When In Doubt, Ask A Nine Year Old Or A Strawberry Blond & Lovin’ It!

Well my crash course into the world of xBox continues and while I am doing pretty well and learning reasonably quickly on most things, FIFA 17 and the skills required for a truly competitive game still elude me.

So, I am more than happy that the steady flow of buddies for the small testosterone filled one continue to come through the door and continue to offer a much more challenging game than I ever could.

Last night, in a vague attempt at getting to grips with the damned game I managed to seize the opportunity of the small testosterone filled one not being on his xBox and went to the basic controls page of the game.

Armed with a pad and pencil, (how old-fashioned!), I duly started to copy out the various combinations of buttons on the control pad to allow for some private study and familiarisation with the game.

I duly started to copy them out with all due care and after half a page of A4 I was left with a feeling that I could so this and in time I would be that cool mum that could play a good game of FIFA 17.

It was at this point that I spotted the remaining pages on the screen – all waiting to be copied out.

There were a further 12 pages – all ranging from half to three-quarters of a page of A4.

Not to be beaten I duly found a website from where I could save time, energy, paper and my right arm by printing them all out.

12 Pages later they were all printed out.

Now, if it wasn’t bad enough that I now have 12 pages to study and inwardly digest, I am also having to Google various terms and technicalities.

For instance, I am learning about ‘manual protect’, ‘small feints’, ‘big feints’ and ‘finesse shots’ among others.

As for ‘threaded through passes’, well that sounds like something you need to speak to your GP about.

So, I am actually no further forward and as I struggle to get time alone on the xBox to practice and get to grips with the intricacies of the game I cannot see any progress being made between now and the small testosterone filled one’s 18th birthday.

However, rescue continues to come in the form of other small testosterone filled ones who appear out of nowhere in order to offer their services as suitable opponents.

Just twenty minutes ago himself and I had regained control of the TV, forcibly switched off the xBox and were settling down with an orange juice, (don’t forget where we live), a bowl of pistachios and were about to watch a pre-dinner rerun of Top Gear when the phone rang.

The small testosterone filled one answered and needless to say it was for him.

Before we could do anything about it one of his buddies was en route for a xBox session.

So, here we sit with two small testosterone filled ones enjoying the delights of xBox. The pistachios are half eaten, the orange juice drunk and the pre-dinner rerun of Top Gear forgotten about.

Now, this is where the title of this evening’s post comes from.

You see they are not actually playing FIFA 17 at the moment but another game called ‘Rocket League’ where two cars play football and the normal football objective of scoring a goal is the aim.

Now, like FIFA 17, there are many different configurations of control pad to make for a competitive game – but nowhere near as many on damned FIFA 17.

So, while I have yet to win a game of Rocket League, I can put up a good fight.

However, this evening’s xBox guest arrived, immediately grasped a control and started making his car do all sorts of fancy tricks while scoring numerous goals and quite frankly giving our small testosterone filled one a real run for his money.

Himself was slightly bemused by this and promptly asked how the xBox guest had performed such intricate acrobatics.

He then wished he had not asked as the nine-year old xBox guest went into a convoluted explanation of how to do said acrobatics involving a very complicated combination of control pad commands.

We both wish he had never asked.

This has only added to my feeling of being old and past it which quite frankly has been growing since the arrival of the gruesome twosome just 5 days ago.

Yeap, not only is my inadequacy on FIFA 17 a major issue in my mind, (along with the lack of opportunities for appropriate quite and private practice), but also the growing physical prowess of the small testosterone filled one.

Firstly, we had a wrestling match the other day and for the first time ever I really could not do it. He simply had the advantage and there was nothing I could do about it. I had to call in himself for reinforcements and had over control of the battle to the stronger force.

Secondly, since the return of the small man, he has been joining me in my swimming training. This is not only to get him out of the house and away from his xBox, (and the damned FIFA 17), but also to try to get rid of some of that nine-year old boy energy.

In times gone past I comfortably had the advantage in all swimming challenges laid down by the small man, but no more.

