Wednesday 1st March 2006

I was on the phone to a client at the time, when I over heard someone say, “Let’s just moves the desks around NOW!”. Before I knew what was happening, my Manager had agreed and the dismantling of our work area began. As much as I wanted to object, I was unable to do so, deep into resolving an problem for a customer. You would not think that moving four desks, through 90 degrees would be that difficult, but opting to give the all clear at the busiest time of the day on a Tuesday afternoon, was sheer madness Add to the fact that the helpdesk number has to remain active throughout. Now, I can confirm that my colleagues are extremely competent when it comes the technicalities of supporting our bespoke product suite, but when it comes to hard physical I am not a good judge. Until this week. As soon as our manager gave the nod that we could carry out the move (that was, might I add originally scheduled for Monday morning) everyone suddenly came to life, in a operation of near military precision. I was impressed. Although to be fair, I hardly broke into a sweat, moving one cupboard, before finding myself manning the phone line, while the real men got on the with the real work. Personally all I can say is that I absolutely love my new seat, facing into the office, rather than my back to the rest of colleagues as was the case before. General comments have been that I can now spend the time surfing, chatting on MSN to my heart’s content. Now would I ever do such a thing? Overall I am glad that after several weeks of confusion, rumours and false information the move has taken place and once again I can settle into my new working environment. Since I joined the company, this is my fifth move of some description or other. One move was, in fact an act of God, in the sense the window starting leaking following an afternoon of heavy rain, drenching my desk, but missing the important electrical equipment on my desk. By 5.30pm, we were all happy with arrangement of our computers, spare phone cables, cabinets, photographs of loved ones, football fixtures list and comical saying. I was actually surprised how little time it took, with all hands to the pump and my manager along with the company PA supervising. I had placed my order for the new England Away shirt almost as soon as it had become public knowledge a new kit was to be released. If my knowledge serves me correctly I was browsing the FA web site, looking for when tickets for then first game at Wembley against Jamaica would be becoming available, only for a pop up to appear with John Terry and the new kit and that pre-orders could be placed for despatch on the day of release, the last day of February. While I had already got Chris a birthday present, it was more of a practical joke than anything else. I wanted to get him something special, something practical. Before yet another rumour starts going around my office and end up as an exclusive in the News Of The World, he is just a work college that has become a good friend. After all, in September, he bought me the now old England away top, just in time for the the Wales World Cup qualifier in Cardiff on Saturday 3rd September 2005. While maybe at the time I was not very grateful for the gift, I actually am. Five years earlier, my friend Darren bought me the England home shirt for the weekend game (and ultimately final game at Wembley) against Germany. So having received England shirts as gifts, I felt it only good and proper to get it as a gift in return. So today I handed over a short sleeve shirt to Chris. I had bought myself the long sleeve version, only because it will be the second long sleeve football shirt I own (after my 2003, Arsenal away shirt). Most of my football shirts have been presents and I have only purchased three myself, Arsenal Final Salute home shirt (2005-6) and England Home (2002-4) in addition to this latest edition to my wardrobe. Many retailers were trying to push novel items to entice you to purchase the new shirts from their store. JJB were giving away England FM portable radios, but they looked tacky and cheap. The official FA supplier, aptly named England-Direct, offered a book, The World Cup A-Z for each individual shirt purchase, so I ordered two. Not bad for something that retails at £6.99 (apparently). Can you believe it is only 100 days left until the World Cups starts? I cannot wait!

England Away Strip 2006-8

Wall to wall football this coming weekend. After the PremPlus matches on Saturday, it is down to Adams Park for the Women’s League Cup Final. However, before I get carried away, I must discuss the friendly tonight. I was convinced that England would wipe the floor with Uruguay. After their fantastic comeback against Argentina, this South American opposition would be a piece of cake. Little did I know the roller coaster ride I was in for. England looked the better team, controlling the park and having most of the possession. The light blues were left to taking potshots at goal from long range, led by Diego Forlan, but to little affect, until the 26th minute when a wonder lob shocked all the home fans at Anfield. Although thankfully, the boys did not let their heads drop and just pushed forward for the equaliser. It is a funny old game and the picture of Crouch & Wright-Phillips on the side lines waiting to come on was a fantastic picture! Although it has been impossible to find online. The closest I have come is this little classic gem. I spoke to my friend Dave online during the comical moment, which had Le Saux and Motson in a fit of sneers and giggles on the air. I messaged him, “Little & Large” and his response was “Laurel & Hardy”, I couldn’t stop laughing. Just a shame that the BBC commentary is of such a poor standard, bring back Barry Davies.

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