Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Some irony for a rainy Wednesday

The little pink shoes were a little damp this morning, but surprisingly easy to drive in.

I was down my local hostelry Monday night, having a chat about how utterly pointless and stupid the EU was, and we got to talking about some of the laws which are never going to work, and which are so harmful to businesses, you start to wonder what the point of the EU is.

Firstly, the Working Time Directive. Now, I don't know where these bureaucrats get off telling people how long they can work for, but they do. Personally, I believe such retarded, union-led laws lead to unproductive, inefficient companies and in particular damage SMEs which are the backbone of the economy. Stop these companies from running properly and you are well on your way to fucking up an economy. But the small point of humour in this monstrosity of a document was the number of working hours it took to write and study. We voted on it, of course, in Strasbourg. But before that it went through various committees. My colleague who worked on the document spent many early mornings and late evenings trying to get amendments and voting lists done, many more hours than the maximum of 35 stipulated in the document.

And Strasbourg! My goodness, when I think of the late nights and early mornings there, because some desperate wannabe has stayed up all night submitting split votes and separate votes to gauge the general opinion of the parliament over the most suitable punctuation mark to use in an article, and they only want us to work how many hours? Thirty-five a week maximum? But I had to work 12 hours a day in strasbourg just to get the work done, and there are 4 days. 3*12 is 36, for fucks sake! This means that according to its own laws, the parliament has to shut down and members of staff can't prepare the voting lists for thursday. Actually, I'm all for that. Less crap being passed will be better for everyone.

Especially financial services. I was sent an article yesterday outlining a new form of crackpottery whereby to combat terrorist financing, financial institutions have to have and keep a record of the names of everyone who transfers money from one account to another. Have fun watching your banking costs rise, and your interest on savings fall, whilst terrorists simply find another way of transfering money.

Are you trying to make the countries of Europe the laughing stock of the world? Well, are you? Because you're going the right way about it, I can tell you.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Bring on the 7th!

I finished reading Harry Potter and the half-blood prince yesterday. What a book! The trouble with Harry Potter is, though, that we wait 2 years for a new book and then finish it in 2 days. I'm waiting for the next one with baited breath and how long until it is published? So in the mean time, I have decided to combine Harry Potter characters with some of the colourful characters in the European Union. I'm not saying they are identical comparisons as we all know, just because someone is pro a political union breaking down thousands of years of culture in Europe, it doesn't mean they are murderers. Where am I going with this, I hear you ask? Not sure, but it has to be better than the Harry Potter porn flicks my darling moist friend and I were coming up with last night. Harry Potter and the enormous orgasm may not be that much of a seller, even if it does involve a threesome between Ron, Hermione and Harry and (GBF’s choice) a Slytherin sandwich....

Obviously, the character of Harry Potter has to be taken by Nigel Farage: fighting evil (the EU) no matter what personal risks he puts himself in the way of. He's also very nifty on a broomstick, I hear. Wise Dumbledore will have to be Roger Knapman. Quiet, calm and full of good ideas, with the ability to mobilise the troops when required. Roger Helmer is going to take the role of Cornelius Fudge who means well, but gets things wrong quite often (like being a Tory and joining the EPP, thinking Eurosceptics will have some say...dur). Hagrid is going to be played by our dear farmer and animal lover, Neil Parish..lovely country bumpkin and not the sharpest ear of corn in the field? Hermione has to be played by the wonderful and clever Theresa Villiers. She's a sharp cookie, and just because she isn't an all-out rebel, doesn't mean she's not fighting for the cause.

In the red corner we have Neil Kinnock as Lord Voldemort. I'm thinking African fisheries policies, trade deals where LDCs suffer immensely at the hands of those determined to make the EU a political union, and stuff who gets in the way, and a Commission which had to resign over fraud. Admittedly, Neil Kinnock doesn't go round the houses of those with different political opinions to himself and blow them up, but in my fluffy comparison of pro and anti EU, he's a bad egg.

Professor Snape can be played perfectly by Robert Kilroy-Silk. He says he's on your side, but looking at his past behaviour and allegiances, can you trust him? Then, he goes all out and reveals his true colours, and you realise your fears weren't misguided.

