Sunday, February 28, 2010

Technically correct

Well when I go into work tomorrow and ask how my weekend went I can say that

" I flew a plane, started construction on three evil robots to go in my new army, performed to a packed venue and was invited to sit on a back row by three girls at once"

and I'll be telling the truth at least technically speaking.

I'm sure that the facts that the plane was only one in Wii Sports resorts for the Wii, the three evil robots are 28mm scale and plastic models, everybody else in the Leicester YSA was also singing at the same time ( thank goodness) and the three girls were the members of the YSA presidency and it was only the back row of the stand in the Leicester stake centre would be of no interest to anyone whatsoever :-)

Well it's the start of March tomorrow which means we are already two months into 2010 which also means I have two months left on my probabation which is a scary thought as six months seemed like such a long time three months ago!

I'm on a week of lates this week which should be interesting as it certainly prved to be a good learning experience last time round.

Later folks.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Performance guessing

I was a bit surprised to read in the newspaper today that Weatherman get rather large performance related bonuses. Now I'm sure weatherman work very hard but it is the last job you would expect to get bonuses because once you get rid of all of the technical terms isn't what their doing essentially guessing?
" I said it would rain on Thursday and it did. Cheque please!"

Still this wasn't the weirdest news of the day. Far from it, obivously taking a play from Sky news when during his trial they used lookalikes to recreate the courtoom a show in the USA used a lookalike to stage a recreation of the Death of Michael Jackson, from when he was first found unconcious all the way to showing the lookalike being prepared for autosopy and then slid into a morgue drawer!

In another somewhat weird news story a man who won 10,000 euros on a scratchcard on a flight reacted rather badly to the news that he would have to wait to get his money, by eating the card! Which probably means that firstly patience was not one of the virtues of this particular passenger and secondly he's eaten the most expensive snack he'll ever eat as of course, no winning card no cash.

Our loft has now been finished, and all of the boards have been laid which means we can now put a lot of stuff up there and confuse Owen at the same time as he still hasn't been able to figure out what's going on when people disappear through the hatch in the ceiling.


Later folks.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Oh how I wish I could answer that

Anyone who has ever worked in customer service in some form or another will know that at somepoint you will get a statement or question for a customer usually a very nasty/obnoxious one which you could answer honestly. Well I got one of those today
" Just how thick do you think I am?"

I just ignored him and kept going whilst wishing he would cross that line which would give me the excuse to cut him off. He didn't though, staying just the right side ( if barely) of the line. This call prompted a lot of amusement from the rest of the team with lots of suggestions as to how they would have responded if they could have done.

Speaking of my team as it were, I'm starting to feel like I'm getting to know them all better which has been difficult as my new team is almost three times the size of the team at my last place. The main thing I've noticed are the different ways people have for dealing with stress. A couple of the guys are so laid back about things they could be walking horizontal, one of the girls plays with a pen, another drumbs her fingers on the desk and a third tends to start playing with her hair. Myself and the other trainees have started to feel more at home in the team as we've started to be gradually drawn into the banter which goes on between the veterans.

Banter which is usually started by BeeBee. The best staff member on the team and a young lady with a especially wicked sense of humour. When I listened in on her calls to get some tips the other day she welcomed me with the greeting of " Now I get to teach you my dark and wicked ways" . Last night she was having a back and forth with one of the other guys before suddenly saying that she was sure if the other guy didn't want a affair with her I would. I looked up to see most of the team staring at me.
" Well?" she asked a smile on her face " Would you?" my quick witted reply was along the lines of " ehhhh? say What now ?" her reply was much more quick " Why is there something wrong with me? Is there something wrong with what you see?" at this point there was much sniggering from the rest of the time. " there's no right answer I can give at this point you know" I told her. " Yeap" she responded with a smile " Still want one though" I responded with the only thing I could think of at this point " Not tonight dear I have a headache."

Finally when I came back from lunch today I discovered my computer turned off. Somebody explained that everyone had needed to exit a program and as I had locked my computer all they could do was turn it off. Our senior agent for the team walked past and she told me that she's had to push my button to solver the problem. I looked over to BeeBee who was smiling and said" Push your button did she? Bet you weren't expecting that?" I responded " No, especially as I wasn't present for the event" " Sounds a lot like marriage" one of the other girls suddenly added.

