Same shit, different day. Sometimes I get some different shit on the same day.

Thursday, March 30, 2006


Right then I'm off to Florida. Back on april 15th

4 adults and 6 kids, this isn't going to be a relaxing holiday.

In the meantime please read one of the far more interesting blogs listed in the sidebar under the heading Pearls of wisdom, go on just pick one you've never visited before, who knows where you'll end up.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Last week Wifey went out on the lash twice! On friday she went out with the mums for a meal and on wednesday the bossman at the nusery where she works took out all the staff for a meal to say thank you for all their hard work.
One man and seventeen women and guess what they talked about all night? ...... yes, SEX!
Poor bloke must have been like a frightened rabbit caught in a car's headlights.

Friday, March 24, 2006

It's life Gym, but not as we know it

Buzz Lightweight has got a new obsession, he now treats his body as a temple and has joined the on-site gym .He goes 3 times a week. In order to change himself into Buff Lightweight, Buzz has become a gym bunny.
The only problem with this is that he keeps disappearing to the gym, without telling anyone, when he should be working.
I can't go into much detail because it's a work thing but it reached a head last week when he came back from the gym and then sat on his arse for 3/4 of an hour when there was work outstanding.
I had a go at him, in the printroom, out loud, in front of everyone.
He said "hold on, lets have this conversation in private" I was on a roll, I said "no" and carried on listing his faults.
A bit later on he confronted me for round 2, I offered him a compromise which he thought was fair and far as I was concerned the issue was dealt with and closed. Buzz apparently thought different.
Buzz has some difficulties in his home life and he said that going to the gym helped him to relieve the stress he had been under. This is fair enough and I'm glad I don't have the same problems he has got but I just felt that in a close working enviroment you have got to be flexible and work with a bit of give and take and he was taking too much. Going to the gym is not something that I would do during the working day, even if I did claim it was my lunchbreak.
He called me aside on wednesday and stated that he had thought I went way over the top and it was so unfair and nobody likes me ,everybody hates me, I'm going to go and eat worms. He also took the opportunity to kindly remind me that my role in the site as unofficial lead engineer does not mean I'm in charge and that I'm just the same as him (I wanted to say "I am not the same as you!", but I bit my tongue and held it in) and that I am just a liason for the client.
I'm not sure if he was expecting an apology or not but he didn't get one.
Yesterday I arrive at work on late shift to be told by Cap'n Bob that Buzz has gone sick and once again his wife phoned in for him. This is, I think, the 5th time he has been off sick in the 18 months that he has worked here. In early February I had one and a half days off sick, this was the first sick time I have had for at least 3 years.

Buzz repairing a copier earlier in the week

He was off again today which means he won't be in tomorrow for the overtime he was so desperate for when he came here.

Monday, March 20, 2006

This weekend was the firms annual do. Wifey and I went to the very nice Ashford International Hotel for a dirty weekend, sorry I meant dinner dance.
The format was the same as usual, you pay a small contribution, you get a night in a posh hotel, dinner, drinks, a raffle, breakfast and a headache.
If any one should happen to recall my post last year you may remember that I am only slightly bitter and twisted about the fact that we have never won a thing in the raffle. Not a fucking sausage, when some people seem to win every year. Bastards.
The raffle prizes range from small items like playstations, pamper days, dvd players up to bigger items like Hifi systems, adventure days and the big daddy prize this year was a 32" LCD telly. They also have a couple of small table prizes which are not part of the main raffle. Last year I won a cheapo MP3 player as the table prize, this was the only thing I'd ever won in about ten years of going.

The raffle started, a few small prizes went, one of the pamper days was the next prize, we didnt want it, we didn't win it Pheww close escape. Next prize up was a playstation with games, we wanted it, we didn't get it. A few more prizes went, Fishboy won a slimline dvd player. Bastard. Bazza won a Sony DAB radio mini system mp3 hifi. Utter Bastard. Next up was a Tassimo coffee making gizmo, the Big boss calls out "I don't believe, it's gone to a site engineer who's probably drunk more cofee that the rest of us put together, it s Mick ......" YYYYesss, get in!
I strolled up to get my prize, soaking up the applause, and made some witty comment about does it make doughnuts aswell.
Now I didn't particularly want a coffee maker, it was too big for our kitchen but I was chuffed to buggery to actually win something. Bazza asked if we wanted to swap his HiFi for the coffee making gizmo ( He wanted to give it to his mum for mothers day) seeing as we currently didn't have a Hifi we said yes.
The raffle is usually drawn using peoples name tags for the seating arrangements but this year for the main prize (the LCD TV) they adopted a different approach. The final winner was to be found by playing heads and tails. This involved everybody standing and putting their hands on their heads or their arses then one of the managers flipped a coin, if it was heads then all the tails went out and vice versa.
I started on heads, the coin was flipped heads it was. A few people sat down. I looked around and saw that most people had chosen heads for the second round so I choose tails. The coin was flipped, spinning high into the air, and then slapped onto the back of the callers hand. Tails. Now there was less than 15 people left, Fishboy was the only other person on our table, he choose heads, so did I. Suddenly Fishboy's wife turned round and said to me "you should choose something different so our table has more chance" I replied with something along the lines of "it's every man for themselves" but the damage was done. Stay the same or change to tails? the dilema was raging in my head, the caller was about to toss the coin AAARRRGHHH what do I do? right at the last minute I changed to tails. The coin sailed into the air the caller caught it and shouted out "heads". Bollocks.
The remaining 5 people were all called out the front and two tosses later the 32" LCD tv went to the girlfriend of one of the ex-apprentices. lucky cow.

