Archive for February, 2004

I just realised, it’s Feb 29th which means women can ask men to marry them. I’ve had no offers, I’m going to sulk!

Yes ok I didn’t get round to finishing before. This was partially due to the network failure as I’d suspected but it did come back on later but it was too late as far as I was concerned. Since then I’ve had loads of network outage so haven’t been able to get on at all, which has been irritating as I have typically had things I wanted to say.
Blog update, I got another comment, and a mention on somebody else’s blog, the call goes out to who is worth a read and usually more prolific than me so you get a bit more for your html money. I had commented on his Public Transport Rant and added some Private Transport Rant of my own which he kindly asked if he could put on his site on his next one. Anyway it got me thinking about the morons and assorted maniacs I have encountered on the road every day for the last 4 years. Here are some more of them:

  • Middle-lane Mobile mondeo man -sits on his phone, no hands free, and just veers across you every now and again, not enough to hit you but just enough to make you lose control of your bodily functions.
    Action: In Summer the best course is to have a tape of Bach organ fugues which can be cranked up on the stereo to hamper his conversation. (Please remember earplugs are essential kit for the strategic driver)

    The Sidewinder -Now this one can be in most cars, Vectras, Golfs, Saabs and XR3s tend to be favourite. Distinctive by his slipstreaming manoeuvres and ability to carve up 3 lanes of almost solid traffic.
    Action: Now normally tailgating is frowned upon but this instance is an exception, one is allowed to block the sidewinder by careful acceleration to cut off his escape route, it should be made clear that the person in front should be aware of this tactic before deployment to prevent any nasty incident.

    Van man – Don’t be fooled it doesn’t need to be white, though this is the most common incarnation. There are no defined rules to govern this driver, capable of any road manoeuvre at any time and uses his skills with more frequency than an FM radio.
    Action: Avoid, you can’t beat him, it isn’t his van and he knows it, the best you can hope for is he’ll pick on someone his on size and get crushed by a 7.5 tonner.

    The 7.5 Tonner – Van man with a qualification, principally an LGV license but not trusted by his firm to take out any larger vehicle. Capable of much the same road sense as when he drove a van, he can’t drive it as fast but can do more damage.
    Action: Slightly easier to deal with as generally you have enough time to get out of the way and pass at least 2 lanes away.

    The ladies aren’t immune either and there are very particular types of women drivers too, now I’m not going to get gender biased here because by nature of the fact that there are more men on the road than woman to my mind clearly proves there are more male maniacs than female but the women are there and some just as bad:

    Mini Cooper Girl – Mini Cooper girl on the whole is relatively benign and on the motorway is too scared of damaging her car to attempt any of the more complex modi operandi but in town can be liable to pull out without looking or not pay attention to the way she’s going if Annabel is in the passenger seat.
    Action: Not worth bothering with except in town where if you think “surely she isn’t going to do that” she probably will.

    BMW 4×4 Woman – If you’ve got an off-road vehicle, get off the fucking road, drive to London through the bloody fields, you drive as if you were anyway. You’ll only see her in this during the week ‘cos hubby’s in his silver merc.*
    Action: For the brave…run her off the fecking road and see how she fares!

*See ‘Silver Merc Man’ @Bob Red’s

Original Comments:

Bob Red made this comment,
Nice blog dom! I especially liked the 7.5 tonner and BMW 4×4 woman. an artic tried to overtake me on the approach to a roundabout the other day and had no other choice but to slam on the anchors, or get the word “sainsburys” tattooed on the side of my car! the bastard! Keep up the good work! Im publishing the ones you sent me tomorrow, and then ill link to your site for these ones! Many thanks again!
Bob Red
comment added :: {ts ‘2004-02-29 15:50:08’} GMT+01

moog made this comment,
its all so true, i get so fucked off with the twats on the roads these days!i hate the mothers takin their 1 kid to school in a BUS…
Visit me @
comment added :: {ts ‘2004-02-29 16:21:46’} GMT+01

I went onto a few fellow bloggers sites to see what was going on and found some interesting stuff. One of which was who had found a Personality Disorder test (results can be seen on eraserdust’s site) so I thought in for a penny in for a pound and did it too. Now people can compare our respective psychotic tendencies.
My results were:

Disorder Rating
Paranoid: Low
Schizoid: Low
Schizotypal: High
Antisocial: Low
Borderline: Very High
Histrionic: High
Narcissistic: High
Avoidant: High
Dependent: High
Obsessive-Compulsive: High

Personality Disorder Test – Take It!

