D4D

No, not D&D

People Carriers

As has been noted before on here, I do a fair amount of driving on any given week, mainly for commuting. It’s about 400-500 miles per week at the moment – although I’ve had greater mileages, and lesser ones.

One of the things I notice during those drives is how drivers do seem to group up, and that certain groups are infinitely worse than others. There’s always the usual culprits – BMWs, Audis, and White Vans, but there’s another one I notice more over time. MPVs, or people carriers.

I don’t know if it’s because BMW et al don’t actually do people carrier vehicles, but it does seem that MPV drivers are on a par with BMW drivers. In particular it seems that Citroen Xsara Picasso (now renamed the C4 Picasso, I think) are a breed of shit drivers. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve seen these vacuous bell-ends approach roundabouts in the wrong lanes, cut across lines of traffic, cruise across busy roundabouts, stick their cars into the flow of traffic, weave across multiple carriageways, and generally act like cunts.

So yes, welcome to the ‘shit drivers’ group.

  • BMWs and Audis
  • White Van drivers
  • MPVs – and Picasso drivers in particular.

Break Contemplation

When this current contract ends, I’ve already got the next one lined up, which will be another 4-6 weeks of work, taking me through to the start of June. It’s a nice situation, having something already lined up and waiting to start – not all that common, and helped by the knowledge that I have no intention of extending this one at all.

It’s making me think about what’s next (i.e. what’s after that) and I’m actually contemplating taking a week off, disappearing to a cottage somewhere.

It’ll be expensive though. Not the cottage (or whatever) itself, that’s not too bad.  But I’ll still know that it’s costing me a week of work, which is a not-insignificant amount. Mind you, I haven’t actually had a proper break/holiday in more than two years, so it’s something I’m definitely thinking about.

I’ve got some ideas on locations, but also of things I want to do. But mainly just taking a break, and hopefully putting some of what’s in my head onto paper/disk/keyboard.

Right now, that’s sounding like quite the plan.

Jargontastic

At the current workplace, I’ve heard more jargon and bollocks than I know what to do with.

The one today was “onboarding” – which is apparently another word for “starting a new job”. I suspect it’s only used by cunts and idiots – but really, Jesus Christ, “Onboarding”?!? Fuck me.

East/West

I’m really hoping that this isn’t a poxy April Fool’s thing, because (as I’ve written before) it’s actually needed far more than HS2 is.

Network Rail have published a development plan which includes an East/West route connecting Bedford, Milton Keynes, Aylesbury and Oxford.

Phase 1 will deliver the infrastructure required for Chiltern Railways services between Oxford and London via Bicester as well as the works required for the later introduction of East West Rail services west of Bicester.

Phase 2, which is at an earlier stage of development, will deliver the EWR works east of Bicester to Bletchley and Bedford, including the Aylesbury to Claydon Junction line within this five-year period ending March 2019

So – still a long way to go, but it looks like it might just be a plan.

Mislaid

I am, on occasion, a bloody idiot. Last night was a prime example of that.

I went to the cinema to see the new Captain America film, and also had a meal. Because I was out like that, I took my Kindle, and because it was chiffing cold, I also took a jacket. (I’m normally pretty immune to cold, and don’t bother with jackets or coats at all)

When I got to the cinema, I put the jacket down by the side of the seat, with the Kindle in its inside pocket.

When I left the cinema, I also left the jacket – because it’s not in my mental software to get it, I completely forgot about it. I am, in short, a complete fucking idiot.

I went back this morning first thing (I had a day off anyway, for a number of reasons) to see if they’d found it, but no-one had handed it in. I’ll check again, just in case it’d been held over somewhere, but the odds are that the jacket and the Kindle are gone.

Of course, things could have been so much worse. It could’ve been an expensive coat/jacket, I could have left my wallet in the jacket as well. The Kindle could have had my payment details in it, or personal information. A couple of years ago, the loss of something like this would have knackered me, would have led to some financial juggling and so on just to replace it.

Now though, I’ve already registered it as lost, ordered a replacement, and it’s really not a big problem. It’s annoying – and of course a reminder that I’m a fucking idiot – but it all could have been so much worse. Indeed, it’s gone some way to showing me the changes that have happened over the last year or so, and in that, it’s no bad thing.

Big Business

As it turns out (and I do need to remind myself of this more often, and/or not take on the jobs) I really don’t understand big companies. I don’t have the necessary mindset for working within them, and I simply don’t get how they work.  All of this also probably contributes to explaining why I don’t want to work in them too often, and why this current contract won’t be being extended by me.

I like small companies – even medium-sized ones. I like the ability to bypass management (if it even exists) and talk direct to business owners/directors, and make a difference. I like knowing that (mostly) the people I work with are productive, and know what the hell they’re doing.

In a big company, I’m a fish out of water. It seems like productivity becomes something that’s talked about and aimed for, but isn’t actually achieved. Ever. I don’t get the mindset where people would rather have meetings (and sometimes meetings about meetings) in order to establish who will be to blame if a project goes wrong, rather than just getting on and doing the project. I don’t get how productivity seems to become a way of avoiding work, because there’s “so much” other stuff to do.

Currently I’m working in a huge barn of an office, with probably 100-150 people in it. Yet they seem to collectively do less than the previous company I worked with, which had six people in a room. People here seem happy to be bums on seats, to do as little as possible on a daily basis and simply mark time ’til they can a) go home or b) retire. It’s not a mindset I can work with, let alone live with. I want – no, if I’m honest I need – to be doing stuff, to create things that work, that make life easier.

I needed to write this so I can look back on it, so I can remember just why I don’t like working with big faceless companies, the behemoths of the world – regardless of the industry they ‘specialise’ in.

 

Pheasant Terrorism

Some days I pretty much despair of the human race.  (OK, OK, most days. Nearly every day.)

Yesterday’s example was caused by this story in the BBC about a pheasant ‘terrorising’ people at a farm in Cambridgeshire.

From the story…

A delivery driver was trapped for 20 minutes after the bird blocked his way, flew at the bonnet then chased his van.

“One young girl was having her first driving lesson on our land and could not move the car because the pheasant would not leave it alone.”

“I don’t think we’ll see our delivery driver for a while either,” Mrs Hamilton added.

I’m sorry, but if you’re in a vehicle, and being ‘terrorised’ by a pheasant then

  1. You’re a pathetic wanker of the first order
  2. YOU’RE IN A CAR. Run over the sodding thing. Job done.

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