Thursday, April 28, 2005

la la la I can't hear you

oh, that's good. I like that. yeah, do it again. lucky me, BT Business Broadband has gone down on me for the fourth time in a week. They had a run on wet conductive flanges at B&Q this week, so Dave the engineer didn't have anything to stick the 01603 exchange back together again, did he? Well cockadoodle bloody doo. I hit the speed dial now occupied by the BT Business Broadband status line. "Welcome to your internet service status line for BT Broadband, updated at 3:05 Thursday the 28th of April. We are aware of a technical fault at the Norwich exchange, affecting dialling code 01603. Our engineers are currently working on the problem, but Steve had to go and get a Ginsters from the shop, and Darren is currently on his mobile, flogging a Celica to a hairdresser from Penge. We tried Gary, but he got a bad knee, so it doesn't look much like that red light on your modem is going to turn green today. I'd do it myself, but I'm in a lap dancing club in Wapping"

I did make some of that up, but my red light is still on as I scratch these words into my arm with a screwdriver, and I've just thrown a melon out of the office window at two dogs biting their own ears off in frustration. it's the timing you see. I mean, it's only Norwich right? you don't need t'interneht to be in a tractor pull or to just stand on the edge of the village green, slapping yourself in the face with a haddock and mumbling about your sister's mum's boyfriend's Civic. no mate, but I'm trying to publish the globalization development kit for 37 countries you see? they wanted it last week, when your sodding service was disrupted for 3 whole mornings in a row, so now I'm still here, wondering where I go to Read More about Massively Scalable Sun UltraSPARC IV Servers, looking out the window at a recalcitrent hoofer flicking her mane over a lovebite, wondering when you might be so good as to let me get online to see what Olga in the Ukraine needs me to do for her. it's not too much to ask. not at 100 quid a month. I'm not even losing revenue. you're just making me look like a dolt when I have to phone people to get them to tell me the number of the conference call I need to attend where I can't update you on your email because I can't currently read it and the update I sent out earlier isn't there but the stuff you want is here but, oh, I'm sorry, you can't have it because I've run out of pigeons.

there is one part of the message which directs me to the helpful web site, which of course is about as useful as telling me that if I can't start my car I should take it to the garage, but I'm not going to mention that, because it's such a lame horse of a target. dammit! couldn't stop meself. I know, I'll power cycle the modem. that'll fix the exchange. it won't be quite as exciting as power cycling the W2110z, when I put it face down on the carpet, sit a hamster on thegrill at the back and watch it whoooosh out the window as Sun Java Workstation Über Fan kicks into life making that noise for 10 seconds that makes everybody duck. ah, I remember getting Mike's old IPX back in 1994 and thinking that was an object of desire, but that thing couldn't make toast like this brushed-aluminum harlot. ooh, you are awful, but I like you.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

what are you doing to yourself?

got one of those things on my face. Zoe got her hair suck in it the other day and it went all 'frizzy'. I also get that look which says it's about as likely as reversing the mantle over a crisp. I got beard. yeah, but hang on, I got bags as well and I got stuff on me that I can scrape off now. it's physical embodiment of markup language and it's flapping about in a carrier bag in the back of the office. shut up. it's not even validated and its poking old photos of Germaine Greer into my foot, like saying 'go on then, go on. you'll never finish me you know. I haven't even been invented yet - it's 1974. HAAHAHAHAAA!'.

so I get on a level, but I'm hoping for some kind of truck to take me away and put me in Northamtonshire or somewhere so I get to see Look East but don't have internet access, because that's doing me in. I should be having a right laugh, I mean, it's not like I've just stepped out a salon or something. I take a quick look at the corner of the trellis and Mr Potter lobs a jam grenade into the sun, which doesn't help at all. if I had a leg of lamb for every time it got throttled on the ring road I'd be blistering into a watery cat flap and shooting up red bush tea. it's not rocket science. just normal science, but with human music in the background.

