It Never Rains

There seem to be two growth industries locally. One is telesales, where the lowest paid 10% annoy the top 10% by failing to sell them stuff over the phone. And the other is job agencies, which have a small rack of good vacancies in the window...and mostly telesales inside.

Google lists 759 agencies in and around Portsmouth. I spent the afternoon in one street with five of them, listening to the same spiel from a procession of women with identical hair and suits. "There's not much around at the moment in the areas you're looking for, but leave your CV with us and we'll get in touch if anything comes up". which translates as "Fuck off now so I can put your CV in the bin".

Incidentally, the areas I'm looking for are:
* IT
* Clerical
* Administrative
* Graphic design
* Web design
* Retail
* Educational
* Care work
* Bookkeeping
* Accounting
* Anything that doesn't involve driving a truck or getting a hernia

There's a school of thought that, by the law of averages, the more agencies you register with, the greater the chance of finding a few that aren't a complete and utter waste of time. I incline to the other school, which reasons that if nine tenths of the apples in a barrel are rotten, probably so are all the others.

Still, I did get to apply to a company who describe themselves as "small and fun, aiming to offer an amazing customer experience" for a post that requires "skilled manual administration". Thanks to that description, I've got no idea what the job really was, but it sounded intriguing.

The news media is full of how those parts of western England near rivers have been flooded by rainstorms over the last few days. Or rather, it's full of how plucky middle class britons are gamely wading through the waist deep water in their towns, and cheerfully mucking in with filing sandbags in case it rains tomorrow.

There's no mention of the antiquated drainage system being unable to cope and spilling sewage onto the streets, nothing about the rebuilding cost, and absolutely no mention of global climate change.

It's not quite New Orleans, and certainly not Bengal, but it is a warning being conspicuously ignored.

The Strict Machines have broken up, officially and irrevocably. They've done it before - about once every six weeks for three years - but it's different because...this time it wasn't guitarist Paul who did the disbanding.

You know how in some dysfunctional relationships one partner periodically saves it by threatening to leave the other? And how the one is taken completely by surprise when it's the other who finally leaves? well, it's like that.

Paul is now casting around for someone else to be in a band with (and guess who he's asked to program percussion for him), while Anna is inundated with musicians who want her to sing for them, now that she's free.

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