"Your time is limited so don't waste it living someone else's life.
Don't be trapped by Dogma which is living with the results of other people's thinking.
Don't let the noise of other's opinions drown out your inner voice.
And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition, they somehow already know what you truly want to become."
- Steve Jobs

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

I'm on Facebook

I gave in to the incessant naggings of other Facebook friends, and did my own page. So I now have a Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=759492523).

Bank charges - bastards

So I've sent a letter off to try and reclaim £25 that was charged to my account this weekend, for a cheque that bounced. The day BEFORE the bounced cheque went thru, another cheque I'd paid in was showing on my balance sheet, therefore I assumed there was enough money in my account to cover it. But no, it bounced and I get slammed for £25. So I emailed Cahoot for an explanation and they said that even though the amount appeared on my statement, I should have still allowed for 3 working days to pass for the funds to go through.

If this is the case then why the fuck did they bother showing the amount on my statement, if technically, the money wasn't there? I'd ratheer it didn't appear until the CASH WAS THERE - FFS.

So I downloaded one of those letter templates and adapted it to suit my claim. All I want back is the £25, I will go to small claims court if I have to, it's the principle I'm fighting agsint. These bastards keep announcing ridiculous profits year after year, while us, "the Little People" pay thru the nose in charges. Research has shown that it costs £2 in admin fees to bounce a cheque. So the remaining £23 is pure profiteering and greed.

If every Cahoot customer closed their accounts and withdrew their money THEN where would the fuckers be??????

Fingers crossed...........

Friday, July 27, 2007

This Madeleine nonsense has to stop

I read this news item today with an open mouth:

A mother who scolded her tantrum-throwing daughter in a shop was outraged to be visited at home by police who told her it was inappropriate to reprimand the girl in the light of Madeleine McCann's disappearance.

Ruth Ball was at home when police officers knocked at her door and and ticked her off about the way she had chastised four-year-old Leigha.

The 24-year-old was told that the method she had used to reprimand Leigha was "inappropriate" in the light of Madeleine's disappearance from her family's holiday apartment in Portugal.

Ms Ball was at a newsagent in Dunstable, Bedfordshire, when Leigha started screaming after being refused sweets.

She swept her daughter out of the shop and put her in the car to calm down, standing a couple of feet away with her three-year-old son Jack.

A few minutes later she got into the car and drove the family home, thinking no more of it.

The following day a policeman visited her at her home in Luton to tell her off.

The officer said it was inadvisable to shout at her daughter and shut her in the car after what happened to missing Madeleine.

The mother has quite rightly defended herself and said

"I am trying to raise two decent human beings, even though I have been advised by the police to let them run riot, turn into thugs and help keep the prison population going when they're older.

"Kids learn young. If they learn now that kicking, hitting and screaming gets what they want, what are they going to do when they're adults?"

I can't believe that someone reported this woman to the Police, and secondly, the Police thought it appropriate to go round to her house and tell her off for discipling her child. And I'm sorry but WHAT THE FUCK has it to do with Madeleine McCann? "Don't tell your child off in case she gets abducted? Then you'll feel really bad, y'know??" Erm sorry but what is the connection?

Ruth had not left her child alone in an unlocked hotel room while she swanned off for Tapas and vino. Ruth was simply scolding a child who was chucking a fit when she was refused sweets.

I can't believe the McCann bandwagon is still rolling on. Cinema adverts about her disappearance have been pulled after complaints they scared small kids, and complaints that people going to the flicks didn't want to have to sit thru more Madeleine footage. Gerry McCann is now trawling the corridors of power in Washington as a self-appointed ambassador for missing kids, and also to "highlight the plight of his missing daughter".

They've seen the Pope, they've hogged national TV, they've been on talk shows and news interviews, every breath of their lives is reported in an attempt to keep their daughter's abduction in the headlines. "Cuddle cat farts!" "Gerry picks his nose!" what next??

We're all Madeleine-d out for goodness sake. And now we can't tell our kids off, "because of Madeleine".

I'm sorry but my sympathies ended when I found out they'd left three very young kids alone in a hotel room. And despite their good jobs and obvious wealth, they preferred to leave them unattended rather than pay a tenner for a babysitter. "Oh but we checked on them every 30 minutes" is not a good enough excuse in my book. It only takes a few seconds for a child to fall and injure themselves, climb out a window, eat or drink something dangerous, choke on something. It matters not one iota that they checked on them regularly or not. They should NOT have been left alone in the first place.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Typical bloody mass media

Reading the press coverage of Celebration Europe I can't help getting a bit fucked off with the stereotypical attitude of the mass media. Once again they dredge up the old "nerd" stereotypes, and make out like we are all a bunch of freaks who don't live in the Real World (well the state the Real World is in, who'd want to live in it??)

The Sun did a one page article featuring a close-up photo of a Vader helmet with a fag in his mouth, and various shots of Sandtroopers and the Police, with the usual captions about "being short for a Stormtrooper" and "not the droids we're looking for" (I was one of the Sandies in the shots, wooo!). The screaming headline was "TAR WARS" with a tagline about how "Movie fans light up the UK". In the centre page was an article on David Prowse and Mark Hamill who were meeting up again for the first time in 25 years at CE. Thankfully, the article was not as scathing or mocking as the "Tar Wars" spread.

Then we have the Daily Mail who sent a total non-Star Wars fan to CE, and naturally she wrote a sarcastic article politely calling us all freaks (read it here). Lines such as "And then there are the drooling fans, standing in queues with their carrier bags. The whole impression is of the world's wackiest refugee camp" help to paint a picture of nerdy negativity.

What do the paper expect from a reporter who'd rather be out having a manicure than being photographed with a bunch of Sith Lords? Where was the article written by a Sci Fi movie fan, to offer a balanced view to this daft cow's bias?