I sat down and was waiting for my computer to turn back on before suddenly being struck by a fit of the giggles. One of the girls what was so funny and I explained that if people at church ask how work was they might be a bit taken back if I tell them that a girl offered to teach me her dark and wicked ways and offered to have a affair before another girl pushed my button.

Quotes of the day;
" It's small and light"
" It's twice the size of a ipod"


Later folks.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Really doesn't help

Today was a day that I heard some people start to refer to as a hell day as we were just overloaded with calls from shall we say somewhat difficult customers. Things didn't start to ease off until mid afternoon by which time a lot of people were just feeling exhausted.

One of the quotes of the day was this

" It's 600 cm long, by 40mm wide as is half a finger thick"

These set of measurements were apparently the dimensions of a a4 sized envelope. No amount of patience explanation could persude this customer that a A4 envelope is not six metres long.

Still on the plus side it's Friday tomorrow and thus another dress down day although this one is for charity so we're having to each pay a pound if we don't want to have "uniform". Some people do complain about having to pay to in their words " wear their own clothes" but no matter how well they try and phrase it they still come off sounding cheap.

I also have my next training session for the NVQ in customer service which I'm studying for by simply doing my job essentially, tomorrow which should be interesting. There's a lot of work to do which although requires basic answers it does make you think a lot about things which are you do with out much thought.

If that makes any sense whatsoever.


Later folks.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The universe continues to mock me

Unlike my last job where the traffic was fairly constant asides from the occasional accident the route to my current job is rather different. Sometimes it's relatively easy to get out of geektown and other times it can be less so.

I also discovered that trying to best my travel time estimates on previous experience doesn't work well either. I was on the 10 to 6 shift today and I knew from the last time I was on this shift that I needed to leave plenty of time as the traffic is very heavy at that time of the morning.

However the traffic wasn't heavy this morning. Far from it as a matter of fact, it was light, very light. In fact so light I got to work nearly an hour before I actually started. D'OOOHHHH!!!!!

Still better to be early then late I suppose. It could have been worse, people coming from the other direction were having great difficulties as the motorway was shut on both sides between two sets of junctions.

I got to leave early as they needed me to start early as it was very busy when I went into the office ( after spending sometime reading in the canteen). Of course as they only had me start five minutes early, I could only leave five minutes early and as the bus didn't arrive till five past six it wasn't a whole lotta help. Still if I had been on the phones till six I'm sure the universe would have organised for me to get a difficult call at 5:59 and 59 seconds.

Work is going well right now. It's still a challenge don't get me wrong there, but I think that's good as it's keeping me on my toes as it were and encouraging me to keep pushing myself. I was surprised to find myself helping one of the new trainees today as it made me realise that " I do know what I'm doing".


Later folks

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I hope not

One of those random conversations started at work today about if we would ever get video phones in and actually have to speak to people face to face. The general consensus was that this would be a bad idea as the customer would be able to see if you were get frustrated as it's a lot easier to control your tone of voice then it is body language. However I suppose it could have it's benefits the other way as well because if the people could see you theres a good chance they would be a lot less rude. I've noticed this effect recently and I've come to the conclusion as they don't talk to you face to face people find it much easier to be rude to you.

Quote of the day and the winner of the " That doesn't really help award"
" It's not big or small and it's also not that heavy."

It started snowing about a half an hour before I finished work and didn't stop for quite some time. However as it was really quite wet none of it settled, turning the snow from a thing of wonder to something of a cold wet annoyance.

I mean if it's going to snow at least let it snow long enough so I can get snowed in and get a day off work.

Later folks!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Lets just chalk that one up to experience

It's been one hell of a day.

There's no other way to it to be blunt anything and everything which could go wrong seemed to go wrong. I was in a little bit of a panic by lunchtime as I had visions of actually finishing a day without getting anything on the board as it were in the way of targets.

Still things picked up massively in the afternoon, it's funny how a good lunch can make the day seem so much better and I ending up having a really good day.

Asides from one very very nasty customer who got to me more then usual due to how quickly he 'changed' from being nice and polite to screaming down the phone at me for what was quite really no reason whatsoever.

Still on the plus side nice customers seem to outnumber the nasty ones like that quite dramatically.

I'm on what I like to refer as to the early middish shift this week, which means that I still get a greater lie in then when I'm on earlys but I still get home at a reasonable hour.