Yes, that fab school with all their sporting opportunities has clearly worked its magic not only on the small testosterone filled one on the rugby, football and hockey pitches and on the cross-country course but also clearly in the swimming pool.

No longer do I have the upper hand. The only stroke that I stand any chance in is front crawl and even then we are neck and neck. After each race of front crawl I am a breathless mess needing a break before the next leg.

The small testosterone filled one is quite benevolent to his old mum as he does volunteer to give me a five second head start on breast stroke, (my weakest stroke by far), but is still drawing pictures in the water waiting for me at the finish line.

As for back-stroke – well I have no idea what is going on there as once again he is stood contemplating life and the universe by the time I make it to the end.

Now, the fact that we have this afternoon had a fully technical explanation of intricate driving techniques on Rocket League by a nine-year old xBox expert and I have been reduced to a breathless, exhausted mess in the swimming pool by the small testosterone filled one, the strawberry blond hand grenade has also today contributed to my feeling of being over the hill.

You see while I have been swimming training with the small man, I have been at the gym with the hand grenade.

Now, the presence of strawberry blond one at the gym is as a result of numerous per-end of term emails asking for a ‘Fit-Bit’.

We are not the sort of parents who just buy things on demand for our children and I negotiated, via email, a deal whereby if the strawberry blond one came to the gym with me over the holidays without whingeing and moaning and actually did something, then I would discuss the possibility of a Fit-Bit with himself for her birthday.

So, she has made her bed and now she has to get out of it in a morning and go to the gym with me.

Now there has been a couple of episodes of whingeing and moaning to which I have just said the words ‘Fit’Bit’ and suddenly it has stopped – now there’s a surprise.

Now, there are challenges to taking a strong-willed, (don’t know where she gets that from), strawberry blond hand grenade to the gym.

You see, aged 11 a strong-willed strawberry blond hand grenade knows everything and will not accept advice from her mum – even though her mum is a fully qualified physio.

So, the hand grenade launches head first into activities in her own way and not always with the best technique.

Any words of advice, no matter how indirect, are rebuffed and she just carries on in her own way to prove a point.

I am firmly of the opinion that the fact she is going to the gym is a major bonus and as long as she is getting into the habit then I can live with any poor technique.

So this morning she announced she was going onto an exercise bike. She has made some vague comments of late about a slight twinge in her knee but being the callous physio that I am I have ignored her and will only worry when her leg drops off.

So, I made the fatal mistake of congratulating her on her choice of using an exercise bike and commenting that strengthening her quads would help any knee pain.

Well, not my brightest move.

With a derogatory eye roll and a facial expression that would have made Donald Trump crumble into a gibbering  mess, I was informed that she knew that and she knew all about knees. I was told that they had studies knees the week before last in biology at school and that was why she was going on the exercise bike.

Clearly I was misled with three years and a BSc in physiotherapy studies, I should have just gone to the strawberry blond one’s prep school and done a biology lesson instead.

So yes, I am feeling a little shaken by the increasing strength and sporting finesse of the small testosterone filled one and the unshakable level of superior knowledge of the hand grenade. I am not sure what will come next, the small man throwing me over his shoulder to speed me up getting to the swimming pool on my zimmer frame or the hand grenade explaining quantum physics and molecular science to me.

Whatever it may be I am sure that it will result in me feeling even more antiquated and past it.

Right, I am still working my way through the small testosterone filled one’s washing pile so best I head off, put on my marigolds and load the long-suffering washing machine up once more.

I still have not heard from any exasperated Cumbrian farmers whose sheep have been electrocuted by chewing through our ‘temporary’ telephone wire and I did phone our home number yesterday to check the answer phone just to see if it was still working. It was yesterday.

I am maintaining my pressure on BT/Openreach – much to their disappointment as they clearly thought they were out of the woods and was delighted to see yet more poop rain down on BT with the OFCOM £46 billion pound fine for poor service.

Did I rub their noses in it on Twitter and Facebook as well as happening to mention it to our ‘Senior Executive Level Complaints’ Bod in an email?

