Thursday, September 21, 2006

Natwest Bank

A couple of days ago I had the misfortune of having to withdraw £1,500 from my bank account in cash to pay some dodgy builder for some work... cash in hand. Now I have to admit that withdrawing such a large amount of cash is not (thankfully) a frequent task, so being Mr Sensible I decided to ring the branch first to check out what I needed to do. They said it was no problem, just bring your Cash Card with you and some form of ID, Driving License or Passport, excellent I thought, that's easy, so off I went to the bank with Cash Card and both forms of ID (just in case !).

After waiting what seemed like forever to actually get to a counter, I passed across by Cash Card, Driving License and Passport and requested £1,500 in cash from my account, the assistant looked at me and said I needed my cheque book to withdraw money, sorry I said, I have just rung the bank and they told me to bring down my Cash Card and ID, well that was wrong advice Sir !!!!, I could already feel my blood starting to boil, so I asked her to make sure her advise wasn't in fact wrong, so off she went, came back 2 minutes latter and said it was fine, great I thought.

Next she goes I need to ask you some security questions so that we can prove you are who you say you are, at this point I was amazed, I told her I have brought in some ID, in fact my Passport which is the most universal recognised form of ID in the world, the little red book that gets me into any country, which is recognised by every country in the world as my ID, but clearly not in the Natwest Bank, I could not believe it, so you make me bring my passport down to the bank and then ignore it. So off we went with the questions, date of birth, mothers maiden name, name of first shag type of stuff, then came the question which sent me over the top, for what purpose is the money sir ?... what.... did I hear you right ?, you are asking me what I am going to use my money for ?, I angrily said it was non of their business, she said that she had to ask as part of the security questions, and I said sod off as its non of your business and asked to see the manager as I was so fed up with what was going on.

I waited 10 minutes for the manager to arrive, when questioned she said it was all banks policy to ask such a question and it was to do with money laundering, I said this was stupid, people do not put money into a bank account to launder it, and certainly not £1,500 !, so I said OK I'll tell you what its for, I am going to buy drugs with it, and I need it now because I and starting to get withdrawal symptoms, so is that OK ?, I got my money and left in utter disgust.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Airport Security

I have been on a recent trip and experienced the new security measures, now let me say that I totally support what is happening, anything that makes our flying safer can only be good.

So what happened, I only had hand luggage, in my bag was some clothes and a laptop, I knew I was not allowed to take any form of liquid so I didn't. When I arrived at the security screening, I had to remove my laptop from the bag, no problem, I had to remove my shoes and I had to take off my belt, nothing too bad at all, everything went through the x-ray machine and it was quick and painless exercise.

Now here is the point, imagine that I am some nasty piece of work who wants to blow up the plane and I want to smuggle liquid onto the plane, how would I do that ? try to hide it in my bag ?, nope, I would put it in my pocket, simple as that. I have never been searched once, I could carry any non-metallic item in my pocket and nobody would know. What I am getting at is this, these new measures are stupid for the simple reason that even a 2 year old can find the flaw, put the stuff in your pocket, I certainly do not feel safe flying these days.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Convertible cars

You know in the UK we buy more convertible cars than any other country in Europe, this has always amused me considering the weather we get.

So what amazes the hell out of me is how often we see the tops up on these cars in brilliant weather. Anybody who lives in the UK knows we only get a handful of days with good summer weather, so why the hell buy a convertible and not take the top down when its nice.... idiots, its not as if its hard to do, modern cars have fully automatic roofs.

Today though I found a new game, I was driving home when a Saab convertible came up behind me, I was impressed to see that the driver actually had the top down, so hats off to the man. As I was driving a bloody great bug decided to commit suicide on my windscreen and as always hits exactly in the middle of the screen on the drivers side obscuring my view, so on goes the windscreen washer to get rid of the mess, it took ages to remove the bug, its then I look in my mirror so see the guy in the Saab behind me getting soaked by my windscreen washer fluid.... it was so funny I kept washing my windscreen, much to the annoyance of the bloke behind who started flashing his lights and beeping his horn at me.... wicked... I can't wait for the next one to appear behind me.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Websites & Advertising

What is it with web sites and advertising, of course, I understand that they need the revenue to support the site, but why oh why do you have to have a bloody great big pop-up in the middle of the screen !!!!. I am not aware of any other advertising that is so obtrusive, I mean, when you are watching a film on TV, they don't put adverts in the middle of the screen, they put breaks in instead, in a news paper, they don't put an advert in the middle of an editorial, so why do web sites think they can do it.

Take, brilliant, informative site, but I don't use it anymore, I am fed up of having to a) find the bloody close button and b) when I have found it hit close, there is nothing more aggravating that reading some news and in the middle a damn pop-up showing me a nice new car.

Whilst we are on the subject of web sites, why oh why do people use flash for their web sites, don't they realise that they make the site impossible to navigate, unless your business is art and design where you need to show off, use HTML and ditch flash, its horrible.