Saturday, December 02, 2006

A Plea

In France people say that if you clink glasses and don’t look the other person in the eye you’ll suffer seven years of bad sex. Personally that’s one little old wives tale, urban myth, superstition, whatever that I am not willing to mess with. But what I really want to know is what did I do to piss off the Electricity and all things Electronic Gremlin? I’m a fan, I don’t live in a mud hut and shun him, so what did I do?

You see when I think about it he’s had it in for me in lots of ways for a while now. Just before I moved all the eco-friendly bulbs blew. Half my hallway was dimly lit, finding my shoes in the coat cupboard was a little expedition and my clothes were dried in gloom. Then when I moved here I was got two shocks. One of them becomes more frightening every time I think about it: standing on the metal sink in bare feet. Then one night the toaster popped and all my electricity cut out. I got on a chair and stared at the fuse box that resolutely said ON and wondered what to do. I flicked it on and off, nothing. I called Colleen, she was indisposed due to quite a few pints of something or the other and all I could hear on my end of the bad connection was ‘Press the button’. What fucking button? I’d flicked the switch. I was hungry and in obscurity. I rang the neighbour’s doorbell and explained in a flash that I was in the dark. He came round and pressed the biggest green button you have ever seen. I warmed my toast up again and the electricity blew again.

Then my phone got cut off, I know I’ve mentioned this a few times, but that’s it now OK. One Saturday morning I woke up thinking it was really late and I turned on the hall light and it exploded. Did I fix that light wrong? I wondered as I tootled off to the loo and then forgot about it. At ten am when I tried the light again I remembered it had blown. So I turned on the bedroom light to see better and that didn’t come on either. The whole fuse had blown.

One night there was a Europe wide power cut. I don’t actually accept responsibility for that. I just sat here in candle light reminiscing about the winter of discontent when Mum would cook in candlelight and brag every single time about how glad she was that her cooker was gas, while bro and I set up his plane on a wire up along the length of the corridor and watched the luminous yellow thing take yet another perfect landing. The giant Chinese weeble was always a willing onlooker and would rock from side to side as the plane landed. And I wonder now why someone made me a huge CHINESE weeble?

Anyway, there were several more toaster electricity blowing episodes. It seems having the stereo, two heaters, the oven and the toaster on is a no no.

And then just when I thought all this was over, Thursday night happened. I watched Incroyable Talent. There is no unbelievable talent on that programme, I was just sucked in by the troupe of muscly gymnasts, the muscly gymnasts who were also ALL firemen; Parisian firemen. I discovered that I live down the road from one of the BIGGEST fire stations in Paris one early morning when I got the wrong night bus home and wandered in the general direction of home. OK I’m digressing. So, it was bedtime, I set my alarm on the phone and shoved it in my back pocket and went to brush my teeth. I did that and then I pulled my pants down and heard a mysterious clatter. I stood up, turned round (hard when your pants are round your ankles) and watched my phone skid round the edge of the bowl and just as I reached in SPLASH, my phone sank to the bottom.

I swear my initial thought was: Shit how am I going to wake up tomorrow? I have NO clocks in my flat. After solving that problem (computer speakers on the adjacent pillow connected to the i-pod which was tested several times) I turned to the problem of the water logged phone. It was wet, and it wasn’t working and I was kind of expecting a phone call.

I tried drying it. I dried it all night, I dried it all morning, and then when I got home from work I dried it again. It only works erratically when it’s been heated up, but you’ve got to admit that’s impractical and I was kind of expecting a phone call.

So I decided that considering that even if my phone did regain all its former functions that still included a 5 key that doesn’t work very well and can you imagine sending text messages without j, k or l? Try it, it’s not easy. So I went and bought a new one. It’s pretty cool. I have finally entered the camera phone age and it slides up to reveal the keys, so that when I play my favourite sport of phone tossing the keys won’t get buggered up. It’s also got a fairly rubbery outside again useful for the above reason. But of course now I need to learn how to use it. The phone call I was expecting came, I slid up the phone and pressed answer at the same time. I cut him off.

Please Gremlin, I don’t know what I did, but I’m sorry now and surely I’ve paid enough. Could you please pick on someone else now? Although maybe not that German electricity company that caused the Europe wide power cut, because my heating is electric and it’s colder now.


Marie said...

That's enough to piss anyone off. There was a powercut in my block of flats last Wednesday night and though it lasted an hour and a half I was really pissed off. It happened just when I was about to cook dinner (I've got an electric cooker).

Anyway, hope it's all sorted out for you now.

Minx said...

Seven years bad sex? I am clinking, clinking, clinking.....

Shameless said...

Verilion, you certainly have had a run of it. I remember living somewhere where the fuse box button bounced out everytime I turned on the oven. It can be fixed! The landlord should get on to this and up the power of the system or something technical. The clinking and looking in the eye is something we all do here in Lyon! Everybody is so scared out of their wits that the eyes bulge like a serial killers when the glasses are clinked! I'm not sure what's worse.

Verilion said...

Yep Shameless I can certainly relate to the bugeyed look, and then on top of that someone else added that you had to drink from the glass before putting it down! As for the button popping, I had my electricity upped when I moved, so how did the previous occupant live?
And Minx I was kind of hoping you'd have a spell under your hat to sort this sort of thing. I also didn't mention that I accidentally bought a jazz album called Magic Numbers this morning and when I booked my flights recently I booked the wrong day back! I'm not even going to try to do reports on the internet now, who knows what might happen there.


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