Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Get stuffed, Barossa!


Even though we've got ourselves a new arsehole in charge of the Fourth Reich, the outgoing one couldn't resist the opportunity to tell the UK to get stuffed when presented with the platform by another arsehole, our very own Andrew Marr.

Marr is the one you might remember who said all bloggers were sad little adolescent prats sitting in a dark basement masturbating where their mothers couldn't see them. Mind you, in light of some of the idiots who have been trying to disrupt this blog recently, he might be right about some of us...

But I digress. Mr Barossa told his audience that if we thought Britain could do anything to curb immigration from the EU then we were sorely deluded. Cameron is considering an ‘emergency brake’ that could be applied if numbers of incomers exceeded forecasts, and further curbs on low-skilled EU migrants’ rights to benefits, tax credits and national insurance numbers.

Though there is growing support for reform in Germany, the Prime Minister is being warned by the EU that fundamental changes to the right to free movement across the continent would require full-scale changes to the EU treaties that will be all but impossible to deliver.

Barroso insisted an arbitrary cap on EU immigration would be incompatible with EU law and condemned Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond’s suggestion last week that Britain was ‘lighting a fire’ under the EU by proposing a referendum.

'What would be the influence of the prime minister of Britain if he was not part of the EU? It would be zero. Inside the EU you can get much more than outside the EU' he said. ‘I think this reference to fires and weapons is more appropriate for defence than foreign secretary,’ a reference to Mr Hammond’s previous Cabinet job. 'I think it is very important to have a positive tone between Britain and the EU.’

Well I've got a very simple message for Mr Barossa. That message is this : We don't need you and we don't want you. To suggest that this country would be nothing without the EU is frankly insulting and patronising. Who the hell does this bloke think he is? Well, I can answer that too :  he's an unelected and irrelevant little Brussels bureaucrat of the sort that makes it more likely we will quit Europe rather than less.

Keep talking, matey. If there's one thing the people of this country really likes it's being talked down to by foreigners trying to put us in our place...

Tuesday, 21 October 2014

Lynda Bellingham


I was sad to hear the news that Lynda Bellingham had lost her fight with colon cancer. Apart from anything else, it's a bastard way to die and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. Really.

I can't say that I was a lifelong fan or that I could name a half dozen things she appeared in, but Mrs D and I watched her appearance on This Morning a couple of weeks back. She knew she was buggered and yet she was still chirpy and cheerful and gave a sterling performance. Now we could be cynical (Who, me? Shurely not!) and say "Well, what do you expect from a professional actress putting on a performance?" and there may be an element of truth in that. But could you put on such a performance faced with that sort of imminent demise? I know I couldn't. The fact that she was on there at all speaks volumes for the woman's character and bravery.

She wanted one last Christmas with her family before she died. She didn't get it and that's a shame. I think she deserved it.

Her situation put me in mind of Wilko Johnson, another terminal cancer sufferer. Wilko said he found the diagnosis 'liberating'. Not sure I would. But then we all have to die sometime and maybe knowing when is strangely liberating. I hope I never have to find out.

Well done, Lynda. RIP.

Monday, 20 October 2014

Getting that job...


Before I retired, I worked for myself and 'body shopped' myself around more companies than most people have had hot dinners so I sat through ore than my fair share of job interviews. Actually, I regarded them as meetings with potential clients because, being self employed, I was looking to work with them not for them - something that was lost on the wast majority of my clients. But I digress...

Over the weekend, I came across an interesting article about the most stupid questions asked at job interviews. Here's some of them. How would you answer them?

1. 'How many planes are there currently in the air?'
Asked by Investment Technology Group to a software developer candidate.

2. 'How would you sell a fridge to an Eskimo?'
Asked by Harrods to a Summer Sales Associate candidate.

3. 'If you were a Disney cartoon character, which one would you be?'
Asked at Trend Micro, Marlow, to an Account Manager candidate.

4. 'Tell me about the last time you had a 'Eureka' moment?'
Asked at Xceed Group, London, to a Marketing Assistant candidate

5. 'If you were given a million pounds, what kind of business would you start?'
Asked at Schuh, to a Sales Advisor candidate.