Dolores Umbridge will be played by Sarah Ludford. Blind to the real world and determined that her way is the only way, despite evidence to the contrary.

Please add your comments about other characters, in particular I need Draco and Ron. Names and reasons on the back of a postcard, please, and ten points goes to the best ones.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Cocaine found in the European Parliament

Traces of cocaine, indicating usage, have been found in 41 of 46 lavatories tested in the European Parliament. I'm not surprised, for two reasons.

1) This place is jaw-achingly dull. If you've ever been to a committee, you'll understand.

2) It certainly explains much of the 'legislation' coming out of this place, and the conduct of committees and plenary sessions. Let me explain....

From the national drugs website:

Delivering a quick and euphoric high, a blast of top quality coke can make you feel like you've just scored the winning goal in a FA Cup Final. Confidence soars through the roof, the heart thumps out a drum'n'bass crescendo, while you feel like you're on top of the world. Such is the strength of the drug, even the Grimthorpe Working Men's Club feels like a great place to be after a hefty noseful.

Side effects: You may well feel like a million dollars on coke, but to those around you, you may well appear as an arrogant, loud arsehole with your incessant gibbering and insincere waffling...

Do you see where I am going with this? I've always wondered why people like to talk so much in the Parliament and why they feel so confident making the decisions they do, particularly when they are not equipt with, say, the knowledge or expertise most of these decisions require. I am certainly not implying that everyone in the Parliament is snorting a quick line of Charlie before they hop, skip and jump into their 2 minute speech on the quality of beetroot cubes in the EU, or before they undertake a massive voting list on something they probably know little about, but it certainly makes one wonder...

Saturday, July 16, 2005

My graduation...

Was yesterday. Won't go on about it too much, but just to say that it was a lovely day with lots of lovely canapes and champagne and I feel very proud of myself. Particularly since I did so little work. But there we go.

It was also the first official outing of my shoes, pictured above. If anyone is looking to buy me a small token gift, anything similar would be greatly appreciated. particularly these ones....

My mum managed to find her way to the bar rather too frequently for anyone's liking and ended up sitting by the corner of a wigwam, bottle clasped firmly in her hand and talking to students like she was one of them. Bless. The funniest bit was, however, when my father came to collect her and she informed him that for their next holiday she wanted to go backpacking.....

Thursday, July 14, 2005

It's been a while, have you missed me?

The shoes I am wearing today are something else. Beautiful baby pink pointy-toe sling backs with not so much a kitten heel as a cat heel. The Ginas are with me, waiting to be taken home and worn to the graduation tomorrow!

But enough of my classy footwear. I have finally found the time, and the inclination to write my last entry in the room 101 section.

I was going through my book shelf the other day and I stumbled upon two old favourites which I haven't read for a while. The First was Captain Corelli's mandolin and the second was Charlotte Grey. Everything about these books was fantastic - the characters were so beautifully described and real, they could have been people you knew. The stories were gripping and unpredictable. Indeed with both, there was the bitter-sweet yet strangely satisfying ending which allowed you to believe that it could have been a true story, because they don't end with big loves and butterflies and whatever else people in love have. The language used, particularly in Mandolin is so rich and detailed, Delia Smith could use it in the Summer Collection.

Another thing these two books have in common is that films were made from them. Or maybe, bits of them. That is what I wanted to put into Room 101.


How can it be that after all that happened on the Island of Kefalonia, they would end happily ever after? Why does it have to end happily ever after - these people met during war time and the ending illustrates how people can get things wrong through assumptions and appearances, rather than trying to find out the truth. Charlotte Grey went to France to find her boyfriend, she didn't just fancy a jolly to the war torn area and whilst she was there pick up some french cheese and some lovely fruit covered tarts. And she certainly didn't risk everything for love to run off with some communist! Why do Hollywood film producers think that everything has to end happily ever after? Surely it's more satisfying to know that Charlotte went back to her boyfriend whom she risked so much for, and settle for a quiet life in Britain than some stupid affaire which you just know was going to end with some slutty blonde and a haystack.

Hollywood, these books are best sellers for a reason. If you tell us that the films are adaptations of the books, then don't give us a sugar-coated 'we wish this had happened' version. Life isn't like the movies, but sometimes it is like the books.