Still waiting

To carry on from where I left off last time: It got to about 16:00, and I still hadn't had a call back from Vicky at the temping agency. I was in Kingston by this point, so I called the office off my mobile. I finally got through to her, feeling pretty damn pissed off. The transformation from that until the end of this 3-minute phone call was something spectacular. By the end, I'm the one who ends up feeling bad. She's so apologetic about everything. And she assures me that to make up for this fiasco with the solicitors, I am now on the top of the pile for when new work comes in, it's just that nothing has come in for a while. "Today is Wednesday. We often get work in on Thursday or Friday to start next week, so hopefully I'll call you in a couple of days." She's really nice about everything, and by the end of the call, I feel bad. It probably helps that she's hot. And not only that, on the phone, she sounds hot. And it's impossible to be pissed off at hot girls when they pretend to feel bad and be sorry for something. That's just science. I even felt bad about my main reason for being in Kingston: To hand my CV in to another temping agency. That agency emailed me the next day and told me that they currently didn't have anything, but I somehow came out of that conversation feeling like I was the one who was in the wrong. This despite the fact she didn't call me back. She didn't reply to my email. She hadn't found me work. This is the danger of doing business with hot girls. You get all thrown off. They should only allow ugly girls in a working environment so you can keep your head straight. It's an obvious logical step.

That was Wednesday. Today is Saturday so I guess they didn't get any work come in on Thursday or Friday. I'm really not sure what to do about all of this now. I am busy every hour of the day as it is right now: Selling things on eBay and sorting my finances among other things. Is it going to be worth me sacrificing my time to look for another job, when this agency could end up sorting me with work. And I genuinely think I have just been unlucky. Maybe naively, but that is how I feel. They're not a Micky Mouse agency, because the person who recommended them to me used them to find his current job. I'll give it a while longer. I can keep myself busy making and saving money getting ready to travel, even if it is not preferrable to having an actual job. I do kind of feel that I'm in an employment rut though. Just like when you haven't got laid for ages, the longer you go without, the more and more you feel like it's never going to happen. Then when it does, it's over in about 30 seconds because your balls are so full. But you're back in the game and you can take it from there. I feel the same about working. I haven't worked since last Summer, and I feel like I'm in an employment rut. I just need a little work to get my confidence up, and the work will flood in. But everytime I think I'm about to have a days work, something happens and my employment balls get fuller and fuller, and the more it seems I'm never going to get any work.

The other thing I started in my last blog, was the demise of my beloved blender. That blender well over a year old, using it multiple times daily. And it had only cost me £10. To be fair, it was held together with a match-stick super-glued to it, but that's not the point. With a little light maintenance, it had lasted me a long time. Wednesday was the end of the road for my old buddy though. And I went into Tesco's on Wednesday night to find a replacement. Now unless I'm mistaken, a Tesco Value blender in Hull went as cheap as £3.50. That does sound very cheap, so maybe I'm getting mixed up with something else, but I have the figure £3.50 in my head. In Twickenham, the cheapest is £14.99. If I'm not mistaken, then I think that tells you something about the two different areas. If you live in Twickenham, I guess you're supposed to be extravagant enough to spend £14.99 on a Tesco Value blender. I'm not. So I didn't buy one in the hope that Argos could do me a better deal, but it tells you a lot. Or it tells you I got the pricings muddled up. But either way, it tells you something.

So the next day, I take a walk into Argos. They do a blender for £8.99. A massive £1 saving on the one I bought last year, and a £6 saving on the overpriced Tesco offering. So I get that. What was weird about this though, was the way that I bought it. Now I said in my last blog that I was thinking of playing a bit of poker; trying my luck with a small amount and seeing what I could turn up. Today was also my birthday. Like Christmas, I despise my birthday and have done for a long time, so to me it was just Thursday. But being my birthday, and being a day I was thinking of gambling for the first time in 6 months, I think god might be telling me to roll the dice, when my Argos order number is '888'. God "coincidentally" breaks my blender, then "coincidentally" makes all the ones in Tesco's 888 expensive, before "coincidentally" making the ones in Argos much cheaper, then "coincidentally" making me customer number '888'. If that's not a sign I should be gambling, then I don't know what is. This didn't even click with me until I was laying in bed last night. I was there trying to get to sleep, and I suddenly realised: "36 hours ago, I was customer '888'." Now I definitely need to try my luck with the poker. I'm a sure thing to win!

