Monday, November 29, 2010

My heart is too heavy for hand luggage

bmibaby customer relations
PO BOX 737​62
Castle Donington
DE74 2XP​
23rd November 2010

Passengers: Tiernan Welch & ****** *******,
ref: H2S5BB

Good afternoon,

I am somewhat frustrated that there is no longer a method of accessing your customer service over the telephone. Add to this my confusion that you, an on-line travel company no longer accept correspondence by e-mail. But, as requested by your website I have written to you detailing my concerns and I hope that you will be able to deal with my concerns swiftly and efficiently.

Last week I booked two flights from East Midlands to Belfast for my partner and I to return home for Christmas, due to depart on Tue 21 at 17:00 and return 15:05. As it is Christmas I opted to check a bag in however, given that I travel lighter than my partner, I put the check-in bag under her name.

Sadly, since I booked the glights my partner and I have broken up and she will not be coming with me and I was wondering first off if there is any provision to get a refund on the seat I booked for her? If not I'll enjoy the extra leg room, but as it is Christmas I expect the seats will be in high demand. Also, would be able to transfer the check-in bag from her name to my own?

Thank you.

Actually, there was one other thing which I could really do with your help on. Do you think it’s my fault? The break-up, do you think that its something I’ve done? I mean, there weren’t any signs to speak of, and I thought that things were going really well. We got on and the people around us would revel and bask in what I felt was the warmness of our mutual love. I have always been considerate and kind, never aggressive or violent and have never strayed been unfaithful so do you its possible to just fall out of love? And, as Prince Charles asked - what is love? Is it something tangible and real? Or is the grief which I’m feeling merely a chemical reaction in my brain which I’m confusing with fear of never finding someone as well suited to me? I accept that its going to be difficult. We were together for many years and, after all the hottest love always has the coldest end. I’ve listened to a lot of good advice and will continue ‘to take everyday as it comes’ whilst acknowledging that ‘it’ll get easier’ and so on. My family and friends have been so supportive too, but still there’s this knot in my stomach; this immense sadness which descends and holds me down like a sad little Incubus.

I worry; do you think that we have one great love? Have I missed the boat? Instead of writing this should I be out there winning her back or do I accept her decision that things are just over. Can love be mended, or as Wilde said, was the heart made to be broken?

Goodness, where did that some from? Imagine, if you had a phone number we’d have probably have resolved this in two minutes…

Please advise the best course of action.

Please do not take this as notice of cancellation of my flight.

Many thanks,

T. Welch

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Memoirs of a nobody

I was discussing ‘blogging’ with someone over the weekend. It was clear that they had never read my posts before and made an assumption, perhaps from my cocky demeanour, that it was more of a personal journal that an attempt to be half way satirical and half rip of the ‘Time waster’s letters’. Perhaps it is a little arrogant that I should even be scribing and documenting my musings but he seemed actually offended by the fact that someone (me) should be given any sort of a platform to speak publicly unless they had something to significant offer. He included celebrities within this bracket.

Frustratingly the drunken ramblings of a girl I vaguely knows mate did get me thinking about ‘life’ and how I see myself fitting into it. Now, my age has never been too much of an issue for me, though that isn’t to say that I haven’t lied about it from time to time. Generally, these ‘fibs’ were in fact attempts to make people believe I was older than my actual years in order to attain alcohol. Conversely, I recently did knock a year or two off whilst talking to someone who couldn't have been more than nineteen, who (seemingly sincerely) thought I was about twenty two. I didn't have the heart to correct them.

People, including myself, frequently say in conversation that they feel no different now to when they were teenagers. However lately the integrity I am able to put behind this statement has wavered. I don't know whether it is to be with my being in the winter of my twenties and the presumption that, by the time I was thirty I had expected to be somewhere doing something - or to have at least made something of myself. This contemplation does make one reflective. And as the next chapter of my life becomes punctuated by the marking of another decade I sit here, full of a horrible cold and in my late twenties, and am able to accept that I am a normal human being and that this is, well…it’s Ok.