Later folks.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

It'll be allwhite on the night

Apologies for the lack of bloggage yesterday folks. I got so engrossed with what was on TV by the time I realised I hadn't done a post yesterday it was too late as it was time for bed. So all I can really say to that is Oops.

When I woke up this morning I noticed it was really quite light. Surprisingly so and it too my still none too awake brain a few moments to notice something out. The light coming through the windows wasn't only light it was also quite white as well.

Yeap it had snowed overnight. A lot! Which delighted owen as he really enjoys going for a walk in the snow and I'm sure he's managed to go for a walk more times in the snow in his short life then our last dog did in the entirety of his.

Of course Owen might have been delighted with the snow. I was not as snow usually means ice and as long term readers know there's nothing else which scares me when driving quite like icey conditions. To be perfectly honest I did almost turn round and come back within mere minutes of leaving the house as I found myself slipping and slidding whilst trying to climb a hill. However I perserved and my ever faithful, (if a little battered after several years of use) didn't let me down.

I was surprised on reaching the main road to discover that the roads hadn't been gritted at all!! The road between geektown and Loughborough was thick with snow which didn't help my tension levels at all. Fortunatly although there was snow, there wasn't any ice.

However I was even more surprised to discover at the end of church that the snow had disappeared almost as quickly as it had appeared, melting in the rather bright sunshine leaving only a few piles here and there.

Very strange weather indeed.


Later folks.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Not a moment too soon

It's the weekend! And to that I can only say Thank goodness. I found today a real struggle which started as all work days do with the struggle to drag myself out of bed.

Although there was some heavy snow to start with it cleared up pretty quickly proving once again that the weather deadzone that likes to hang around geektown is still as strong as ever.

Despite the struggle to make it through the day especially as we reached mid afternoon my spirits were considerably lifted by my first six month review/assessment. Now for all you regular readers are probably wondering how the heck I could have a six month review when I've only been there four months, and in department for just over three. Well your right, I didn't but I did. Basically it was one of those occurances where I had to have one as everyone had one even though they only had two months worth of data to base a six month review on.

Confused yet? Try sitting through it a explanation of it .

Anyway, where was I? Oh yes spirit lifting and I don't mean a postman collecting beer.

I'm doing really well, very well, much better then I thought I was to be honest. I've only got one area where I do need a lot of improvement and I'm working on that. Among the high points I was complimented on was my brilliant phone manner, my amazing level of attention to detail, and my ability to stay calm in the face of angry customers. I was also complimented that my confidence seems to be growing in great strides which made me realise it had. I've built my confidence in myself back up to where it was before the events of last September and I think I've even surpassed that. This job has taken me out of my comfort zone and I seem to have risen to the challenge very well indeed.

All in all the assessment was a nice way to round the week off.


Later folks.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Getting more then you bargained for

Well it's snowing. Again. If it was the weekend I would probably be quite happy but as it's not, I'm not. I have still got one day of work before I get to the weekend. I think the week of early starts is starting to tell, that and the fact that I only had one day break between the end of last weeks shifts and this weeks as I had real trouble getting out of bed this morning.

A rather large fit of the giggles hit our bank of desks at work today as one of the girls managed to get her words mixed up in a rather amusing way. Instead of saying to a customer " I can give you my extension if you want to speak to me again" what she actually said was " I can give you my dimensions if you want to speak to me again" There was a brief pause before the penny dropped as to what she had actually said and she quickly corrected herself, but it was too late at that point as everyone who heard her say it collapsed into hysterics.

It started snowing just as I left work and of course irony being what it is, I missed the bus due to a late call and I had to wait out in the cold for ten minutes for it to come back. Fortunatly I was able to get home quickly even if the snow was so heavy it was difficult to see very far. I just hope that they've put down enough grit or it will be a interesting challenge getting to work tomorrow.

Grumpy and I were left some dumbfounded over the latest " Public information film" that was put onto the tv this evening. It was a animated cartoon which ran for nearly five minutes during a ad break. It went on for so long they had to keep flashing up a caption to say it was a public information film. It was the story of two aliens on the moon who found a strange object. As the cartoon kept going we were wondering what it was about. What important message were these two aliens trying to impart. Why don't play with lighters and a warning to adults to not let kids play with lighters either.

Quite why that needed to be five minutes long I have no idea and I dread to think how much money they spent on that insanity.

Oh well, only one more day of work. Roll on the weekend!