I said earlier that eBay and bank accounts have been my fruit from the passed couple of days. I've got the ball significantly rolling in both parks, eBay to make me money, and banks to save that money. My PS2 was sold a few hours ago to someone in Hungary for £97 before postage. And I currently have another 5 listings, which include nearly my entire DVD collection with 78 DVDs currently listed. These 5 listings should be worth well over another £100 to me. Tomorrow, my beloved collection of NFL jerseys gets listed. I'm reluctant to sell them, but apart from my Hasselbeck, I won't be taking them travelling with me. And like everything else I have, if I'm not taking it travelling and it has financial value, then I'm selling it. I expect to be a different person once I return. I doubt I'll even want this stuff. So I may as well prolong my time of travelling, and clear everything I have so I can start a-fresh once I get back. Like my collection of hundreds of VHS videos that I threw away recently because their value was now virtually zero, I expect the same of DVDs by the time I return. Especially if I'm able to travel for up to 5 years. I may as well get some money for them whilst they still have value.

Apart from this website, one of the clear advantages to having learnt HTML, is that you can spice up your eBay ads without having to pay eBay for many of their features. For example, you can add links to other websites with little effort, saving you having to describe all of your products in great detail. The main one I've found though, is I can list as many pictures as I want within an advert, without having to pay eBay because I now know the HTML to include them. You do though need these pictures to be hosted somewhere online. So if you're looking through my photo gallery and you happen to see the picture a load of DVDs, or an NFL jersey, then you've probably stumbled across one of the pictures I'm hosting for my eBay adverts. I think I've edited the permissions so that only I can see them. But just in case, that's why. I still haven't figured out exactly how the random picture generator that is currently there actually works. So that might decide to pick out random eBay items to show people, so if something comes up, then that's why.

In terms of banking: If you read what I wrote a few blogs ago, it was about how Which? magazine was blatantly just copying my website to come up with their articles. You know what, I think they're copying my whole life. I signed up for a new ISA 3 or 4 days ago. Then what happens? The new copy of Which? comes through the letterbox this morning, and they rate that ISA as the best one. Coincidence? It's a little convenient. Seriously though, this copy of Which? did open my eyes to the fucked up nature of the UK banking system. First off it made me realise that I actually need 8 bank accounts as opposed to 7. Why? Because it showed me exactly how much better the smaller banks current accounts are to the big 4 UK banks (HSBC, Lloyds, Natwest and Barclays). To quote the magazine: "Cahoot pays more interest on its current account than Natwest does on its savings account." It later goes on to say that the big 4 banks now hold a 63% share of the GB market, compared to 57% 2 years ago. Put in more basic terms, not only are the big 4 shit, but more and more people are joining them. Now if anyone is thinking, why do I now need 8 bank accounts rather than 7, it's because I have a £1,500 interest free graduate overdraft with HSBC. I deliberately stay just above this £1,500 and put this interest free overdraft into savings so it's earning me money at the expense of HSBC, so I can't do away with my HSBC account.

If you read a few blogs ago, I was asking, what is the best marketing ploy in today's world? What is today's air bubble? I think we might be onto a winner in bank accounts. The big 4 are increasing their market share, yet absolutely raping people. Cahoot offers 3.65% interest rate on it's current account. The big 4 all offer 0.1%. HSBC also recently emailed me to tell me that to withdraw my money abroad, was soon going to be costing me even more. Which is exactly why I opened a Nationwide account a couple of days ago so I can withdraw money for free. They are absolutely raping people, yet their market share is increasing. That is good marketing.

As I was writing, I just heard some shouting from out on the street. A very cockney accent shouting "This is what you done. This is what you done when you accused me of rape. When you told people that I drugged you and raped you." This was being shouted into the car of this delinquent family that live across the street from me. A daughter, who can only be about 20, her baby, and her mother all live across the road. This guy is now asking what it is he did wrong after shouting at her for a while. And I think I might even be able to hear crying from the car. Hard to tell. It's too dark. Maybe that was this poor babies father. This is one weird damn household though. Their curtains can't have been opened in 5 years now. Makes good entertainment when this kind of thing happens. Which is with alarming frequency.

