Friday, May 15, 2009

Catching up 'Days of our Life' Style

Does anyone remember when Days of our Lives in Australia was so behind due to, well, I'm not really sure, so they basically condensed 6 years of programmes in to a week of episodes to catch up? Even then things hadn't changed - So and so was still wrestling with the fact that her pool boy was her husband's illigitmate gay lover who turned out to be her best friend's nephew kind of deal? Well, my attempts at writing over the past few months have been as unpredictable and haphazrad as midday television, so I thought I would wrap up the past six months that way. But then I thought this would not be appealing:

I went skiing at Christmas. It was cold. There was snow. I had fun. New Year's in Scotland - Vegas - Germany - snow day - booze - work - homeless man boxing - football - etc.

I then sat down and thought why did I start this blog? Well, firstly it was an easy way to show people what I was up to. But then Facebook came along. Secondly, it was a way to tell a story behind the photos, but then there were status updates. And not the 'Bart is moving forward' (seriously, what the fuck are people on about with these incoherent blabberings on status updates - you're not in Dawson's Creek - you just look like a tosser).

Thirdly, I thought maybe it was a way to make people laugh; Fail.

Then it struck me, it was a way to bitch and release frustration.

I've become content - I've settled down. At the start of 2008 I was fancy free and running around like a leopard on speed. Halfway through the year I got a girlfriend and work started taking on greater importance and time. The blog stopped; the late nights ceased; the rash stopped spreading; and I no longer noticed the little nuances that day to day bugged me so magnificantly about this country. Halfway through 2009 and the girlfriend is gone, I got the promotion and am on top of work, but it's a little bit harder to get in to the 4am Wednesday night finishes - but I'll try.

What's prompted this - I've rediscovered stupidity! While I found it difficult to question what nowadays to me has become normal course in the UK (being told the devlivery man will take three weeks only to take five; Royal Mail abandoning signatures for parcels opting instead for a simple 'tick the box' so there is no accountability when a package gets lost; or maybe it snowing in February which causes the busiest city in the world to shut down because no roads, trains - even underground ones??? - or people's legs are able to move).
Snow day: giving Coomba a chance to beat small children

No, I'm used to all these, so it was with great enthusiasm when a new cedent appeared on the scene - I have an iPhone.

Now the iPhone not only allows a variety of applications, functions and abilities, it provides the UK with another way to fuck up. Amazing.

On purchasing my iPhone it was only a matter of time before I broke it. Well, a beer and the floor broke it, but let's not dabble in specifics. Being a smart boy, I had insured my iPhone. So I called O2 for a replacement. They were quick and painless and replaced it easily, to my great surprise. But this was just the light caressing foreplay before they decided to have their way with me. The phone was broken.

Calling O2 to ask for a new one I was told it wasn't their problem. As the handset was not their original it was the insurer's issue - not theirs. After calling the insurer I was told that as I had never claimed before, they could not help me?? Doesn't one have to claim a first time? And here is what I like to call the 'UK bounce' - an issue that is bounced between two parties: O2 to the insurer and back; the bank to the rental agent and back; immigration department and common sense and back - it's a serious fucking sport!

Speaking of the immigration department, I've just got my visa renewed, which gives me another three years - this is good. What they have done to my photo which makes me look like Astro Boy - this is bad.

Any English girls out there that may want to marry me, please stand up - I don't want to be lumped with this photo for three years!

However, my current visa has changed - you now need a Masters to be able to apply. Now this is a kick back to immigration numbers rising and people blaming migrants for taking their jobs. Now I don't think these two are linked. Given that in the current economic environment, I know of none of my Aussie mates that are skilled workers losing their jobs, but I know about at least 10 Brits, there's a reason. This 'UK bounce' spreads to all areas, where as we seem to know that there is a job to do and actually do it. For example, the other week there was a transport strike for three days, and good God the excuses for not coming in to work.

My mates have told me some crackers: 'I need to walk a kilometre to catch the bus and it's forecast for rain, so I don't want to get wet'; 'I don't have the right walking shoes to get in'; and 'I'll need to get up an hour earlier, so I'm working from home'. It used to be the British way to have a stiff upper lip; now it seems to be pass the buck.

But this is why I, and many of my friends, are staying. It's not hard to excel in a City where so many blazing lights splutter out due to a perceived heir of false accomplishments and a belief that they are owed something for nothing. So wish me luck with my visa renewal, it's back to living fancy free and excitable, the sun is shining, the birds are singing, and the random stupidity of day to day life in Mother England continues.

The rash is back though.