadliest Catch' on Discovery as often as I can. Now that's the kind of job I'd like. Crab fishing in the Bering Sea. Well, it would have been okay a few years ago, but I don't know if I'd be up for it these days, what with me bad back and me dodgy knee.

(There is some interesting stuff going on in my life really, but I can't talk about it yet. Mum's the word.)

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Working For Dickheads

This isn't a rant in any way, but for the last ten years I've been working for a company with aspirations of being a 'World Class' company.

It's just a joke. As usual. So I finally had enough and walked.

Maybe I'm a shade arrogant (I don't think so, but some do) and I kind of object to being hauled up on disciplinary charges by people who are barely literate. Anyone who works for a multi-national company will get where I'm coming from here. It's all about corporate image and sucking up.

I don't do that. I tolerated it for long enough and got embroiled in internal politics, and I've decided that enough is enough. Count me out. Even prawns don't have to tolerate shit for ten years.

It's a gamble, in a recession, but it was either walk away or go mad.

I'm already mad, so I walked away sideways. How the hell are you supposed to take managers seriously when they have to ask you for the correct spelling to fill in forms?

Only problem is, my sleep patterns have been a bit haywire the last three or four days. I blame it on the Discovery channel.

And just to prove I'm not going a bit mental - I see that I have two followers on my blog! Hello birbee and Nick!

Just for information - birb - read your chilli blog earlier. Loved it. We've got some Scotch Bonnets and Birds Eyes growing out the back. I like chilli but I'm not suicidal - once saw a guy's face turn pink and start to swell up eating a hot curry! Lips looked like Lesley ash after a while. Silly arse!

And Nick - played one of your tracks from You Tube last night - found the old foot tapping involuntarily. Good stuff. The one with the blonde woman singing. Sounded a bit like Blondie.(Strangely enough!) Enjoyed it.

Stick with it chaps - all is not lost.

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

United Lost

Fair enough - a soft penalty, but we've been on the end of a few favourable decisions over the years, so it all evens itself out in the long run.

Today, spent waiting - the legendary seaton Carew taught me how to wait with dignity - for a washing machine delivery.

It didn't come.

The wife's just come home from work and I suspect that she suspects I've dozed off or something and missed the delivery man.

I didn't. I was watching a movie on the telly - anything's better than watching Dickinson's Real Deal, and then I watched the football. That was crap. But, you win some, you lose some. It's all good.

Mind you, she's still glaring at me, and now the cat's joined in...

Time to turn on the old Skoob charm...

Nah, that's not working.

She won't be happy until I get another job....

Martin Shuttlecock (as was)