Admittedly, like many of us I had assumed that I was special. Don't we all to a degree? I presume that we all have out our own individual internal monologue in which we are the star. I actually used to fantasise that my life existed as some kind of Truman show existence where I was the main character. My life would be watched and critiqued by the rest of you (or maybe it was aliens), and to keep things interesting I used to sometime make little knowing commentaries which, had I been a television star in another reality, would have worried the producers no end.

It’s curious, people appear to be aggrieved by the notion of autobiographies, yet they remain some of the most successful selling books in the country. I don’t read them as a rule, but I have read a few, namely; Joe Strummer, Johnny Cash, Richard E. Grant and Peter Kay and I have enjoyed them all. What struck me, specifically about Peter Kay’s is how little happened. Kay’s story ended before he became famous. I assume this means that he will now be able to release further editions which detail the meteoric rise to become one of the most irritating faces in the British media. The thing about celebrity autobiographies is that we aren’t interested in the glitz and the glamour, because lets face it, this is the part of their lives which has been public and we have effectively been through it with them. What people want in the grit, or as Motley Crew wrote ‘The Dirt’. I mean, the only aspect of Katie Price’s train wreck of a life which remotely interested me was the demise of her relationship with unassuming vacuous tit, Peter Andre. Who gives a ***** about Gary Barlow’s children or Robbie William’s wedding – it’s what they called each other that we’re dying to find out.

Perhaps I’m overcomplicating things; my point was merely that I should be allowed to write a blog. But, and this question has been bothering me for some time now; are the lives of people in the public eye really any more interesting than our own? I have met and befriended a (small) number of minor-celebrities and I read their blogs, twitter, tumblr etc and admittedly some write well. Some too are funny and some have a point to make - but for the most part the writing is pretty inane and little more than dull reflections on pointless activities. I’m not saying my life justifies having a blog however I enjoy my life, and just because a performance takes place on a smaller stage does not mean its not worth watching.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

From the Jungle to the Streets

New television shows must be an awful lot of effort and expense. To that end I have sympathy with production companies and networks having to commission reality show after reality show in order to keep costs low and ratings high. But now, as I’m sure you’re aware – the reality show is dying and as Big Brother breathes his last breath this week it is apparent that there is something new needed and, with respect, I believe I may have found the future of television.

Hark back if you will to the Nation’s brief obsession with the great outdoors spearheaded by likes of ITV and Five’s offerings: ‘Help, I’m a celebrity, get me out of here’, ‘The farm’ and ‘Log Jam’. All hugely popular in their day, but now little more than embarrassing smudges on an already sketchy and questionable broadcasting history. Channel 4 of course went a different route to feed our outdoor pursuits appetite and introduced us to the ‘Born Survivor’ Bear Grylls. Bear came with an impressive resume, having already climbed Everest, featured on advertising campaigns and joined the Indian Army for some reason. The programme saw him take on Mother Nature and hurt her viciously as he climbed cliffs, parachute, skinned animals; wrestled other bears and drink piss.

Now sadly the ship may have sailed on the survival fad, but the captain is ready and I’m certain that, given the correct vehicle Bear can make a triumphant return to the top of the ratings. I believe I have this vehicle and feel that now the time is right to put this bear in a new light. And so I would like to present my proposal for your new hit show ‘Bear Grylls Bare skills’!

In case you aren’t as fortunate as I am to be down with youth speak; ‘bare’ means ‘a lot of’. You see, the lexicon of ‘youth speak’ is specifically designed with view to exclude adults and functions as a code between peers. Therefore, my clever use of their terminology will maximise our potential viewing audience. You see, I believe that engaging the socially excluded young people of the country in imperative, and what better ambassador for this that than son of a Politician, Eton Educated, ex-Scout mater Michael ‘Bear’ Grylls?

