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Friday, February 10, 2006

What have I learnt today?

Today I have learnt several things:

  1. The number 21 bus which goes through Birmingham goes as far as Bartley Green before turning round and coming back to Birmingham City Centre, which means if I fell asleep before I got off at Edgbaston, I'd be on for at least another half an hour before it started to come back towards town. Better not fall asleep then.
  2. Tesco may be quick enough to employ you at Christmas, but they never pay you correctly (I'm still waiting for my second week's wages) AND they have no problem taxing you on your earnings, even though as a full-time student you aren't taxed until you earn more than £4,800 a year. Thanks Tesco, I'm STILL trying to wade through all the red tape shit to sort this out.
  3. Birmingham in February sucks as far as the job market's concerned. I've been looking for a new job daily for about two weeks now, and I've had no luck. The woman in the Dixons XL said, "we've pretty much got a job ban until April, head office has told us we're not allowed to employ anyone until then because of the store budget."

So, make sure you have enough spare cash to get you through if you're a student at the new year, because otherwise you're going to have a hell of a time trying to find a job.

I have pizza though, so happy days, happy days... Think happy, be happy.

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Semester Two Beginneth!

Back now for the second semester, armed with my new timetable, very little cash, and some clean clothes (took half of them home with me over the Semester 1 exam period, because let's face it, who doesn't want to avoid doing washing).

Been a fairly mundane week so far, I think this weekend will be just like the others - sitting in my room or sleeping, with a little bit of shopping at some point and then more jobseeking. I really don't want to have to go back to Tesco, my former employers, because their workplaces are horrible to work in.

However, unless I can find something - and soon - it may have to come to that. Rats. At least the house is sorted out for next year, looking forward to that already.

Now then, I have to find me a girlfriend so I have someone to spend all my free time with, being on my own is slowly grinding me down... I think this is gonna be tougher than finding a job, though.

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Sunday, February 05, 2006

Birmingham evacuated: I'd completely forgotten about this

Back in July, only a couple of days after the London bombs, the centre of Birmingham was entirely evacuated for 24 hours - on quite an incredible scale when you view the map of the cordoned-off area.

Check it out:
Map showing the area of Birmingham's city centre evacuated on July the 11th, 2005

In fact, if you look at the map, there's a large roundabout at the lower-left of the image, where the cordon comes to a point... if you head left, following the road off the map for about a mile, that's where I currently am at university (in Edgbaston). I also recognised everywhere in the video report accompanying the article... Scary stuff, and the message is as applicable as it was back in July last year - remain vigilant. I'm beginning to wonder if this latest row over 'the cartoons' is the touchpaper to a whole string of race-related tension, especially in such a racially-diverse place as here in Birmingham.

Oh well, I live in hope that common sense prevails, here's hoping that that's the case.

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