Archive for April, 2011

Perfect Pizza

Posted in Customer Service on April 24, 2011 by thecognitivekey

Oh my goodness. I guess we should have learned from our previous experience with this company. Last time they couldn’t find the house and had to call to find out where we are. No real problem that time, the food was still hot.

This time, though the food has arrived cold and the ice cream has melted. It arrived 90 minutes after the order was placed. Several phone calls were made to check on progress. The driver was on his way, was new, all sorts of excuses. Now we have been offered a refund and fresh food which is by all accounts being delivered by the manager. I will believe it when I see it. At the moment we are faced with cold pizza which will need to be microwaved unless the manager arrives pretty soon with the replacement hot food. I am not going to hold my breath.

The service from this company has been appalling. Late delivery, they don’t phone back when they say they will, and I am afraid I don’t believe the manager will be arriving with new food.

We will certainly not be using this company again. A strongly worded letter of complaint has been sent to Head Office.

A phone call from the manager – large pizzas are now being cooked and will be with us in about 15 minutes, plus new ice cream. Refunds are not possible as that is done by Head Office. I think there will be strong words exchanged with Head Office on Tuesday when they are open again. If they manage to deliver on time then it will be 2 hours after the initial order, and 6 phone calls, plus more hassle on Tuesday.




Posted in Work on April 15, 2011 by thecognitivekey

It could be on its way. I haven’t written about the details before now, but on Monday we should get to know who will be offered voluntary redundancy. The leaving date is 5th June. I can reveal now that I have heard already. My manager, unaware of the timetable, told me yesterday that I would be offered the redundancy package. Hurrah! All I have to do now is decide if I can afford to take it.

It would be nice to leave. There is so much that needs to be written about life in the code factory.

Sea Change – Robert Goddard

Posted in Books on April 15, 2011 by thecognitivekey

Odd that I have never read anything by Robert Goddard before. Even odder considering he went to the same school as me, albeit a few years before me. Actually why that should be odd now baffles me. I don’t keep in touch with my old school so no reason for me to know anything about Robert Goddard.

This book is based in the 1700s at the time of the South Sea Bubble and follows a character who becomes quickly embroiled in the fallout from the Bubble. It was easy to associate with the main character throughout all his troubles. I had far less sympathy for the main female character and I didn’t really understand the infatuation with her, a nasty woman. The story is well paced, with plenty of turns to maintain interest. The end is a bit contrived. Too many lucky breaks for my liking. The change of heart of the heroine, the happy ending for all, it doesn’t really do it for me, I’d have preferred a more realistic ending. But overall a good light read, and as I read it I couldn’t help but draw parallels with our on recent banking crisis. Politicians and bankers obviously never change. 8/10

Niger seed

Posted in Birds, Wildlife on April 13, 2011 by thecognitivekey

The goldfinches have been enjoying the seed I have put out for them. Goldfinches have always passed through the garden, often stopping by the birdbath for a couple of sips before continuing their journey. Usually in pairs. Since I put the niger seed feeder up there have been many more goldfinches. Up to a dozen at one time, fighting for position on the feeder or just eating the spill on the ground.

Since I started feeding the goldfinches (and it is only really goldfinches and siskins who will feed from the special feeder) I have had to move the feeder. They are such messy eaters that they spill far more than they eat. The original position was starting to have a mound of niger seed beneath it. Time to more it. It was moved to the other side of the garden. Again they are messy feeders and I was tempted to put the niger feeder to hang over the flower beds so I could just dig the overspill seed into the ground.

Ha! But all has now changed. When filling the feeder the other evening I noticed that there was a lot of broad-leaf weed growing in the lawn, all of it directly below the niger feeder. In fact it was a circle of weed where the seed had fallen. So, this isn’t the best quality niger seed. The top quality stuff is actually called nyjer seed and is trade marked – this seed is heat treated to ensure it can’t germinate. Other seed is sold, especially in this country as niger or thistle seed. Thistle is completely different from nyjer. A totally different plant. I have now had a close look at the niger seed I have and I must admit it does rather look like thistle. So, once the goldfinches have finished the current supplies there will be no more. Goldfinches will have to find their food elsewhere, though they will be welcome to share the nuts with the tits and greenfinches, and to get a drink. But no more niger. I shall be putting the weedkiller down shortly before the weed gets too firm a grip on the lawn.

The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare – GK Chesterton

Posted in Books on April 10, 2011 by thecognitivekey

I first heard this book read on Radio 7 on the BBC. A good adaptation and a great listen so I thought it was time to find out more.

The adaptation turns out to be very faithful to the original novel. It’s an entertaining read about a group of anarchists who, well I won’t spoil the tale. It is a very light read and to be honest I had worked out the truth about Sunday way before the end. Some of the references at the end when Sunday leaves messages for the other anarchists baffled me. I am not sure if this is because the novel was written in the early 1900s or whether it was supposed to be confusing. Would I read it again…maybe, but I am not sure I would treat it as a classic. It has nothing earth shattering to say. The religious metaphors were completely lost on me. It’s just a light, easy read.