Their meanings for the terms are:

Paranoid personality disorder is characterized by a distrust of others and a constant suspicion that people around you have sinister motives. People with this disorder tend to have excessive trust in their own knowledge and abilities and usually avoid close relationships with others. They search for hidden meanings in everything and read hostile intentions into the actions of others. They are quick to challenge the loyalties of friends and loved ones and often appear cold and distant to others. They usually shift blame to others and tend to carry long grudges.

People with schizoid personality disorder avoid relationships and do not show much emotion. They genuinely prefer to be alone and do not secretly wish for popularity. They tend to seek jobs that require little social contact. Their social skills are often weak and they do not show a need for attention or acceptance. They are perceived as humorless and distant and often are termed “loners.”

Many believe that schizotypal personality disorder represents mild schizophrenia. The disorder is characterized by odd forms of thinking and perceiving, and individuals with this disorder often seek isolation from others. They sometimes believe to have extra sensory ability or that unrelated events relate to them in some important way. They generally engage in eccentric behavior and have difficulty concentrating for long periods of time. Their speech is often over elaborate and difficult to follow.

A common misconception is that antisocial personality disorder refers to people who have poor social skills. The opposite is often the case. Instead, antisocial personality disorder is characterized by a lack of conscience. People with this disorder are prone to criminal behavior, believing that their victims are weak and deserving of being taken advantage of. They tend to lie and steal. Often, they are careless with money and take action without thinking about consequences. They are often agressive and are much more concerned with their own needs than the needs of others.

Borderline personality disorder is characterized by mood instability and poor self-image. People with this disorder are prone to constant mood swings and bouts of anger. Often, they will take their anger out on themselves, causing themselves injury. Suicidal threats and actions are not uncommon. They think in very black and white terms and often form intense, conflict-ridden relationships. They are quick to anger when their expectations are not met.

People with histrionic personality disorder are constant attention seekers. They need to be the center of attention all the time, often interrupting others in order to dominate the conversation. They use grandiose language to discribe everyday events and seek constant praise. They may dress provacatively or exaggerate illnesses in order to gain attention. They also tend to exaggerate friendships and relationships, believing that everyone loves them. They are often manipulative.

Narcissistic personality disorder is characterized by self-centeredness. Like histrionic disorder, people with this disorder seek attention and praise. They exaggerate their achievements, expecting others to recongize them as being superior. They tend to be choosy about picking friends, since they believe that not just anyone is worthy of being their friend. They tend to make good first impressions, yet have difficulty maintaining long-lasting relationships. They are generally uninterested in the feelings of others and may take advantage of them.

Avoidant personality disorder is characterized by extreme social anxiety. People with this disorder often feel inadequate, avoid social situations, and seek out jobs with little contact with others. They are fearful of being rejected and worry about embarassing themselves in front of others. They exaggerate the potential difficulties of new situations to rationalize avoiding them. Often, they will create fantasy worlds to substitute for the real one. Unlike schizoid personality disorder, avoidant people yearn for social relations yet feel they are unable to obtain them. They are frequently depressed and have low self-confidence.

Dependent personality disorder is characterized by a need to be taken care of. People with this disorder tend to cling to people and fear losing them. They may become suicidal when a break-up is imminent. They tend to let others make important decisions for them and often jump from relationship to relationship. They often remain in abusive relationships. They are overly sensitive to disapproval. They often feel helpless and depressed.

Obsessive-Compulsive personality disorder is similar to obsessive-compulsive anxiety disorder. People with this disorder are overly focused on orderliness and perfection. Their need to do everything “right” often interferes with their productivity. They tend to get caught up in the details and miss the bigger picture. They set unreasonably high standards for themselves and others, and tend to be very critical of others when they do not live up to these high standards. They avoid working in teams, believing others to be too careless or incompetent. They avoid making decisions because they fear making mistakes and are rarely generous with their time or money. They often have difficulty expressing emotion.

Now I have to say that I found it interesting in a Hollywood Psycho-helpline kind of way, the questions were often very ambiguous and you can already tell when answering that this is going to build a slightly false impression. Nevertheless it looks as if I am quite barking which I have of course known all along and I am sociable enough to ensure that everyone else knows it but at least I’m not preoccupied thinking that they’re out to get me, even if they probably are!