Oh yes, just a bit!!! Lovin’ it, lovin’ it, lovin’ it……..




Time Flies, BT/Openreach Action & The Gruesome Twosome Return…

Well it’s amazing how time flies. here was me thinking that I would just have a few days of no blog time and low and behold here we are two weeks later.

Yes, it is two weeks since my last missive on the EIOT blog and a lot has happened.

First and foremost the gruesome have landed. Yeap, the Easter holidays are upon us, the peace is shattered, the house looks like a boarding school bomb has gone off and the fridge is already a good deal emptier than it was this time a couple of days ago.

Now, it wasn’t quite the snagless trip that it should have been for them, or us. All our meticulous planning went down the swanny quite dramatically as a minor hitch en route to the airport ended in near disaster. Raised blog pressure, bickering and extreme anxiety ensued – that was here in the land of sand and not on the M-something I hasten to add. No, the strawberry blond hand grenade phoned us with a barely audible sense of concern in her voice and the testosterone filled one was completely unfazed as he had sausage rolls and his iPad so quite frankly anything could have happened and he would not have flinched.

Yeap, an accident on the motorway brought the whole detailed, military quality plan to a standstill – nobody’s fault but a damned pain in the bottom anyway.

So, a 90 minute standstill and stress levels here in the land of sand soared. Even our usually calm driver who ferries the gruesome twosome from various points of the country to various other points in our absence was a bit flummoxed. But they remained completely unflustered and even a tad bored by the whole scenario.

Yeap, they were too late for the flight. Crisis!

Now, it is bad enough when you are at the airport yourself and have a problem, but when you are 3000+ miles away with the offspring at the airport, school finished for Easter and no flight then nerves were jangling somewhat.

Anyway, crisis solved with the legendary Lufthansa springing to the rescue with an alternative – but not after nail biting, stressful bickering and more than a few expletives.

Oh how I needed a glass of wine on Thursday….

Anyway, crisis solved and the gruesome twosome arrived late at night, completely unvexed.

Now, they are back with us safe and sound and will be for almost a month. However, yesterday morning I took it upon myself to put a hand into the luggage of the small testosterone filled one.

I am not quite sure what I was expecting but I can guarantee it wasn’t this.

In my naivety I suppose I was expecting his bag to be packed as I would pack mine. Yeap, my subconscious was expecting nice clean clothes, neatly folded, organised, sweet smelling with shoes in special bags.

Shock! I unzipped his bag to find a mish-mash of grot. Well, a high proportion of grot. There was some hygiene in there – Matron at school had clearly had some input – albeit minimal.

Yeap, I unzipped the bag to find a homogenised clump of clothes. A combination of clean clothes that would have been recently laundered by Matron and a preponderance of well, dirty clothes.

Now, when I had donned my protective gown and donned my marigolds I started to fish out the contents of the bag.

Needless to say the contents of the bag all made their way directly to the linen basket and I swear I heard a sigh coming from the washing machine in the kitchen.

But, I was, (and still am), more than a little bemused by the fact that among the ragbag of clothes that I plucked out with my marigolds were all his day school uniform – trousers and shirts. No other uniform just his shirts and trousers.

This in itself gives me cause for concern as it undoubtedly means that he stinky sports kit is festering in his sports bag and will be for the next month along with his wet swimming kit and towel.

Best I write a grovelling email to Matron in the hope that she is still at school.

Now there was evidence that the trousers were waiting to be washed but the shirts? Well, they were all buttoned up and folded – clearly by the tender loving hands of Matron.

So, slightly puzzled I asked the small testosterone filled one why he had brought clean school uniform 3500 miles from Cumbria to the land of sand.

I was greeted by a bemused look that suggested the stupidity of my question and was then informed that ‘I didn’t know what to do with them so I just put them in my bag’.

OK, I suppose I should be grateful that he knew what to do with his euphonium and hadn’t resorted to stuffing that in his bag as well.

‘And’, I asked, ‘what about the flip-flops that I asked you to bring back?’

‘Oh, forgot those…..’

So, we have his school trousers and shirts here in the land of sand and his flip flops remain in Cumbria….That’s useful.

