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Wendy Young - disability arts online
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The Cooker, The Phone, Her Head & Their Dogma (and a hatchet) / 30 May 2014

The cooker broke down. I decided on a new one.  That went wrong after a few weeks.  Apparently I could have sent it back to the Shop before 28 days but I was too late.  So the supplier sent an engineer who, after umpteen visits with the wrong parts even got fed up and advised 'ask for an uplift number', which means the manufacturer will inform the company who sold it to me to take it away and refund my money. 

The process should have been simple (in an ideal world) but I spent hours on the phone, was given wrong information, went to the nearest shop about 7 miles away because I was fed up of the phone calls.  After looking at the crap cookers on offer I was told the quite good one and not too expensive one wasn't in store 'it's a bit more complicated than just ordering another cooker'.  (To kill time my bored escort asked about a digital camera 'we dont have that one mate' said the cocky sales assistant.  'It's there' said my escort pointing to the camera in question!)  

So I would have to wait for my refund and then come in and order again. 'Can't I do that online?' - yes I could apparently and my money would be in my account the next day when the cooker was picked up OR I could go back to the store when the collection people picked the other one up.  We can get the collection carried out on Thursday this week.

Okay great!  Two blokes turned up but refused to take the Cooker away because they were not gas engineers!  A phone call later, 'gas engineer will be here Saturday, 'not in Saturday', 'ok when?', Thursday (my Thursdays were becoming a regular Cooker drama!  My Life was on hold!). 

Sooooo, the final Thursday, they came, they took, I called up for my refund.  'Sorry but you'll have to go back to the shop you bought it from'.  !!!****%%***!!!!!! (then I gathered myself) 'I BOUGHT IT ONLINE NOT FROM A SHOP!'.  (If anyone's bothering to read this and has lost the will to live - imagine my Head!)

Well, after some pleading and explaining, I finally got my refund.  Now, I have spent so much time on the phone I have looked over my kitchen and thought, I could take a hatchet to this unit and get use out of that space and taken on another nightmare - decided on a new kitchen! 

So, a pushy company got in touch straight away after I filled an online form and sent a Designer round that night.  After four hours of what supposed to be a mere quote I had signed to an added interest loan for a fancy kitchen I can't really afford!  This was a classic case of lamb to the slaughter of 'hard sell' tactics!  The man couldn't even finish his words he was talking so fast!  I felt for him, he is obviously overworked - he arrived at 7.30pm and left after 11pm!

Talking of talking fast, I listened to a commercial station on the radio and one bloke was mispronouncing words - under the duress of an airtime limit I guess?  Then on a new channel on tv, trend people giving out the news topics so fast they mispronounced words!  Everything has to be so got over so quickly.  We have to keep up and be trodden on and left behind if we don't.  Life is a ball of confusion and only the wrong survive in my eyes.  What's wrong with taking our time, choosing the right thing, doing the right thing, not being pressured into buying stuff that sends us into an abyss of nothingness in the end?

My work colleague says it's all part of the bigger picture where 'the people in charge' are messing with our heads to the point people don't know where their passport is....I don't know where mine is, albeit out of date, but I need to find it nevertheless and it made me think.  I'm beginning to believe that there this Dogma is stealing our power.  

We are bombarded with so many different companies for phones, energy, appliances etc etc (they call it 'choice') vying for our custom.  Of course, when their product goes wrong they seem to just want to put you off by ignoring us, confusing us, hoping we'll go away and say 'Oh I can't be bothered'.  Then there's the food we eat that's wrong one day, right the other, good stuff, bad stuff....is it a ploy to finish us off rather than look after us when we need care?  Now a bigwig has come from America to take charge of the NHS and says we don't have enough 'local/cottage hospitals'!!!  Does this mean the campaigners were right after all!!

I digress, back to where it all started - my cooker!  I still don't have one.  I don't know whether I will have a new kitchen as all sorts of negatives are popping up.  Oh, forgot to mention in the middle of all that I almost bought a vintage cooker off ebay but traipsed to the West Midlands (from the South) to find a rusted, dirty, pile of what was once a beautiful Parkinson Cowan!  Then I saw a gorgeous 40s one but realised it was not practical so withdrew my bid!  (Is anyone actually interested in all this???).

Well, that's my rant for today!  However, the oddest things happen when you stand waiting on the phone for a human voice (thought at times an automaton would be preferable), you look at your kitchen, you think about life,

you wonder where the hatchet is and almost chop the whole fucking thing to pieces!  Then someone says 'can I help you?' and the units are saved.

I just want a cooker
be nice to be a looker
but practicality is a must
and I have sussed
though vintage is cool
it be a cumbersome tool
new ones are not pretty
fall apart like putty
nothing's built to last
they wear out fast
like my brain
with the strain
it's been too long now
living on cold food
I wanna make spag bol
Grilled bacon, some stew
Bring me my pan of burning fat
Bring me potatoes (maris piper)
And I will cook some home made chips
Maybe I'll build a makeshift fire
My countenance will be divine
And hopefully I won't lose weight (HA!)
When I have some home made grub
In Wendy's cookerless flat!