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The System And My Struggle To Be Part Of It

It doesn't take a lot to cause traffic chaos. Many years ago I was heading home through Wootton Bassett when I encountered a driver having difficulties getting his car up the steep hill that enters the town from the southwest side. Being a genreous sort, I stopped to help. Pushing a vehicle uphill, especially one with an unwilling engine and a large female occupant who refused to step out of the vehicle, wasn't easy and no-one else volunteered to help. Within minutes traffic was backing up in both directions, traffic wardens were closing in to find what the trouble was and inflict terrible financial maulings to anyone guilty of the slightest infraction of the Highway Code. So I helped the guy reverse the car by gravity as close to the side of the road as possible and left the area sharpish. My work here is done.

 

But it isn't always my own fault. The other day I was walking home by the Old College site. Roadworks have spread across the junction in front of it, diggers ripping out more and more mud, flourescent yellow droids with working class accents yelling incoherently at each other. Unfortunately this has restricted the the road a good deal.

 

In one direction, a large low-loader lorry and trailer was trying to negotiate the turn into the building site, blocking the only remaining lane. In the other direction, another lorry driver decided to use the temporary access road as a short cut to the site, depite the "Give Way" and "Left Turn" signs, blatantly pulling across the wrong way in a one-way system, and blocking traffic behind him. And so chaos was brought to Swindon.

 

I didn't do it.

 

Data Protection Of The Week

Right now I attend a support centre to assist my job-searching. Internet access, personal assistance, and free stationery. Very useful. The only downside is the constant form filling and register signing that I have to put with. Every session I need to fill out a report form detailing my activities for the day. it must be completed fully and correctly or my benefits are in question. Like being in the army except no-one shouts at you.

 

Anyhow I did my duty for the day and dotted every eye and crossed every tee. The manageress who runs the office spotted me droppin g my form on the assigned administrators desk and immediately turned it over. "It's okay" I ventured helpfully, "I'm not ashamed of it". Sadly she lacks a certain sense of humour and merely replied "Oh it's the data protection act". I see. I post my job search details on a government website as ordered, email those details to any administrator who requests it, my bank details and statements to a national office dedicated to catching dole cheats, and to some extent, reveal my activities to the world via this blog. But no-one, repeat no-one, is allowed to see that report form.

 

You have been warned.



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