Anyway, the washing machine has been coaxed into life and is attending to its mission. The bag itself is now empty and open, allowing the air to to get to it and hopefully freshen it up over the next few weeks ready for its return journey when it will be full of sweet smelling, freshly laundered and highly organised clothes.

So, what else has been happening?

Well, it has been quite here, very quite – until last night. The normal levels of extreme chaos do subside to a moderate level when the gruesome twosome are away but we do still have our moments.

Firstly, himself has had an awakening – it has only taken several years but he has got there.

Yeap, when one day he came home from work and found me glued to the extravaganza that is Broadchurch he was vaguely interested and even sat and watched the last 20 minutes with me.

Well, that was enough to trigger the avalanche – he suddenly decided that he would like to sample the broader Broadchurch experience.

Well, what can I say? Broadchurch devotees we have our latest member. Yeap, he is hooked. We binge watched series one on Wednesday and then series two on Thursday. The only thing that is stopping series three at the moment is that the gruesome twosome are at home and it is not really child friendly material.

Anyway, even after fetching the gruesome twosome from the airport he was still in his Broadchurch buzz zone and as he was dozing off to sleep he was still talking about the intricacies of the plot of series 2 and is even taking about going to Dorset to visit the locations.

He was very unceremoniously asked to be quiet and go to sleep.

Talking of TV, you will I am sure be pleased to hear that my Jeremy Kyle detox is continuing to do well. The physical symptoms of withdrawal are lessening and Mr JK’s name barely enters my head at the moment.

That said, I did turn on the TV the other day and stumble across Judge Rinder and lingered for a few seconds – but common sense soon kicked in and I soon changed over to the news and quite frankly wished I hadn’t and switched off.

So, to our news that everybody wants to hear – the BT/Openreach fiasco.

Yeap, we have news. Now this is in no small way thanks to the efforts of the national press, and the local press who finally published as well, who launched, (and continue to maintain), an assault on BT/Openreach.

Yeap, it would appear that the press love a story that takes a shot at the behemoths that are BT/Openreach.

The original article appeared on a website that deals with all things communication – news, deals, research everything and I am exceptionally grateful to my friendly journalist who published it.

Within minutes of the story going live we were contacted by The Daily Mail, The Mirror and The Sun – all online editions.

At the same time I launched a Twitter attack on all accounts BT/Openreach, (and believe me there are a few).

Now, I am not sure which newspapers published and which didn’t, but the effect with BT/Openreach was meteoric.

All of a sudden Openreach were in touch – yes Openreach, not BT. All of a sudden temporary solutions were being offered and all of a sudden nothing was too much trouble.

Apparently managers were breathing down necks and apparently all hell was breaking lose.

The outcome is that we have a ‘temporary’ phone line that not only gives us a phone line but also gives us internet.

Now, let’s not get too overexcited about this as it is a temporary fix.

Yeap, apparently Openreach have attached a wire to the the telegraph pole by the phone box at the bottom of the hill, (although in doing so they then realised the phone box has not been working for a long time) and then proceeded to lay wires over the fields up to the telegraph pole near our house and connected it to the line going into our house.

Now, this is clearly not a technical description and I do not think it needs to be – the wires are apparently not buried and run over the grass in the fields.

So, this is a very temporary fix and I am just waiting for a sheep to bite through the wire or a tractor to severe the cable.

I am not sure if there is an electrical current running through telephone cable but I am half expecting an exasperated farmer to phone the land of sand when one of his flock of sheep has been electrocuted.

So, I would just like to say that I am very grateful to the Openreach engineers who provided the ‘temporary’ fix but if BT/Openreach think I am going to be quiet now then I have news for them.

You see I am convinced that BT/Openreach are now going to rest on their laurels and are going to let the ‘permanent fix’, i.e. the moles on ploughs slip, (not literally the moles you understand but the work).

So, the emails to BT have continued and I have pointed out in no uncertain terms that they will not be allowed to let the ‘temporary’ fix slowly become the ‘permanent’ fix.

