Thursday, April 15, 2004

What a day today

My day today starts with trying to take some money out of an ATM and finding I was £10,000 overdrawn (yes, 10 thousand) - surely that couldn't be me (I have no o/d limit). Someone's taken thousands of pounds out of my bank account and the bank has just let them. Irate call to bank, followed by another irate call. It will all be sorted tomorrow they say. Then a visit to the cinema to see Dawn of the Dead (don't ask). One hour into the film, the screen goes blank. A fire alarm can be heard in the distance but it's not clear if it's somewhere else. The film restarts a few minutes later and continues for 20 mins. The screen goes blank again, the curtains are drawn. Checking outside I see that the entire cinema has been evacuated - except the screen I am in. How can that be? The manager arrives 10 (count them - 10 - I stayed in a potentially burning cinema for 10 mins! How dumb is that?) and promises a voucher for a free movie. The voucher says can be used in any Warner cinema except the one that I'm in! Is that any use? Of course not, so a refund follows. If those were government IT projects, they'd be front page news. For days on end. Checking the ATM later having sorted it with my bank (don't ask) the ATM says it will be down for maintenance over the weekend for a day and a half. If those were government IT projects, they'd be front page news. For yet more days on end. Incompetence is rife - but don't for a second think that the public sector is an easy target and that everything else is fine. Your standards are different. The standards of the press are different. There is spin everywhere you look. What is in the paper is not true. Ask David Beckham (maybe) ;)

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