Posted in Uncategorized

You will save your Toner and I will use mine

I had another one of those “threatening” letters yesterday.   The one where I am told that the supplier/bank/investment house or whatever will in future communicate by e-mail and website rather than by post.

They always make the point of how much money this will save them and how “green” the decision is:-  less paper, less ink, less envelopes, less postage.  Then they say that if they don’t hear from me within two weeks, I will be presumed to have consented to on-line notification and information.

No way!   I’m going to need hard copies, not least for the taxman.   So, the company/provider saves its money, and I have to spend mine on paper and ink.

Posted in Uncategorized

The iniquitous booking fee

A theatre needs to sell its tickets so that it has an audience for its performances, and can make money.

An airline needs to sell its tickets so that its flights are full, and it can make money.

That’s their purpose.   That’s what they are in business for.

But now we are getting some interesting additions.   Theatres not only take the price of the ticket off you, they take a booking fee as well.   It’s as if they are doing you a favour by letting you buy their tickets.

Ryanair has announced today that it is going to make a charge for airport check-in.    It’s not as if you can board the aircraft and fly without checking-in.  You can check-in on line free of charge, but that’s not always convenient, and you can only do that if you only have hand luggage.

Of course, the cost of the booking office and the check-in will have been included in the ticket price all the time.   In just the same way that the garage includes the cost of the plastic seat cover and the paper floor mat when calculating the cost of your service.

So now the theatres and the airline are charging the cost twice.   And because we want to see the play or concert, and because we want to fly, we are mugs enough to pay up.

Posted in Local Government, Politics

Actually the Council Tax could owe me money

Every time I read yet another story that we’re all going to be charged for each binful of rubbish we have collected every week I’ve been getting very hot under the collar.   My theme  –  what the hell am I paying this vast amount of Council Tax for?

The list of Council services I don’t use is long:-  education, social services, housing, planning, libraries, sports facilities, etc, etc.   The only things I get, for what is a considerable percentage of my monthly income, is a wheelie bin emptied once a week and the recycling taken away, the street lighting, non-existent street cleaning, and infrequent and badly carried out road and footway maintenance.   Now that doesn’t seem very good value for money.

But the more I think about it, the more my view is changing.

Perhaps we could take this strategy further  –  paying for the services the Council carries out for us.   That way, and based on the above, my monthly payment would be tiny.   In fact, I can visualise a situation where they would probably owe me money.

Posted in Uncategorized

You can’t get into the childproof medicine bottles, and then the antibiotics look more likely to kill than to cure

Childproof medicine bottles may be desirable to stop children taking Mum’s pills, but they are hell for the rest of us.

If you have a headache, by the time you have got into the bottle or packet you’ve probably got a severe migraine!

I’ve been taking cough medicine for the last two weeks.   The bottles have those tops where you have to bear down on them whilst you are turning them.   It is absolute luck whether they open.   Last night,  I should think I attempted this procedure 20 times before the top just clicked out and I was able to open it.   Meanwhile, I was choking.

There must be an easier way!

The cough arises from a bad chest infection.   I’ve finished one course of antibiotics, with no improvement.   Today I went to see the GP who prescribed another course, different type of antibiotics this time.   I thought I would share with you some of the content of the explanatory leaflet:-

“You should take the capsules with a full glass of fluid, either sitting or standing up, and well before you go to bed for the night to stop them causing irritation and ulceration of the gullet.   It is important not to lie down for at least 30 minutes after taking the capsule so that it can move as quickly as possible to the stomach and prevent irritation of the throat or gullet.   These capsules can cause allergic reactions, wheeziness, difficulty in breathing, chest pain, fever, sudden swellings, rash or itching, sore or swollen tongue, diarrhoea, cramps, soreness and itching around the back passage and/or genital areas.  You may notice you are bruising more easily, have more nose bleeds, more infections and sore throats, sensitivity of the skin to sunlight, inflammation of nerves and stomach pains, increased pressure in the skull resulting in severe headaches together with blurred and/or double vision and blind spots.   Permanent loss of vision has been reported.   Other effects reported are tinnitus, inflammation of the membrane surrounding the heart, loss of appetite, feeling or being sick, heartburn, difficulty swallowing, sore or painful tongue or mouth, discolouration of teeth, hepatitis, jaundice, liver failure, pancreatitis, aching muscles and joints, an increase in the amount of urea in the blood, severe skin reactions.”   It further says that some of the above have been reported rarely  –  once is enough.  

On the whole, I shall probably be better not bothering, and sticking to the cough!