The car is still at Mickey's (he's not a mouse for those of you wondering) awaiting a brake calliper. Experience tells me it may be there for the weekend as this particular type of calliper is manufactured by the same people that make hen's teeth and rocking horse sh!t, but as we've recently learned - whatever (or 'It is what it is' if you're not into the whole brevity thing) As much as it's in theory a hindrance not to have the car at my beck and call, it's also very enlightening. The weather is warm so Mrs G doesn't object to cycling to work and of course it is good for her.
On the work front, Pooh and I are nearing the end of the heavy phase of our adventure with the baseball player (see: This book, not that it will clarify anything for most of you). This means we have time to reflect you would think, but not a bit of it. There's another piece of work involving tennis that urgently needs attention and I'm allegedly the man to attend to it.
It's a piece that has to be priced, approved and with the customer in 5 working days, and that is the first problem. Ironically it's being led not by anyone in the UK or US but by a bunch of cowboys for whom the word 'communication' doesn't have a passport, so there's our second problem. The third problem is that everything that is known about the story so far is held in the head of a person who is off sick and a database that I don't currently have access to.
That's about the size of it. I'm squarely in the frame for the unachievable. To quote Detective Inspector Derek Grim of Gasforth Police station "My arse is on the line and I don't want a cock up!"
I may exaggerate slightly. After all, we're all aware that "You can only do what you can with information available" and "Whatever" (see above re: brevity). Ultimately I know I'll have support from the other members of my team should it be required - if only the cowboys would stop with the re-fried beans and get on with the cattle rustling.
An early morning call with our antipodean cousins confirms all this frustration. All is not well, but "we are where we are" :-)
Next job is a haircut, so with no car that means 10 minutes on the bike to get it sorted. Normally this would be 20 minutes in and trim and out, but I hadn't taken into account the lazy, slovenly, over-holidaying teachers who are up in arms because their loosing some of their pensions. I'm sympathetic to most cases of the little guy being screwed over by "the man" but not this time. Public sector: Welcome to my world. I had this pain last year and no-one in public service gave a flying-fig. I think there was a question in parliament that got generally ignored so why should I care now you're suffering the same fate? In fact I celebrate the fact that we're all on a more even keel (apart from the stinking rich who are far to busy not paying taxes to be interested).
To return to my point. I'm now sat in the barbers waiting room with half a dozen screaming kids who aren't getting the education this country so badly needs them to get so that we can increase our lead in innovation and invention which will fix our economic issues such that we wont need to cut pensions in the future. As it is, the teachers are helping us breed a bunch of kids who's lack of qualifications will make them perfect to work in manufacturing, just not in this country - more likely here: http://www.shanghai-tennis.com/
In summary, I suspect the future of teaching in this country is heading in a similar direction to the miners and the steelworkers, so at some point we'll have outsourced edu-macation to foreign climes as well. In the mean time, you might like to encourage your uneducated kids to learn chinese while you still can.
Back home post hair cut and cycling (chinese manufactured bike, by the way) and I see from the email on my (chinese manufactured) laptop that chief sh!tting bull is no nearer answering any question of import and that I am basically faced with a crock of cack to try and fix. My predecessor to this job, as it transpires, has done a sterling job up to now, but the current demands are unreasonable. God knows what CSB has been smoking in that peace pipe.
This is a scary moment for me, being the first deal of any size that I'm sort-of running on my own.... It's OK. This year has taught me to embrace fear, laugh in the face of adversity and tweak the nose of death. In short, I have new balls thankyou. Might need new trousers (preferably not from China) at the moment though. ;-)
This post originally appeared here: Posterous