Is a cattleprod.
I know, I’m getting in early on my Christmas wishlist, but a cattleprod – used as it is currently and indiscriminately on zapping poor cows, instead of as it should be ; on zapping pesky humans – is just what I need.
I could go on at some length about the number of people that need a bit of zaaaap !ing at this moment in time. I expect I shall. First on today’s candidate list is my boyfriend – who I don’t grizzle about much (even though he deserves no less). But today he’s getting grizzled about. And my aren’t I happy that he’s not particularly capable of reading this blog. But frankly, unless he gets back to doing more productive things with his weekend (namely, entertaining ME), and stops whittling away the entire two days glued to whatever bloody goddamn computer game he absolutely must finish honest-I’ll-only-be-a-little-bit-longer before he can concentrate on the real world long enough to say, do the dishes or something, then he’s going to feel the zappy steel pretty soon. One thing I would like him to be honestly-finished-with-soon is the damn ferret cage he started on about 2 months ago. Yes you read me right, a ferret cage. Because one day he decided that he absolutely must get a pet ferret. Which would have been fine as far as half-arsed ideas go if he hadn’t got around to building a cage shell before he got distracted by another half arsed idea. Consequently, we have sacrificed a half metre square out of our not so very grand total of 44m2 for an imaginary pet. That’s a little more than I’m willing to share.
Second on the list of he-who-should-be-prodded is the gas heater repair guy (who, during the process of robbing us blind decided to have a dig at those sneaky embezzling Jews, but managed to annoyingly stay just within the borders of actual racist slur, so the best one could do was to sit and wait to pounce saying ‘hmmm, really ?...riiiight’ until that very moment – which he craftily avoided – that one toe goes over the racist slur line). Anyway, if you haven’t been reading this blog like, since, forever (and why haven’t you ?) you’d know we have an on-again, off-again love affair with a lousy gas heater and a lousy gas heater repair guy. Well, we had a quote to get mud shifted out of the pipes, and an appointment was made. Within about 3 minutes he was trying, once again, to get us to buy a new radiator rather than repair this one. The main problem here is that a) new radiators cost about 2,000 euros, b) the landlord is in South Africa. And c) I’m not willing to make that kind of decision for anybody. What ensued was a totally unnecessary telephone triangle while we sorted this out. Eventually the repairman’s boss yelled at him over the phone to just do the bloody work he’d quoted for and stop pissing about. Which was better than paying 2,000 euros, not to mention much more fun to listen to. Because my stupid boyfriend decided to take the quote WITH him to work, and accidentally on purpose delayed coming home so he wouldn’t have to speak to the repair guy, we got overcharged. The heating is sort of working now, but it’s still being quite temperamental. Much like me.
Third on my list is everyone who frequents my local post office. Without actual lane markings the French, it seems, are totally incapable of forming an orderly queue to save themselves. This, coupled with the fact that our local post office is only ever staffed by a maximum of one an a half people at any one time, means I have already managed to lose 3 years of my life waiting in a post office melee - especially interesting when I've only lived in the area for 7 months. The whole crowd dynamic in our post office seems to go like this;
*Only two out of the maximum 3 booths are ever open. No matter how large the customer crowd is
*Both booths are filled, one seems to move along relatively quickly, the other seems to always have a person with some unimaginably long problem to sort out. The staff member doing the sorting is generally on the point of having a nervous breakdown
* The rapidly moving booth closes temporarily for no apparent reason. The sign thanks us for our understanding. (This is a fundamental difference between English and French cultures. English culture apologises for the inconvenience - French culture thanks you for your understanding. Which assumes a lot.)
*The "queue" starts well back from the booths, and works for about 4 or 5 people before degenerating into a rugby scrum that looks something like a herd of sheep bunched up at the back of a paddock (I think my Kiwi genes just showed through there).
*As slices of my existence are consumed whole, individuals advance to be served, but the queue doesn't. You see, the new front of the line person never seems to think that MOVING FORWARD might be a good idea. This continues until you have a vast empty expanse of floor space in front of the booths, the herd of sheep are still bleating at the back, and the crowd extends out onto the footpath.
In case you were ever thinking that I don't write to you often enough...
The final prodding candidates are, of course, everybody else (except for you, I probably like you a lot) - the pushy public transport users, maniac drivers, diagonal pavement walkers (you know the ones, walking slightly slower than you, so you're gearing up to do a pavement overtake but during the time you've been catching up to pass them on the empty side of the pavement, they've managed to sneakily veer across to your side just in time to totally block your path as you're about to pass, old people are spectaclarly good at it), people who rant incessantly on their blogs, administration etc etc etc....