Between the Devil and The Deep Blue Sea?

img_5502

Between the Devil and The Deep Blue Sea?

Alternatively titled ..  Dead Man Walking .. or should that be Dead Man Wanking?

Why wanking?    Read on ..

It’s been a while since I wrote any of my nonsense,   I’ve been busy,   working too hard over the past year and not even had a week off since the Easter furlough back in April 2018,  when for one reason or another I didn’t get off on holiday anywhere.

Even at Christmas and New Year,  I only had 2 days and 1 day off work respectively.

That’s pretty unhealthy really.

There’s been reasons,  a big project consuming my time,   it went live in April and if you use the global companies services in the UK,  then you’’ll most likely be processed by it.    I’m quite proud of it.

Add on top of the 10 hour day an extra 2 hours for commuting,   It’s way too long,  for far too long.

But that’s about to change,

I’m a contractor,  self-employed,  I love working myself,  but the powers that be here want to reduce their budget and have employed a couple of staff replacements.     They guy who is my direct replacement is a complete prick,   loud-mouthed,  thinks he’s clever,  tries too hard to impress,  talks when he should be listening and sticks his foot in it big time.

Now I’m a dead man walking,  my contract is up in 2 weeks’ time and I’m not being fed any new work,  just handing over to big-mouth.

Or is that dead man wanking,   as all I’m doing now is fucking about and trying to keep myself looking busy.

The good thing about this job is I’ve banked a few quid,  well I had until a few weeks ago when I paid the mortgage off.

A 6 figure mortgage is a  £700pm payment  vs 6 figures in the bank and £40pm interest.

A no brainer really,  why pay the bank when they don’t pay you?

No mortgage ..  Free at last,  free at last,  thank The Lord almighty,  I’m free at last!.

Well I ‘m mortgage free,  still got a few quid in the bank and it will be fantastic to have a break for a while.

I might even take off the full summer,  I think I deserve it.

—————————

PS – Weren’t the Celtic shit at the weekend .. getting well beat by the new team in blue that plays out of Ibrox.

A clear out is required.,  drop the dead-wood,   the has-beens and the never-beens.

On the plus side, we have the money in the bank to make the changes,   but is there the will?

 

 

Advertisements

This is Not the Champions League. #UEFA

UEFA

Celtic are back in action tonight,  the second-leg of the first of four qualifying rounds to get to the UEFA Champions’ League Group Stages.

We are already 3-0 up from the first leg against Alashkert of Armenia and tonight should be a formality.

How skewed are UEFA in the decision making of their qualifying process that whoever wins between Scotland and Armenia’s champions are playing 8 games to qualify in the group stages when there are 26 direct entries to the group stages including 4 from England, 4 from Spain and 4 from Italy,  3 from Germany and 3 from France.

This is not a whinge saying that the above is not fair.    If that’s how UEFA want to play the game then that’s up to them.

What am I saying is that this is no longer the “Champions” league and should be renamed accordingly.

Tonight,  the walk from Dalmarnock train station along the wide thoroughfare of the Clyde Gateway with the stadium looking magnificent in the distance always brings pride in my heart and a smile on my face.

Mon the hoops.

Treble Treble then 10 in a Row.

I’m a Celtic fan, It’s part of who I am. I can’t remember being anything else.

Even in those dark days of divorce, I’d find myself at Celtic Park surrounded by fellow fans and thinking no matter how bad things get, I’ll always have this and at least I’ll never be a hun. 🙂

Celtic has been not only part of my life but also my sons. In those dark days it was the glue that bonded us bhoys together. Him aged 5 sitting on my knee eating pizza, the seat beside us empty. The guys around us patting his head and giving him sweets.

20 odd years later, we’re still in the same seats in the Jock Stein Stand with the same guys sitting around us.

Part of my legacy with my Bhoy is that I’ll pay the season tickets until I’m not working then he’ll take the mantle and hopefully grandkids will fill that empty seat.

Today Celtic play Hibs at Easter road with a beam back to the Kerrydale suite at Celtic Park. A few of our fellow fans are meeting for a beer and to watch the game together.

It’ll be a bit different to talking to the backs of their heads.

