Bitch on the Blog

August 1, 2017

Through your nose

Filed under: Ethics,Money,Questions — bitchontheblog @ 08:01
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And now to another even less tangible matter.

I believe most of my readers, possibly all, to be more worldly wise than my innocent self. So please do answer me a question which has been pressing, on and off, for a while: How come you are made to pay for services you don’t use?

Let that question sink in before its magnitude hits your wallet.

For example, simple yet baffling: My broadband service and land line provider charges me for NOT using its TV services. The only reason I am still with them that they allow me, for a minimal fee, to phone round the world for “nothing”. As the blower is rarely further away than my reach, and friends and family largely abroad, it’s probably saved me thousands over the years. Still doesn’t answer why I have to pay for not watching TV. Before the curtain twitcher in my life tells you which company I am talking about: It’s … , as in “heaven”.

Then there is energy. My first brush with energy was low blood sugar. Not mine. Adults’. They’d pop a giant sugary something. Better than smelling salts for revival of spirit and enterprise. You bought it in an apothecary. Iris will fill you in. Let me save her the trouble: Traubenzucker.

Energy. The British are marvellous that way: You’ll get a good “deal” if you are a dual fuel (that’s gas and electricity) customer. If per chance. like my good self, you are condemned to use electricity only –  because that’s how your abode is wired – you may whistle. And pay top whack. No deals to be had. The good news being, as of this morning, that the increase will only be 12.5 % (for dual energy customers). Of course, and it is the type of false psychology/economy I tend to employ at all times, you may shrug off what amounts to “only” a few pounds. However, and anyone who goes shopping knows this: Just because each item you purchase is chicken feed in pennies doesn’t mean you won’t be presented (to use John speak) with a steaming pile of …. at the till.

Why are we made to pay more for NOT using something?

Thanking you in advance for an education,

U

 

 

 

 

 

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June 18, 2017

Shades of white

I am no good at drawing. Which is rather surprising since I come from a long line of people who actually made their living painting.

My father who inherited that most remarkable talent – though never made anything of it because he was more interested in pursuing other interests, once helped me out. I was about twelve. Our art homework was to do a portrait of a pirate (water colours no less – the smudge’s devil of all inventions). We had a few days. The worse and the more dreaded the task the more it’ll spoil not only your life in the interim but you’ll put it off to the last minute (deadline by another name). (Un)fortunately my father passed my desk (Sunday afternoon) as I was putting the finishing touches to a half hearted attempt at conveying both the cliche and the menace of a pirate (Johnny Depp my creation wasn’t – it was before his time). So, in a moment of charitable (or was it) intent, my father chucked my effort into the nearest waste paper basket and conjured up the most magnificent pirate ever. Took him zero time – not that he meant to ram home that I most certainly had betrayed the creative family line (on both sides). Not at all. He was far more interested in taking all my essays and other writings apart – even if they rated A* by assorted teachers. You want to know what my father called my teachers? Don’t. Repeating it would be flying in the face of my genteel upbringing and the manners my mother instilled in me.

So Monday was grand. My art teacher’s face lit up. He studied my father’s effort in detail. He was chuffed. He smiled. At me. After an artfully executed theatrical pause  he said: “Do tell your father that, on account of fraud, I’ll only give him a two” (a one being top mark). After that I can’t remember anything. Other than that I was always tops in the theory of art and art history. Brush to canvas? Forget it. Why would I? Know thy limitations.

Not to sell myself short and as befits my temperament, I did and do passable caricatures (of people). That’s about it.

As Karma has a way of biting you unawares,  most nearest and dearest to me, friends and assorted family, are masters of their chosen art. Occasionally forced to remind them, ever so tactfully, we can’t all be artistes. Some of us have to be the appreciative audience. The ones who do the clapping, the stroking of ego, the catchers of tears, the slayers of tantrums, the ones who write the critiques, facilitate you, marketeer your stuff.  And, BUY IT.

Whatever you do, please do not talk to me about gallerists. It was Basel/Switzerland, ca. 1997, when I fell off my chair on learning that a gallerist (the marketeer and provider of large swathes of wall and the monied) will take a  cool 66 % off your sales for services rendered.

Titanium white greetings,

U

 

October 15, 2016

Don’t send chocolate

Filed under: Amusement,Dizzy,Exasperation,Observations — bitchontheblog @ 20:45
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As Lovely Lorna (LL) suggested the other day, I do need a break. Luck. Hope that saying about seven years of … followed by seven years of … is NOT correct. It’s so depressing. Mind you, I have always liked the “seven” times table. Particularly when we got to seven times seven (49).

I do not put any fault at Lady Luck’s door. Not least because I am convinced that if luck weren’t on my side I’d be long dead. Possibly, most likely, not even born. Which, of course, and I only learnt this recently (where have I been all my life?) that there is a particular school of thought which advocates that paradise is to never been born. Maybe. To me life is a bonus. Even when shite at times. At least you are alive.

Where were we? Luck. Yes, so to continue my saga of unfortunate mishaps, today I slipped. Don’t say Lady Luck wasn’t on my side. I could have broken something. I didn’t. I will, no doubt, have a bruise on my lovely right buttock, but am not concussed though did hit the tarmac with the back of my head. Neither, for once, did I break a wrist.

My sister, the youngest, once asked me, rather impatiently, why I kept breaking my arms. THERE MUST BE A REASON, she said. I have no idea what she was implying. Obviously THERE is a reason. Like, in this case, the lovely combo of autumn’s fine drizzle and leaves falling. And yes, I was wearing flat shoes. I slipped. Simple, ain’t it?

