Sunday, 13 October 2013

The living dead

In the news today, an American man has turned up from almost 20 years of being missing has been told he cannot have a driving licence because he is still legally dead.  Donald Miller Jr vanished from Ohio in 1986 after he lost his job and turned to drink and he was officially declared as deceased eight years after going walkabouts.

Mr Miller explained that he just drifted from place to place whilst living his life out of a bottle.  After getting his life back on track and returning to his home town, Donald decided to apply for a driving licence through the court.

The law as it stands in Ohio states that there is a three year limit to reverse a ruling of death and given that Donald had been adrift from the world for almost twenty, the judge refused to overturn the ruling.  This basically means that Mr Miller is, despite being very much alive, officially dead.

The judge stated it to be a "strange, strange situation". With Donald Miller standing in front of him in the court, the judge explained that he had no idea where this left him because as far as the law is concerned he is deceased.   

Apart from the obvious issues this leaves regarding legal documents, there is the other side of the problem to being dead.  Will he be accountable for any of his actions, illegal or otherwise?  He really does give new meaning to the saying, ‘Dead man walking’.

Whatever the outcome of Mr Miller’s dilemma, this is confusing, is he in some kind of twilight zone, stuck between the afterlife and death.  Or has he reached a dead end in his life/death.  

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

i Phone, i can't swim

In the news today, A fake Apple advert claiming the recent new iOS 7 software update makes iPhones and iPads waterproof has hoodwinked some individuals into believing these claims by testing them, resulting in some ruined devices.  

The bogus advert which had all the glossy look of a genuine Apple advertisement, seems to have tricked a few thoughtless people into literally taking the plunge by dropping their previous appliances into water. 

One of the claims was a "smart switch" that cuts off the phone's power supply when water is detected, would kick in when required. This, it was said, "prevents any damage to your iPhone's delicate circuitry". Shame the gullible i phone owners didn’t engage their smart switch before attempting to test out this bogus theory.

Not surprisingly there are now a few useless smart phones that have not fared too well after their non-smart owners tried to play sink the battleships with them.

One angry but naive owner wrote on social media site Twitter: "Whoever said iOS 7 was waterproof F*** you."  And another rash but equally stupid Apple fan wrote: "OK whoever said iOS 7 is waterproof GO F*** YOURSELF."

Clearly they wrote these comments on a different phone as theirs are still drying out. Good luck with your insurance claims chumps


Monday, 8 July 2013

Climbing the ladder of success

In the news today a TV journalist in India has been sacked after delivering a news report on serious floods in the north of the country where over 1,000 people died while sitting on the shoulders of a man with the flood water lapping around his knees.  

An employee of News Express in India stated that Narayan Pargaien was guilty of "grave misconduct".  Mr Pargaien is insistent that the man in the clip who had lost his home in the floods had been paid and was happy to be used as a human ladder.  The ace reporter was very keen to blame his cameraman too because he was only meant to film him from the waste up to avoid showing the destitute homeless man.

Whilst the report was not broadcast by the TV station, the video was anonymously uploaded onto YouTube where it has had thousands of hits.  Although the clip has been stated to have caused outrage it isn’t clear who is irate other than his now former employer.

One of the main attributes to be a successful news reporter is to be quick-witted and sharp to stay one step ahead of the opponents.  Mr Pargaien was doing just that, ‘How do I get a great shot in the middle of the flood stricken streets whilst my trousers remain dry?’  Maybe on reflection the use of a desperate displaced victim of the disaster wasn’t the best option, even if he did agree to it.

There is no news on what has become of Mr Pargaien, early indications that he is looking at becoming an optical illusionist are unfounded.  Given his poor behaviour he is unlikely to be awash with job offers and he best practice his stilt walking skills if he wants to do any more flood reports.  Oh and find himself a better cameraman too. 

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Escorting the Welsh

In the news today and after somewhat of a delay in writing, a Welsh Government scheme aimed at young people to help them potentially earn up to £48,000. The careers advice has been featured on the Business Wales website as “aspirational career opportunities”, the vocations suggested? Lap dancers, strippers and escorts.

Unbelievably the advice states that, "the escorts provide companionship to the client when attending events such as a formal dinner or the theatre". The site was quick to point out that it is an offence to “incite escorts to act as prostitutes”.

An investigation has been launched into how but most importantly, why; this was even considered as practical occupation advice.  Plaid Cymru AM Jocelyn Davies has described herself as ‘no prude’, but thinks it not acceptable to provide women with information on the sex establishment. I think Ms Davies that you may indeed be slightly straitlaced and also sexist, what about men exercising their right to become strippers or escorts?

She also goes on to say, "Stripping is degrading for women and the Welsh Government should not be promoting the view that sexually exploitative work is an acceptable career."  Now she is either excluding men totally from this or she derives that it is acceptable for them to be exploited.

While I’m on the subject of discrimination of the sexes, let’s not stop there.  Why is the advert aimed at young people?  There are thousands of unemployed older people, excluding someone from the running just because of age these days will land you straight in front of an employment tribunal.

There you are in the later stages of life, redundant, on the unemployment scrap heap, thinking there is no hope of another career and the Welsh Government throw you a lifeline. Even if you can’t corner the market as an escort for the over 70’s, there’s always the compensation claim for discrimination to top up your income support. (I am unaware of the current term for what was called dole money years ago, Heroin supplement, beer tokens, wide screen TV funding, take your pick).

