Category Archives: rant

Reaping what you sow

I confess, I am a football fan.

Yes I know, please don’t laugh. It gets worse as well…I support my home town club Carlisle United, who are superb at being frustratingly rubbish. So when a World Cup comes around, the hype starts, and the footballistas amongst us get our hopes up, that this time, it will be different.

….and it should be different, we have the Premier League, the most highly rated, highest viewing ratings, money-spinning league in the whole world, it’s full of some of the greatest players in the world. Drogba, Torres, Cech, Tevez.

But it is never different, our national side comes out, chest puffed out, ready to do their duty, but no, we’re plain, boring, uncreative and pedestrian. I think the individual players do their very best, but are ultimately doomed to be not good enough.

Is it possible that this is the problem, in creating the monster that is the Premier League we have sacrificed our national side for the most glamour of the world’s most popular league. We have become the Las Vegas of football…glittering on the surface, but a desert underneath.

We have some good players, but the Premier League relies on creative skiful players from overseas to provide the spark, and that leaves the national side bereft of magic, passion and flair. Now I’m not turning into a Daily Mail writer, and thinking we should only have English players, these overseas players are magical and make our leagues into a wonderful spectacle, and our players aren’t bad.

Maybe we should just recognise that we’ve made that sacrifice, Premier League for the National side, and so quietly withdraw England from any competitions.

That way we’d know where we stood, and wouldn’t have to go through the absolute torture of hope and expectation that get dashed time after time.

The saddest thing is, there is a little corner in me that still believes.

Bullied into buying

I think it would be safe to say that most of us dislike uninvited telephone sales calls to our homes.

I signed up to the telephone preference service (TPS) to ensure that I didn’t get these calls, and I’m pleased that they’ve dried up…mostly. I say mostly, as I got a call last week from a company called Nationwide Energy Service, the saleslady was very insistent that this wasn’t a sales call, that they had a government grant that I could use, and all it would cost me was £99.

Of all the sales calls I have ever had the misfortune to receive, this was probably the most pushy, slick and well-worked of them all. The saleslady had every objection covered, had the ability to talk without breathing, spoke at 100 words a minute, it was like being hit by a sledgehammer.

The irony of it was that the product she was selling, loft insulation, I had already decided that I needed to sort this summer for our home. However, her attitude was so aggressive that there is no way I am going to buy it from them. So I’ve decided to incur this company as much time & cost as I can, knowing they will not get a penny from me. I let their surveyor come round, measure up, quote, and I’m now waiting for the follow up sales confirmation call, which I will say not yet, please call me back in 2 weeks, when I will ask them to call later…you get the picture.  I’ve also reported them to the TPS.

This lot really bugged me, I think because the sales lady really knew how to work the call,

So memo to self….

  • I have a right not to say yes there and then, I can take my time and decide.
  • Someone else’s pressure is their pressure, let them keep it.
  • If someone makes a request, the default position is no, it is much easier to change a “no” to a “yes”, than it is to get out of something.
  • You have a right to be undecided, that’s not a untenable position.
  • I have a right to find out more information and alternatives.
  • I have a right not to be bothered by these people.

So if these guys call you, do yourself a favour and just put the phone straight down.

And if you’re Ashleigh from the Nationwide Energy Service, change your practices now, they are deceitful.

And if you’re the saleslady that called me, then please, please, please, go and find a good use for your quite obvious phone talents…go and join Compassion or World Vision, but stop doing what you’re doing.