Now ever since my site first appeared on Google, they have been telling me that I should submit a sitemap so that they can read my site more easily and more of the pages would be listed. I've never made a sitemap, so to learn how to manually write one, and then to do it, took me nearly 3 hours. I wanted to write it manually, so like nearly everything else on this site, I created it, so I understand it, and I can easily edit it if necessary once I'm travelling. But it took a while. And not including all of the pages within the forum and photo gallery, this website currently has 56 pages. I had to write a sitemap detailing each of these pages individually. It took bloody ages. And it took 2 days for Google to have read the sitemap once it had downloaded it. Before I submitted the sitemap to Google, 16 of the 56 pages were listed. Now, after nearly 3 hours of learning to create, and then writing a sitemap, how many pages are now listed on Google? That's right, 16. What a waste of time that was. It has no errors on the map. For whatever reason though, Google just doesn't feel the need to list 40 of the pages on this site. So that was a fun waste of time. At least it has now been done though I guess.

Today has been a big, big sports day. Team GB has won 9 Olympic medals including 4 golds. Usain Bolt strolled to Olympic gold and a new world record in the 100m. More importantly though, it was the kick-off of the Premier League season. I said in my last blog this had been a depressing Summer to be an Evertonian. And that was proved today. We could only field 10 first-team players we were so short on numbers, so not only did we have a 17-year old playing in midfield, but we also had 6 defenders on the pitch. And apart from the goalkeeper, all 6 of our other substitutes were also in their teens, brought up from the youth team to fill the spots. This could be a very long season. No surprise really that we lost at home to Blackburn. 6 defenders was never really going to work. This, though, is what being an Everton fan is all about.

Obviously key this week, has been the war in Georgia. The following are quotes from George Bush in a speech he made yesterday:
"Georgia's sovereignty and territorial integrity must be respected... Bullying and intimidation are not acceptable ways to conduct foreign policy in the 21st century."
Now I don't want to put a downer on a speech where George only fucked up a couple of times, because that really is an achievement for a retard, but for the man who invaded Afghanistan and Iraq to talk about respecting sovereignty and territorial intergrity is a bit rich, even for Bush. "Bullying and intimidation are not acceptable ways to conduct foreign policy." That is a bold statement from any American, where bullying and intimidation are the foundation of their foreign policy. I have to once again ask, how the hell does this idiot run the world. Maybe... just maybe if you try really, really hard, you can somehow come to forgive America for electing Bush once. But to have him for 4 years, and then vote him back in... I'd love to hear them talk their way out of getting the award for the dumbest peoples on the planet for that one! To quote the front page of the Daily Mirror from November 4th 2004 that I used in my June 05 blog entry, "How can 59,054,087 people be so DUMB?" The Bush speech can be found here for anyone who's interested.

Dumb Bush This is the world we live in though. It's great isn't it? I like to write these blog entries, because I'd love to know, once I get back from travelling, if I'll still feel the same as this. As I've been writing, I've constantly had some of my American friends signing in to MSN. I'm not an anti-American person. I have a lot of American friends, I'm just anti-dumb. And there are a lot... a LOT, of mind-numbingly stupid people in America. It's not that I mean to have a go at all of American when I talk disparaginly like that. Among the retards there are a lot of intelligent people. A lot of people who dedicate themselves to exposing the flaws in the US system. But the stupid decisions and comments made by Americans, it just overwhelms those with any intelligence. This YouTube video makes my point pretty well. It's easy just to blame the dumb South as well. This one in New York City about 9/11 takes that away though. I do like to keep these blogs though, so I will know once I get back from travelling, what I thought, and what I was like before I left to travel. I might not make it back if I go into the wrong parts of the US now. Shit happens though. Luckily very few people actually read these blogs so far. Especially this far down a page. There is little though, that you can guarantee about travelling. One thing is, that it will change you. These blogs are what will let me know the person who I was, before I started travelling. They are my portal back to my pre-travelling self. Because I often think back to the person I was at different stages of my life. And I remember the things that I was doing, but I really wish I could delve into my mind from back then, and find out why I did the things I did. Why did I smoke? Why did I spend 12 hours a day in front of my Sega Saturn? I couldn't comprehend doing either of those things today. When I get back from travelling, I might ask myself: "Why did I used to get to the gym 5 days a week? Why did I just get up some days and decide to run 10 miles? Why did I want to travel? Why didn't I start a career when I had the chance?" This blog is my portal back to my former self. Which is why it doesn't bother me that very few people read it. Once I start publicising this website once I start travelling, then I expect to get at least some traffic. But that won't be for another 10 ish weeks yet. Fuck that sounds soon. That could be another 30 blog entries before then though. I don't expect that anyone will ever read back through my pre-departure blogs. I don't think that anyone will ever read this sentence, yet I write it anyway. Why? Because this is my way be to find out about the pre-travelling Jro. This is my way back to me on the 16th August 2008. What was I thinking, what was I doing, and most importantly, why was I thinking and doing what I was? This wasn't why I started this website. But it is damn sure why I keep on doing it. This is me then, now.

