Friday, June 29, 2007

You don't need an indie song, to figure out what's going on...

7.31 On Time
I don't know who it was, in the Senior Management 'the minions are getting complacent what shall we do to make their lives more difficult?' Meeting, who came up with the genius notion: "Hey, how about ... we remove their voicemail" (raised eyebrows of approval) "and - we don't tell them we've done it?" (impressed nodding).

Or, who improved it with:"And then, when they do start to spot something's not right, we can send out an impenetrable, ambiguous and overlong email 'explaining' why it's for the best." (smirks of triumph all round)

I'll bet The Galumpher had a hand in it though.

It's not only history that's just one fucking thing after another.

Mastermind - Divine Comedy
Let's Go To Bed - The Cure
Eple - Royksopp
La Femme D'Argent - Air
After The Curtain - Beirut
Dancing Shoes - Arctic Monkeys
Too Nice To Talk Too - The Beat


Thursday, June 28, 2007

I don't want to kiss no one else...

16.12 On Time
A bit of soul searching went on last week.

Not from me obviously, because I don't actually have a soul. Or hidden depths, or any of that stuff.

I did have a perfect moment though. Lying back on the lawn, watching the clouds: simultaneous sun and rain, listening to The Blue Nile.

"Soul Boy" brought tears to my eyes.

Will that do?

Soul Boy - The Blue Nile
Any Major Dude - Steely Dan
Goodbye To Love - The Carpenters
The Impossible Dream - Matt Munro
Down Town - Petula Clark
Boys Don't Cry - The Cure
Teenage Kicks - The Undertones


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

He opens the door, he's got that look on his face...

7.31 On Time
We were discussing Baker Street last week

After the usual "Bob Holness played saxophone on it/No he didn't, that was a rumour started by Stuart Maconie" chat, someone mused: "I wonder if he ever did buy that piece of land?" Someone else said :"Well, if he didn't he'll be kicking himself, it'd be worth a fortune by now."

I know he didn't buy it.

Just like he never gave up the booze. The one night stands were a different matter, but they gave up on him, rather than the other way round. He tried the quiet little town, but felt suffocated and was back in the city within six months.

Whenever I hear the song I see him: unshaven, running a hand through uncombed hair, with a bemused expression and a look in his eyes that shows he knows he's had his last chance, but he doesn't know why.

There is no reason.

Some things just are.

Baker Street - Gerry Rafferty
Superstar - The Carpenters
Fire and Rain - James Taylor
The Carnival Is Over - The Seekers
The Mourners OF St Pauls - Liam Frost
Tiny Vessels - Death Cab For Cutie
The Culling Of The Fold - The Decemberists


Tuesday, June 26, 2007

"Let's drink to all that we've left behind..."

7.31 On Time
My mum had a trait which used to drive me crazy.

She would mull over a throwaway remark for months. An imagined slight in the post office queue became the subject of an autopsy. She would re-hash, dissect and analyse it until she'd convinced herself of the speaker's malicious intent. Then, having established exactly how it was she'd been wronged, she would dwell on all the retorts she should have made and rehearse the future ways she would royally snub the offender.

I decided, long ago, never to waste time or energy on pointless introspection.

It's why I don't dwell on things.

The Mourners Of St Pauls - Liam Frost
Fake Empire - The National
Making It Back - Richmond Fontaine
Country Feedback - REM
Just Off The Coast - Clearlake
Red Rabbits- The Shins
Over The Hillside - The Blue Nile

(Antichrist Television Blues) - Arcade Fire
Goin' Back - Dusty Springfield


Monday, June 25, 2007

17.12 On Time
Today could've been worse.

There could've been a pile of unanswered letters on my desk.
My keyboard could've been buried beneath a landslide of message slips.
My answer phone light could've been flashing.

As it was, my most onerous task was having to read an impenetrable email from our...well, I'm not exactly sure what it is that he does, apart from send incomprehensible emails and have a really bad eye for design...anyway, our person who writes the instructions telling us how we shall carry out our many and varied tasks and corrals uncontrolled documents with an evangelistic fervour.

From this, I have gleaned that there is to be another Course soon. This time it's 'Project Management'. The agenda doesn't mention pipe cleaners, but it does contain the work 'Workshop'. Twice.

The best part of the day was Canoeing Instructor's face on receipt of her holiday gift. She was playing in the snow as I left.

Kid Charlemagne - Steely Dan
Soul Boy - The Blue Nile
I Saw The Light - Todd Rundgren
Morningtown Ride - The Seekers
Fade Into You - Mazzy Star
Torn - Natalie Imbruglia
White Horses - Jackie
It's A Hit - We Are Scientists
Stuck In The Middle - Stealers Wheel


Well, slide over here!

7.31 On Time
That's it then.

My holidays are all over.

Fun was had with cheese, hedges, some bubble bath, a cocktail shaker, the Maze at Chatsworth and the Church of Scientology. But not necessarily in that order. Leanne led Tim and Thesaurusboy astray, but no permanent damage was done.

Chickens were involved, but not harmed.

Love Will Tear Us Apart - Susanna & The Magical Orchestra
Lucky Stars - Dean Friedman
Sylvia's Mother - Dr Hook
I'm A Believer - The Monkees
JCB Song - Nizlopi
Man On The Moon - REM
Verdi Cries - 10,000 Maniacs
Anchorage - Michelle Shocked


Thursday, June 14, 2007

16.12 On Time
I may not have had much enthusiasm for the Customer Care course but I really, really wanted to win those Maltesers.

My first attempt at pitching my pipe cleaner idea was met with indifference. But after the coffee break when Leanne & WildMoodSwings hadn’t come up with anything better they became, like the pipe cleaners, quite pliable. I set to work.