They have assured me that this will not happen, but after so many broken assurances then quite frankly pigs might fly.

Anyway, I am looking forward to visiting EIOT Towers and enjoying the delights of a phone line and the internet, as long as no sheep have been electrocuted by then that is.

Right, so, best I start thinking about entertaining the gruesome twosome for the next month.

The small testosterone filled one’s xBox is back in the land of sand and already I have been nagged into an inch of my life to play FIFA 17 with him.

With the best will in the world that is a bit beyond me and to be honest I cannot get my head around all the different combinations of control pad buttons to make the players do anything vaguely footballish.

Wayne Rooney’s (professional) reputation would have been smashed and his career in ruins if he performed in real life as I made him perform yesterday.

So, the small man has got very frustrated with me and this morning I was reduced to a plea on the compound’s Facebook page for anybody who knew how to play FIFA 17 and rescue came in the form of a friend’s son who at the same age as the small man is an ideal buddy to play FIFA 17 and give me a reprieve.

So, here they sit, glued to FIFA 17. They have complete control of the TV. The strawberry blond hand grenade has taken to wearing head phones to avoid the ‘boys’ that are in the lounge. Himself is researching Broadchurch locations and me?, well I am in a supervisory role of them all – especially himself.






BT Divorce, Media Frenzy & Smug Mode…

Oh its getting sooooo exciting here, I am all of a quiver and am chuffed to pieces with what is going on.

Yeap – my friendly journalist has done his stuff and published the article and quite frankly he has pulled no punches and been completely blunt with his assessment of the story.

Now, I am a little torn here as I am seriously tempted to publish a link to the article but it gives my real name and also himself’s and so my cover would be blown.

I need to mull this over.

Anyway, the article has been published and the good news is that The Daily Mail are due to publish on their online edition today.

Oh BT you have messed up big time, Oh it is fab!

The Sun were interested but seem to have gone quiet…..

The Westmorland Gazette got wind of it, wrote to me asking for details when I told them they had all the details some 4 months ago and did nothing about it. I think heads have rolled and I got a nice apology saying they forgot about me and the fiasco(!). They did say ‘they may put something in next week’s paper’ – don’t strain yourselves guys.

So, the news of the day is that BT and Openreach are being legally forced to separate – oh what a shame, I hope it is not an amicable divorce with lots of kicking, screaming and restraining orders. I just hope the kids are OK.

You see in my many highly energetic conversations with BT/Openreach they have always sworn blind that they are two different companies – well they have now proven themselves to have told even more untruths than ever!

I have already expressed my interest and immediate availability for the vacant Chair post of Openreach – their feet would not touch the ground!!!

Oh I am going to have some fun today, there will clearly be some raw nerves at BT/Openreach today and I am going to love it!! I am going to be completely unbearable…

So, the latest update from BT is they are reviewing the mud again next week. Not only do I wonder how many newspaper/online articles can be published by then but how many solicitors letters about who gets the dog will be sent from the BT lawyers to the Openreach lawyers.

Anyway, I must contain my excitement, I must, I must, I must………

Onto other matters.

Firstly, anybody in deepest Cumbria – if you happen to see The Small Testosterone Filled One, please remind him that he has a Mum and Dad out in the land of sand and we really would like to speak to him when he can fit us into his hectic social calendar.

We have had communication from the Strawberry Blond Hand Grenade reasonably recently – well this week anyway – but we would always appreciate more if she is so inclined.

My admin assault is continuing but I have to say I am struggling against a tide of emails about phone lines, children and problems with transferring the electricity supply to EIOT Towers. Yes, my email inbox has reverted to type and is now well beyond one page and is way beyond any line of sight….

Of course the good news is that I have been soooo busy over recent days that I have had no opportunity to relapse back into Jeremy Kyle and his daily dose of trash TV. No, it is now over a week since I last indulged. That said it is now weekend again here and so himself is at home with his disparaging comments and sarcasm so any temptation that may come my way is firmly rebuffed.

Right, time to gloat!





Laptop Laxative & No Cold Turkey Here…..