Later folks

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

And the universe is mocking me

I woke up this morning and immediatly thought I was late and started to rush round in a panic trying to get ready as quickly as possible. It was at this point that I noticed the time on my clock. I wasn't late. Far from it, in fact it wasn't this morning it was still last night, a mere ten minutes after I had gone to bed bizarely enough. I quickly got back into bed and hoped it wasn't some sort of sign.

It was another somewhat weird day with the selection of the slightly strange and bizare I had to deal with being more strange and bizare then normal. The customer who had the most massive overreaction I had ever heard a particular stand out.

My new role is a lot more KPI focussed then my last job. I have three main KPIs to focus on each day. One of which I'm slightly behind on where I need to do be, the other two I'm doing great in. In fact really, really great, in one my average score is three times higher then it has to be, which of course down to irony or the universe deciding to mock me means of course that I keep doing really well every day in this area and not having much luck in the one where I need to. All I can say to that is D'ohh!

C'est la vie I guess.

Later folks.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Here we go again

Due to Tap dance still being away with Grumpys car it was time for another round of musical cars this morning as Grumpy had to run me into work so he could borow the car so he could go out and get some things done before coming to pick me up this afternoon.

Of course having a special tendancy to get in ironys crosshairs a heck of a lot nothing went to plan. The usual massive traffic jams in the morning failed to materalise so I got to work stupidly early and I got a call this evening at bang on my quitting time a mili second before I could log off meaning I was late out.

It was also another busy day at work with the usual mix of the weird, wonderful and downright bizare, including having to explain why a bunch of car keys couldn't be considered documents and why we can't just send something to a whole country without knowing the city it's going to.

They also showed the first part of the trilogy of CSI episodes where a character from CSI las vegas first goes to miami, then new york then back to Las Vegas. However the slight flaw with this " Television event of the year" as they've advertised it, is that although CSI and CSI New york are in the current series, CSI miami isn''t. In fact we're a series behind, so not only have they blown the cliffhanger for most viewers we also had a lot of new characters who we had no clue as to who they were!


Later folks.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Oh so early

My first thought this morning when I woke up was why am I having to get up when it's still dark out. Isn't there some law againist it?

But there isn't and with that pesky rule that companies only pay you when you turn up for work I wasn't faced with much of a choice and had to drag myself out of bed, like it or not.

Still the early shift proved to be a rather interesting experience as initially you tend to get all of the people who are very focussed and know exactly what they need, then as mid morning approaches you start to get the more general queries and then by mid afternoon it switches to the more urgent calls with people who need things in a rush.

And I'm not even going to get started on having to deal with what must be the rudest customer ever.

It was also nice as the person who sits next to me is back after being off for a couple of weeks so I don't feel quite out on a limb as much. Not that we have much time to talk mind you, especially this afternoon when it just suddenly went totally, totally maniac and didn't let up for over a hour.
I could really do with not having that happen again for a loonnggg time.

I also realised that I'm in need of a new project as it were, to do something constructive and or meaningful. I'm a bit unfocussed right now and need something to direct my energies towards as I just keep doing lots of little odds and sods rather then anything really constructive.

Any suggestions anyone for a new project and or hobby?


Later folks.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Scuttle, Scuttle

We had to play musical chairs with my car this morning because as Tap Dance has borrowed Grumpys car he needed to borrow mine so he could get to his bowls morning but of course as I needed the car to get to church I had to drive to the chapel and he then too kthe car to get to bowls before coming back to pick me up.

Physics had one of his random thoughts this morning when he leant over to me and said " Do you think that anyone would try to claim political asylum in heaven by using the human rights act?" when I asked him what he meant he explained " Well they could say that if they were sent to hell they would be burned or tortured with pitchfolks and that would violate their human rights".

I decided not to ask him how he had got onto that train of thought. Somethings are best left unanswered.

The primary were singing a musical item and both Physics and I were amused to see midway through the song a guilty looking little head poke around the chapel door. This was followed unsurprisingly by the rest of a little lads body who proceeded to scuttle through the chapel bent over as low as he could before throwing himself down in a gap between the pews in a obivous attempt to avoid the gaze of his primary teacher.

At the start of Sunday school physics was telling us about he had been speaking to a girl he knew online who asked him when he was getting married. He responded asking her when she was going to get married. Her response was to say that he should ask her boyfriend that question. When we asked what his response was to that he simply smiled and stated in his matter of fact way that he told her that her boyfriend wasn't his type.