Monday, April 25, 2005

notorious weasel canal

it's a parody. you can take any number of the words and throw them in a bucket with an airwick. then it's off down Skinnergate until a dad-faced boy squeals into a fish shop, mumbling something about a 'press release' and a bag of kittens lost on the lip of Yorkshire. Danny took the keys and blagged the monitor, putting tiny monkeys in the telly while a puny love child was rattling his fork in about 3 consecutive entries

anyway, cos it was late and I'd had enough of repackaging the future, I went to bed with a long face. I'm lobbing a partner over a crack tomorrow, but it's gotta be by 11, or I'll end up coughing over a bog-hopper and immediately sticking my wad on the 12:20 at Doncaster.

Saturday, April 23, 2005


exuent and fall over. it's the ubiquity of globalfulnessness that makes us all sit at our desks and talk like this. I used to be just the same as I am now. sitting there on a warranty desk filtering out the calls with 'SunOS 4.1.1' or 'Openwindows' and putting them in a queue I kept especially for people I thought would never call again and then spending the rest of the day constructing a hilarious usenet posting about Pot Noodles and flaming a dick from Leighton Buzzard. but you progress, and now I'm working at the weekend because the thing I first thought of has turned into the thing that that's now 2 weeks later and 37 into one isn't quite all I thought it could be. you've got one of those over there, but I haven't got one over here. they definitely don't have one in Japan, and a guy from Slovakia has told me he already knew about it when I was supposed have told him but didn't but he isn't going to but it doesn't matter because they don't but I'm thinking they will when they see the things I'm sending them because they haven't asked for it, but they're going to get it and they'll just have to take it out themselves.

if I could only rearrange the following words, I think I'd be able to make sense of it: time on delivered when going might help if but you're busy localization applications for once I that said before dammit. It's probably something to do with that infinite number of program managers and an email client proposition. you know, give an infinite number of program managers an email client and eventually they'll write every single conference call number and meeting time combination possible on one line without word wrapping but including a signature file so dense the universe implodes after a 'five minute break', but crucially, they'll then spontaneously all stop using it and create a startup company and be the only people at their own leaving parties in an infinite number of bars on University Avenue, necking an infinite number of Jagers before waking up on their own and crying an infinite number of tears into their muesli because that's really all there is and there's always a parrot calling your name, but it's spelt wrong so you never got the email, but the sys admin who's aliased your own domain and catches all bounces is laughing at you with his friends and pointing at you in an infinite number of corridors with Network Computing posters and notices about Java Desktop System and Solaris plastered on them covering up the Why? campaigns that nobody's really sure whether you allowed to take down even though they're 3 years old.

there, there. is there a t-shirt I can wear? I love free stuff.

there's only one word here: washing. it's done in outline font and tarmac. it's right next to phone number for BT Business Broadband complaints (which is 0800 679905, by the way) and it serves to remind me of one thing. I'm more responsible than I ever used to be. I have a number of dependents, more house than Mecca bingo and sums of money that constantly slip betweem my tanned-but-fading fingers. If I don't hang the washing out I will DIE. That's all there is to it. I'll now put Joy Division on and poke myself with sticks in the dark until I get the bends.

Friday, April 22, 2005

one of these days I'm going to cut you into little pieces

you hum it, I'll play it. oh, I see, it's like that. I got 1 thing to do today which is really 18 things which I have to put in 1 place, all chopped up and ready to go. I just had that lovely designer and the very lovely program manager give me everything I could ever wish for, and so I just need to extract the semantics and identify the local business requirements and goodness me, it'll be like a barn dance where everyone drink's Dad's cider and falls into a trough with a pig holding their trousers over a bucket while Charlotte writes "feck!" in her web.