So, the Jeremy Kyle detox continues and to be honest it is doing well. I have not been near the TV control at any point during the day, have not gone onto the ITV Hub and have most certainly not Googled any clips on YouTube.

No, all is well. Thus far I have not gone cold turkey, had no uncontrollable shaking or wild and unnecessary outbursts – well no more than usual anyway.

However, as tonight is Broadchurch night in the UK, I will be tuning into the ITV Hub tomorrow for my weekly fix of Mr Tennant and Ms Coleman.

Will the temptation be too much for me? After catching up on Broadchurch, will I weaken and turn to Mr Kyle for entertainment or will I remain strong and steadfast in my resolve?

Well, time will tell. I can only hope that I can maintain my resolute stance and cast Mr Kyle away with a waft of my hand.

To be honest my Jeremy Kyle withdrawal programme has been aided by my assault on my admin backlog.

Yeap, thanks to the BT fiasco I rapidly develop an admin/email/internet backlog of jobs that need attention. Any stays in the UK lead to a backlog that not even the IT/admin equivalent of Senokot can shift in a hurry.

I do find it quite ironic that on the whole I have to return to the land of sand to get on top of all admin and make phone calls. Yeap the pub and fab cafe serve a purpose, but that just deals with the immediate, the backlog is something else.

So, the last couple of weeks have seen me half-heartedly chipping my way through the backlog.

Today, however saw a full scale assault in camouflage, heavy weapons and tactics that the SAS would be proud of.

Yeap, I have been rather busy today – in fact I have been ridiculously busy.

So, as you can appreciate Jeremy Kyle has barely even crossed my mind.

What has crossed my mind is a plethora of emails, letters and research.

Yes, I am feeling quite virtuous – my email inbox is now on one page, yes one page! Those emails that are left over are simply ones that are there to remind me that I am waiting on a reply from somebody.

How exciting – one page! First time in years!

So, no missives from BT today, but as I got an out of office reply from our ‘Senior Executive Complaints Team’ bod at the weekend saying that she was out of the office until tomorrow no surprise there.

Yes, I sent quite a curt and direct email to her over the weekend, but as it is a struggle to get any answers at the best of times, then quite frankly a reply from any other bod at BT in her absence would be too much to ask for.

BT and BTCare also seem to have stopped posting their self-congratulatory and self-satisfied posts on Twitter – maybe they are just trying to avoid sarcastic and blunt responses……

Right, brief post this evening as I continue my assault on the admin backlog…



Jeremy Kyle Detox, A Mandatory Haircut & Godfather Reprieve…..

Those readers who are interested in my general well-being, mental health and descent into despair will be relieved to hear that I have managed to abstain from Jeremy Kyle for 2 days now. Yes, I have apparently managed to overcome my brief foray into the desolate and desperate world of Jeremy Kyle and associates and have for two days abstained from such an extravaganza.

Now, it could be argued that this forgoing of the bleep ladened programme is due to the fact that it is the weekend here in the land of sand, (yes, please remember our weekends are Friday – Saturday so tomorrow is a working day), and himself has been at home.

Therefore, himself could be seen as a deterrent to such mind numbing TV as his disparaging comments and sarcasm would be enough to deter a starving chocoholic who found themselves in a Cadbury’s factory.

So, tomorrow will be a big day. Himself will be at work and I will be alone – with the TV control.

Now, I am reasonably optimistic that I will be OK tomorrow, I have lined up some pretty heavy-duty admin tasks that will take me at least till tomorrow to complete – quite possibly following on into Monday.

Beyond that time will tell as I will be reverting back to Expat in The Middle East without admin backlog  and time on her hands……

So, the gruesome twosome are on another Exeat weekend. No, this weekend we have not requested the support of the Godfather and therefore by default, Mary Poppins. No, he is still recovering from his last Exeat experience and in order to avoid even being asked to help, he has disappeared off on a ‘business trip’ and was last seen in Bogota.

Now that’s one way to get out of his Godfatherly duties.

No, the gruesome twosome have scattered to various parts of the country.