PS -Particularly aposite for a Sunday I took the Dante’s Inferno test as well, and I am quite literally in deep shit!!!

The Dante’s Inferno Test has banished you to the Eigth Level of Hell – the Malebolge!
Here is how you matched up against all the levels:

Level Score
Purgatory (Repenting Believers) Very Low
Level 1 – Limbo (Virtuous Non-Believers) Low
Level 2 (Lustful) High
Level 3 (Gluttonous) High
Level 4 (Prodigal and Avaricious) Very Low
Level 5 (Wrathful and Gloomy) High
Level 6 – The City of Dis (Heretics) Very High
Level 7 (Violent) High
Level 8- the Malebolge (Fraudulent, Malicious, Panderers) Very High
Level 9 – Cocytus (Treacherous) High

Take the Dante’s Inferno Hell Test

Which was nice!

Wahey I hit a ton of people having a browse. I feel quite chuffed. Even though I still maintain I do this for me and the interest of other people is a bonus it’s still nice to have 3x more hits than entries I’ve made, or perhaps that simply suggests how lazy I am!
And I got another comment, well, an acknowledgement of a comment that I’d made, one that I was actually quite pleased with, very sardonnic, nice!

So I feel bouyed by the power of blog. Which is typical because I’m struggling to think about something interesting to write. I shall probably hit myself with a club hammer around bedtime to catch my sub-consciious by surprise to avoid last nights fiasco. I think I’ve got some diazipam somewhere they might work just as well but without the pain!

So that was my first strike day, it wasn’t bad, but there was so much shite to sort out I feel inclined to go back to work for a rest! I should have bought myself a little r+r time for tomorrow though by running around like a cyan-posteriored arthropod today.

I’m going to write more later but I’m tempted to publish now in case my connection goes cack later.

Noooooo, I bloody hate it when my mind does that, getting ready for bed all tired and with a busy day tomorrow and trying to wond down, I even commented on some other people’s blogs in order just to release some of the energy for writing that I had, and then the mind say, ‘right are we all settled…let’s think about death…!’ bloody hell, I don’t want to think about bloody death and least of all just before I go to bed. I swear I wonder if I’m possesed by a sadist, I suppose the alternative is that I’m a masochist with a flair for phychological torture!

Anyway this blog is a diversion more than anything else just to drive me from the nodding dog syndrome into the dozing dribbler that wakes up all sweaty in a couple of hours with backache and a stiff neck from the chair.

I’m feeling laconic today, I could do with some social interaction and a bit of satirical banter to be honest. I seem to work far better off other people than making amusing stuff off my own bat, I guess I lack originality, or maybe I need a straight man to bounce off!

I feel more upbeat now I’m going to try to crash.

Original Comments:

Bob Red made this comment,
Hi Dom,
hope you got a good nights sleep!
Thanks for your comments, those characters were great! ( i think ive met a few of them, but not on my way to work. im sure if you meet them at night they always have their full beams on and persistently drive up your ass!) If its ok, ill mention you and your characters in my blog next week, when i do my next “going to work rant”
Keep up the blogging, hope you are getting lots of hits and comments.
Thanks again
Bob Red
comment added :: {ts ‘2004-02-24 22:14:28’} GMT+01

Well, I have my first strike this week. I haven’t been in the job very long so it’s come upon me quite quickly and I don’t know the history etc. From what I understand it is a combination thing, partially to do with the prospective abolition of academic-related grades (which I’m on) this would mean that those of us not in academic positions would go on the same grading as admin etc. The downside of this is that our pay increments wouldn’t be as good the pension provision the same. Now I did hear the other side to this from one of the guys in the dept. I didn’t know that to be academic-related you have to have a degree, this means if a post is classified as academic-related you cannot apply regardless of suitability if you do not have a degree. Furthermore for a management position also a degree is mandatory. The bloke I was speaking to didn’t have a degree and he said those who don’t are kind of looked down upon by those who do, this seems very petty to me as my degree being German gives me no real skill to do the job I’m doing anymore than if I didn’t have one and it certainly doesn’t give me license to feel superior above those who’ve been in the dept for decades. The flip side for me personally is that I do feel that somehow my decision to study has paid off by making me the person I am and being in the position to take this job when getting a job was not the purpose of my degree, not to metion the fact that the debts I have built up need paying off somehow!