The show will see our hero trade survival in the Jungle for survival on the ‘Streets’ as Bear will be plucked from his comfortable Hertfordshire home and placed in one of the countries’ many deprived neighbourhoods. He will need to think on his feet and keep up the persona of a street smart, savvy youth whilst living in an area with significant issues around anti-social behaviour, crime, teen pregnancy and drug use. Think the Secret Millionaire meets Jeremy Kyle.

Audiences will tune in weekly to see our hero adapting his unique survival skills to his new surroundings and its inhabitants. His experience using camouflage will render him unrecognisable in a ‘Hoodie’, the traditional uniform of the ‘yobs’. But he’ll keep his wits about him and use his instinct to communicate with the natives as he forages and fights for necessities such as food and weed – just as he would in the wild! His cub scout learned knife skills would be put to them test as he may be asked for ‘murk’ someone from a rival crew! Imagine the anthropological significance as Bear maps the behaviour of gangs as he goes tagging in the evenings with people sharing his postcode.

To keep things fresh and current, his challenges could be dictated by trends set by scare mongering tactics in the right wing media such as legal highs, the knife crime ‘epidemic’ and even benefit scum!

With low overheads and a minimal casting costs filming could start with immediate affect and though my preference for the show would be channel 4 - I have confidence that Sky one or Channel 5 would be all over this idea like a wetsuit.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

The only one with sympathy for BP...

Dear Obama,

First off I'd like to congratulate you on being the American version of a Prime Minister, you totally deserved. I'm not just saying that because you're black either. I have loads of black friends...well, some.

Just so you know, I know how it feels to be the new guy and its hard, especially when you move to a new house and make new friends and stuff. I recently moved house myself and had to deal with an over friendly shopkeeper in my new Coop, he's nice and all, but a little bit tiring, a bit like Hillary I suppose. But I have to be firm and remind you that no one likes a bully, and just because people haven't been very nice to you and you haven't lived up to America's ridiculous Christ like expectation of you is no reason to take it out on everyone else.

Personally I thought the Health care bill was a lovely idea! But the unpopularity of your handling of the economic crisis and the on-going illegal war in the East is no reason to take it out on poor old BP. They must be having a tough time too Bamz (I can call you Bamz, right?). Essentially, I think that you two just need to sit down and have a talk about it, 'old school' style. I have completed a NVQ (level 2) in Mediation and I think that between us we can sort out this little misunderstanding. I'm sure that BP didn't mean to leak oil into the Mexican Gulf, in fact I'm sure of it. Besides, its only the 'Mexican' Gulf anyway. But they're trying their very best to clear it up and its cost them an awful lot of money, 11 Billion Pounds to be precise (that's about a Gazillion in your 'dollars'). Now that may not be a lot to you, but its a lot of money to some people. And I'm not saying that they're innocent in all this, I would never land all this on you homeboy so I'll be talking to them too. But they've already said they're sorry and they've even sacked CEO Tony Hayward, so the least you could to would be to accept their apologies and then we can all go for a nice swim.

Peace bro.


Friday, May 07, 2010

TV go home.

Oi hi!

I don't pretend to have much understanding of socio-economics, to me 'credit crunch' simply sounds like a delicious new brand of cereal. One thing that I have noticed, however is that since the dawn of flat screen televisions; like so many things in life size is unquestionably linked to status.

We can look back at history and can easily identify these symbols, the pyramids and castles which were built as measures of wealth, status and power. More recently it was small mobile phones and big cars but now, now it is the television which is clearly a modern day version of this cursed vanity. I myself feel inadequate with my mere 32'' standing next to friends with their enormous 42 inches - so big they needs both hands just to hold them. Indeed the Television represents a crude cultural measuring stick which you can assess by malevolently strolling past and staring into someone's front room and gazing longingly in at the draining neo glow.