In Priesthood the ward music director came in to help us practise for a musical items the priesthood is supposed to be giving in a couple of weeks. She spilt the group into tennors, bass and all those who don't have a clue about sining who would be singing the tune. She seemed to be getting quite frustrated that the 'tune' group was far from in tune. She asked if we all knew if we were singing in tune or if we were singing one or two octaves below where we should be. I did want to point out that if we knew exactly what octave each of us sung in we wouldn't be in the middle group.

Well it's my first early shift tomorrow which should be interesting.

I hope.

Later folks!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Somewhat overdressed

Well I survived my first Saturday shift even if I was cursing when I arrived as they had forgotten to mention something rather important. Saturdays are always considered a dress down day so as you can imagine being in a shirt and tie I looked somewhat overdressed compared to everybody else on the floor.

Still the Saturday shift wasn't as bad as I was expecting, it wasn't quiet but it wasn't manic either, it was nicely busy, so you weren't busy all of the time but it wasn't quiet enough that you got bored between calls.

The other good news was that as my line manager was running the shift he took the opportunity to have our monthly catch up. I am progressing nicely in all areas and I'm surpassing my promotion targets which is good. The challenge now is to lift things to the next level as it were and start hitting the targets for 'regular' full timers.

Which is harder then you'd think as the job is surprisingly complicated and needs a lot of skill.

It's a bit strange only have one day 'break' before I'm back to work but at least I'm on earlys next week which means that I should be home well before 5pm.


Later folks.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Rabbits in the headlights

It was interesting this afternoon as a fresh batch of trainees faced their first afternoon on the phones.They were placed on the desks next to us and although we were quite busy most full timers were keeping a watchful eye in their direction in case their mentors were called away for what reason and they got really stuck. The one thing I noticed was how terrified they all looked.

Later on when the newbies had left for the day and there was a brief lull I turned to one of the two other 'surviours' from my training cohort and asked him if he had noticed how scared they'd looked and he nodded. I paused before asking " We looked that terrified as well didn't we" He simply laughed, nodded and agreed with the confidence of a veteran staff member that we both feel but probably shouldn't after three months.

But then again three months is still a long time and we have learnt rather a lot once you think about it.

It was also a bit strange today knowing it was a Friday and having that good ole Friday feeling, but it not being the end of the week as I still have to work tomorrow. Well it could be worse I suppose I could have to work all of tomorrow and Sunday as well.

We now have our new cooker fitted which is good as micowave meals really aren't as tasty as 'proper' cooked food. This is just the midway point of the work though, we still have the other half of the loft to finish, then the bathroom is going to be revamped and after that I am considering investing in a bit of furniture and redoing my room, because I could be making soooo much better use of the space in there then I am.


Later folks

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Feeling the urge to scream

It's been another one of those days. In fact it was probably the worst one of " Those days" that i've had. It was incredibly frustrating and I was sorely tempted to start banging my head on my desk after one especially trying phone call which had ground on for nearly 15 minutes!

The phone call I got with less then 30 seconds to the end of my shift just seemed to be the "perfect" end to the day as it meant that I had to wait for nearly 15 minutes out in the cold for the minibus to come back.

Being late as well meant I was the only person on the minibus on the way back to the Car Parkwhich I'm sure must have looekd a little strange, almost like I was being chaffeured back and forth.

Still if theres one thing I've learnt it's that you shouldn't dwell on things if you've had a bad day. Simply suck it up, forget it and move on wit ha positive attitutde. Today might have sucked but tomorrow won't.

We should have our new cooker wired up tomorow, so that should be the end of microwave meals for what I will hope will be a considerable amount of time.

I did find out that a stake meeting which was cancelled on Tuesday has been reschduled for next Tuesday and I'm supposed to go. Well it's good to know even if I know nothing about this meeting or the fact that it has already been canceled at least once.

I think communication might be the top of the list of things for hte new YSA presidency to sort out.


Later folks.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Funny where the mind takes you

Whilst I was in town today a sudden thought struck me. In one of those weird coincidences that lift throws at you sometimes I will be working this Saturday( for the first time in my new job) but if I was still at my old job I would have still been working this Saturday as well as their holding a big event this weekend.

