Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Pot, Kettle

This via the Guardian's website:

Union accuses Morrisons of sex bias

Press Association
Wednesday December 28, 2005

Supermarket giant Morrisons was today accused by union leaders of sex discrimination over payouts to staff it is making redundant, three decades since landmark equality laws came into force.

Press Association? Siding with unions against corporate fat cats? The poor sod who had to cover that one must have had a wry smile on his/her face, considering the amount of flak PA itself comes in for at the hands of the NUJ. It seems as thought every issue of Bylines or The Journalist contains a new string of offences against staff, whether it's unpaid overtime, bullying or salary discrimination. The NUJ started a campaign for official recognition by PA at the start of 2005, but to my knowledge this is still a distant prospect.

Friday, December 23, 2005

I wish it could be Christmas everyday

Well I wish it could be Christmas everyday
When the band starts playing and the kids begin to play

Kids? Band? Hardly. Here in the City, however, there is one very definite advantage to working so close to Christmas: nobody's here!

Honest to god, it is fantastic. I had to go to the Post Office today to get a late Xmas parcel sent to my boyfriend, and was dreading having to spend my entire lunch hour waiting in a queue of hacking, snivelling people.. but to my delight, there was NO ONE THERE. Well okay, there were three people there. But there were also three cashiers open, which meant about two seconds of queuing for yours truly! Pure bliss. Even in non-Christmas times of the year,it's never ever that quiet.

The same thing applies to all the restaurants around Farringdon. Deserted! No queues, all of your favourite sarnies still plentifully stocked, and some places even giving the stuff away at a third of the price. Fab!

I'll be working next Wednesday through Friday as well, seeing as my 2005 holiday leave has all been used up. If things are as chilled then, I really will wish it could be Christmas every day.

So go on then, open forum. How will you be spending this holiday season? I have been informed that mine will involve a 'Christmas lasagne', courtesy of one of my more freestyle culinary flatmates. Which reminds me, I need to go buy brandy butter and fairy lights.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Quote Unquote

Hearty congratulations to newlyweds Elton John and David Furnish, who finally got married yesterday after waiting for 12 long years for their union to be considered legal. However, I think someone might have forgotten to inform the BBC that their nuptials are officially, 100% above-board. Why else would there be quotation marks in every article surrounding the event? At a glance:

  • Stars pack Elton 'wedding' party
  • Thursday's newspapers revel in the "marriage" of Sir Elton John to long-term partner David Furnish.
  • Sir Elton John and his partner David Furnish become one of the first gay couples in England to 'marry' in a civil partnership ceremony.

What gives? It was a real wedding, they did marry, and it was recognised by the state. The BBC's implied "yes, but" attitude on this is more than a little arcane... not to mention patronising. Plus ├ža change, then!

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Transitional Phase

It was my 25th birthday exactly one week ago today. Unfortunately, instead of spending the week indulging in the heights of Bacchanalian excess (well, except for lunch at the Gay Hussar and that hazy Saturday night in Shoreditch), I've spent much of the past seven days investigating the less appealing side of reaching my quarter-century: responsibility.

After two (mostly) happy years in Clerkenwell, it seems my days in EC1 might be drawing to a close. Not by choice, I hasten to add, but through a woefully ill-timed decision by my landlady to sell the flat and cast us out into the unknown. While the other flatmates are pursuing rental options, I've decided to see if I can go about buying something, to avoid being put in this position again.

In doing so I have officially become The Most Boring Person In The World (TMBPITW), who perks up when adverts for Abbey or Nationwide pop up on TV, regularly trawls the Foxtons website and, worst of all, has developed a complete inability to talk about anything other than bloody flats and how to buy them. Is this what adulthood is meant to be like? Bloody hell, I hope not. As TMBPITW, I've even started to bore myself.

Anyway, I'll spare you all the gory details, but suffice it to say this is the reason behind my not having posted for awhile. I am, to borrow a phrase from my daily analysis lingo, in a transitional phase. Will try to stick to the once-a-week-minimum rule from now on, though.

In the meantime, I've been pondering. About a couple of things, since you asked.

  1. London. What in god's name is the point? Don't get me wrong, I still love the place, but if you're not loaded with cash or already the owner of a property, can you ever really make your entire life here? Assuming you've arrived from another country, that is. For the price of a crummy one-room ex-council flat here, you could get nice clean HOUSES with SEVERAL rooms in many other countries.
  2. Luuuurve. Is it possible in a place like this? My experience of London is fairly limited, but it tends to include people who (a) have moved here from other countries, or at least other parts of the UK, and (b) make their living in the media industry. Say two of those people meet and start to date, and everything's peachy. But then, bam! The nature of your job could dictate that you almost never see your partner except when pissed, one or both of you could be turfed out of your flat, redundancy or horrific job conditions could see you out of work, boredom or post-work boozing could lead to infidelity, the stress of living in a box in central London could make you want to permanently head for the hills... Oh yes, and family in two different locations outside London doesn't help matters either. So I'm just wondering, given all that can go wrong, is it possible for anyone working in the media in London to have a romance that lasts?

Teenage angst was nothing compared to this. Actually yes it was, it was fucking horrible. Still, though. Aaaaargh!