6. 'What is the number of people travelling on a tube per day?'
Asked at Barclays Wealth, London, to a Business Analyst candidate.

7. 'What do you consider to be the 'greater good?''
Asked at ThoughtWorks, to a Business Analyst candidate.

8. 'Is jaffa cake a cake or biscuit?'
Asked at Kerry Group to an Engineer candidate.

9. 'How would you describe an atom to a child?'
Asked at Gartner, Egham to a Client Executive candidate.

10. 'Who could win in a fight, Chuck Norris or Godzilla?'
Asked at Schlumberger, Aberdeen, to a Field Specialist Trainee candidate.

11. 'Would you support HS2 or Boris Airport?'
Asked at McLagen, London, to an Asset Management Analyst candidate.

12. 'If I write down all of the numbers from 1 to 1,000,000 on a page, how many times do I write down the digit 2?'
Asked at Jane Street, London, to a Trader candidate.

13. 'How many cranes are in London?'
Asked at Capco, London, to an Associate Talent Programmer candidate.

14. 'Calculate the size of the disposable nappy market in the UK.'
Asked at Bain & Company, London, to an Associate Consultant candidate.

15. 'You play a game of Russian roulette with another person, is it better to go first or second?'
Asked at Codemasters, Royal Leamington Spa, to a Game Developer Candidate.

There are, of course, correct and incorrect answers to these questions, but from my vast experience tempered with my not giving a shit whether I get the job or not, here's what I would reply :

1. Nobody actually knows and I certainly don't need to know. Why do you?

2. If you're trying to sell fridges to eskimos, then you need to fire your marketing director.

3. What kind of Mickey Mouse company are you running here?

4. About five minutes ago when I discovered I was being interviewed by an amateur.

5. I wouldn't bother as I already made a million and have my own company.

6. Too many.

7. My family.

8. I'm more interested in what it tastes like.

9. It's very very small. Even smaller than you.

10. Chuck Norris because Godzilla doesn't exist.

11. No.

12. If you have time to work that out, then you're not doing your job properly.

13. Define the physical confines of London.

14. How long have you got?

15. No.

My favourite interview was one where they rigged the chair so that the back came away in my hand as I pulled it out to sit down. "Oh dear!" I said. "Not the old broken chair stress interview technique again. That's so passe!"

Or the one where I was being interviewed by two people at NHS Supply Chain from a pre-printed list of questions. One of them asked the question, the other wrote down the answer. After about five minutes, I asked to stop the interview. "But we've only just started" said the personnel manager. "I appreciate that" I replied. "But I'm afraid that you just don't have the qualities I'm searching for in a prospective employer."

And if you're left reaching for that elusive response to the question "Is there anything you'd like to ask us?" then I suggest this one :

"Can you please summarise in less than 60 seconds why I should work for your company?"

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Footie balls


Let's be honest. There's a whole lot of shite talked about football. But that's no excuse for the politicians to join in....even if they are desperate to attract the votes of the common man.

First the Conservatives decide to sound off about the price of match tickets, suggesting rather ludicrously that these should be set by law. Another vote winning idea from the pathetic Department of Sport Media and Culture.

And then Labour decides - predictably - that if the Tories come up with something, then they need to match it. Or come up with something even more ridiculous! If Labour wins the Election, then they promise a 'revolution in English football' - giving fans board membership and the right to say who owns their club.

Now come on! Repeat after me : "Football is a game. Football is a game. Football is...."

Got it? It's not that important. If ticket prices are too high, then people won't buy them. If you want to buy shares in a club, then buy them. Seats on the board? FFS get a grip!

About the only sensible policy I've heard onthis subject so far is from UKIP. They say they would abolish the Department of Sport Media and Culture. At least that makes sense...

Saturday, 18 October 2014

Ebolarola


What the critics say about "Ebolarola...

"Stands a real chance of breaking big in America!"

"Given the right exposure, this could easily go viral..."

"Serious stuff!"

"Really catchy! Seriously infectious!"

Definitely one for the Christmas top 40 album chart...