Fandango’s Friday Flashback (25 October 2019)

It is that time of the week again, and Fandango has posted his Friday Flashback. He uses his post to re-blog something from this day in a previous year, and I try to follow suit.

My blogging is purely spontaneous, I write when I feel like it, and in previous years I have gone days or weeks between posts. This week, I can just about get within a few days of the anniversary.

A very short post from a couple of years ago. Don’t worry – I have long since reconciled myself to it being a topsy-turvy world – that people having dumb ideas earn a lot more than I ever did!

Stroke Survivor

I was up at the hospital the other week. All the signs there are that NHS white-on-blue, with the exception on those to the Eye Clinic, which are bumble-bee black on yellow. Great, must make it easier for people with vision issues to find the place.

And then you think, “what if they’re not going to the eye clinic?”

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Lost in Translation

I’m still quite green on this platform. To this post, I would actually like some responses, please, if you feel inclined.

I follow a blog on here. I found it early. They comment on things sometimes, which is how I first found them. I receive notifications of their posts – mostly quite a few, at least a dozen per day. Mostly not writing themselves, but reposting material. That’s fine, I can live with that. I can skim past the reposts very quickly, and just click through to the original blogger’s page if the title takes my fancy, or to show my appreciation.

This morning I came across “quote of the day” a regular. I quite like the quotes that people have come up with, little gems to help you start the day. This morning’s:

Encouragement after censure is as the sun after a shower.

Goethe

As far as I’m concerned, a great one-liner. In fact I’d go further and say that we should ecourage all the time, regardless of censure, sun or showers. That’s my #1 goal on here – I know it is small potatoes but I hope my likes and my comments encourage other bloggers. The late Tony Benn [a UK politician] was almost ninety when he died, and he used to say that the job of old people was to encourage. Again, for me, doesn’t matter what the age – we encourage each other, period. I think that the only thing about age is that the older you are, the more likely you are to actually realise that.

So I commented:

That’s our job. All ages really, but especially as we get older. To encourage.

and thought nothing more of it. I didn’t think it was particularly humourous. And just now, I had a “laughing” smiley face response, a 😀 . Not a “like”, not a smile, not even a proper word, just one of these emoticon things that I never really got the hang of.

I know that over of Facebook, a “laugh” response normally means “your contribution is so pathetic that it makes me laugh”, i.e. purely sarcastic. But so far I have found wordpress to be a whole lot more civilised and yes, good-natured.

So I would be grateful if one of you old hands could explain to a noob exactly what they think this “comment” actually means.

Situation Vacant

Ah…..job agents, you gotta love ’em!

I received a phone call last night at 6:30 pm. At that time, usually, I don’t answer the phone, but the truth is I didn’t realise what time it was.

An agent. A job. He tells me a little about it, it ticks all the high-level boxes. Before we get too far, I ask where it is. I haven’t driven since the stroke, so would be reliant on a taxi. He asks for my postcode. Thirty minutes. A bit far, but I can do that at a push.

I later look for myself. Fifty. That’d probably make it too far. I’d have to do the journey once and judge for myself.

He tells me the rough location. It is out on Salisbury Plain, which usually means just one thing – army. I’m not interested in Defence work, I tell him. Especially now, there is a clear distinction for me between helping people and killing them. The apps I write from home are largely to do with health, diabetes-related – if my software helps people manage their condition, all well and good. I take care to make them free to use because I don’t particularly want to make money from people’s misfortune.

He assures me that it’s not Defence.

Okay, send me a spec. A spec [specification] is important. Just its existence tells me that a client (or in this case, an employer) has put some thought into what they need. With bigger organisations, it also tends to mean that the role has been budgeted – there’s no point getting involved if the client isn’t going to be able to go through with it. I know this because I once hired, for big organisations. The job spec starts the whole process, without one you don’t get anywhere. The spec arrives – this skill, that skill. Nothing overly demanding. They tend not to be – location is the key nowadays and the work itself is a few levels dumber than I was used to. A mention of the skills they want, but not of the kind of projects they get involved in.

Fortunately, the agent has sent me a link to the client’s web site – normally, agents don’t give the client’s identity away so early in the game.

I follow the link. Not Defence directly, but Defence Logistics. Ever since Thatcher’s sell-offs, a plethora of private companies have sprung up, all of which engage 100% in defence-related activities, none of which are formally Army, or MoD [Ministry of Defence]. It’s one and the same to me. Black and white.

I’m relieved that my initial suspicion was right. I’m relieved that I was able to rumble this job before getting too far down the line. It does mean that the search goes on, but in the meantime, I have an app to finish.