Environment

My First Post, start off with a bang

by Time out with Tony, by Tony Scott Thursday, June 13 2013

Hello blog viewers, this is my first blog. For that reason I have decided to release what I hate most before I start in the blogosphere. I live in a Kentish Town and the one thing that buggers me the most about living there is the transport system. 

Now Don't get me wrong it's all fine and dandy at all times of the day running clear services, apart from at school times. I dread having to stand in the freezing cold of a bus stop while young girls standing around me light up cigarettes as and when they please, coughing out black smoke. The depressing atmosphere of this place is also stereotyped by a billboard that has gone beyond its call of duty and is in disrepair.

And then getting the bus itself is a struggle. The masses of people my age that have to get to school along this route is immense, this leads to overcrowding. The council of course only have the bare minimum of buses needed,  which means that I get to enjoy the sheer pleasure of being crowded in with, well how to put it, people beyond my liking.

The hilarity of it is that many smaller bus companies (not arriva) put on one-day services to please the inspector of the bus companies anually that means that they can pass of as being a good company, when really they have to battle with overcrowding every day. It's madness.

Of course it's classic that on a busy school time service, Mrs Young Mum has to make an appearance and shout at other people on board as if we are animals, as she barges her way through the crowd with no respect for anyone. Goddamit why can't they understand that they can take transport at different times?

The bus drivers are characters. You start to get a know of the nice, friendly drivers; and the resentful, child hating ones. Of course because they have protection they think they can dish hate to people and be outright rude. It is iust unbearable

In short, you can see my resent for transport, which I believe is a common thing. I hope you enjoy more of what I have to offer. Goodbye.

Tags:
Categories: Arriva | Environment | Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council | Transport

Summer Events in Folkestone

by The Fly Away American (in Kent), with Jessica Galbraith Thursday, June 13 2013

Did anyone catch the Red Arrows in Folkestone this past weekend? The weather was beautiful, the crowds were large, and the show was magnificent. Well, for the first five minutes. Admittedly I am not much of a plane, car, motorcycle type girl. I really enjoyed the Red Arrows, I did, but my attention span can sometimes fail me. Regardless, I had a fabulous day out with friends. Barbecuing at The Leas Coastal Park is just about my favorite thing in the world. It was windy, but then again- when isn't it? It was really a shame that the city wasn't able to profit from the thousands of people who came out, I seriously considered running down to ASDA and setting up a hot dog stand on the promenade. I would have made a killing


This weekend (Tomorrow through Sunday) Folkestone will be hosting the Folkestone Multicultural Festival, three days of dancing, food, and music representing regions from all over the world. I usually go for the food. Last year, I had the best Nepalese food on the planet- no joke. I have dreams about it sometimes. Not a bad option if you are looking for something to do this weekend. I am always happy to see local events going on, and do my best to show up and support the organizations that put these things together. Here is the schedule for the event: Folkestone Multi-Cultural Festival


Next weekend the inaugural Folkestone Fish Festival will take place. The Whitstable Oyster Festival is my favorite event in Kent all summer, so I am hoping this one in Folkestone really gains some momentum. Many of the local businesses (Rocksalt, yum.) will be down at Folkestone Harbor with stands of food, drinks and random stuff.  I will be attending the South East Airshow next Saturday, but will be down at the Fish Festival on Sunday for the Blessings of the Fishes. I am intrigued to witness the process of blessing a fish. 


I will be all over Kent this summer, but thought I would start off letting you all know what is going on around my neighborhood! 


 

 

 

MSN - Male Stalking Network

by The Odd One Out, with Dan Millen Tuesday, January 8 2013

 



Well when you work with a group of women, anything can happen. Everyday brings a new adventure, sometimes a challenge, and as always I am at some point left scratching my head at something one of them has said to the group during the working day... hence this latest post.

Well at the time I was writing this, I was sitting on a leather couch in the suburbs of San Jose, California drinking juice and looking at my notes from previous weeks. I was literally another world away from where I usually am when I encounter my issues as 'The Odd One Out.'

Today's weird and wonderful post is surrounding the inner workings of a colleague of mine when she uses MSN Messenger. (MSN Messenger, for the computer illiterate, is principally an instant messaging service that allows contacts to talk to each other - a sort of text messaging service that is online).