The Strawberry Blond Hand Grenade is residing with a school friend in West Yorkshire, but having said that a message was received not long ago to say that she was on a train to Leeds for a day of retail therapy and dinner out.

As for The Small Testosterone Filled One (TSTFO), well we received a photo of him with his life long best mate who after leaving Saudi and then Abu Dhabi now resides in Lancashire.

I have to admit to a slight tinge of guilt here. You see TSTFO has been in need of a hair cut and the need has only been exacerbated by his refusal to have it cut as he ‘wants to grow it’.

I emailed school and requested a hair cut when the barber was next in the boarding house.

He successfully managed to avoid being in the house at the required time and so avoided the barber.

I emailed school and asked if next time the gardeners had the hedging shears out, would they mind  doing a quick short back and sides?

Looks like the Cumbrian weather is not up to hedge cutting yet.

So, over to Mrs M. Yes, long-term readers will recall various posts about Mrs M, the mother of TSTFO’s best mate and who is also a very good friend of mine. The previous posts usually revolved around escapades in Abu Dhabi involving copious amounts of orange juice and explaining what a bad influence Mrs M is. Well, as regards a haircut for TSTFO Mrs M is a force of nature.

Mrs M is a fully qualified teacher with quite a few years experience. In addition she has two off spring of her own – one of which is TSTFO’s best buddy.

So, I have no doubt that my request to Mrs M to ensure a full haircut for TSTFO has been executed and he now is back to his normal unshaggy hair good-looking self.

My guilt comes as a result of the emotional cost of this as TSTFO will have fought the concept of a haircut tooth and nail and will have done anything possible to escape the barber’s chair.

My money has always been on Mrs M, but I suspect it was a bloody fight with peripheral casualties.

I will wait for a full report from Mrs M later.

Of course the big advantage Mrs M has is alcohol to numb the pain, I simply have a glass of orange juice….

So, to BT. Well, yesterday saw a spontaneous, unprovoked and unsolicited update from BT.

Yes, an email from our “Senior Executive Complaints Team’ bod – Ms W, popped into my inbox as a little surprise. To be honest I am not sure why she bothered as there was no news to update. Well, apart from they are reviewing the state of the Cumbrian countryside again on Monday.

I could save them the trouble, (but I won’t as I will not do anything to make the life of BT/Openreach any easier), and tell them that as the Cumbrian countryside is wet and muddy all year round, it will be wet and muddy on Monday.

I have to say that while I commented that I did not know why Ms W had bothered to update me, I actually do know why she had.

No, not due to a long-standing sense of guilt or embarrassment about the fiasco that has been connecting EIOT Towers to the outside world for the last 6 months.

No, it was because my new journalist friend had clearly been doing his journalistic type things and asking questions.

He has asked me the previous day for the details so he could contact BT and I willingly supplied them and given my blessing for him to get digging, well BT certainly aren’t!

This unprovoked contact from BT follows a similar pattern as every time anybody asks questions, whether out be our MP, the local paper or my new journalistic friend, BT get all defensive and start producing spontaneous and unprovoked updates – even if there is nothing to update.

They really do think I am stupid.

Anyway, today two other notable events have taken place with regard to BT.

The first and least important, (well apart from the cathartic effect of BT cage rattling), was another caustic comment I posted on the BT Twitter feed this morning.

Yeap, as per the other day BT posted another Tweet about how wonderful they are so my default reaction of sarcasm kicked in.

It is quite interesting as the BT Twitter team no longer ask me for details of our case but just ask what the latest update is – they clearly recognise me now.

Needless to say I have not responded to Laura’s question – I have been far too busy counting the mosquitos on the mosquito netting to post a response.

The second, and more meaningful event happened when I woke up this morning. When I was cruising through Facebook this morning a desperate post about BT appeared.

It had come as a result of a mutual friend commenting and so it appeared in my feed.

Well, this post had started a snowball of stories of BT ineptitude, bad manners and general incompetence.

I already knew that there is a vast proportion of the UK population who have been screwed over by BT from reading various websites and blogs as well as people contacting me, but now I have more.

