Geek!

You can tell that WordPress is created by geeks when they bring out a new feature like the one below which allows me to post syntactically highlighted code into my blog. Most of the regular vistors, with a few notable exceptions – you know who you are – will not give two stuffs about this feature but it is pretty cool.

Here’s some code from one of the apps that I work on (this one is from a dentistry software house – I write all but one of their products).

[geek alert]For those that need to know it runs the passed application with elevated administrator permissions on Windows Vista [/geek alert]


procedure TfrmSequences.RunAsAdmin(hWnd: HWND; afile: string; aParameters: string);
var
sei: TShellExecuteInfoA;
begin
// Execute 'aFile' with aParameters  as the parameters
// with a request for elevation to Adminstrator level on Windows Vista
FillChar(sei, SizeOf(sei), 0);
sei.cbSize := SizeOf(sei);
sei.Wnd := hWnd;
sei.fMask := SEE_MASK_FLAG_DDEWAIT or SEE_MASK_FLAG_NO_UI;
sei.lpVerb := 'runas';
sei.lpFile := PChar(afile);
sei.lpParameters := PChar(aParameters);
sei.nShow := SW_SHOWNORMAL;
if not ShellExecuteEx(@sei) then RaiseLastOSError;
end;

Rules is rules

Woman behind customer service desk in Sainsbury’s:How many items do you have in your basket Sir?

Me: [counts] “er, six“.

Woman: [huff] ” Well, on this occasion I will let you pay for your goods but normally I can only let you come here with five items or less“.

You had to see her face when she said it to understand why I got so cross.  This is one of my particular things; if you work in a shop on  a checkout, particularly on a “customer service” desk – your SOLE purpose is to serve the customer and take their money.  Otherwise you are just stopping a small part of the floor from getting dusty.

Me: [enraged, puts basket down, theatrically turns around surveying TWO customer service people behind tills (they ARE there to take money and they sell the fags too) and then continues to ostentatiously look for crowds of disgruntled fellow shoppers indignant that I have transgressed and smashed the rule that they have so diligently followed.  There are none.  The desk is empty.  Both women are unoccupied. ]  “hmmm“.  [Now I look towards the checkouts where various heavily-laden trolleys are two deep at the three (out of 22) checkouts that are open.  I laugh, snortingly].  “I think that such an attitude could be described as customer dis-service.  I assume you are a trainee?

Woman:I beg your pardon?

Me: Well, you see I do get fed up when I am in a five items or less queue where the guy in front has two baskets overflowing with purchases and he gets served but, to be frank, that’s not the case here and your excoriating condescension  to ‘let’ me pay for my goods here makes you look like a bit of harridan and, since your colleague has nothing to do but watch you work I assumed you’re new to the job and are being trained.

Woman:I’m not b…

Woman number 2:Leave it Silvia, just serve him“.

Yes Silvia, leave it.

The band played on

OK, just got back after an unexpected night of watching one of my mates who is the lead singer in a band.  As it turns out – a very good band.  It got….dimensional…

Things that were said to me this evening include:

  •  Christ you’re even more mad than M – and he’s on drugs.
  • Wait a minute – you’re D’s boss?  Jesus, what kind of company do you two work for?
  • You’re a very sexy kisser, where do you live? [the person who said this was leaning against my inner thigh and stroking my shoulder at the time, clichéd but true]
  • Come and jam with us next Monday, it’ll be wicked.
  • That will be 14 pounds please.
  • F*ck me, so you host our website then?  Cool.
  • My real name is Ian too – the band (a famous band) just called me Sid, because it was easier.

🙂

Life…it’s computerised

Yesterday, inspired by New Order and a week-old drunken viewing of The Chemical Brothers DVD, I bought myself a keyboard synthesiser and some studio recording and sequencing software. This is not a comment. It’s a warning to The Chemical Brothers because after playing with various patches and sequences it’s now clear I’m going to dominate the music charts and summer festivals with my own peculiar brand of electro-heavy two-fingered-arpeggio beats and they’re not going to get a look in. What with my existing fab guitar pedal (previously blogged) and ukulele it’s just as well Jimmy Hendrix is no more or he’d have to set fire to the rest of his guitars to keep up.

It’s not a mid-life crisis. Honest.

Part of the problem right now is, having parted company with my most recent femme fatale, I’ve got a struggle on my hands to not throw myself into my work 24/7 or troll off down the many many local bars – a side effect of living in the theatre district – and get hammered on TVRs with my drunken friends who need no stronger excuse than “I’m in Café Rouge, meet me next door to collect your alcohol rations in 10 minutes“.

We did that a few days ago. It was messy. We ended the evening, sat in the vodka bar, drinking blackjack shots and something with strawberries and what looked like crushed ants in it watching two barely-clothed girl members of the public doing the “I’ve had too many JD and cokes” dance. They amused us but, frankly, we were just as amused by the DJ who looked older than me and provoked a heavy-duty alcohol-fuelled discussion on whether or not I should return to DJing. Whilst intoxicated I always hear a little heart string snap inside my head when I remember my days “banging out the choons“. Sober, I remember the effort involved and the sheer contempt I felt for the dancing revellers after 10+ years of hearing every possible cheesy joke and drunken entreaties to play some mis-remembered song that clearly did not fit the mood of the evening.

It was a laugh though. I was relatively successful and made a bit of a name for myself. Meh. I can’t go back, I’d only get those urge-to-kill feelings again. Plus I have a restraining order.

So now, to avoid this I fiddle with computerised keyboards and attempt to make sounds like the Human League did in the 1980s. Or I surf the net too much (people with FaceBook accounts will be aware of this already). Or I cook. My current trend is for fish. Fish is good for you isn’t it?

Mind you, when you surf the net you do find some weird gems like the one below – some people obviously have similar problems with the question “what shall I do today?

Laters, peeps.