I did try to pre order the latest books from my old place through Waterstones today. I did consider still buying them from the GW Store but with the people I used to know no longer working there I don't feel any sense of loyalty I suppose to buy them full price from there where if I buy them full price from waterstones I at least get reward points.

However there was a brief flaw in this plan as I seemed to have been cursed with the only Waterstones store in the country that will not release a book or take a pre order ahead of schedule. The girl behind the counter told me that the next books would be released on the 4th March and I could not order it before then and it would not be in the shop before the 4th March. So I can either buy it from the GW Store or I have to wait a couple of weeks before I can buy it using points.

Or I could buy it cheaper via amazon but have to wait for it to turn up who knows when! Decisions, decisions.

Asides from that frustration it's been a pretty quiet day. I've invested in another book by Alison Weir who is rapidly turning into my favourite historian. If you ever wanted to know anything about the tudors I've advise you give her books a go, their fantastic.

I heard from Engineseer today, he's recieved his mission call and will be going at the end of May. He's not going to the most exotic of locations but it could have been worse. They could have sent him straight back here which would have been oh so weird. Good Morning Engineseer, errhh I mean Elder Engineseer...

It's back to work tomorrow, two more full days then one half day before my next day off. I will be on Earlys for the first time next week. Yes it means that I will have to get up really, really early to be able to get there in time to catch the first bus of the day but at least being on earlys means I could be back home by 4.30! Which is none too shabby.


Later folks.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010

oh so slow

It's been a long day. Not sure why, it's just seemed to be one of those days where everything seemed to take a really long time and time seemed to pass oh so sllloowwwlllyyy..

Quote of the day was in response to the question " Was it sent by land or by air?"
" It was sent by courier!"

We're having another dress down day on Friday although this one isn't for a charity. But the theme is valantines day which made me realise two things. One I don't have any clothing which is red and secondly it's that time of year again isn't. The time all single people dread.

It's going to be very weird tomorrow as I have the day off, in the middle of the week. It's been a while since I've been on a shift pattern where I get random days off in the middle of the week. Still I musn't complain as it could be worse, it could happen like that every week.

No idea what I'm going to do tomorrow though. Hopefully inspiration will strike:-) and I will be able to get something creative done.

Either that or I will just play on the Wii.

Both will probably be as equally fun.

Later folks.

Monday, February 08, 2010

For those of you living under a rock

Facebook has changed it's layout, again. And I'm sure that pretty soon we will see the start of umpteen groups complaining about the change. Again.

If there's one always consistant fact about facebook it's that there will always be a group formed to protest againist any change whatsoever. Well there's that and the groups which form once the latest rumour about being charged to use facebook appears. You know the usual, " we'll have to pay yearly, we're going to be charged monthly, we're going to be charged weekly, facebook will steal our souls etc, etc, etc."

Work was good, if a little manic at first while I tried to once again find my rhythm as it were. I was just ever so slightly punchy on the keyboard for the first hour or so.

I also had a call that I found very hard to focus on as the girl I was speaking to ( who had a very nice voice anyway) had that song featuring Katy Perry with the wolf whistles in on in the background. It's hard to be serious and focus when all you can hear in the background is Wolf whistles, every few seconds.

It's a bit of a odd week because as I'm working Saturday morning, I'm working tomorrow, then have Wednesday off, then work for the rest of the week before having Sunday off. I'm glad I don't have to do this more then once every month and a half.

In the news today it was announced that apparently having just two sugary drinks raises your chances of getting pancratic cancer by something like 87%. Which means there's another thing you can't do.

So what else can't we do? Well lets see going off all the adverts on TV these days you can't drink, you can't smoke, you can't eat food with out having to read all the gory details of the contents on the front of the box not that we need them of course as we all know that anything that tastes that nice isn't good for us. We would go out to do some other wholesome activity but we're supposed to be reducing our driving by five miles a week otherwise the planet is doomed, doomed, doomed if we don't act now. Of course this reduction in driving is only possible assuming we don't die first by not wearing a seat belt or running a red light. We would watch the TV at home but that raises our carbon footprint and we don't want to spend too long at home because we might die in a fire if we don't check our fire alarm every day or plan a escape route to get out of the house.

I'm sure we would all go and live in caves if we could but I'm sure that would violate some form of health and safety and we'd all get arrested.