Overall it was a good function, the venue was one of the best I've been to and it was nice to have a break from the kids (especially for Wifey) and best of all we actually won something.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Customer Service

my broadband connection has been running a bit slow for some time now and I have been meaning to phone Bulldog's support line for ages but just haven't got round to it. Last Wednesday (1st march) I did get round to it. They answered the phone quickly and the support guy was very helpful and told me a few things to try but said that he couldn't log the call as their system was down and suggested that I phone back later. I decided to e-mail the tech support my problem as I was to busy to fanny about phoning up.
One of the things the oringinal support guy suggested was that as my broadband router was plugged into a phone extension socket I should unplug it and plug it into the BT master socket to see if the problem is caused by a bad conncetion in the house, fair enough I thought, but not so easy to implement. My broadband router is connected to the PC with a network patch cable, the PC is in the extension at the far back of the house, the BT master socket is in the hallway near the front of the house. Due to my neverending networking studies I have 4 PC's, a couple of hubs, a Cisco router and a Cisco switch all piled up on a wall unit type thing. Moving one of these to the hallway was not an option. so I needed either a long phone line, I haven't got one, or a long patch cable so I only need move the broadband router, I haven't got one of these either but I know a man who does.
So yesterday I manage to borrow the cable which I'll be trying out tonight and also yestreday I finally got a reply to my e-mail from bulldog support over a week after I sent it. It said I should phone tech support!

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Early in 1991 my then girlfriend and I bought a dog. We had decided to get one from Battersea Dogs Home. We didn't, instead we drove to Wales and bought a liver spotted Dalmation.
We had been planning it for ages and had already decided on a name, Lung. Yes you read that right the dog was to be called Lung. We could not think of a name beforehand and so as a joke I said "I'll flip through the dictionary and jab my finger and what ever word I land on is what we'll call the dog" I landed on Lung and it kind of stuck.
When we saw him we thought he doesn't really look like a Lung so another name was needed. The dogs dad was called Harry and I really liked that, it was so different from the usual Rex, Fido or Spot. So I thought about it and decided on Harvey.
The Girlfriend left, Harvey stayed.
Around 1996 I had met Wifey and we were buying a house in South Ockendon, my current house in Barking was in a safe little haven and I used to leave the back door open so Harvey could wander in and out and not shred the funiture (which he did if I locked him in). In the new house this wouldn't be possible and so it became clear that I could no longer look after Harvey without either locking him in or locking him out. This was not fair to him and I wouldn't do it.
Whenever I visited my Dad and stepmum I always took Harvey with me and they absolutely loved him. I agonised over asking dad if they wanted to look after him as he already had to look after my stepmum who is crippled with MS. He said yes without thinking.
Since then Harvey brought so much happiness to my Dad I knew I had made the right decision and realised that Harvey was so much better off with them than he had ever been with me.
Harvey provided much needed relief from the stress of looking after a demanding woman in a wheelchair.
Harvey was always a bit of a lively dog and was always enthusiastic when meeting people, at age 15 he still wanted to behave like a puppy but his body could no longer keep up. In the last few years he had become increasingly less agile and sufferered from arthritis aswell as a few other illness's.
On Monday Dad phoned me to say that Harvey hadn't been well and that he had taken him to the vets and Harvey had been kept in.
Harvey, the only pet I've ever owned, the most lovable cheeky fella and cause of much chaos was put to sleep on wednesday.

Harvey when he was little.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Fist of Fury

Big'un had his third Wing Chun kung Fu grading last Saturday and did very well, we'll find out if he past in another week or so.
Leading up to this I told him that he needed to do some practice as he hadn't been to classes for over a week due to illness. The phrase "be careful what you wish for" has never been truer.
On Monday when Wifey took Big'un to School Wifey was approached by the mum of big'uns best friend who asked
"did Big'un tell you about the incident on Friday?"
"no?" replied Wifey.
Apparently during a game with two other boys, whom I'll name Karate Kid (he does Karate you see) and Psycho (he's a bit odd you see) there was an incident where the Karate kid punched Best Friend in the stomach at which point Big'un "did some Kung Fu" on the Karate Kid.
I remind you that Big'un is aged 7.
Wifey and I both asked him about "the incident" separately. I stressed to him that I wasn't cross and this is the reason he does Kung Fu and sticking up for his friend was very honourable.
Big'un told me that after the Karate Kid punched Best friend, the Karate kid tried to punch him and he blocked it using Bong Sau (wing arm block)* then KK tried to pull his hair and that was the end of it as the dinner lady broke it up.
It is just like the plot of Fist of Fury with the Karate school verses the Kung Fu school, Fantastic!

The school playground, last Friday.

* of course the correct Wing Chun technique would have been to block and simultaneously counterpunch and then follow up with punches to the face until the opponent starts bleeding and stops moving, but I felt this would be a bit extreme for 7 year olds so I didn't point it out to Big'un :-)