Anyway, to compound temporary shock, all my coins scattered all over the place. Thus I found myself ten p (in Dollars probably 15 cents – who knows with Pound Sterling plunging) short. So, limping along as best I could without showing the limp, I asked a couple of guys outside a pub for ten pence short of my  four remaining pounds. Sweethearts, I tell you, it’s hard to believe the relationship some people do have with money. Remember ten pence. Not ten pounds. Not a hundred. Not a thousand. Ten measly peeeeeeeeeeeee.

The moment someone asks you WHAT you need money FOR is the moment you know you won’t get it. He wouldn’t let go. Kept asking me what I needed 10 p for. He even suggested that, no doubt, his continued questioning could be interpreted as “intrusive”. Indeed. I told him to forget it.  May Karma bite his behind. When in need find a taxi driver. Mean they ain’t. Neither do they ask questions. Thus I was able to make the purchase I’d gone out for in the first place.

On my return, naturally, I found my key unable to open the door.

Safely ensconed in my abode once more, living to tell the tale, yours,

U

September 3, 2014

Pockets

Health Alert: Lecture on the horizon.

Just told guy outside cornershop, (sweet, young, of uncertain nationality – I don’t ask that most awful question “Where do you come from?”): “Never ever ask anyone if they have change.” As begging goes it’s so brainless and, for the one with or without change in her pocket, a complete turnoff. Ask me for fifty pence, one Pound Sterling, a fiver. Tell me what you need. But please don’t just sit there and ask me for “change”. He took it well, though I dare say he wasn’t sure what I was trying to convey.

Most of you who communicate with me on this blog are both of strong opinion and live in cultures different to mine. Actually let’s forget the ‘culture’ bit since people within the same culture can be, and are, so very different from each other. Please do let me know how you ‘give’ when directly approached, how you give via, say a charity, how you give to  a friend. Or, why you do NOT give.

The young man above remained courteous when I told him how not to go about it. And no, I did NOT leave him shortchanged. For that I know too well what it feels like having to ask in the first place.

U

May 24, 2012

Economics

Filed under: Despair — bitchontheblog @ 16:50
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I have just about had it with the English Press (the paper and its commentator not to be named). What is with the English? They refer to the rest of Europe as “the Continent” when they themselves are part of fucking Europe. They refuse themselves. If the Euro were a bedchamber they might find themselves either in a nunnery, a cloister, or in a divorce court – marriage annulled.

So fucking Germany once more being maligned when Germany is the very country who bails out everyone. Including the Greek. It’s incredible. If, and I hope I won’t because I’ll be going down, meet that columnist who wrote his smear, probably whilst having lunch and one too many drinks on his paper’s expenses account, I’ll punch him. I will. With pleasure. Let him pay for his own Moussaka and a bottle of Ouzo.

Sometimes in life we mess up. But don’t piss on those who lend a helping hand.

Vorsprung durch Technik? Well, you could have fooled me. And whilst you are at it: Why not put up for sale your BMW and break off your neighbour’s Mercedes star?

U

October 5, 2011

Don’t bank on it

Filed under: Despair — bitchontheblog @ 11:01
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Am in repose (a state of calm and peace).

Have decided that I live in the wrong time. It’s all very well not to be plagued by cow pox after Jenner squashed them. I have missed my boat. Just contemplated Virginia Woolf and the stones in her pocket before she entered the stream. And no, I am not suicidal. You do have to admire the woman’s forethought. Imagine she’d changed her mind half way into the river – minus the rocks. That would have been me: Result: Zilch. I’d still be alive. Only wet. With a lot of explaining to do.

I hate water. Always have. Not water you wash yourself and surroundings with. Just water. Deep. Swim across a lake. Don’t know what’s lurking down there. Try and think of other things – like the shore. Try not to think that you will have to swim back across same lake. Why do you do this? To please your grandfather, and anyway a sense of adventure (yes, I know I said it yesterday) bred  in my bone. In truth I wish I lived in Victorian times, with a corset stringing me up so tightly the slightest (e)motion would make me faint. Smelling salts. Gently lifted onto the sofa. Everyone (mainly the paid to do so) fawning to my every sigh and whim.

There is an author whose heroine I could have been and made him even greater than he already is. Yes, Dickens too, Though he is not my first choice. But he’d have loved me. As much as he loved any of his characters. I wish I were Dickens myself. His output. And that was before typewriters. Instead of which I am … in repose. Neither is my phone working. I can receive calls, but can’t call out. Post tele philosophy. Have added to my will that I wish to be buried (not burnt, buried) with a phone – surely someone will keep my credit topped up.

U

September 13, 2011

Better than nothing

Filed under: Communication,Happiness — bitchontheblog @ 12:50
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Last night’s moon full and shining onto my bedstead. And no I don’t draw curtains which is why the Angel sleeps with blinkers courtesy of Virgin Atlantic. Theirs being the most stylish.

Have decided that there is only one weapon of defence in the war of keeping your sanity: Money. Am now on warpath since my purse has been leaking for the last three years and wild scenarios as to how to make up for lost time and nerves shattered in process occupying me to the extent that I have lost all concentration; thus needing to re-read the same page ten times and still haven’t got a clue.

I resent Big Brother and some camera on you at all times: It’s taken all the fun out of robbing banks.

So where better to throw myself than at the bosom of the blogging world. Apropos of nothing: Did you know that women’s skin is much thinner than men’s (biologically); yet I maintain, the male soul being  more fragile and a lot more easily trampled upon, women are the ones with the thick hide. Weep if you must.

Anyway, my new love interest has me baking Italian biscuits. I knew this from as early as age 5: Falling in love is not good for you. It is so distracting you might walk into an oncoming truck.

U

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