Thursday, 26 May 2016

Get Rich or Die Studyin'

Tonight was the 3rd week into my study group for Napoleon Hill's Think & Grow Rich. The themes of this week's chapters (since Week 3 and 4 have been rolled into one)... are entitled Imagination (tick), Organised Planning (what happened to Week 3?), Persistence (tick) and Decision (double tick - I ordered a burrito, followed by nachos). The author reminds us in no uncertain terms that those who lack decisive action and quiver in uncertainty are doomed to a penniless life. Or in his terms, "will not succeed in any undertaking". Harsh.

Napoleon Hill wasn't the only one eager to have his opinion heard. While a few of us were chatted about what being rich means, a pair of beady eyes bored holes into the air around us. Then as our discussion branched off between 2 of us, he erupted...with a violent declaration that we were all wasting our time. My friend and I looked at each other, then looked at him. He continued, with an incredulous expression, telling us that everything was "in here" (poking his own head) and that he didn't need anyone else. I eyed up the empty pint glass that sat gloomily before him.

"No man is an island!" I graciously declared hoping that the attempt at melodrama would dissolve any escalating aggression. But to my dismay, his response was defiant and sufficiently animated:

"I am!" and without irony, "I am a painter and sculptor!". Then, more cheerfully, "I'm as mad as a box of frogs". I was mostly surprised that this was the first time I'd heard the expression being used self-referentially. But perhaps that's what islands are destined to have to do.

Then, after a short pause, regurgitated more instructions: "You -- *pointing to my bewildered friend* --- need to get on with your life, and YOU --- *turning to me*---need to F*** off!"

My poetic exclamation had obviously done nothing to sedate him or gentrify the situation. But I somehow succeeded in moistening the vile glue of this strange conversation envelope and posting it back from whence it came (an unnameable monstrous island)...then the box of frogs gathered his coat and hat. Even deranged amphibians need clothes.

Monday, 2 May 2016

Stranger Danger

We should all be heartened, and relieved, by this (real) Lifeboats advert and gently reminded that it is that playful rascal Satan who joyfully pedals Sales and Marketing.

"Lifeboat volunteers will drop everything to rescue total strangers!"

What a waste of time. Why not join Friend Ships, a service where only friends are rescued 
if there's nothing on the telly? 

Friend Ships
Where friends come first, naturally. 

If a tree falls over in the forest and no-one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?

If you're out at sea and in danger, you are safe with us - as long as you have friends**. We are the UK's first rescue service dedicated to putting friendships first, leaving strangers to bask in the briny. Our dedicated team of volunteers ask one simply question so you can be safe and sound in the shortest possible time. In the long tradition of Noah and his Ark, we recognise that teaming up, like love, is the most natural force in the world. Hell's wildest fires deal with the rest. **and the new series of Britain's Got Talent hasn't just started

Our unique rescue boats won't let you down
It Makes Sense

* With our I Got You, Babe plan, newly weds are prioritised - that Honeymoon love won't drown on our watch!
* No-claims bonus if you have over 600 friends on Facebook
* Get your first month free if you can show us that you receive 2 notifications per hour (proof required)

Don't be a stranger - our insurance policy covers anyone, even you pitiful creature surfing the web alone, because we are the only company in the UK who even accept a passing hello in the Post Office and a Message in your Other folder as a sign of  friendship. You're safe!

Peace of mind We know that you value loyalty - you don't like sharks. Strangers are like sharks and we can guarantee that your good money will never go to rescuing them. No-one wants their legs bitten off. Let them drown, the nasty friendless bastards.

We tirelessly rescue from Monday to Friday until 5pm. After hours, you can all take a running jump. But preferably not into deep water. 

One quiet afternoon in Cornwall...

Friend Ships Contact Centre (FSCC): "Hello, Friend Ships Cornwall, what's your emergency?"

Friend Ships Volunteer (FSV), Gary, aboard The Friendly Swan: "Sighting of a lady in distress off the coast of Bude."

FSCC: "OK, right. Let's establish is if anyone knows the victim so we can send Rescue straight away. Do we have a description so we can find her Facebook profile?"

FSV: "Female, white...difficult to establish her age because of all the splashing. Her hair's dark, really wet, maybe black. Her makeup needs touching up."

FSCC: "I'll need more, Gary."

"Well, I've heard there was a sighting in a local chippy - a lady in her 50s, about an hour ago or so. The owner said she wasn't happy with the chips. A caller has suggested a potential suicide attempt."

"Right, that's something. Did any of the staff recognise her?"

FSV: "My Uncle Roger used to date the fish-fryer from that chip shop back in 1984. So we could have a connection. Friends Reunited?"

"Gary, if she made it from her phone she's might be active on social media. We'll need her phone. Can you access her phone?"

"I'll try" *reaches down, boat tips, lady's hands grab at him wildly*..."be with you shortly, love, hang on in there, won't you...----- Negative to getting the phone, And I've heard that salt water will short circuit it."

"How about her password? Is she conscious? We could get a sync of her contacts, and we can go from there."

*Gary peers over the boat, trying to get the lady's attention*

"Excuse me, Miss - er, Mrs..." *desperate gurgling from the water* "Are you on Facebook? F A C E-book? *lady getting bluer in the face and struggle starts to lessen* ----- No, nothing. Er - subject uncooperative."

"Well, that's no way to behave. Perhaps we're fighting a losing battle and she doesn't have any friends? *tuts* Although I am getting a few profiles in Bude ... ah, but I'm gonna be here hours."

"Have you checked TripAdvisor? I bet she's the kind to leave a nasty review on that chip shop."

"Roger that. *taps furiously at the keyboard, mumbling incoherently*...doesn't look like she lef---oh, Gary, here we go, an hour ago someone posted a 2 star review."

"2 stars? What did she give the stars for?"

""Chips cold and undercooked. Don't waste your money. Man on till said he liked my hair, which made my day"."

"OK. A name...I need a name?"

"Er yeah - Buttercup Beamdancer."

"I'll Google that --------- I'm not getting anything up, Gary. Can you ask Buttercup her real name?"

"Butterc -- oh, erm...hello? *water completely still, dreadful silence*