If we win then that’s the league wrapped up for the seventh year in a row and a win against Motherwell at Hampden in May and that’s a historic second Treble in a row.

Would you bet against it?

I wouldn’t.

If you’ve read any of my nonsense, you’ll know I like an occasional flutter, but only really like to bet certainties and put enough on that the return is worthwhile.

Earlier in the week I contacted Ladbrokes for the odds of Celtic winning 10 league titles in a row.

As you can see from the response above it’s not a risk they are willing to take. I.e In their opinion Celtic will go on to win the 10 titles in a row.

Got to agree with them.

Enjoy your day, these are the good days. These are days to celebrate and remember.

Celtic vs Rangers Perspective.

I regularly put on a post with odds before the Glasgow Derby of Celtic vs Rangers.

It’s by far the biggest rivalry in Scotland, the UK and certainly one of the most fiercestly contested derby matches in the world.

It’s more than simple rivalry, there’s cultural history involved where most people would presume that all Celtic fans are Catholic with an Irish heritage and all Rangers fans are Protestant with loyalty to the UK.

It’s a generalisation but it’s not as simple as that. Continue reading “Celtic vs Rangers Perspective.”

Torn – Is Glasgow a Binary City?

 

img_1580

He’s not a happy man, John that I work with.

I wonder why?

On Friday he seemed to be buoyant, looking forward to the weekend. A quiet night on Friday as he had a flying lesson on Saturday and was saving himself for a big day out at the football and celebrating on Sunday.

John’s a Rangers fan, or a Sevco fan if you like to wind him up about the fact that his original team have went into liquidation and the team in blue that play out of Ibrox are not the same team that he has supported man and boy.

On Friday, he had a spring in his step, lunch time was full of phrases like “We’re back” and “This is the most I’ve looked forward to an Old Firm game in years”.

John’s attitude, probably like most who see the world through blue-tinted glasses is that Celtic haven’t been performing at their best ( true) and that Rangers have had better recent performances ( possibly) and that over the 8 games since Christmas Rangers were the form team and had beaten St Johnstone 3-0 where Celtic could only draw 0-0 against them.

He was in full-on mode .. upbeat, confident and on a roll.

Truth be told, I was more nervous about this game than I have been for any game against Rangers since they were reformed from the assets that Charles Green bought from the insolvency administrators.

Would they be able to beat us at their ground with 45,000 home supporters baying for “Fenian blood”?

My heart said no, but my head wasn’t as confident with a 60/40 likelihood that Celtic would win. Much less than previous games were I had no doubt that we would win, or at least not get beat.

Is that the same thing?

I can handle a draw. But getting beat by your biggest rivals stings.

Glasgow isn’t exactly a binary city,  it’s more 1’s, 0s and Nulls.

For many people,   you’re a Tim or a Hun or nothing and if you’re nothing then you’re viewed suspiciously by either side and assumptions are made from your upbringing and attitude to put you in one box or the other.

So you might as well be something.

But in reality its not as simple as that.  there are many people who really could not give a toss about football or religion and wish that the lot of them would pack up and go elsewhere.

Add to that,  the growing number of immigrants to the city who do not have the historic loyalties which cause this unholy rivalry to be the car-crash spectacle that it has become.

Some people are too involved,  too close to it,  that they lose all sense of perspective.  That they think that its all about “us” and “them”.   Completely unaware that there is so much more to life out there and lots of people who don’t give a fuck.

Did you see the game? Continue reading “Torn – Is Glasgow a Binary City?”

It’s tighter but the moneys still safe! #CelticFC

img_1525

 

Oh the weather outside is frightful …

Well it certainly is in the Central Scotland area,  where the “Beast From The East”  is laying siege to most of the country including my wee street,   which being half-way up the hill to East Kilbride is a certainty to be snowed in when the weather turns nasty.

The best thing about being snowed in is no travelling to work,   I’m self employed but I get to Work From Home .. a loose term for logging in and being available and doing enough to look as if you’re busy but in reality I’m sitting around playing piano,  watching  tv,  making curries and otherwise keeping my hands and mind occupied.

Idle hands .. Its the devils work!     🙂

Anyway,  since I’m not spending 3 hours a day on my commute to that Global Communications Company in Livingston that currently employs my services ,   I’ve been able to drop a few thoughts on the blog.