Incidentally, if anyone did read that last sentence, if you could put a note into the forum it would be great. Just so I know if anyone actually has read this page.

I'm going to wrap things up now. I have little more to say. Hopefully next time I write, some kind of work will have shown up. I'm not holding my breath though. My problem is I am too honest, and it's not often that I can justify saying that. But I refuse to work for an employer without telling them that I'll be leaving in November. I don't want to have that kind of relationship with someone. And the fact that I am leaving is the big stumbling block preventing me from finding work. Everytime I say that to someone, they without exception tell me that in my situation, they would all lie to their employers. It's not often that I can say this, but I seem to have too much integrity. It's now that I regret going to Mexico. I loved Mexico. And I learnt so much about my tolerances for when I am travelling, confirming what I pretty much already knew: I travel alone. I don't want the company of another person. Say what you will about it, but I am just one of those people more comfortable in my own company. Most things I do, I do alone. And I do alone, without regret. It's not that I don't have friends: I have more than I want or need. I'm at the point of nearly having to delete some on Facebook because it has become so clogged. Nearly 600, all people I know, no one just added from the Internet. But I just prefer doing things alone. I'm a bit of a loner in that sense. But it's not that I don't like people, its just that I feel that other people hold me back. I have the confidence to do anything I want. I'm fearless, I'm brash and I do what I want. There aren't too many other people like that. And for that reason, I am much more comfortable on my own. Other people will hold me back. Whether it be having the balls to do some of the things I do, or having the fitness to keep up with me when I go up a mountain, I don't think there's an ideal travel buddy for me in the world. And it's 10 times easier to meet new people when you're by yourself. When I travel, I always go to bars by myself and meet the locals. You just can't do that very easily with other people. It's for that reason, I am like I am. It's not that I'm shy, it's not that I'm unlikable. Well it might be the second one. But it's just that there is no one out there like me. And on this once-in-a-lifetime trip, there is no way that I am carrying anyone through what I want to do. I want the freedom to do as I please, no restrictions. Anyway, I got distracted. Again. I don't regret Mexico. I loved it. But not finding work, this is down to Mexico. If I had come straight back from uni, it would be easy to get. And as I think I said in an earlier blog, I turned down a 6-week contract at AQA to go to Mexico. The trials of finding work over the passed 3 weeks, they would have been avoided. And my bank balance; that would be much prettier. But I still don't regret it. I learnt what I needed about myself to make sure this trip goes off without a hitch. I saw people from the other side of the planet that I am really close to. And if nothing else, now I have the time to prepare properly for this big trip. Though preparation may be no consolation for lack of money. Like I said in my last blog, if this job I was interviewed for in Canada pans out, then the trials of this Summer mean nothing. But that is a big if. There's a part of me that said after that interview, 'look for other work as a backup.' But then another part of me said that 'this was going to work. This is where I will end up.' It was this thought that won. Not becaue it was the sensible thing to do. Rather, doing nothing; doesn't take up as much time. I hope I made the right choice. 2 weeks from now and I will know. It can't come soon enough.

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