God! Show Me Magic
It's tradition at our place for people who are leaving work to buy drinks for everybody. It is also tradition for people to actual fucking turn up on the designated date for the leaving drinks. Where the fuck is Russ?
My team leader Russ is leaving tomorrow. I've worked with him for almost 7 years, and we've had a lot of ups and downs (as described in this blog on several occasions). We've sort of made a peace lately. He realised he was being forced out (he's a subcontractor), so he no longer sees me as a threat to his status as team leader. He's gone back to being the guy I got to know all those years ago, argumentative, likeable, funny and chatty.
He did kind of make it difficult for me on this team for a while, but he was being manipulated from behind the scenes. I won't go into details here.
Our new team leader is to be a guy called Ian. Ian is likeable enough, but as usual for BAe, it has all been done in a farcical way.
For the last 2 or 3 years it has always been made clear that Russ would be moved aside and I would run the team. I used to stand in for Russ at meetings when he wasn't here and I was also responsible for appraising team members and looking after their development. This is what led to the whole "threat" thing.
Hang on, here's Russ. About fucking time.
Anyway, when our higher management team changed, so did the plans. Oh, I was still strung along with the "oh you'll take over still" bollocks, but I'm not stupid and it was evidently not true. So now, instead of being the team leader my official title is "the focal point for Fuel Management". What does that even mean? Are people going to stare at me, expecting a fucking magic show?
I'm actually quite looking forward to it. Nobody who isn't on the fuel team has a fucking clue about the scope, size and technical detail of what we do. Ian certainly doesn't, as he demonstrated by coming and having a chat with me the other day. I am preparing to be wilfully difficult.
Apparently, that is one of the things that counts against me. Russ had a chat with Ian the other week about the team structure. My friend Chris is taking over what Russ actually does, but the management had reservations about putting Chris on the same team as John and I. Apparently we have a reputation for being argumentative, difficult, and being "no-men". Ian decided to go ahead with the plan, even though the big boss people weren't keen. Heh, I found it quite funny that I'm seen in this way. Fuck em!
Quick weekend round-up…
On Sunday we went to the memorabilia fair at the NEC in Birmingham. There are some things that happened which I can't mention here, as they would spoil some Christmas surprises I have in store for people.
Johnny Woodhouse came and met us and got to meet three of the guys from the original Dawn Of The Dead. Highlight was when he got Ken Foree to say, "when there is no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth". Erotique!
On Friday we went to Feedback in Lancaster, which is a new indie night. It was good and had the added bonus of a VJ show in time with the music. It was very impressive. The one problem I had is that I was knackered after a week of semi-insomnia and the escapades of Thursday night. I always feel really insecure when overly tired in a club or pub (like the time I went for a nap in the SU toilets). I think I gave my best grumpy zombie impression for everyone.
I wrote the above yesterday but didn't post it for various reasons. It is Friday now.
Last night we went to an Indian restaurant in Warton called 'The Mango Tree'. It was very nice and differed from your standard Indian restaurant (meat or veg curry of varying strength), in that there were several non-usual options.
Nige booked it on a whim and six of us ended up in there, some of us had been in the pub all afternoon because of Russ's leaving do.
Anyway, I recommend it.
I don't feel very well today but I don't think that is the fault of the restaurant. I think I just didn't sleep well, am overly tired and have a bit of a feisty stomach. It's my own fault.
At lunchtime today I nipped into town to pick a parcel up from next to the train station. As I was leaving, there was a man on the other side of the door waiting to get in. He'd already let somebody else out so I stopped to wave him through. He didn't budge though and he insisted I left first. As I thanked him for this, I noticed that it was former Scotland and Preston manager Craig Brown.
He always seemed like such a lovely chap, and the manners he showed in coming into the parcel office just confirmed this. Everything I've ever read or heard about Craig Brown made me believe he is one of life's good guys. He must still be living in Preston.
As I drove back at lunch, I went past The Fighting Cock. I don't know if I've mentioned it here before but it is all boarded up. It was quite sad really to see it like that. The Preston I knew from my teenage years and from uni seems to have all but vanished. All the old uni buildings have been superseded by newer, shinier ones, Vernon building now doesn't contain computing students, the SU is in the process of being completely re-built, the old house on Ladywell Street has been completely done up, and the pub where I whiled away many evenings (and played for the football team) is now all boarded up and empty.
Jesus, and that's just the ones I can easily remember. Maybe I'm getting old (it is 11 years since I started university) but Preston changes quite a lot, especially the uni. It is a far bigger entity than it used to be. The students don't look like students anymore either. There is now no real dividing line between students and locals. Nobody wears green jeans anymore…
How is your Christmas shopping going? Well? You haven't started have you? Tsk, you don't want to leave it too late in buying presents for Glenn. There are only 21 more shopping days to Glenn's present day.