What about the Rangers eh?

Now second in the SPFL and a mere 6 points behind Celtic,  who have a game in hand and there are 10/9 games to play for Celtic/Rangers respectively.

It’s closer than I expected,   but not close enough.

Lets be fair,    they have been playing better football since the got shot of Pedro.   The caretaker manager Graham Murdy is a straight-talking honest professional and has made a few decent loan deals. Continue reading “It’s tighter but the moneys still safe! #CelticFC”

Supply, Demand, Fear And Loathing in the UK Software Industry

Fear And Loathing

John and I have worked together a few times over the years.

The first time was back in 1998 during the halcyon days of deregulation when the government was throwing money at the utility companies in an attempt to open the energy and telecom markets and make buying electricity, gas or telephone services more competitive.

That was the party-line anyway but the real reason was in making money for the people who already had the money to invest, i.e. the Tory Party demographic and the banks, pension companies and institutes which could make huge profits buying the UK infrastructure at bottom-dollar prices and their share prices doubling over night.

As individuals working in software development, there was lots of money to be made on that gravy train and even although John and I were comparative bottom-feeders, we still made a relative fortune on obscene hourly rates, but that’s supply and demand for you.

Deadlines were tight, the date at which the market was set to open was fixed in stone and our employer Scottish Power was desperate to be one of the first PES’s with its foot in the door and it’s grubby little hands in your wallet.

Of course the reason that deadlines were tight was because the early days of analysis and design had been undertaken by some of the major consultancies of the time, IBM,. Logica, Cap Gemini and they were too busy lining their own pockets with the freely available money directed from the public purse to actually give a t0ss about getting the job done.

They talked a good game, as they always do, the project managers and analysts were the kind of guys who were good at drawing boxes to represent systems or data sources and then drawing the lines between them to represent processes and data flows.

You know the type, all talk, all confidence and delivered nothing.

I hear on the grape-vine that these guys are still out there now, 20 years later working in banking and the privatisation of Scottish Water, the latest gravy train to come along offering free money to those who talk a good game.

It’s not really strange to find that these guys all know each other, a cabal of frauds masquerading as leaders when all they are good at is leading any unsuspecting PLC up the proverbial garden path.

Of course by that time, budgets have been agreed and half spent, lots of documents have been produced with diagrams of boxes and lines but not a lot of actual detail and no infrastructure or software architecture which will implement the new business requirements.

That’s when they call us bottom-feeders in, the mercenaries who drift from contract to contract getting the work done on a decent daily rate extending the contract as long as we can to keep the dosh rolling in as long as possible or until someone else makes us a better offer.

1998 and Scottish Power went live with half-@rsed systems that didn’t work, that had been badly designed and sparsely data-populated.

Let me elaborate, some @rsehole who will remain nameless had been so focused on the data flows to communicate customer comings and goings with other market participants that he had completely missed any changes to the customer service screen to deal with the new data flows and the changes.

Another @rsehole in charge of data population decided that half the customers weren’t in scope for initial population. So on day-1 when these customers decided to get their electricity elsewhere, their data content fell down the cracks between the systems never to be seen again.

Yeah, of course it caused a stushie, there were customer complaints, OFGEN were involved, but the consultancies didn’t care, the @rseholes didn’t care and the bottom-feeders like John and I aren’t weren’t paid enough to care.

If the truth be told, what John and I did, with most of the development team was party hard on the money we earned on the gravy train that seemed that it was never going to end.

Every time our contract was renewed there was another £200 per week thrown on the deal, a sweetener to keep us motived and interested, sticking with the project to get it over the finish line even although we knew that it was fecked. We were paid to fix the bad software, write the missing parts and cleanse the data, all of which should have been complete before the system went live.

Here’s a unobvious truth, a software developer will earn more money from a bad project than a good one and I can assure that we made a fortune.

There were quite a few marriages ended in that period. But that’s another story for another day.

That was then, this is now.

But back to John, he’s a good guy for a hun. ( Rangers Supporter )

Continue reading “Supply, Demand, Fear And Loathing in the UK Software Industry”