twould be troo if I could get down the 01603 exchange and just stick the 2 bits of chicken wire together that have apparently fallen apart and caused an entire city to lose internet access on and off for 2 days. I work from home. I'm 3 hours from the nearest office. Great. but it's not me I'm worried about. Noone will believe me anyway, so I'll just have to fit my entire 2 days work into an intermittent 2 hour window while some BT engineer has accidently enabled everything by squatting over a drain and conducting electricity through his dangling tools. From his tool belt. I'll then have to send a hilarious email describing how I fell of my roof during a meeting of the Rod Hull fan club and so I've been offline for a bit and everyone will forgive me as they laugh uncontrollably into my performance review. No, the people who I'm really very concerned about are the ones who might have to get the dust sheets of their X5s and actually visit Tescos in person - rather than having the online order picked out by hand by Beverley Maggots, who's washed her hands at least once this week and *thinks* that's a Gala Melon - mingling with the chavs and mardy local gits from east of the city as they pick out their Organic Guacamole by squeezing in between Grant and Ashley who are sticking a Star Wars sticker book into the eyes of 4 year old David Rio Michael who's standing up in the trolley tipping Walkers crisps over the side and pooing his pants just so he can get a slap and use it as an excuse to leave home at 14 and walk up and down my street scratching his name into the offside door of our Scenic.

quick check under the desk and I have 3 green lights on the Wireless Network 1250, which I'm expecting to all suddenly go off any minute just after Jensen Button has jump started from row 6 and everything will be irrepairably broke for the rest of the day. I'll have conference calls of course, but I've got no idea what number to call as all the details are kept on my Sun Java System calendar, which is on the other side of my Cisco VPN client which is installed on my Windows XP which is running on my Sun Java Workstation W2100z which has a Broadcom NetXtreme Gigabit Ethernet card which has a ethernet cable coming out of it which is connected to my Netgear RP614 router which has a cable coming out of it which is connected to my Wireless Network 1250 modem which has a phone wire coming out of it which is connected to the first BT box on my wall which has a hamster behind it who has won a free holiday for 2 weeks or a telly or 50 quid cash, and he's been calling a premium rate number for 17 hours and started chewing his own foot off to escape. aah.

Thursday, April 21, 2005

commit no nuisance

endangered as they are, socialists in the community do get out sometimes. There was a scintillating debate on plasma vs. LCD, but you know, we're stuck on or Sony Trinitrons, and we can't justify the upgrades. I can stretch to a digibox, because then I can get BBC Four where they have Bulgarian folk music and Damien Rice in session, but goodness me, I can't justify £1900 on a widescreen LCD. I mean, it's probably made in an emerging market economy in terribly exploitative working conditions. The thing is, I can justify my Sony W1, because I researched it extensively and didn't overspend unnecessarily. So that's alright, right?

lucky me, I get to live in a market economy with freedom of speech and my liberty intact. I can sit in the pub talking bollocks about the government and not get arrested and persecuted just because I think I might vote for the Green Party. Even if I think they'd be a rubbish government. You've just got to nail it down sometimes. I have my choice to make but I'm driven by dichotomies. It's no good me clinging to my Militant Tendency youth when I clearly can't justify my overspending. So I just talk about it in the pub with Sean. Then I go home and flick on my Dell to see if the share price is above the number I first thought of and then doubled and added 1.

In the end, it's all about that transition phase between being 23 and unemployed in Sheffield and a fat bald bloke in Surrey doing 5k on the treadmill in my lunch hour. Somewhere in the middle I got paid a large sum of money and then I forgot I really cared about anything. I went to the workhouse the other day and came away with this message. Stop it Mr. Ecclescake, you're killing me! Now there's a sound in my head from 1991 and everything's alright. I went with Neil to the Kilburn National to see Robyn Hitchcock and everything went white. I didn't really feel anymore, but Neil lived in St. John's Wood so it was a long way home.

oh, and here's a tractor

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

I'm responding, but I'm not listening

I mean, it's pretty neat right? I mean we can do this stuff without the, you know, forgotting the this, and the that, but it's like, well, we should I could you know like it we might wanna try it we can take it offline if we have to. and hey - thanks, right? no, I mean, this is great. no, really...

blimey. it's not like I'm 'aving it large 'ere while all this is kicking off, but it's a bit bleedin' rich when old Bravo gets the gab on and e's blartin' on abaht the branches an' the bleedin' French, like. I CARN'T 'EAR YER MATE! SORRY! and 'ere I am scribing like a nutter just gettin' this hoperations review done so I can leg it dahn the Black Horse and get a swift one in with Mad Andy and the wife, before it's back to the gaff to see that thing on the telly with that bird out of Blue Peter getting 'er legs slapped by some undead geezah. lahvly.

