Monthly archives: November 2003


EasyInternet sucks.
Something is blocking all the posts I’ve made in the
last hour, so I’m trying emailing one.
Of course, now the updates will be there and I’ll look

Ian Pattinson

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The return of incompetence watch

Yes, BT is being crap again. After having a manager chase up my problems last week and get a definite date (today) when broadband would be cut off and I could re-order, I phoned today all excited about getting the process started. And was told I’d have to wait until Friday. In fact, it might be better if I held on until next week. You know, just in case.


So I’m back in EasyInternet, trying to drown out the smell of stale sweat with Earl Grey and accessing the one email account I have that is web accessible (spinneyhead[at]yahoo[dot]com if you’re interested). Until now I was all for blaming NatWest and NatWest alone for this disaster, but now I am also pissed off at BT. They’re okay so long as you’re connected, but their house move/ re-order system seems designed to lose them customers.

Eid was yesterday. That’s the last time I trust a calendar I find on the Internet. Next time I’ll just ask someone. I think I’ll break open some of the Stella I’ve been squirelling away from pub quiz winnings and celebrate Thanksgiving. I was going to launch a Dubya effigy on a rocket, but once again this plan has been put back (from July the 4th to Labo[u]r Day to Thanksgiving to…. I don’t know, some time after I get broadband back when I can persuade a few people with video cameras to record it.)


I guess I’m a bit of a fair weather patriot when it comes to sporting events. I actually watched (well, sort of, I was playing Gran turismo at the same time) the Rugby final, and have to admit, it was a nail biter. Yay for our boys!

Though I wouldn’t be even this interested if it had been football. The sports minister was on telly last week saying that we had lots of world class athletes, just not in sports the public is interested in. I take issue with this. I’d like to see more mountain biking, a sport we have a couple of world class downhillers in. Instead of Ski Sunday (or whatever it is nowadays) during the winter months we could have Downhill Sunday almost every week. Duals and BikerCross would make for good short attention span telly. It might have something to do with sponsorship. At the moment, the main people funding fun sports are Red Bull. Perhaps they’re not big or swish enough to get attention often.

Not so extreme, more of a long slog. I rode the Northern loop of the Bogle route yesterday. I felt better at the end of the 27 miles than I did after the first 2. Only got one picture, of the war memorial at Clifton, because I didn’t want to risk my muscles siezing up by stopping too often.

At least I’m not the only one confused by the start and end of Ramadan. It seems Eid starts today not, as I had thought, on Thursday (though I may still stay off the beer until Saturday). And yesterday I was told that the Sunni and Shia ramadans are different lengths. All too confusing, but at least I also found I wasn’t the only one off alcohol for the duration.

Left Hand, Right Hand

I spent about an hour and a half on the phone to BT this morning. I talked to the Sales department, who passed me on to the Billing department, who told me to contact the Cancellations department, who passed me over to the technical help desk, who (I think, it was all getting a bit hazy by this point) sent me back to the Billing department. They all tried to be helpful (except for the cancellations guy, who tried to get rid of me as soon as possible), but none of them could understand my situation enough to do anything but forward me. And this is just to sort out cancelling my existing account (why can’t I just settle up and get reconnected now the problem with NatWest has been cleared up?), which has to be done before I can reorder broadband.

Ay Carumba!

Just been to a mini anti war rally (there’s a bigger one tonight and then the main one in London tomorrow). There are pictures, which I’ll post as soon as I’m able. I’m a little uncomfortable participating in a Socialist Worker side project, but it’s a big stand-up-and-be-counted issue, so I’ll show my support wherever I can.

Gazillion piece puzzle

A computer program has been written to solve the world’s biggest jigsaw puzzle, 16,000 sacks of shredded Stasi documents. The East German security agency shredded all it’s documents when the Berlin Wall came down but couldn’t arrange the trucks to take the scaks away to be burned. In theory it will take 5 years to complete the task as opposed to 400 years with the current manual method.


One of the few things getting me through this internet drought is SSX3.

Despite my previous moans about BT I would like to point out that, to this point, they have been wonderful over this whole lack of payment debacle- it is entirely NatWest’s fault that I am in this position. However, I have now reentered the BT bureaucracy zone where idiotic rules apply and I have to jump through hoops to get my connection back. I called on Friday, the date I’d been told, to find that I couldn’t reorder because the cease process hadn’t finished. So I called again yesterday, only to find that the close down of my old account, and removal of ADSL from the line, would actually take seven days. So I’ll call tomorrow, and they’ll probably tell me something else that will mean it takes even longer to get the internet back.

I need connection dammit! The silly websites Graham Norton mentions are catching up with the ones I know about!


Late DEx strips for you. Friday’s and yesterday’s. You’ll notice a big change in style between the two. The prologue was drawn a couple of years ago then abandoned, but when I restarted the project I realised it still fit. The main story pages are done by cheating lots and using Poser to set up the scenes with backgrounds often copied from photos (I’m a tracer. I have no problem admitting that).

Best Laid Plans

I was going to get around the lack of connectivity by coming into Easy Internet and using my pen drive to transfer comics and stuff to Spinneyhead. Of course, the USB slot they so kindly provide either isn’t working or just refuses to recognise the pen drive, so no dice there, I’m afraid.

Hopefully within the next week I’m going to load myself down with 35mm film and wander around the city centre taking pictures for a project I’m calling Look Up: Manchester above head height.. The intent should be fairly obvious from the name. I’m going to take the time to work out a route around town and do some research as a way to string the photos together. I may add a third strand which’ll basically be my day out taking these pictures and personal reminisces (“I remember when this was all fields y’know. Damn, that was good acid that day!”)

Other projects I’m brewing up include The Manchester History of the World, with a timeline stringing across the top of national and global events and across the bottom of Mancunian moments. The idea being to show what was happening here at these points in history and how, if at all, wars etc. impacted the people of Manchester and Salford. (Why Manchester? Well, because I live here of course. And because the Industrial Revolution stuff will be perfectly suited.)