Additionally, and rather sadly, it appears that the biggest televisions tend to be owned by those people that are in the worst position to pay for them. To this end, immoral and unethical companies such as Brighthouse are able to charge ludicrous APRs to deluded souls who believe blindly they must possess these symbols of prosperity.

Which brings me to ask why Leicester City Council, did you find it either necessary to build this, the world's biggest flat screen television in the centre of the city? I can only assume that you were aiming to recreate a familiar 'living room' feeling for the cities unemployed so that they would never need to be without daytime TV? Or perhaps, you wanted Leicester to live up to its unofficial title as 'England's waiting room' by furnishing it with a television suitable for 300,000 impatient customers to keep half an eye on. Or was, like I have mentioned above, a ruse to make an arrogant and unconvincing suggestion of prosperity and success?

Quite sincerely, I don't know why you don't just be done with it and start to show Jeremy Kyle followed by repeats of cash in the attic and the Gilmore girls. Give the people what they want.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Eon, Eon, Eons

Dear Eon,

Three and a half weeks – it has been three and a half weeks since I first rang to tell you that my boiler was not working. That’s three and a half weeks without heating, means to wash up or means to wash myself. Without being mellow dramatic, the third world could do better – I mean they may have to walk 2 miles for clean water, but at least they have access to it.

26 hours - 26 hours is the combined length to time I have spent waiting in for your engineers to arrive to fix the aforementioned problem. Now, no one could accuse me of not being a patient man; in fact given my three and a half week pilgrimage without water I suspect that those around me are beginning to compare my suffering to that of Jesus’ 40 days and 40 nights (though he could probably have a bit of a wash if he needed to).

Perhaps I’m being a touch unfair? Engineers have been coming to my house, providing comic relief to the situation. They’ve all been decent enough folk and very friendly. They’ve all individually come in drank my tea and turned my kitchen upside down in order to tell me that same thing – so let me share that with you with the same patronising intent I received it with. I need a new APS (Air pressure switch) and my IM (Ignition motherboard) is ‘on its way out’. So to sum up: an APS and IM need to be ordered to fix my boiler, OK? Seriously, is that OK?

I know, I know. It’s simple, right? In that case why has it taken 5 people to come to my house on 5 different days over the course of three and a half weeks costing me 5 days of annual leave from work to resolve this matter? The process has been nothing short of farcical; honestly. ‘The part has been ordered sir’. ‘Sorry sir the part is in Coventry’, ‘Sir the part is attached to a blimp’, ‘Sir, the part was left in a will by an eccentric millionaire and now an only be found using this hundred year old treasure map and sextant’. I don’t mean to be rude, but this isn’t my problem and I am no longer interested in your excuses. It’s cold and I smell. Come and fix my boiler.

Yours in questioning doubt,

Tiernan Welch

Monday, March 29, 2010

Nokia 5800 express to Hell

Dear Nokia,

You have created a phone that is not only one of it's kind, but also has put the evolution of mobile phones back years. The Nokia Express music is the orphan child of smart phones mutated with the unwanted bastard child of an mp3 player. If this was an attempt to rival an i-phone then, well, I just feel sorry for you.

I have about twelve reasons why your phone is so bad, and I am considering serlalising them for you. Today I will share the struggle of answering a phone call.

It happened yesterday, my sister rang me as I was sat in a beer garden. The phone shrieked and I stabbed at the express music's 'super smart' touch screen in an attempt to answer the call, but I guess that was asking a lot. I mean its not like that'd be straight forward. I dropped the call. I rang my sister back and to my suprise she didn't answer, despite there only being a time lapse of 30 seconds. I then rang back, a third attempt and lo! she answered. I apologised.

'Sorry, my phone wouldn't met me answer it' I said.
'God' she replied. 'I have the same problem, you don't have one of those Nokia Express music phones do you?' she joked.

But Nokia, I do. The joke was on me.

I don't want anything from you, you've done enough.

Tomorrow - the lost dialing wand.

Tiernan Welch