Later Folks.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

Irony, Irony wherefore art thou Irony.... oh wait there you are

As long term readers will know I am the Institute class president of our Stake. Or at least I was.

Today, they released me as the class president, something I have known was coming for several weeks now. Not for someone else to take my place but rather as they are doing a massive shakeup of the way the YSA program is running in our stake, the YSA program and institute will now be run under a single YSA Presidency with one President and three counselors. Which means that the role of Institute class president is essentially redundent.

Before anyone says it I am more then aware of the massive irony that after having a job that was made redundent one of my callings has been made redundent as well.

So that's down to one calling and being able to sit back and relax and watch other people try to organise YSA related activities? right?

Not quite.

It seems that I'm still needed as I've been called as the 1st Counselor on the new YSA stake presidency. Quite how the new presidency will work and who will be responsible for what will be as much a learning exercise for us as well as everyone else.

Should be fun though.

Later folks.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

Well at Least it makes my room look tidy

I'll make no bones about it, the house is a little tiny bit of a mess right now.

Of course it everything had gone to plan we would have had a brand new cooker installed in the kitchen and loft fully fitted with boards allowing us to fit a lot more stuff up there allowing us to start working on the rest of the house slowly but surely doing some much needed work.

But you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men.

We hit a small but significant problem with the new cooker.

It didn't fit.

This prompted a awful lot of running around in order to get a new new cooker, which isn't going to be delivered until next week, but the old cooker has already been dumped. So we now have no cooker for a few days. Due to all this running around there wasn't time for the loft to be finished either, so we now have a lot of stuff down from the loft which as of yet can't go back up there.

I can see a lot of microwave meals or jacket potatos in mine and Grumpys future for the next few days.

Still looking through the loft bough a few surprises as it's surprising what you can store away and forget about it. Not only did I find two paint by numbers oil painting sets, I also found a cross stich for beginners, a set of china, a set of records that's right records not CD's or Cassettes, Records which I'm fairly sure belong to Grumpy. I could be wrong but I'm fairly certain neither of my sisters or Tap Dance listened to Roger whitaker. But that's not all, there were several bags of cassette tapes, two flower pressing alblums plus a box containing Grumpys pipes.

But you never said Grumpy smoked! I hear you all cry, well maybe one or two of you well he doesn't, at least not anymore. He stopped smoking them back in 1990 which goes to show how long they've been stuck in a box in our loft here and at out last house. Quite why they were still up there is a reason which seems to have been lost to the mists of time as well as the reason why we had six rolls of wallpaper, some floor lining, a tennis racket and a printer so old it should be considered an antique.

Owen has been watching the comings and goings of the day with a extreme sense of bafflement as he's tried to wonder what exactly we've been doing. He's really not happy when new people first arrive at the house ( which goes to show how often we have visitors round) but he usually calms down after a while. Especially once we've given them drinks, I have no idea why but if we give them a drink he seems to accept them.

Just another one of his funny little quirks I guess.


Later folks.

Thursday, February 04, 2010

Well it could be worse

I've been in a bit of a grouchy mood all day today as I woke up with a very sore throat and it hasn't gone away. I've no idea where I got it from and quite frankly it's getting a bit annoying. Still it could be worse, I could be at work with a sore throat and that would have really, really sucked.

I've done quite well with avoiding the temptation of being sucked into the evils of daytime TV. But that's mainly because I've been cleaning, painting or just playing on the Wii instead.

Owen being the inquisitive little dog that he is, still comes and watches me play with a very baffled look. You can almost see the cogs turning in his head as he tries to figure out just what the heck I am up to, because from his point of view it must look like that I've gone crazy going back and forth and waving what looks like a stick at the screen.

Well I can't believe that it will be Friday tomorrow. This week has just gone so fast! Still it has been fun, I usually find that taking a week off is about the right about of time if I'm not doing anything specific as any longer and I tend to get bored.


Later folks!

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Duck and cover

Opposed to yesterdays quite bizare day, today has been pretty quiet thankfully enough.

I went into Nottingham and had a interesting morning looking around the shops. I spent a large chunk of time in Waterstones immersed in their history section as it's to be honest brilliant and I had a great difficulty making my mind up as to what to buy.

However I was good and only bought two books.

Where I wasn't so good was the model shop and came away with a bag full of plasticard and other odds and ends of modelling material. I have found that my modelling projects have gotten steadly more involved and complicated, although I think thats more down to having to be more careful about what I buy now as I now longer get a 50% staff discount.