So the women and I were discussing things that annoy us about Facebook when one of them suddenly said 'Do you remember MSN Messenger? We all responded with a unitary nod. 

MSN was great when I first used it, in fact it's how I first began talking with my soon to be wife (She is American and lives in San Jose), but after 4 years we grew tired of the breakages in connection and service and chose to move to Gmail. (Google Mail is awesome).

Anyway... my colleague then proceeded to say aloud to the rest of us "Yeah, did you ever do the sign in, sign out thing?"

I was confused and raised my eyebrow. What shocked me more was that my other colleague said "Oh yeah, I used to do that."

I continued to stay quiet, trying to focus on the invoice I was processing. I didnt want to get drawn into another strange discussion. One a week is enough for me!

Then came another comment "I used to love MSN, I've had some great conversations on there."

The conversation continued, going back and forth across our pod desks. Different pros and cons were listed and they also discussed all the features they enjoyed using. (I can say now, I hated the 'nudges', which shook your computer screen when people wanted to talk to you when you had been idle for 5 minutes or so).

I couldn't take it anymore, I had to interject otherwise I would just look ignorant or worse still, they would draw me into the conversation at a point where it would become uncomfortable for me to back out and they would tease me about it.

"Yes, Jess and I first began chatting on MSN after my holiday to San Francisco in 2007." I said. "But what the hell is the 'Signing in and signing out' thing?" 

Curiosity got the better of me.

The two girls laughed, knowing it would send me into a frenzied rant, as most things do. The others in our group sat silently, waiting to hear.

"Come on what is it?" I persisted.

"The 'Signing in and signing out' thing is where you're already signed in, chatting to other people and you see a guy you like come online. He will obviously look down his contact list and see who is online and talk to who he wants. What I did was to sign out of messenger and then sign back in again." [Cue my long pause and thought] - What the hell for, I thought? "That way, he will see the little notification box that pops up in the bottom right hand corner, signally that I have just come online. That way he is more likely to talk to me."

To say I was thinking of the movies 'Fatal Attraction', 'Obsession' & 'Misery' while she was explaining would be pretty harsh. I was a little disturbed originally but the more I thought about it, the more I thought that this was a pretty clever tactic to get a guy to notice you. In fact, it was bordering on genius.

The good thing to add to that is that my colleague appears to know where the line is and is not hovering over it, ready to hop into the weirdo territory. As long as she stays behind it, I am happy to continue sitting next to her.

So that's the latest from me - keep checking in to see my posts and remember, if your on MSN, either remain invisible or sign out first and stay offline before JS sees you. 



Tags:
Categories: blogs and bloggers | Business | Employment | Entertainment | Environment | Humour | Just Life | Leisure | Moaning | Moans and groans | People of Kent | Work

Strange but true!

by The Odd One Out, with Dan Millen Friday, December 7 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, I have been observing the behaviour of the women in my work team over the last few months and it has been interesting to say the least.

 

 

We have had quite a few personnel changes, with three great colleagues leaving us, which I would like to highlight on before I start this post.

'PJ'

Our wonderful Chair's PA, 'PJ', left us for another role. When she left, we felt the pressure. She was the 'Oracle' and a fountain of all knowledge. Whenever we had a problem or needed an answer, we would always ask PJ. That proves beyond any doubt how vital she was to the setup of the office. The Admin team will never be the same again, seriously!

'Leads'

'Leads' was next to leave us. She was the life and soul of the secretariat. Despite not officially being placed within our team on the hierarchy, Leads was definitely considered to be a main cog in our working machine. She was bubbly, fun and showed us all how to make a 'real' salad at lunch time - Sainsbury's iceberg lettuce sales were up during her secondment period.

'Roondog'

'Roondog' departed from our team and the glue that held us together seemed to lose it adhesiveness. Her wedding checklist and housekeeping emails have been sorely missed and our team has struggled to get to grips with not having the benefit of a kick ass Office Manager around to look after our interests.

Ladies although you have gone, you will forever remain honourary members of the admin team. (I need a few minutes - Cry).

 

 

So, now I've dried my eyes, it's time to get on with the official first post.

I have updated you on the changes in my office but now it is time to move on to my observations, and my reasoning for why I am 'The Odd One Out'.

So this week's topic: the bizarre statements they come out with.

