Just looking over some past blogs. Didn’t realise I was such a miserable bastard. And there was I picturing myself as a rakish blade with wit to spare. Born in the wrong century. Should have been wandering around in sack cloth grubbing for scraps with the pigs.


London transport staff. What a loveable bunch of misery merchants they are. Predictably sour, universally unhelpful and still wrestling with the basics of communication beyond grunting when someone dares ask for help.

They argue that the great unwashed tide of humanity that ebbs and flows past them all day stains them with petty irritations, grumpy demands and sarcasm that all but calcifies their better emotions.

Nothing is guaranteed to get your morning commute off to a worse start than an encounter with one of these subterranean Orcs.

Typical example last week. Waiting for a train in vain. Several services dropped off the indicator board with no explanation. An hour passed. The natives are getting restless.

I approach a ticket wallah at the barrier. He has his back to me.

‘Excuse me,’ I say. No response. ‘Excuse me, do you know when the next train to X is?’ Still no response. ‘Do you want to turn round when I’m talking to you?’

‘Why?’ says the back.

‘I just want to know how long the delay is likely to be.’

‘No idea. You’ll have to wait.” he says still not turning around.

‘Thank you. Great customer service.’

 No response. Welcome to London.


Our freelance internet editor left today removing a bad tempered pall that hung over the office. This was largely governed by his mood which was as reliable as an English summer.

Why do people stay in jobs that make them unhappy and then take their frustration out on everyone else? Well, I shouldn’t look to closely in the mirror on that score but stop short of making other people’s lives a misery as a result of it.

He was like a bear out of hibernation whose first task on rising from being bedded down in his own shit all winter is to bang his head on the cave ceiling and blame someone else.

It’s difficult to feel angry with someone who is hurting so much but I was sorely tempted to kick him in his hard drive on a couple of occasions.

He was led to the edge of his personal volcano the other day when only a handful of people were around to go for his final lunch. He canceled it in a pique sending round an uber stroppy email speaking of his humiliation at having to cancel it.

He was a nice guy when he wanted to. However, facing him over a bowl of sweet and sour while the thunder god creased his flabby brow was enough for people to make their excuses and exit stage left. Adios, Mr Grumpy. May you find sunnier pastures.

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