I also popped into the shop where I had a retail secondment last year to say hi. It was interesting to talk to one of the staff members to find out how much has changed in the relatively short time since I've left the company. He then started asking me questions about all of the books saying that he was sure I still had lots of inside connections and found out lots of information all the time about what was coming. I had to admit that I didn't and it seemed to really surprise him. I dunno maybe he was expecting that I still get including in departmental emails or something.

Someone once said that you should always try to learn something new everyday and today I did. The new thing I learned today is to make sure that if Physics is going to be playing on the air hockey table after institute you need to be in a different room, as that puck was flying all over the place. I think he even manged to hit Bro H a couple of times!


Later folks.

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Strange Days

It's been a remarkably odd day. There's really no otherway to describe it as all sorts of things seem to have been going on.

I started the day by having another clear up of my bedroom before doing a final bit of tidying in the garage as we have to fit some new bathroom items in there. And before anyone asks that in the sense of storing them in there whilst we have some work done, not that we're having a bathroom installed in the garage. Because that would be crazy and we're not that crazy around here, honest. We're certainly not ecentric enough to do that either as we don't have that much money.

I then got a call from Tap Dance to inform me she had recieved a very odd email via facebook from me and she wasn't sure it was on the up and up. One quick logging into Grumpys computer and about thirty seconds of swearing later ( Gosh, Darn, Blast it etc honest!) I realised that my facebook account had been hacked. After changing all of the security settings and several deep scans of the computer for anything untoward later I'm fairly certain ( touch wood) that it's as secure as it can be again. If anyone is on my facebook list and you've had a odd email from me with a link please delete it asap.

The funnist thing I found however was that what tipped Tap Dance off that this email might be untoward wasn't that it started with her christian name more that she had recieved it at 8.05am this morning and she knew that meant it probably wasn't from me as she couldn't see me being up at that time whilst I was on Holiday.

I then had to try and fix Grumpys printer which is steadfastly refusing to work despite all of my best efforts and after a hour I was sorely tempted to see if it's abilities included being able to fly if I chucked it out the window!

After a quick stop for lunch and some smart alec comments from people on facebook my next task was to help Grumpy do some measuring in preparation for some work we're having done in the loft at the weekend. Which really confused Owen as he watched us trying to measure things, however he did disappear sharpish when we got the loft ladder down as I think it worries him a bit when we disappear up it.

However being a muppet I managed to leave the tape measure up in the loft after closing the ladder up. Still the advantage of being a wargamer is you usually have a lot of spare tap measures hanging around which meant I didn't have to open the loft again. However while I was up there I found a box of Grumpys old journals. He decided to check on a whim and found out that 17 years ago today he was in Germany and just for the day. as well. I pointed out that, that was pretty good as back then it wasn't as common to fly out and back on the same day. He thought I was accusing him of being old and pointed out in return that it wasn't that long ago and it wasn't like he had driven to the airport in a horse and cart.

Finally I ending up cooking Tea whilst Grumpy took Owen out for a walk. It's been quite a while since I cooked a full meal like that and I was quite pleased that my cooking skills are still rather good. Not that I get many chances to show them off mind you.

Hopefully tomorrow won't be quite as bizare. I'm off into Nottingham to have a look round the shops as it will make a change from usually going into Derby.


Later folks.

Monday, February 01, 2010

And for everyone who ever wanted to know everything

After visiting the library today ( and a very long rant about the new automated system for booking books in and out of the library, (Apparently it's like one of those self service supermarket tills) Grumpy showed me the latest full colour leaflet of information from our local council.

As well as being available in English ( and full colour) it's also available in at least five other different languages as well as large print and brail. And what sort of information warrents such ha large and exspensive outlay? Why a list plus maps of all of the winter salting routes in Leicestershire.

Yes you've read that right the council has printed a leaflet showing which roads will be gritted and salted in winter and the priority for each one because obivously someone somewhere felt that there was a pressing demand from people to know exactly which roads in Leicestershire are salted and when.

Asides from crazy council spending of our money I've lost another friend on facebook :-( I do wish there was someway to see who has removed you as once you reach over a certain number of friends it gets hard to remember everyone whose on your list and I've only got 144 people how some of these people with 800+ people cope I'll never know.


Later folks.