 Lib Dem Miss Eluned Parrott said: "These are perfectly legitimate businesses”, but is surprised to find them on the Welsh Government’s website. But when you think about it, where else would you find out about these professions?  You can’t complain about the unemployment figures on one hand and then criticise young entrepreneurs for wanting to earn high wages.

I’m off now to see if I can upload my CV to potential employers, I wonder what the perks are. I’m guessing there will be a lot of night shifts, traveling and meeting lots of different people. I’ll get to see lots of shows at the theatre and eat in good restaurants, I think it’s only fair I make sure they get back to their hotel room safely.  Don’t you?  

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Ice cream inflated Lolly

In the news today, well, more last week but who’s bothered.  Consumer chiefs are investigating after four British tourists paid 64 euro (£50) or ($83) for four ice cream cones in the Italian capital of Rome.

Roger Bannister and his wife, along with his brother and wife were on a short break and stopped for an ice cream at the Antica Roma ice cream parlour.  Aware of prices becoming inflated if they sat down, they cunningly ordered the ices to go.

Mr Bannister, who is a company executive from the West Midlands, said: ''They didn't even say thank you when we paid.” And added, “How can they get away with charging that much?”  The question I’m examining Roger is, how can you be that stupid?  Mr Bannister continued to be outraged by saying, “It's scandalous and should not be allowed to happen.” You allowed it to occur Roger; there was a choice you could have made other than paying the clearly inflated prices.

I’m not wishing to be unkind to Mr Bannister, as I’m the worse person for working out sums but even I would have questioned 64 Euros.  You also have to query how Mr Bannister managed to become a company executive; I can only assume that he doesn’t do his own accounts.

A staff member from the ice cream parlour, who has remained anonymous, said: ''The prices are clearly on display. They got what they asked for - four ice creams.”  Which is a fair point, a minute spent to look at the price list before proceeding with the acquisition would have saved Mr Bannister from making a national embarrassment of himself and family.

With today’s smartphone technology and internet access there is little excuse for not being able to work out the exchange rates.  The ice cream establishment and others are clearly preying on the British tradition of not complaining and charging extravagant prices. But the fact still remains that although life offers you many choices,  this was undoubtedly one of yes or no.  Simple.  

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Incredible night out

In the news today, an incredible event that took place in the city of York involving the Hulk.  North Yorkshire Police have issued a statement following an assault on a female that suffered a black eye after the green fictional monster struck.

The statement says, "At the time of the incident, the woman suspected of the assault was covered in green body paint with dyed red hair”.  It is however suspected that the green angry assailant was a female in her early 20’s around 5ft 8 in tall of a medium build.  This would immediately rule out the real incredible Hulk, as I’m sure he is much bigger and a man.

The incident took place in the early hours outside the local McDonalds restaurant and appears to have been an unprovoked attack.  Detective Constable Cheryl Hunter, who is investigating the crime said: "Thankfully the injuries were not too severe. However, the outcome could have been far more serious”.  It’s unsure from the victim as to what if anything was said during the beating, but if you’re like me you’d have wanted the words, “Don’t make me angry………” somewhere in there.

Police have asked that if anyone witnessed the occurrence and can identify the Hulk, to contact them.  I wonder how many calls they have had recognising her as the incredible Hulk?  I’m guessing her friends are keeping silent about this, maybe they were all dressed similar and to squeal on her would break the super hero’s code.

The target of this comic book attack should really think of herself to be lucky that she didn’t come up against any of the other super heroes instead of the alter ego of mild mannered scientist David Banner. The real Hulk had green hair if I remember correctly; the assailant had made the error of dying hers red, possibly down to a lack of research. If you’re going to be a gigantic, green, illuminated, mutated humanoid monster with incredible strength, and an inability to control your rage, at least get the costume right!

Saturday, 4 May 2013

Company man, forever

In the news today, a New York company has offered its staff a 15% pay raise for being tattooed with the company's logo. The brokerage firm run by Anthony Lolli says that not only does it prove the employees loyalty to the company but they receive a healthy pay increase.

So far in the last two years around forty employees have taken the plunge and been branded with the everlasting reminder of who they work for.  The company, Rapid Realty, has a logo that isn’t too offensive in that it is made up from the letters of its name and most employees are sporting it on their forearms.  It might be a different story if they worked for a contraceptive firm.

The scheme was put into motion after one employee got the tattoo to prove his devotion to the company.  A corporation logo pen neatly tucked into the shirt pocket for all to see would be a less eternal display of dedication.

I’m just wondering what would happen if the company ever went under and there would be forty unemployed branded ex devotees wandering the job centre like cult members that have lost their leader.  Maybe they could incorporate the tattoo computer chip so that they can be tracked and take another step closer to the big brother state.

When you think on one hand that Mr Lolli has increased his wages bill considerably, if you have got the perpetual company brand with you at all time, you are less likely to leave the firm, thus increasing productivity and the fortune of the aptly named Anthony Lolli.

I’m unsure that this scheme will catch on elsewhere; it is after all an extreme measure to take. I can’t see workers from McDonalds rolling up their sleeves and proudly showing off their yellow M’s, or workers from the sanitary products factory.