Tag Archives: ranting

…It’s just been revoked

How I yearn for the halcyon days when, having been slighted in some fashion, a chap could challenge the offending cad to a duel, get up at the crack of dawn, fire a musket round through his heart and be done with it.

Simpler, happier times.

Fast forward two hundred emasculating years and we’ve evolved to mumbling ‘That’s the third time you’ve incorrectly formatted this spreadsheet. Prepare to feel the wrath of my carefully-worded-so-as-not-to-get-in-trouble-with-HR, passive aggressive, sent before running away, email.’

He won’t do that again the cheeky little expletive-deleted.

Of course he will. I am powerless to stop him.

At the office I’ve been lobbying for a practice along the lines of the police’s guns and knives amnesty – a ‘Bring your rant to work day’ if you will. For one glorious day of the year you could saunter up to the lazy, ineffectual office gimp and, with complete impunity, bombard them with the abuse they so richly deserve, before putting the secretary across your knee as punishment for that memo she badly typed six months ago (it’s the only way she’ll learn). So far my suggestion has been met with stony stares and a call for me to go on something called ‘gardening leave’?

My female boss clearly doesn’t understand me.

But flippancy aside (I don’t advocate the spanking of women except by mutual consent) you have to be careful. For example – I was once sitting minding my own business when the following message arrived in my inbox:

‘Dear Martin, I am writing to let you know that I am having a name and gender change. From now on I shall be known as Rachel. Yours, Richard.’

I met with Rachel for lunch. For the sake of argument I’ll refer to her as ‘she’ even though, at this stage, she was still packing heat. Rachel wasn’t a happy camper and told me that she was in the process of making  a formal complaint. Management were refusing to let her  use the women’s toilets even though she was dressing and living as a female in preparation for the full op.

I said to her that she was a genius and that, if I got the use the women’s loos, I’d wear a dress to work, at which point she made a complaint about me.

Women eh! Cuh.

On a related but reversed theme I would encourage you to check out the very fine blog of Transman: http://theadventuresoftransman.com/

Also: In the interest of merciless self-promotion I have set up a Facebook page. If you feel so inclined please like it, love and cherish it, print it off, mulch it down into papier-mache and make your very own blog-based companion etc. I thank you.


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“You are my Kryptonite…”

…Was universally agreed last night as the answer to the question ‘What’s the worst chat-up line you’ve ever received?’

The relevancy of which is that the lady in question had also tried to order The Melting Pot via Waterstones, but had subsequently been refunded after they were unable to source it…all despite my having gone to great lengths to get a wholesale agreement in place with a company called Gardners. I checked on the website and it seems that the agreement has been cancelled without my knowledge!

This kind of occurrence is the biggest obstacle to a self-publisher – the bulk buying view – where a company will say that’s it’s not in their interests to buy (or even take on sale or return) from a single seller due to it being inefficient time-wise. I’ve mentioned before that I sometimes approach a bookshop in or around Reading (where I live), agree a sale, but then have to post the books via a warehouse hundred’s of miles away rather than just take them in myself!

…And relax.

A guy from the Isle of Man ordered the book on Amazon a few days ago and was kind enough to write and say he liked what I was trying to do. I always massively appreciate strangers taking the time to do this, and it more than counters any frustrations I feel at the logistical constraints of fulfilling orders. This particular reader also relates back to the Waterstones rant and goes a long way to explaining a bizarre phone-call I received from a bookseller a few weeks ago – which went like this:


‘Hi, I’m on the Isle of Man.’

[PAUSE] ‘I’m happy for you.’

‘Oh…sorry…One of my customers would like a copy of your book. Can I buy one?’

‘Of course you can.’

‘Great! Bye.’

‘Wait – how were you planning on ordering it?’

‘I thought you could send it to me.’

‘I can, but I don’t know who you are or where you live.’

‘I’m on the Isle of Man…’

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Throw me a frickin bone…

If this blog were a graph, then every six weeks or so a whiney, ranty, high-pitched spike would emerge – today would be one such moment…

Why is getting noticed so hard?

The impetus for this mood-swing came from approaching several libraries earlier in the week and asking if I could put up a poster. One of them made me fill in a two page form detailing what I hoped to get out of the experience, and said that someone would call to let me know if my request had been successful.

‘Surely you jest?’ I reasoned. ‘There’s a space on the wall. Here’s my poster. I could’ve put it up while you were explaining all that.’

‘SSSHHHH,’ her colleague interjected!

Annoyingly, every time I think about jacking it in (almost to the second), someone gets in touch and tells me that they enjoyed the book. I then feel suitable reinvigorated to throw myself once again on the merciless bureaucracy of the literary world.

If any of you reading this have any ideas – they would be gratefully received. A work-colleague suggested going up to Camden and setting up a market stall – not a bad idea at all. I’m also toying with the concept of Bus-tagging (i.e. running up behind moving billboards and eliciting sneers from old-age pensioners).

Finally – following legal advice I should point out that I’ve been burgled, that my posters have all been stolen, and that all future campaigns will (may) be perpetrated by an unknown third party…

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