anyways, it's off to the lockup now to sort out a little business with some old gateways I've got piling up round the back. thing is, right, I promised them to the world and now I'm getting a right ear bashing abaht which bits fall off when you 'ang 'em up on yer own site. I mean, it's not the end of the world, right? if you've got any problems, give us a bell an' I'll sort you out with some new home pages I've got coming in from me supplier on thursday. they're right tasty, real quality gear. cost you, mind. I reckon a monkey, mate...

Monday, April 18, 2005

can you tell what it is yet?

I dunno, you wait all day for a D and then all of a sudden you get an E. I promised them I'd get it delivered tomorrow you see, and I was looking out for final final final. what is he playing at? I mean, if he's up at 4am doing this stuff, then he should be delivering something, right? I can see him there with those massive cans on and he looks like he's been treated with PowerGoo in Photoshop 3 (pre-layers, natch). I saw him in the flesh once. his eyes were in the right place then and he looked about 27. funny how designer's faces end up looking like their designs - you know, a bit like dogs. he's got loads of round edges now, but he just kind of fades out from the top to the bottom until you can see through him. I'm looking at him on IE and he doesn't even fit on my screen anymore.

so I reckon I've got an extra hour to fly a crate to the amarrket and then I'll get me port numbers up and stitch together a downloadable blart. nothing like a bit of raw stuff to keep the punters happy, right? I mean, it's not as if we get paid to do this stuff, i'm just doing it as a favour for Big Dave, cos he's got some badgers down the lockup and they're chewing the gaff up good and proper. if I don't get this stuff on the barrer by 5 I'll be down a pony and Pete Doherty will be scrawling on the walls. strewth.

Friday, April 15, 2005

hola you

somebody rang the cheese alarm so here i am waiting with bait on my breath. just got back from the Costa del Sol and i'm overjoyed that i've stumbled back into a pressure silo full of spring flowers and songs. sharks and hitler, that's what Andy says. mind you, it's sharks, hitler, ghosts and balls these days. know what I mean?

£545 for a family of five on our favorite creaky budget older-than-average cabin crew airline, EasyJet to get us to the south of Spain where we're met off the plane by 17 handlebar-sporting, Ducados sucking Mercedes drivers holding up white cardboard with other people's name on. "snr. Armstrong? snr. Armstrong?", "excuse me", "snr. Garibaldi? snr Garibaldi?", "excuse me. mind the cases, kids", "snr. Dermatitis? snr. Dermatitis?", "excuse me. mind the cases, kids. I think that's it, no hang on. excuse me. WHERE'S THE BLOODY INFO DESK IN THIS BLOODY AIRPORT?"

and relax. pick up key for Seat Cordoba SDi (S for sloooow). drive like tourist down wrong side of autovaía. throw cases into house. up to roof terrace and find it's 75° and sunny at 6pm and laugh like imbecile to self. 2 and a half weeks without phone, email or office.

lucky me. free town house in Nerja, 40 minutes from Malaga. day trips to Frigiliana, Competa, Malaga, days on the beach at Burriana, quick stroll into town to the Balcón de Europa to watch hugely unentertaining street theatre. Apparently, standing still for a very long time dressed as a pirate is very lucrative these days. you only move when some hapless fool drops 1 Euro in your tin and then you move v e e e r r y s l o o o w w w l y like you're really made out of wood or something. I tried it myself. I sat on the beach with una cerveca and didn't move for a week. only very slowly, when I had to slap a wooden bat around like an idiot trying a swat a plastic ball my son had launched about 15 metres to my left directly towards the enormous paella fire in Ayo's bar.

still, it's good to be back. ha. hahahaha. hahahahahahahahaha. "you could work out here couldn't you? it doesn't matter where you work does it? you're remote working. could be England, could be Spain. what do you think?" er, I guess. actually...