All 18 entries tagged Bastards

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June 01, 2008

Having said that…

Follow-up to That's one problem solved from The randomness of tomorrow, today!

The first time I played GTA IV online, there was only one other person there. This, I suspect, was the problem; they were solely concerned with killing me.

I played a few games yesterday afternoon, and actually managed to win two and hold my own on another. I believe this was related to the fact that there were around 4 people this time, so they were distracted with killing the others and I was able to prepare myself and get a few good shots in.

This does, unfortunately, mean that the expiration of my 1 month Gold trial is now a problem again. Damn you Microsoft, and your evil money-grabbing ways!

May 20, 2008

'Phone calls database considered'

Writing about web page

Oh for the love of all that's sane. Where to begin? No...all right? Just "No".

This kind of shit is why I have less than no faith in politics.

It was a stupid idea before, it's still a stupid idea, it won't work, it'll be too easily abused, and I seriously doubt it'll catch any real dingleberries.

Whatever happened to privacy?

Whatever happened to this being a free country?

What makes the government think they can protect this data? They don't exactly have a good track record...

April 12, 2008

It's a bypass… gotta build bypasses…

Writing about web page

I wholeheartedly support Mrs Reid's actions; I find it absolutely disgusting that houses are still demolished to make way for building projects, and I can think of no better way to get that point across.

It is an archaic and irrational process, and I seriously worry about the mental state of anyone who thinks it's a good idea to demolish someone's home for something as frivolous as fucking football or a damned supermarket.

January 25, 2008

You guys are really starting to piss me off…

(No, not you. Don't worry.)

There is only one group of people that deserve some form of pain more than Bill Gates/Microsoft, and that's the bastards who quit online games when they're losing...

I want my win, dammit!

November 01, 2007

Everything I learned about unfair bank charges I learned from Abbey

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin:

I bank with Abbey. I like banking with Abbey; the Durham branch is right next to a bus stop, their online banking system is easy enough to use, and the staff in the branch are generally friendly. I'd never had any trouble with them until recently.

When I started my third year at Warwick (some time ago, now) my Student Account's overdraft limit reached its maximum of about £1600; a rather pleasant sum. All was well until September this year (the next academic year following my first year as a Graduate).

When I checked my balance online on the 3rd I discovered that I was suddenly a few hundred pounds over my overdraft limit. I was understandably shocked. After looking at the recent transactions and the current balance I came to the conclusion, quite rightly as it turned out, that no money had been taken from my account but that my overdraft limit had been reduced by £600.

I rushed into the branch to try to find out what had happened. It turns out that they gave notice of the reduction and that it's how the Graduate Account works; the overdraft limit is reduced each year (I assume each year; I've only had time to reach one so far...). I was certain then, and am still certain now, that I didn't receive a letter saying that my overdraft limit was due to shrink (more on that later). In retrospect it was somewhat wishful thinking to assume it wouldn't ever shrink, but I still didn't know in advance.

So it shrank at the start of September and I noticed on the 3rd. I transferred the hundred-ish pounds I still had in my savings account into my current account and begged the rest (a couple of hundred) off family to get me Back to Black. The reason I was in such a hurry was that my Vodafone bill was due out a few days later and I didn't want the Direct Debit to bounce. I contacted Vodafone, and they said just to cancel the Direct Debit with Abbey, so I did.

I got the money back into my account as quickly as I could, I contacted Abbey themselves to tell them to cancel the Direct Debit, and I saw on the next statement (up to 3rd Sep) that the £20 charge for going overdrawn had been waived because it's a graduate account and it was the first charge in 6 months (first for longer in reality, but that's how the feature works). I though it was a bit irritating of them to bill me when they made me overdrawn, but since it had been waived, since I was back in the black, and since Vodafone had eventually been paid I assumed this was the end of the matter.

I love the smell of wishful thinking in the morning...

A few weeks ago I made a large purchase that used up all the money I had in my account. Because of this I had to stop buying things for a few weeks while my income built the balance back up enough to cover the next Vodafone bill (I'd got the calculator out, and it would). Since I couldn't spend anything I wasn't checking my balance as often, because I couldn't do anything with it. This is why it was yesterday (31st Oct) when I noticed about sixty pounds of bank charges had been taken on the 25th. Again I was shocked, furious even, and still hadn't expected it (having already covered that fact I assumed the matter dealt with).

Having already covered the waived £20 for going overdrawn, these new charges were £25 for an "unauthorised overdraft monthly fee" despite being fined for going overdrawn and dealing with it within days and within the same month, £1.21 interest which I'm prepared to ignore, and £35 for the bounced DD to Vodafone despite asking Abbey themselves to cancel it.