Now I would love to insert the Facebook thread into today’s blog but that would divulge all the lady’s personal details as well as some of mine.

However, I am mulling it over and if I can find a way of pixelating the relevant details I will post it here soon.

Anyway, this lady and I have been in touch and will be in touch even more very soon……..

Right, best crack on with not replying to BT on Twitter – as I always say they never take any notice anyway.




My Guilty Secret Revealed & Somebody Reads It!!!

A few days ago, amid my chaotic, manic and full on daily schedule, (yes just a large dose of sarcasm on that one), I killed sometime meandering through various outlets of Social Media – keeping up with world affairs, celebrity gossip and #envelopegate in LA. Because after all #envelopegate is the world’s most important issue at the moment.

Yes, this is what I have been reduced to and I am even embarrassed to admit that twice this week I have been guilty of a heinous crime. A crime that even I am reluctant to admit to for fear of alienation and being disowned from everybody in my social circle. To make it worse I have done it not once, but twice.

Yes, here goes. This week I have watched two episodes of Jeremy Kyle. There we go, I have admitted it. I have watched it. Not that I understood what the heck was going on and to be honest the number of sound cuts to get rid of the expletives meant that it was just about impossible to follow anyway.

Now, in a previous life I used to work with the top of people who appear on Jeremy Kyle but that was sometime ago and while many of the revelations that blurted out between edited vocals did not surprise me it was still quite enlightening to see how people conduct themselves on national TV.

Now I have to say that the best thing about the whole Jeremy Kyle experience is Steve the bouncer. Yes, for those people with a life and better things to do Jeremy Kyle is a TV programme which actually has real life bouncers, built like brick poop houses who are not just there to make the place look pretty. No, they actually have to keep warring families, partners, ex-partners, on/off partners, in-laws, out-laws and anybody else who walks onto the stage physically apart.

Now Steve is a big bloke, an enormous bloke who clearly is not the sharpest knife in the block but is an integral part of the show and quite frankly makes it palatable.

You see Steve just appears. He is quite often asked for words of knowledge and wisdom when somebody on stage says something that Jeremy Kyle allegedly does not understand and usually mutters a one word answer in very embarrassed tones.

Yes, Steve is the star of the show and quite frankly could justify fame and fortune in his own, unique, understated way.

So, now that I have unburdened myself about squandering time on such a waste of time, back to my wandering through the realms of Social Media.

You see as I leisurely leafed through various pages of different sites, with a family on Jeremy Kyle in the background shouting the odds about who was pregnant with their sister’s brother’s baby after having overdosed on wacky baccy in the toilets of Asda, I came across a Tweet from BT and BT Care.

You see I use social media not just to keep up to date on things both vital and important but also to keep an eye on certain people and organisations. Yes, BT is one of those.


So, it was with some interest that I spotted a post from BT that was retweeted by BT Care.

In this tweet they boasted of their technological achievements and basically how fab they are.

Well, that was one step too far for me and as I have behaved myself of late and been nothing but civil and polite to the behemoth that is BT, (well actually I haven’t done anything with BT for a few days as I have reached the grand conclusion that they don’t listen), I decided that a Tweet in response was due.

The trail went along the lines of;

Anyway, as you can see a  short, sharp exchange designed to rattle a cage or two.

Anyway, somebody else also keeps an eye on BT and their various Twitter feeds………….

Yes, a journalist who specialises in consumer broadband issues was watching…..

Well, there have been a few communications pinging backwards and forwards and it looks like an article may be on its way……

I will keep you posted. Stand by BT!!!!

The world will be pleased to know that my brain must read the EIOT blog and something must have sunk in as there has been a marginal improvement in its nocturnal activities and my recent lying awake for hours mulling over such issues as masonry paint, wood staining and water supplies has improved.

Now, this could well mean that my brain has read and inwardly digested the blog, or it could simply mean that actually I have mulled over in minutest detail all features of EIOT Towers and I have actually run out of things to think about?

Quite likely.

So, on that bombshell I am heading off to wait for news from my friendly journalist.