My Evidence

I have come across a series of strange and bizarre statements in my time with these women. I present my evidence for your judgement: (I have included the initials of my colleagues for their own amusement)

Does the lump on the back of my neck look big? (SK)

Believe me, I had to keep a straight face for this one because she was deadly serious.

Wedding shoes are expensive but can still be worth every penny. You just dye them black to get 'wear out of them' (KR)

Or you could purchase a cheaper pair of shoes and not have the guilt of the huge cost spent on them & the additional cost incurred to dye them black!

My friend is trying to lose weight. She is on the Pre Heart Op diet! (SK) - yes, someone actually said this to me.

***Speechless with a grin***

I'm going to take a cheeky trip to Wilkinson. Does anyone want anything? (RL)

I'm still trying to work out what a 'cheeky trip' is but it sounds amusing whatever it is.


I just sometimes do not know how to react. It takes me off guard and I have to just think of the first thing that comes to mind. e.g. 'What are you talking about?', 'Are you nuts?' 'Jess is exactly the same!'.

Don't get me wrong, they provide me with 5 day a week amusement but sometimes I am absolutely stunned at the information being portrayed to me. I also sometimes think that because I am the only man in our team that they forget I am pumped full of testosterone and not oestrogen. The things they say to me may fall on deaf ears because I am not a woman and do not have the working of a female brain.

Sometimes this can be a hindrance more than a help but most of time I seem to get away with it and we quickly move on.

Well I will give you a while to digest the last 3 minutes of your life that you have spent reading this blog that you will never get back!

Keep checking in on my blog, I still have plenty more to talk about.

 

"I AM THE ODD ONE OUT!"

 

Tags:
Categories: Entertainment | Environment | General | Just Life | Moaning | Moans and groans | People of Kent | Public Sector | Real Talk | Work | The Odd One Out

When an ill wind doesn't blow all bad...

by The Business Blog, with Trevor Sturgess Monday, June 25 2012

It sounds pretty bad, coming on top of the Thamesteel crisis, but all is not lost for Sheppey and wind jobs despite the depressing withdrawal by Vestas.

Peel Ports, the owner of the proposed factory site at Sheerness - not Vestas - has the planning consent from Swale council. Although the Government might have called in the original proposal for a blade-making factory because of a listed building on the site, a refusal would have been unlikely in the face of such massive job creation - up to 2,000 - in a favoured sector.

The stage is now set for other firms to be encouraged by Peel, Locate in Kent,  Kent County Council, Swale council and MPs to consider investing in a manufacturing or assembly plant, or a mixture of both.

It is possible that a similar number of jobs could be created but don’t hold your breath. It could be a lot fewer than the Vestas plan.

While Vestas blamed market uncertainty which had stalled orders for the decision, there is probably more to it than that. The Government was about to unveil a new Energy strategy which might have addressed some concerns.

But the winds of financial, technical and structural difficulty blowing across one of Denmark’s biggest firms,  played a part. The manufacture of a prototype for the massive V164 blade that would have been built at Sheerness had been delayed. The firm had issued a profits warning, its share price had plummeted and bosses had been replaced. It was not a happy context for a big investment decision.

While middle managers proclaimed their support for the Sheerness project, and the company had invested a lot of kroner in working up plans, there is little doubt that new bosses and shareholders were nervous about such a huge investment in a potentially risky venture in Sheerness.

Vestas is not good at PR and had already suffered a bashing over its Isle of Wight plant. It has not properly promoted the fact that the factory was replaced by an R&D plant, and most casual observers think Vestas is no longer on the island.

Vestas has superb plants in Denmark and elsewhere, it is still a huge - and possibly the only - player in the one-stop shop wind turbine industry.

But it is a shame that their undoubted first-rank manufacturing performance will be overshadowed by a feeling that they led Locate inKent and Swale up the garden path, giving them false hope of a jobs bonanza.

Locate in Kent and Peel Ports were tireless in their wooing of Vestas. It seemed to have paid off. But they have been left standing at the altar, disappointed and a little embarrassed. The hopes of potential employees, including the dozens of apprentices being trained for the offshore wind industry, have been dashed.

Of course, there is always the outside possibility of reconciliation - but by then other partners may have come on the Sheerness scene. Let’s hope so.

 

  

Tags: , ,
Categories: Employment | Environment

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