Category Archives: Life

Setanta Shambles

A couple of people have asked after the grumpy old man in me over Christmas, well he is back.

I turned over the channel to Setanta Sports an hour or so ago and it had gone. Not literally, but I was being invited by the on-screen message to take out a subscription. All well and good, but I already have one.

After calling Setanta and selecting the ‘existing customer’ option complete with its five minute minumum wait, I redialled selecting the almost instantly answered ‘new customer’ option.

Continue reading


What year is it?

Gosh, Christmas seemed to fly by with all the weeks of preparations disapperaing in what seemed to be ten minutes flat, with me failing miserably to blog at all over the festive period.

Despite the absence of any posts, I was laid in bed in the early hours of the morning the other day having one of those really strange thought processes that can only appear in the dead of the night.

It occured to me that we are changing the way we pronounce the year in this country as a result of the last millennium. Historically we have announced the date in hundreds rather than thousands which is the norm in many other nations. For instance, 1910 wasFather Time “nineteen-ten” to us and typically “one thousand, nine hundred and ten” to, let’s say, the Spanish. Previously we had “nineteen oh-eight” whilst our continental friends more often used “one thousand, nine hundred and eight”, and so on.

Then suddenly as the last millennium approached, people in the UK began talking about “the year two thousand”, or just “two thousand”. It had to be so, because saying “twenty-hundred” just sounded wrong.

Now, I expected once we moved away from the year of 2000 itself that people would revert to saying, for example, “twenty-oh seven”. Some did, but most stuck to “two thousand and seven”. Why not I say, it does after all come to the tongue more easily.

So then, the next big date would be 2010, when it would surely be easier and more historically familiar for us to say “twenty-ten” rather than “two thousand and ten”? Well, as it gets nearer, I have heard quite a few people referring to 2010 and as yet not one has reverted to the older, more familiar format. Everyone that I have heard) seems to be saying “two thousand and ten”.

It remains to be seen whether our verbal reference to the date format has been changed forever by the millennium. In the mean time, my brain goes on in its never ending search for weird things to think about when I’m trying to get to sleep at night!

Like an excited little kid again

Remember that totally excited feeling everyone had a Christmas as a small child. You know, the one that showly builds up for about a week prior to the big day, beginning withChristmas Tree that warm tingly feeling inside and ending up on Christmas Eve with so much excitement that you almost miss out on the night before Christmas fun because you cannot wait for the next morning. Just before falling asleep you really did hear Santa’s sleigh bells, didn’t you?

Like many, I suspect, the excitement overflowed in our house at about 3am on Christmas morning after no more than a couple of hours sleep, when I used to wake up and see that Father Christmas had been and the frenzy began. Well almost. I actually used to wake my Mum to ask if I could open my presents! The look of utter exhausted confusion on her face as she peered through half open bloodshot eyes year after year will be etched on my mind forever. She used to let me open one or two items and then it was back to bed until the far more sociable hour of 5am, or six if she was lucky ….. then it all started again!

Continue reading

Irn-Bru Snowman Advert

This really made me laugh when I first saw it the other evening. It actually made me laugh loudly. I think it came across even funnier because it initially appears to be an excerpt from ‘The Snowman’ original. Brilliant stuff, well worth a look and guaranteed to make you smile.

Printer pain …….

This is nothing to do with coffee. It’s about big companies, poor customer service and even worse training.

We have a printer produced by one of the World’s largest and most respected manufacturers of office equipment. It’s not a cheap one, because we wanted to avoid hassle and have really good on-site support in the event of a breakdown. This week our seven month old, lightly used colour laser printer broke down. To be exact, it started clicking and not printing properly. We called the UK warranty line which is manned, it turns out, by a third-party company entrusted by the manufacturer to look after its warranty business, and reported the fault. This was where the real problems began. Continue reading

Welcome to Coffee & Cake

Miles behind most of the world, I’m finally starting a blog. A fair bit of the time, cake.jpgI shall probably be inanely wittering on about coffee; how good it can be, how bad it can be, and how most people in this world have never tasted it to its full potential.

Don’t worry though, it’s not all just about coffee – it gets worse! As I get older and the world appears to move ever faster, I seem to find myself constantly left astounded by the things that occur and the way people seem unable to overcome behemoth systems in the face of farcical situations. So, I’ll probably be doing my grumpy old man impression quite a bit too.

Finally for now, welcome to my blog.