Theory Test Blues

Posted by Chalky on Jun 29, 2007 in Driving

Those who know me well, and probably those who don’t, will know that I am terribly unlucky. I don’t know what I’ve done wrong in my life to deserve this amount of bad luck but there we are.

Three weeks ago, I had my wallet stolen. I had to cancel all of my cards and re-order all of them. This, unfortunately also included the Photocard part of my Provisional License.

As soon as I had realised my wallet had gone missing, I immediately rang BSM to let them know as they were in the process off booking my Theory Test for me. They said they would hold of booking my Theory Test incase my Driver Number changed as a result of having to order a new license.

I then rang the DVLA to let them know that my wallet had been stolen with the Photocard in to find out what I should do to proceed. They told me that my Driver Number would stay the same and that I could stil go ahead and book my Theory Test dispite no longer having my Photocard. I rang BSM back and told them to go ahead and book my Theory Test for me.

2 weeks ago I recieved notification of my Theory Test date from BSM for Thursday 28th June. Several days later I got a notification from the Driving Standards Agency confirming my test date. I booked the day off work in order to prepare for the test. On Monday, I had a read through the letter to double check the timing and location of the test. When I reached the bottom of the letter it stated that you must bring your Photocard and paper counterpart in order to take the test.

I rung the DSA to double-check whether it would be OK for me to bring the paper counterpart and my Passport. They said this was not possible and that I could not take the test on Thursday. I explained that I had been told by the DVLA that I would still be able to take the test but they just told me that simply wasn’t the case.

So now here I am, £40-odd poorer (£20 for the wasted Theory Test and £20 for a new Provisional License) and I’m still no better of. It also pretty much ruins my hopes of getting a Full Driving License before I leave Scunthorpe and go back to Sheffield.

Oh well, such is life! Well, certainly my life anyway!


My Blue Peter Moment

Posted by Chalky on Jun 28, 2007 in Work

As the end of the college year draws to an end, the IT Department are in the limbo of waiting for the students to finish before we can start playing with new kit. Jobs are at an all time low as no-one can really be bothered to report anything and hardly any of the equipment is being used.

This has lead to me getting a big fat pile of crappy jobs, including tidying the Help Desk, making lists of laptops that we will be FOGging (getting rid of) and such like.

However today, Andy (my boss) gave me a job that really does scrape the barrel. It’s been decided that the Help Sheets I have made clutter up the Help Desk a little bit and the tray used to store students’ work in on behalf of a member of staff are untidy. The decision has been made to get some ‘In’ Trays to store all of this work. The problem is, our Finance Department is now closed and we cannot make any orders until August. I’ve e-mailed around some of the offices to see if anyone has got any lying around but to no avail.

My task today, set by Andy, was to construct some ‘In’ Trays out of unused paper box lids (the boxes that hold 5 reams of A4). Now those who know me well will know that I am absolutely useless at anything craft-based but, I gave it a go anyway! I started them yesterday, constucting the first two sections and then added the third section today.

Below is a sample of my work, which demonstrates wonderfully, why I am an IT Technician and not an artist/builder/other such profession! I have to admit though,I did quite enjoy it!



Sheffield Underwater!

Posted by Chalky on Jun 27, 2007 in Sheffield

I’ve been made aware more today at the extent of the damage that has happened to my hometown of Sheffield. The Medowhall Shopping Centre is still closed today and it looks like it will be closed for several days to come. I wonder if the businesses within Meadowhall will be able to claim conpensation for the amount of lost business? Although, one would argue that seeing as the M1 is closed and a lot of Sheffield is underwater, what business would they be losing. I know people like to shop, but in this weather? Surely not!

The Great Meadowhall Flood!

At least the Apple Store is on the second floor of the centre so hopefully it’ll be OK! But it’s scuppered any plans I might have made for taking my iMac in to get the USB ports fixed!

Sheffield United fans were pleased to hear that the Hillsborough Football Ground has been completely ruined, becoming a lake rather than a football pitch!

shefwedsflood_468×312.jpgowls.jpgSheffield Wedesnday Lake

Apparently though, we haven’t heard the end of this yet. The worst is yet to come over the weekend, just when I’m embarking on a visit home on Sunday! It’s a good job I wasn’t really palnning on going anywhere!


News articles from the Telegraph:
People of Sheffield show steel
More rain and flooding at thousands flee


R.I.P. Floppy Disk

Posted by Chalky on Jun 27, 2007 in Computer, Work

You may all say the Floppy Disk has long since died a death but in Univerisities and Colleges, it is a reality that these are still used. For some reason, students all over the globe are using this redundant technology, sometimes leaving their only copy of their coursework on them dispute them being so unreliable. I’ve lost count of the amount of tears and frustration that these little buggers have caused students whilst I have been working at JLC.

However, today was the beginning of the end for the use of Floppy Disks within JLC. James and myself destroyed all of the old ‘lost’ Floppy Disks that have been handed in over my year there and destroyed a number of other random Disks that were lying around. I don’t really think we needed to bin as many as we did, I think we began to enjoy it a bit too much!

The new DELL units that we have purchased to go into the Open Access area will not be having Floppy Drives installed as this is an optional extra which we would have to pay extra for and would probably increase the lead time in us getting the units.

I think this will be met with a few complaints but, to be fair, you can pick up a 2Gb USB Flash Drive for about a tenner these days. There’s really no need for Floppy Disks, USB Flash Drives are very cheap these days, more reliable and can store a hell of a lot more data (2Gb USB Flash Drive = 1422 Floppy Disks)!

The Floppy Disk Mountain!


Work by Rubber Dinghy?

Posted by Chalky on Jun 26, 2007 in Work

Well, yet again the heavens have opened and we’ve had yet another downpour. This time though, it has been a little bit more serious.

Here in Scunthorpe, JLC has suffered quite a bit. Two rooms containing computers have sprung leaks meaning we’ve had to go over and remove kit out of them. The ‘quad’ has been completely flooded leading to water seeping into the Staff Room via the Fire Exit doors. This in turn has lead to water making its way into the main corridors in the direction of the Administration Offices.

The journey home from work was a little bit like a ride in a submarine rather than a car journey home.

Back home in Sheffield however, things are much worse. The M1 is closed, buses and trains cancelled, people have been stranded in the middle of town, everything! Sheffield Hallam’s Owen Building is staying open to provide shelter for those who have been stranded and they’re mentioning about people kipping on the floor at the Hallam FM studios! Luckily both my Mum and Jill arrived home safely from work and as our house is halfway up a massive hill, it is pretty safe too!


Living Next to a Murder Scene

Posted by Chalky on Jun 25, 2007 in Scunthorpe

Yesterday, on my way out of town, I noticed a hive activity on Digby Street, which runs along the end of my road. There was Police everywhere and blue Police tape running along the road, blocking it off to the pubic:

Police Tape

I made a joke, saying someone must have been murdered and went along on my way. Today, however, to my horror I found out that my ‘joke’ was actually the reality of the matter and that someone had actually indeed been mudered at 3:25am.

Needless to say, I’m beginning to wonder whether I would have been better off staying at Lichfield Avenue, at least there you only get robbed!

Below is a piccy to demonstrate just how close the Murder Scene is to my house!

Murder Scene

Click here to see the Scunthorpe Telegraph article.