It’s the end of the world as we know it, and I feel fine!
Well, it’s not actually the end of the world, just the day before Valentine’s. And I don’t feel fine, I could actually use a good lie in. But, apart from that (ie: not at all) the lyric is appropriate.
I actually don’t feel too bad about the looming 14th. I think this is because Dale is off on his yearly Rottnest vacation, meaning that Bevan and I have been able to do pretty much whatever the hell we want at work without him breathing down our necks. In Bevan’s case this has involved bringing his own Linux box in and networking it to the rest of the office computers (I have no idea why he seems happy messing about with it so I’ve let him be). I’ve been doing “development” work, which is programmers code for just mucking about and entertaining oneself by writing programs that may prove to be useful to the business at some point in the future. Maybe. I tell you, it’s as good as a holiday.
We have been doing some real work mind you. In my case, mainly sorting through Dale’s email each morning. It’s axiomic that the longer you have an email address, the more spam it attracts. And if you’re foolish enough to sign up to marketing websites or reply to spam, you get even more. Dale’s email address has been around since 1996, and well, when it comes to the promise of marketing information, he tends to click before he thinks. So he gets between 100 and 300 emails a day, of which maybe 8 or 9 are actually valid. And it’s my job to sort through them.
It’s not as bad as it sounds. It’s actually fairly interesting. With such a large volume of spam coming in, even over a period of four days you can actually spot patterns and trends as they emerge. For instance, the Nigerian bank account scam. On Monday and Tuesday Dale received numerous offers from various Government officials and relatives of deceased Nigerian dictators, offering him millions of dollars in misplaced moneys, illegal slush funds and embezzeled investments. On Wednesday morning the flow dwindled, as if the Nigerians were gearing up for a new assault, and sure enough that afternoon one came in from Benin. Then this morning (the Nigerians apparently having got their new Eastern HQ set up) three appeared claiming to be from Taiwan! Fascinating stuff. I can’t wait to see where they come from tomorrow.
But, on the subject of the end of the world (the first paragraph, remember?) I just have to comment on the Let’s look out for Australia booklet that arrived in my (and everyone else in the country’s) mailbox the other day. This is the Government’s response to terrorism, a booklet telling us all to “be alert but not alarmed” and listing things to look out for like people filming Government buildings or packages left unattended in public places. All fair enough I suppose, but there’s a section in the back saying what you should do in the event of an attack. The section on chemical, biological and nuclear attacks pretty much goes…
I mean, honestly!
Hmmm, Ali got attacked by a tick. That’s no good. Actually I wasn’t even aware they had ticks in the UK. I mean we have them here, I picked up two at Joondalup TAFE alone, I’ve still got a lump on my leg from one of them in fact, but you don’t really associate blood sucking parasites with England’s green and pleasant land (#and was the hory Ramb of God! In Engrand’s preasant pastules seen!#). Well, you learn something new every day.
And still on Ali, she’s decided to quote Mark, quoting Helen, refering to me, in an attempt to create a “long complicated conversation meandering across blogs”. What can I do but continue the trend? 🙂
Read the following on Helen’s blog:
Grandparents think Mark will send me something. They called him my “young man”. Heh…
I’m inclined to wonder what the “Heh” was for. It could be hard to tell. I accused Helen of sounding sarcastic in chat on Saturday night and she’d only said two words. Maybe I think she’s more sarcastic than she really is. But what of the “Heh”? Hmm…
So anyway, what did I have to add to this whole little blog conversation? Well, not much really, I just thought it’d be interesting to have a long complicated conversation meandering across blogs. Though I am interested in how Mark was interpreting the heh.
Well, I chose to interpret the “heh” as a bitter, humourless laugh of despair at the innocent folly of the elderly and their simplistic interpretation of relationships in this, the fractured and post-modern 21st century; but that’s just because I like rendering things as dramatic as possible *g*. I suppose it could be sarcasm, but to my mind sarcasm is far better expressed with a hearty “Hah!” than a trailing off “heh…” – of course that could just be an Australian thing.
Anyway, got to go now. This is my complicated TV night with ER, Charmed, The Dead Zone and Scrubs all on at almost the same time. I have to get the VCR set up 🙂