The strike is also about some more key things that I have no problem believing in, firstly the student top-up fees and the NUS have called the students out as well. There is no conflict for me on this one. The other item is that they are planning to deregulate the pay structure etc., currently all University staff are on the same grading system except in London where London weighting is paid. They are planning to regionalise the structure which means that many of the more affluent universities will be able to sort out their own pay to attract staff. Now the capitalists say well, this happens in the marketplace, precisely and look at the screw up there. The red brick Unis have many advantages as it is and the UK higher education system has long since been teetering on the brink of a 3 tier system (realistically speaking the ‘new universities’ are still regarded largely as inferior) The way this will take things, it is introducing the market to education. Well, they have already introduced the market to health and look what that acheived. The same geographical discrepancies as this will lead to. Why…? Well, the claim is because of a lack of money, well, yeah you spend so much on fucking war there’s nothing left for anything else, bastards.

I support the strike and though financially it is going to hit pretty hard, these are the times that you are called upon to sacrifice personal things for the good of a higher purpose. I hope it comes to some good, then it will be easier with hindsight to justify it.

I need some sleep, I am tired. This job is deceptive in many ways, it doesn’t feel like I’m working hard, but it is tiring me, I presume it’s because of there being so much to learn so quickly. It is considerably more enjoyable than being in the private sector so I shall make it my business to try to remain here.

The world tonight, well the US is letting some people go from Guantanamo, how magnanimous of them. From what I’ve heard it’s get them out now to avoid an embarrasing supreme court ruling around election time, which explains why the other 2 Britons won’t be let out. I still find it incredulous that the rules that apply to any other country do not apply to the US if any other country was holding people like this there’d be a furore in the UN and Amnesty would be firmly on the case. The double standards involved are just bollocks, I’m sick of it.

Well who knows, am I overestimating my own potential/importance by taking it all so personally. I guess it’s down to Mother convincing me as a child that I could acomplish anything and deep down some of that stuck. So whilst the logical side says ‘look you are not going to be the next Karl Marx or Noam Chomsky’ there’s still part of me that sits there saying ‘well why not’ someone has to help fill the void, why not me. I think it’ll only be proven one way or the other when the opportunity really presents itself to see whether I can actually hack it in that arena, this is perhaps why I still harbour the ambition to be an academic to hide behind that side to act as a barrier against rejection. I’m still not good with rejection in any context.

Far too much personal detail, time to stop

Two nights in a row, that’s something of an acheivement lately. I’ve been blogging for a month now and if my connection holds up I find it a valuable way to vent some feelings. I’m quite gratified that some people (or maybe it’s just one person reading often!) have been looking although I maintain that isn’t why I’m doing it. Work has been actually quite busy now, I’m starting to get things to do as well as various parts of settling down and aclimatising. I like the department and the people have all been friendly.

Back to the politics and as the title may suggest the bee in my bonnet today is regarding the asylum situation. I find it staggering that with the EU expansion now so many countries are talking about not letting people in etc. etc. The key phrases at the moment appear to be that we are happy to encourage workers to do specific jobs that we need (let’s face it -they mean the shit ones) but we don’t want people coming here and thinking they can abuse our benefits system. Christ if they can make a living off the benefits system then employ them as teachers because I can’t see how with the pittance usually given anyone can survive off the state benefits here. Basically the whole EU thing is a sham, it’s just a vehicle for the TNCs and the rich Western corporations to have unlimited access to get in and buy up cheap land and infrstructure for there own gain. They have no wish to ameliorate the surroundings or the lives of the people, unless it’s a direct investment that will yield a dividend. So whilst the US juggernaut rumbles through many countries for it’s own interests the EU seems to have adopted a corporate ‘lebensraum’ policy that Hitler would have approved of. And yet people in the West are whipped up into a frenzy about these “spongers” who are taking their jobs and living off their taxes, these “economic migrants” who are painted as people who just come here on a whim because they want to make lots of money. How the fuck are they going to do that unless they’re involved in criminal activity, most are just likely to be exploited by those who are. Economic migrants is a highly ironic term -the West has usually exploited these countries so much that ordinry people are forced to leave the country if they want to provide any more than basic survival for them and their family -and why should they live like that when we have so much we upgrade appliances just because they don’t have the latest features or design, when we can go to shops piled high with enough food to feed a small country, where people drive around alone in vehicles large enough to have a family live in them? Sorry Western world you reap what you show, the marketing has worked you told the rest of the world how wonderful it all is here and they now believe it because they have seen such riches they could never have dreamed of and I’m afraid it is natural human emmotion to try to better your existence, it isn’t greed that’s just capitalist anthropological revisionism in my view, it’s just a desire to provide your children with a better life than you’ve had. If the West doesn’t like it then sort the fucking problems out in the rest of the world to make it habitable rather than spend billions on wars and missions to Mars. It doesn’t take rocket science to find the solution!

