Thursday, May 11, 2006


My Uncle Billy, who ran a pitch 'n' putt golf course used to say: "There's nothing worse than the public." I thought this a strange one from someone who depended on the public for his livelihood, then understood a little when I looked at vandalised bridges, broken flag-sticks and other pointless destruction wrought by the public on the golf course, until finally I understood completely when I took a job dealing by telephone with them.

My love and I both work in high-pressure jobs, not that our wages reflect it. Although our jobs are different, we try our best to satisfy and serve as many people as possible within the limits of what can be done (often different to what should be done). People occasionally thank us for our efforts, or ask us to thank our bosses on their behalf.

But one thing that happens, at least daily, is that the great Irish public displays its mettle by eating the arse off one or both of us. In my experience you have the "I want it now" type, who wasn't dropped enough times on his head as a kid, or, at the other extreme, the genuinely fucked-around-with type that a dozen never-to-be-repeated coincidences and delays have pissed off so badly that he just wants to decapitate the first eegit to say "Hello" on the other end of the telephone line.

So I got balloons.

I took a packet and a half and started blowing them up at a quarter-to-seven this evening. Fuck the cats, they could wait ten minutes longer to be fed. I huffed and puffed and filled the room with brightly-coloured latex bags of air and we watched them bump about. Happy little opinionless people filled the floor.

A large group of them swayed about as if discussing the doings of the day. Then I put on a television programme about building houses and they sat in rapt attention for the first half hour.

Some turned about to exchange glances with their neighbours when the builders proved inept, or the cost of restoration of shoddy workmanship came up, but generally -- and especially the orange one in the front row -- they stayed glued to the subject.

The elder cat eyed a red one suspiciously. I have a feeling it's the reason she didn't finish off the full portion of Whiskas this evening. I'll have to keep an eye on that one if it intends to continue making trouble.

I have some uninflated spares, which I think I'll introduce into the company if any go astray. It's possible they might, either by accident, or by something they learned from watching television shows. There are books about, too, so they might consider reading while we sleep tonight. I think it's fun that you never really know what they're going to do next.


Angh said...

Ahhh balloons! Buying a bag of them tomorrow. Good lung exercise, and they really do somehow lighten a load. Don't know how they'll go over with the six silly gits here, but a few happy balloons might save me some dosh at the liquor store. I wish I'd had a floor covered with them today.

BTW: How come it to pass that the Shoutbox isn't working in the forum? Or is it just my new computer not showing it?

Willie_W said...

Shoutbox >> It is working. Make sure Javascript is enabled. Otherwise, you may need to make content from the site "trusted" in your Internet security settings.