Tag Archives: colleagues

An attitude to life

20110314 Pink bin 150x150 An attitude to life

Not too long ago I was introduced to a teacher, we got chatting and I told her about my website.  She promised to take a picture of her pink bin; she likes the colour pink and that’s an understatement.  I, in turn, said I would write something about it.  True to her word, I got the picture and strictly speaking this isn’t the kind of face I normally write about, but it still deserves an honourable mention; It’s kind of cute and I’m a sucker(bag) for a smile. 🙂

 Promises are great when kept.  They inspire confidence and demonstrate reliability and trustworthiness.  Promises are easily made, yet easily broken (by some).  This is true for both explicit and implied promises.  There is the old adage which says that it takes years to build trust but it is broken in an instant, or words to that effect. This is particularly true in this day and age of fast “this” and instant “that”, greatly exacerbated by digital media, where people are living more self-centred lives (the Facebook Generation) and living more for the here, the now and the “me” than ever before.  Put your hands up if you know who your neighbours are.  (Sorry, couldn’t resist that teacher’s reference!)  Even living in Bristol, which is one of the friendliest places I have lived, I have no idea who my current neighbours are and they have no idea Vic Suckerbag lives next door.

When I moved back to Bristol in 2008, having been away for some time, I found a flat in the city centre.  One day I met a nice couple in the stair well, we had a chat and they ended up becoming familiar faces.  We greeted each other whenever we bumped into each other.  Bristol is a bit of a big village in that respect – despite its large population I often see familiar faces – even old colleagues I met whilst working during the summer as a student all those years ago, some of them unaware that I had even left the city at all.

Increasingly it seems there is less of a need to know your neighbours, which is a shame.  If you’re out of sugar you can nip out to a 24-hour supermarket or convenience store and get some.  If you need a ladder, you can buy one because they are cheap – or better still, you can pay someone else to do the job that requires a ladder, for you.

It seems people are becoming less willing to give up their time for other and are losing their willingness to help each other out.  In some way that’s understandable, considering the hours some people work.  Or people make promises and renege on them on a whim or in a pre-meditated move because they didn’t dare say “no”.  Everyone has been let down by others and, in turn, let others down – even if not intentionally.  We are all human after all – even me, despite my red plastic exterior and that gormless open-mouthed look on my face… You may think I’m just a vacuum cleaner… 😉

Was it really better in the past?  It’s probably a case of rose-tinted spectacles…  The bin sums it up nicely: it represents the past and has a nice rosy pink hue.  It’s smiling on the outside, but it is a façade masking the conveniently forgotten reality contained within.

Or perhaps more positively, it shows that it’s good to be alive and sometimes those things that bother or hurt are best forgotten: smile and let the world turn a pinker shade of pink.  To quote the photographer, “Pink… is an attitude to life!!”

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Singing Man gets thrown out of Empty Bar

Man thrown out of bar video thumbnail 150x150 Singing Man gets thrown out of Empty BarThis video was taken over a year ago when I was out with some colleagues.  It was our annual office Christmas dinner.  After the meal a small group of us lost everyone else, for reasons I can’t quite remember (not alcohol-related amnesia, I hasten to add – simply because it’s not important).  I think it was something to do with having to get cash out and arranging to meet everyone in a particular bar.  When we eventually got there we found the place to be near enough empty.  There was one man, who was evidently smashed off his nut and started singing his rendition of What’s up? by 4 Non-Blondes at the top of his voice.  He did a funny little dance and jiggle with it, too!  One of the customers in the bar had the right idea and the end result was pretty funny.

Every effort has been made to conceal the identity of everyone.  If you recognise yourself in the video and wish for the video to be removed please get in touch.  You will need to verify that you are the person in the video by providing your full name and location where you think this video was taken.

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The invisible man

the invisible man 150x150 The invisible manOne of my colleagues rides a motorbike (this is relevant as you will find out later) and as well as doing his normal job he has the added responsibility of being our IT man.  If you have any IT problems, he’s the man to tell you to reboot your machine and check that everything’s plugged in properly. 😉  Every good company has an IT person and thank goodness for that.  In this modern age of computers, pencils and paper… and – wooooo! – pocket calculators (What a time to be alive!) it’s easy to spend entire days tapping away at a keyboard and fighting with IT equipment.  At a previous company I worked at, the internet would “break” at least once a fortnight.  One time this led to an interesting lunchtime, where – shock horror – people actually had to talk to each other, almost as if we had forgotten how to…  Oftentimes I find people are afraid to talk or simply can’t be bothered.  The result of this is an overflowing inbox and surely a less productive and less sociable (or dare I say it, human) existence.

We humans are incredibly clever; it’s no co-incidence that we call ourselves homo sapiens, or “wise man”.  We are so clever, we have the ability to use tools to make our lives easier.  So clever in fact, that we can communicate complex concepts to one another and pass on our knowledge of tools to others.  Sorry if that sounded sarcastic – that was meant in a sincere way!  But every problem solved brings about a new one.  Email is one such example.  We invented a medium to improve global telecommunications and we abuse it to a point where our ability to communicate is diminished.  We fix this problem by inventing social networking and as a result become more insular and spend our lives glued to computer screens away from other human beings.  This is the new “idiot box”.  I very rarely watch TV anymore, but will spend hours on the internet, blogging, reading up on PHP/CSS, checking the news, watching iPlayer, etc…  But I digress.

My colleague left his computer running to sort out some essential IT stuff, put on his motorcycle boots and left his office shoes by his desk.  This produced the curious illusion that he had turned invisible.  I chuckled, took a picture and returned to my computer screen, foaming at the mouth. 🙂

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