There was just a program on Abdul Haq an Afghan who could have led a relatively bloodless revolution in Afghanistan but instead was betrayed by the Americans and principally the CIA in favour of their warlords. It also went into how they screwed up the hunt for the leaders of the Taliban and Al Q and basically allowed them free reign to escape to Pakistan. I say allowed them, if they didn’t then the balls up whether through lack of geographical intelligence or incompetence is too mind-boggling to contemplate.

Christ, I didn’t think I was going to be able to get back on again. New job and everything means that there’s precious little time during the day and in the evening I’ve been having problems getting my connection going again so I’ve had things to say but been unable to publish.

Anyway the new job is good, I like the atmosphere, I like the people, I just hope I can do the job. It’s going to be pretty intense because the printing industry is a different environment entirely with different needs and I’ve been used to popping in, fix problem then back out again. Now I’m responsible for a fixed setup, all the Mac users basically, up to a point. So it’s networkerama and playing with SMB connections and Windows servers etc. Bit of a culture shock, got to get the brain going again or I’m going to look a bit of a git! Still we’re on strike next week for a couple of days ‘cos they’re trying to naff about with the pay structure and such like.

On the political front, well, I don’t get to listen to much of the Today program or PM as I used to so my main source of info has somewhat dried up. However there is finally movement on the party front. There will be regional meetings and there is a website now [] with news and downloads so that appears to suggest that things are fianlly getting going which I think will make all of us feel a little better and perhaps a bit more managed too. Apparently the various actions that George is taking are going well, the Christian Science Monitor has been forced to rescind its allegations and apologise, the case against the Daily Telegraph is coming to a head with even Andrew Neil basically saying time to produce the evidence or shut up. Interestingly the Telegraph has sought to hide its head in the sand under the cover of well regardless of whether it’s true we received the info and the story was in the public interest, which of course didn’t stop them bashing the BBC when that was precisely the BBC defence in the Hutton enquiry, and at least the BBC was acting on the words of an expert in the field rather than spurrious and as yet undisclosed documentation. It’s the usual right-wing horseshit, but you can bet that that the Torygraph will not be hauled through a public enquiry to explain what the hell it thinks it’s doing. I mean, things must be bad when Andrew Neil appears to have the knives out!

One of those days, I’m annoyed, I’ve had ebay pissing me around which is not useful as I’m trying to sell stuff for the holiday. Then I had computer problems that resulted in losing 2GB worth of backup. All in all it’s been a long and bad day and as a result I’m feeling melancholy, I’d done so well this year so far but everything today just made things more and more difficult. I’ve got a tax bill for £900 because work screwed up the tax returns on my old car. I just feel sod it, sod all of them. People don’t seem to contact me anymore, maybe I’m the arsehole after all!

Other than that nothing appears to be happening on the political front, I sense failure, this is not good, perhaps exacerbated by my current mood but I feel that the unity we had hoped for hasn’t come off. Perhaps it will yet but time and money are not on our side. I’m disapointed not to have heard anything from Respect, I’d like things to be galvanised but I guess like so many I’m waiting for someone else to make the running.

The whole country appears to have been watching I’m a celebrity, such inanety, it really is the “Go back to bed Britain, don’t think about your miserable unfulfilled lives” to paraphrase Bill Hicks. “Sit and watch these vacuous twats who have nothing to offer but the fact that they coexist with you on the planet” and these idiots are getting paid for this. the rest of us sit and struggle to figure out how to have a break and keep food on the table and then we get the privelege of watching just how inequitous this society really is. To have it thrust in our face in this fashion really is profane but what does the commercial media care?

It’s all about money for those that have and all about how to get some for those who don’t. There must be more than this. Bloody savages the lot of us.