Life, The Universe and Small Things all covered in one friendly blog.
Remember DON'T PANIC! .

30 November, 2008

Please Check-in on time!

It is the time of year when millions of people head to buy a turkey and I go to the airport. I would say HUMBUG but I said it the other day and was met with a blank face, I then said "you know as in Scrooge" and was met with "who?", "A Christmas Carol", "Nope not a clue what your on about".

I used to turn up at the airport, check in the bags and walked through to airside for a cup of coffee. Not any more. The last time we flew at Christmas we got to the airport 3 hours before take off and still had to sprint to the gate after final call.

We were in a queue from the terminal doors to security, frustrating because airlines know exactly how many people will be passing through the airport on any given day. The trouble is the people on security are pissed off that they are not flying and have to grope up stranger all day so do their best to ensure you miss your flight, or at the very least have a totally awful time getting to it.

This year I want to get there early, so that when we join the queue from Great Dunmow to security we can still be sure of catching the plane. But, it seems, the airline has joined forces with security to make time at the airport hell.

The tickets say latest check-in 2 hours before departure, but hold on, the literature says "Check-in opens 2 hours before departure". Is it me?

I headed for the airlines website, forgetting that the same airline told me extra legroom seats can only be booked up to 7 days before the flight then when I try to book tell they can only be booked 3 days before the flight but there are none available by then.

The website was most helpful and recommends that I check-in 2 hours before departure. That will be the same time as the that check-in closes I guess.

I know very little about running an airport, but even I think checking in a plane load of people in less than a minute will be pushing it.
Still it is as likely as getting through security before take off on the weekend before Christmas I guess.

27 November, 2008

Woolworths, who needs it anyway?

Good old Gordon is at it again, not happy with buying a few banks and running up the national debt to a level never seen before, he is now saying that the government will do all it can to keep Woolworth open until Christmas.
He has definitely gone completely mad, or I suspect the truth is that he has not been into Woolworth recently.

I often go in to the local one, its an amazing experience that I urge everyone to try. I actually do it because you can cut through to the proper shops but I still marvel as I cut through.

The wonder is how such a large shop can sell nothing worth buying, even by accident.
As you walk into the local store at the moment there is rack after rack of totally useless plastic stuff. This stuff is in plastic packaging that is several times the size of the stuff.
The stuff appears to be lots of children's toys all no doubt made in China painted in toxic and or radioactive paints and guaranteed to fall apart within moments.

As I hurry through the next isles are that well known maker of everything quality JML. There is a tv playing something from JML, a special brush for cleaning a widget off a thingy or a gidget for mangling a worzel no doubt.

Then finally, after walking past a selection of gas lamp spares, there are the sweets. At the moment there are several tons, or if you must tonnes, of sweets and great deals that are only a few pounds more expensive than the Co-op. Sainsburys, Tesco, Asda .......

There was an advert , "thats the wonder of good old Woollies", the wonder has to be now why anyone, least of all a prime minister, would think it worth rescuing Woolworth.

Some things are worth saving and then there is Woolworth.

18 November, 2008

Tuck shops and how to avoid a financial crisis!

If, like me, you went to school in the days when it was OK to have a tuck shop in the school selling chocolate and crisps at break time you will probably remember your mates who never had any money.

Some mates were always on the scrounge with "lend us enough for some crisps mate". You got to know the friends who if you lent them 2 bob (10p) would give it back the next day and the others who saw it as more of a gift so you didn't lend to them and you warned other friends of the risky borrowers.

It was one of the good things that school taught in the days when a bag of fatty salty crisps did no more than give you the energy for an hours cross country in the rain.

But tuck shops are long gone and no one teaches people about identifying bad debtors.
All the bankers and traders, who have caused the financial crisis, are too young to have been at school when tuck shops were still allowed and have no idea that you don't lent to those who can not or will not pay it back.

We have the do gooders to blame, the people who banned tuck shops because they sold junk food because children no longer run it off because cross country is banned for health and safety reasons.

If we want to save the financial systems of the world re-open the tuck shops, before its too late!

17 November, 2008

Baby "P" and other Points of News

Have you wondered who decides what is news. If you read blogs then the author decides, but in the world of media who is it that decides all papers and news reports will be about the same thing. And once they get hold of a bit of news why do they go on , and on , and on about it.

The latest saturation of news must be this "baby P" story (see blog entry below).

Yes its sad, yes someone made a mistake but now we are into the "make sure they know it was not my fault" from everyone who thinks it was not their fault.
Surely I am not the only person who has moved on from this news and realises that some children will still be assaulted by their parents, some will inevitably end up in hospital and some will sadly die, but reading and hearing more and more about a case will not solve any problems, yet this is what the media do with every story.

They tell us every detail, so that we even know the inside leg measurement of the person who once emptied the bins of the person who made the trousers worn by a woman who walked past the house where the incident may have occurred 5 hours later.
Is there anything to be gained by this over the top investigation of everything, who has decided we want to know.

Baby P, and all over reported stories are great news for Gordon Brown, attention is diverted for a moment from the fact that he is still there and still wrecking the country, which brings me nicely onto the my next point from the news.

Gordon did cause the Problems!

Supporters of Gordon the Clown are saying what a fab job he is doing saving the economic planet and that as all the problems are global problems nothing is his fault.
OK that is fine, let us assume these are global problems and therefore the other side of the coin is that when things were going fantastically it was a global thing too, nothing to do with the man at No. 11 Downing St.

Come on Gordon you can't have it both ways.

13 November, 2008

Dead Baby - I'm sorry I can't help but laugh!

Now now, calm down, I know there can never be a time when the death of a child is a laughing matter. For those involved it is tragic but on this occasion I can't hold back a chortle.

Before you think me sick or uncaring (should I care) I will point out that it is not the death that has caused the smile but what has followed.

There has been a case where a baby had died and the authorities have said that the child can not be named but can only be know as "baby P". You can see where this is going, can't you.

I don't know why this has made such huge news but it has been debated in Parliament and is on the radio and in all the papers.
It first came to my attention when Gordon Brown and David Cameron were described as having a "heated exchange in the house about the circumstances surrounding baby pee". On come on please, you can't say that without a large proportion of the listeners stifling back a laugh.

We then have people reporting "that the council concerned should not be involved in the investigation into baby pee" and so it goes on.

Childish I may be, but if I had been in charge of finding one of 26 letters to attach to this case it as sure as hell would not have been "P".

Save the Planet, but only for profit!

They say that the truth will always prevail. Whoever "they" are it seems they are right again. This week one council has said that it will no longer re-cycle certain types of plastics because the value of them has gone down and it is no longer profitable.

Hold on there, I thought we were to believe that the point of re-cycling is that it saves the planet.

You have to wonder if this council is one that has been handing out £100 fines to anyone who dares to accidentally muddle up a plastic cup in with the landfill waste. If so how can they explain that its all going to landfill now.

It seems that we must all save the planet, give up plastic bags, and cut our CO2 but only if it makes someone a profit.

Now why am I not surprised.