And not only did I have these unexpected charges, but the charges put me over my overdraft limit again!

Fortunately I was already back in the black before I noticed because it put me only slightly over the limit and some money came in on Monday. But still, not only do I have these charges but I'm probably going to have more because the charges put me over the overdraft limit!

So I shot into the branch again and had a word with the Manager, who has no more power than the lowly cashiers I spoke to last time. She couldn't do anything, and couldn't even comment on the ridiculous size of the charges because of the active case started by Watchdog's report. While I was there, she did cancel the Vodafone DD for me again because it's due on Monday...

So I still had to leave the branch without satisfaction.

When I got back home I must admit I checked my latest statement and there was indeed a tiny section listing the upcoming charges. Well, dammit, I want a separate letter with big flashing lights; this is too important to risk being missed. This is obviously what happened when they shrank the overdraft: it wasn't a letter, but a minuscule note on a statement.

Anyway, that's the story so far (future events expected to be at least another charge for them making me overdrawn). Here's a summary:

  1. 1st Sep: Abbey shrank my overdraft limit without me realising, which put me over the limit without my bank balance changing.
  2. 3rd Sep: I noticed this, and went into the branch, and arranged for enough money to be transferred into my account.
  3. When next statement arrived: Noticed waived charge for going overdrawn (despite the fact I didn't technically; overdrawn went over me...). It was waived, so thought no more about it.
  4. 18th Oct: Spent a lot of money and had to not spend anything for the next fortnight to save up for Vodafone bill.
  5. 25th Oct: Unexpected charges were taken which put me back over the limit.
  6. 29th Oct: Money came in which brought me back into the black.
  7. 31st Oct: I checked my balance for the first time since a few days before 25th in preparation for the Vodafone payment

So there we are, Abbey made me overdrawn and charged me for the privilege. It's a stupid system; I could pull a better banking system out of my a$$, especially since there are at least two dollars in "a$$"...

The first thing I would do is send letters in BIG RED LETTERS to warn people of important things like charges and shrinking overdrafts. And speaking of letters, it's time to draft one to Abbey. I'm getting too old for this shit.

Also, as an aside, how many Pop Culture references can you spot? If memory serves, there are five.

October 28, 2007

Top Gear ∞, 0 Snooker

Follow-up to Dear BBC, re: Bloody Snooker from The randomness of tomorrow, today!

I bet televised snooker never featured The Rolling Stones' Ron Wood...

So nuts to you.

October 22, 2007

I can relate to that..

XP has been playing up something dreadful this evening, so this really appeals to me right now...

October 16, 2007

Dear BBC, re: Bloody Snooker

Dear BBC

You've cancelled Top Gear for Snooker. Why? Surely a programme that is under near constant criticism by the media doesn't make it to 10 seasons by being unpopular. I think Top Gear is one of the best programmes made in Britain at the moment and absolutely will not accept that snooker achieves even the merest fraction of an iota of a crumb of a percentage of the ratings and following that Top Gear has.

The practice of replacing perfectly good, and absolutely fantastic, regular programmes with utter rubbish like ephemeral sporting events is archaic, irrational, nonsensical, and stems from TVs infancy when there wasn't enough time in the day for one channel to fit everything in.

So why not do everyone a favour and create "BBC Pointless-Crap-That-No-One-Cares-About" for things like snooker, football, and any other upstart rubbish deluded enough to think itself superior to any other programme on TV today (yes, inferior even to that human cesspit that is Channel 4's "Big Brother").


Someone who wishes you'd see sense.

October 01, 2007

You see, this is why I hate the Government…

Writing about web page

One important line is the one way down at the very bottom:

The new law brings Britain in line with an EU directive on the retention of phone data.

I mean, why? What's the point? Is there a point?

June 14, 2007

Don't click the link!

Writing about web page

(If you haven't seen the Apprentice final yet and don't want to know the result, this entry's safe but the link is not...)

I haven't seen the final of The Apprentice yet; I'll be watching it tomorrow. I also didn't want to know the result beforehand; but I do...

All I did was go on to Google Reader to see if there was anything exciting. To try to keep vaguely abreast of current events I subscribe to several BBC News RSS feeds; I don't read everything, just the odd one or two.

When I checked this time, there were four unread items, and one of them was a BBC News headline. It said "X named as Apprentice winner".

Why couldn't it say "Apprentice winner named" in the headline, and then give the name in the entry itself, which I wouldn't have accidentally seen...


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