Unreliable and possibly off-topic


Tuesday, March 31, 2009


I live in hope that tonight's reconnection from BT represents rapprochement and that all will now be well. Yeah right, but one must travel hopefully. Can't be bothered recounting my 6 months of problems so far, and merely dine out on the possibilities of reselling my 3 superfluous HomeHubs on eBay. I've paid for those in blood, sweat and tears and hours of phonecalls to Calcutta. By the way, the Calcut callcentre staff are not the culprits- BT is fucked from a systems viewpoint.

It's only taken 3 hrs tonight to move the PC to enable a wired connection, get remote control help from Calcutta, unwire and reposition the PC. My back is aching, so it's off for bath, bed and the New Yorker: heaven.


Sunday, March 29, 2009

Interrupted service....

I've been enjoying only intermittant internet access for 6 months as a special gift from BT. After three malfunctioning Home Hubs (routers), last week I was formally disconnected due to non-payment of a bill which showed me to be £19 in credit. It's no use asking for an explanation for such events, I've learned: you can spend hours being passed from tech to billing to broadband services before being accidentally cut off. My one formal complaint was met with frank disbelief and seems to have ended in my disconnection. Anyway, that's the reason for slow blogging and lack of email replies. I'll allegedly have a new account and connection next week.


Friday, March 13, 2009

Jobbies and their place

Alles gut. I didn't get the job, and have never been more relieved in my life! Four days in the Flatlands was quite enough, and I've never felt more alive, grateful, appreciative or grounded than when pulling into Waverley on the 5th day. Home, home to my wee flat, kiddos, community, Arthur's Seat, architecture, trees, topography, waterways, a coastline, history, multiculturalism and high streets with independent shops. I've never been so happy to be a loser as when phoned with the blessed bad news that I'd 'been unsuccessful'.

The jobbie was 10 miles NW of Cambridge, in a desert of wheat fields broken by the dual carriageways, connecting new-build estates. Sometimes the housing and industrial estates will surround an ex-village High St of empty shopfronts with decaying paintwork, betraying prior prosperity. These will be lucky if they still have a pub or a Post Office. The new-build estates of cul-de-sacs are serviced only by isolated giant hypermarkets spaced at 7 mile radii. The new-build town of Cambourne (1 mile from the workplace) is 5 square miles of new-build homes for 110,000 people, mostly unoccupied and containing one huge Morrison's supermarket, one Fish 'n Chick'n Bar, one Birthday card shop (for the sympathy cards) and one plastic pub. I'd last about 10 mins before topping myself.

A dear friend was encouraging me for my own good that it wasn't as bad as it seemed, so I visited a local Nature Reserve to access the grace and connectedness that can flow from such. But it was just another a big monocultural wheatfield unbroken by nothing higher than a shrub, flat as far as they eye could see, with a few jackdaws. Cambridge is also flat but boasts a river, some trees, some independent shops and two brown people seen exiting the Baptist church. Unfortunately, both rents and selling prices for housing are approx 50% more expensive than central Edinburgh, and everyone talks funny. I asked for the nearest bookshop at a Tesco 5 miles out of Cambridge and was directed to the town centre.

I don't really know why I wasn't offered the job, but it stopped the ongoing mental hell I was experiencing while trying to see how and where I could make it work. The feedback was that I had the professional but not the managerial knowledge.

Possibly I pissed off the manager interviewer by asking for interview expenses? I'd assumed that my costs for a the two-day visit they'd requested, including the depressing night in a Premier Inn, would be covered. But the manager looked at me as if I had two heads when I enquired after these after the interview, and asked me if I was asking whether they'd cover these or if he had a form. Somewhat perplexed, I responded that if a) then b), and was told it would be looked into. It was looked into and I've been informed that since no agreement had been made beforehand I was out of luck. This luck is relative- it's a lucky escape.

I'd like to apologise to the people of Cambridgeshire for this review of their environment, doubtless based on ignorance. I feel sure it must have saving graces, since it contains a population, but am still mystified as to where the population of Cambridgeshire and Huntingdonshire carry out their community activities and prevent a lemming-like mass suicide. Hit the North!