She failed to question what it is about Star Wars that has helped it survive for 30 years, surpass other bigger budget Scifi movies, and is now inducting a whole new younger generation of fans that will carry the mania into the future.

She poked fun at the costumers and Stormtroopers, people who spend the earth building their outfits, then use them to attend events that raise a considerable amount of money for Charities all over the world. The Medicinema stand alone raised £6000 on the CE weekend, a great achievement. Nothing was mentioned of the skills of the costumers, the seamstresses, the prop builders who make the outfits, or the guys who build life size mock-ups of the Death Star corridor or the Falcon walkway or the Tantive Hall corridor - awesome achievements that took hours of work and dedication. Nothing was mentioned of Artist's Alley, containing some brilliant artwork from world renowned Star Wars illustrators, or the graffiti competition with some stunning colourful creations.

She poked fun at the ageing actors, admittedly some of whome have had small careers since SW, but who are still heroes and icons in the fans eyes.

Fair enough, there are some SW fans who take it a bit too far and get rather scary with their Zeal. But that's a small percentage, and EVERY re-enactment group has it's nutjobs, NOT just SciFi people. So why do we always get held up for a public bashing?????

Out of all the fantastic sights and photos that were taken at CE, the only pics to be published in the UKs biggest tabloid were negative and mocking. I wish a thermal detonator was real, I'd sure as hell use one against the mass media.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

I met Mark Hamill

Exciting was not the word for that morning as I made my way to the hotel to meet Tim, Andy and the GMTV driver.  I was bricking it as John H was too busy to attend so it was just me and the guys.  I'd had to liaise with Nick the GMTV dude who sounded really nice and he sorted a lift for us and gave us numbers to ring if I had any probs.

We got to the gates and people were waiting outside for the stars so we were gawped at as we got out of the Voyager with it's shaded windows.  We got shown to a small changing room and briefed as to what was going to heppen - they wanted the Troopers to have a "fight" with the Entertainment Tonight presenters, who would be dressed as Solo and Leia.  Mark was due to arrive at 0800.  

We were taken into the studio to see where we'd be, there were wires all over the floor  :shock:  argh, I had visions of Troopers tripping over them on live TV but the lads didn't put a foot wrong Prime Minister GORDON BROWN was being interviewed with Kelly Holmes so we stood and watched, I coudln't believe I was in the same air space as the Prime Minister, and I also couldn't believe that security wasn't tighter.  Our bags weren't searched or checked, we were allowed to go and stand around in the studio while he was live on air - if I'd been some sort of nutter I could have taken him out in front of the whole nation .

He came over afterwards and we shook his hand and I told him to "Please run the country better than Tony" to which he did the usual politician's smile and moved on.  My mum said I should have "hit him and asked him about Grammar Schools"

We watched the presenters running through the Star Wars introduction with their lightsabres during the commercial break, then went back to our changing rooms just as Mark arrived.  Andy called his name and we introduced ourselves as "your Stormtroopers for the morning" to which he looked indignant and said "Why wasn't I told about this??  Who's in charge here??!!!", we thought he was just fooling around but the we realised he was really pissed off.  AAARGH!!!!  Luckily Nick came over and took control, spoke to Mark like he was a naughty child and got him in his changing room to explain.  I think he also saw our faces and told Mark that he'd probably scared the crap out of us with his outburst.

I was peeping out the door to see or hear anything and as Nick left the changing room, Mark came out too and straight over to us to apologise and say "sorry guys, misunderstanding" - we asked if we could see him after the interview and he said yes no problem, we were SO RELIEVED   Turns out he thought they were going to dress him up in Trooper armour and he was NOT happy about it ....

We also got the chance to chat to Luke's young daughter who was blonde and very sweet.  Imagine growing up at school and being able to say "yeah my dad;s Luke Skywalker"

We were taken back to the studio ready to do the live slot, and I got separated from the Troopers and told to sit on the GMTV sofa - yes THE GMTV sofa  while the ET spot was filmed opposite.  Tim and Andy disappeared to go get ready with Mark, then after the intro on they came with Mark "under arrest" and marched him to the sofa, it was ace.

Took lots of pics of the guys with various GMTV girls who all wanted pics, and we also got the presenters too, then there was Mark and we had him all to ourselves for about 10 mins while he signed stuff and chatted and posed for pics, he was dead nice and he talked about how he read about redheads being bullied and picked on in the papers and how unfair that was and what a nice colour my hair was he signed the guys shoulder bells and also a CE brochure for Richard who missed out on the troop (I never got to see him receive it )

Got great feedback from Nick who also apologised again for Mark's outburst and said that the morning had gone "brilliantly", so high fives all around and we're getting "GMTV Troopers" T-shirts done .

Here are some pics of the rehearsal not the live show.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Graduation Day :@

It's Graduation Week here at the Uni - and you can't walk anywhere without being shoved out the way by enthusiastic mums in flowery dresses taking multiple photos of their kid in a stupid gown and hat.  One bint barged into me, didn't say sorry, I tutted and she tutted back at me even louder.  I resisted the urge to scream "your kid with a £10,000 student debt will be working in admin in 6 months time, bint!!!"

I'm sure lots of the graduates will go on to illustrious careers - but many will fall by the wayside thanks to the oversubscribed graduate job market.  We had an Economics Graduate working a £12k admin job at my last workplace, cos there was "nothing out there for her".

The air crackles with a sort of smug pride that just irritates me, as all parents look forward to talking to everyone about "my son - the one with the degree......", as if "getting a degree" is the passport to a fabulous life of success and wealth.  Far from it.

Bah humbug!  I'm just sitting here bored shitless as I want to get going to CE, the clock is ticking backwards, I've nowt to do here and everything to do at home - ARGH!