At the judging there was a tense moment, a bit like being in the boardroom on The Apprentice, when it was touch and go between us and the sheer cheek of the man who’d had the nerve to do nothing at all with his.

I had to feign unconcern while my every fibre was screaming "Ours is best! Ours is best! We should win!" (I think someone had switched on that dramatic cliffhanger heartbeat sound effect too).

I like to think it was the explanation that swung it:

“We have worked as a team to make pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. All the pieces join together and no one piece is more important than the other because if any single piece is missing, the picture is incomplete.”

The Maltesers were in the bag.

The 'Go' In The Go For It - Grandaddy
Roscoe - Midlake
Suppose - Leaves
Full Of Stars - Turin Brakes
Stranger By The Minute - Porcupine Tree
Gardening At Night - REM
Reward - Teardrop Explodes


Wednesday, June 13, 2007

17.12 On Time
Today I realised that, occasionally, I will make gratuitous calls to companies where I know I will be kept on hold for twenty minutes or so. Just to give myself a break.

Tomorrow I am being sent on a 'Customer Care' course (everyone has to go, it's not that I've been singled out as especially uncaring). Previous attendees indicate that I will be expected to fashion something symbolic of Customer Care out of a pipe cleaner. I can barely contain my enthusiasm.

I suppose I've left it too late to ask for suggestions?

The Crane Wife - The Decemberists


Monday, June 11, 2007

16.12 On Time
My Origami calendar has hit a lame spell.

Last week I was entreated to produce a fan.
Come on guys! Any five year old can "fold a sheet of paper like an accordion" and make a fan - it's instinct, it doesn't take a diagram!
Next came a 'slug bug' wtf? Followed by an 'unusual' (as in 'crap') picture frame and a 'nice' bow tie. I needed a dollar bill to make that last one. I know a dollar doesn't get you much these days, but it still seems like a waste.

This morning sunk to a new low with nothing to make at all. This morning I got 'tips on scoring'. 'Fold the paper carefully'. 'Use a blunt knife'. 'If you have a ruler that might come in handy'.

Guys, guys! It's Monday morning.

I need a challenge. Something to put a smile on the face of a colleague. Something like the week of finger puppets from just before the holiday - now that was inspired. Maybe a dolphin? An orangutan? What about the classic 'preying mantis' ?

There's half the year left; they can't have run out of ideas already, surely? I know I haven't.

The Trials Of Van Occupanther - Midlake


7.31 On Time
I asked for a weekly ticket to Skipton this morning. I have no idea why. I wasn't even thinking about Skipton. The 'did I hear you right?' frown on the face of the lady who sells the tickets alerted me and, just in time, I started paying more attention to what I was saying.

For goodness sake if I went to Skipton on the train it would take me all day - I'd have to go to Leeds first and that, it's a ridiculous idea!

Although, the sun is shining and I'm starting to imagine: castle, canal, nice pub lunch ...

Bloodless - Tom McRae
One More Mile - Tom McRae
Draw Down The Stars - Tom McRae
For The Restless - Tom McRae
Boy With The Bubble Gun - Tom McRae
A & B Song - Tom McRae
2nd Law - Tom McRae
End Of The World Blues - Tom McRae


Friday, June 08, 2007

7.31 On Time
"But what about the tree?" Asks JohnB (among others).

Did we 'drive thru' it? Well, no, actually.

Had we snaked up Hwy 1 from Mendocino all windswept and glamorous in something low and impractical with the top down, it would have happened. As it was, due to a mismatch of expectation with Hertz over what constitutes 'medium sized' we were pretty lucky not to have been driving a tank.

The robust vehicle we eventually ended up with served our purpose very well, but unfortunately (on Driving Day 2 anyway) there was no way it was fitting through that trunk.

We stood around for a bit watching everyone else drive thru (or not), helped out with the photographs and shared the I can't believe I paid $5 to do this, what-the-heck shrug & smile of people who'd driven 100 miles out of their way for the moment. Then we hit the road again.

When we go back we're going in a smaller car.

Born Slippy - Underworld
The Stranger - Billy Joel
Patience Of Angels - Boo Hewerdine
She's Gone - Hall & Oates
A Man, Me Then Jim - Rilo Kiley
Mr Brightside - The Killers
Ant Farm - Eels


Thursday, June 07, 2007

17.12 On Time
So, I'm back then.

"You've missed nothing" Everyone says. Followed by "How was it?"
I go a bit faraway-eyed and smile: "Brilliant, thanks......"

Unfortunately, if reports are true, I may have to revise my opinion of EvilNemesis and possibly even demote him to ExNemesis, which is a shame and will leave a vacancy.

ThesaurusBoy is having the worst time ever and the general opinion is that 'Something' will Have To Be Done, preferably before it is Too Late.

The icing on the cake is OldFishWife's mysteriously acquired calendar of priests. Strange and wrong.

Unsurprisingly, only in HeadHoncho's dreams was Monday's Big Event an unqualified success. I did get a round of applause from the naughty table for asking IneffectualManager a question he couldn't answer, but that is a bit like shooting fish in a barrel.

Otherwise, it left everyone as confused as ever.
Unless we really are doing a performance of RiverDance.

Thankfully, I'm off on holiday in 11 days. No, really...

Head Home - Midlake
I Remember California - REM
Don't Change Your Plans - Ben Folds Five
Going To A Town - Rufus Wainwright
Behind The Frontlines - Johnathan Rice
Western Skies - Roddy Frame
Why You'd Want To Live Here - Death Cab For Cutie


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