01/05/12 - MusicByMeiosis

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Tuesday 1st May 2012. Blog #45.


Never mind your gigs with your ‘musical group’ or your DJing at Flim Flab on a Saturday night ‘til 3am. Forget your managing a rock band or thinking of writing shit about shit on ‘That World Wide Web’. I turn 30 this week and I have many many much more important things to tell you about.

I telephoned some banks and credit card companies the other day to sort out… well all I really wanted to do was change the amount of some Direct Debits (I think it’s a brand name that’s what the capital ‘D’s are for) on some cards and stuff. I hate calling anyone, let alone these companies who have you caught by your dangly bits because you owe them money.

ME: Ring ring, ring ring.

AUTOMATED SERVICE: “Hi, Welcome to CuntyMcCard. In order for us to process your Cunty problem quickly and efficiently, please say your name now.

ME: [I say my full name. Loudly and clearly as if I’m talking to an old lady.]

AUTOMATED SERVICE: Thank you. Now say you card number, this is the long number that is written across your card which is blatantly obviously the freaking card number.


AUTOMATED SERVICE: Thank you. I heard, 4,2,9,6,8,3… etc,etc. Now please say your date of birth in a six digit format. For example if your date of birth is 19th November 1943 say ‘one, nine, one, one, four, three’.

ME: Zero, three...

AUTOMATED SERVICE: I’m sorry, I did not understand that. Please say your date of birth in a six digit format. For example if your date of birth is 19th November 1943 say ‘one, nine, one, one, four, three’.

ME: Zero, three, zero, five…

AUTOMATED SERVICE: I’m sorry, I did not understand that. Please say your date of birth in a six digit format. For example if your date of birth is 19th November 1943 say ‘one, nine, one, one, four, three’.
ME: Zero, three, zero five, eight, two.

AUTOMATED SERVICE: Thank you. One of our telephone cleverly scripted and inhuman human advisers will answer your call shortly. Now here’s Gleensleeves. Your call is being held in a queue and will be answered shortly.

ME: [Makes a cup of tea and lights a cigarette as I know I’m in this for the long haul now.]

10 mins later…

HUMAN: Hello, welcome to CuntyMcCard. My name’s Tom how can I help you today?

ME: Hello Tom, I’d like to change the amount I’m paying on my Direct Debit please.

TOM: OK, can I have your name please?

ME: Philip Thompson (for that is my name for official purposes like weddings, garden parties, doctors, school teachers who don’t know me, banks and buying a unicycle on credit if I so wished. It’s not my ‘real name’ or Martin being ‘what my mates call me’. It’s just that my full name is a bit old fashioned and back to front with my Christian name first and my middle name that I commonly use second. Lots of people are named like that. It’s all fine.)

TOM: OK, thank you Philip. For security purposes can I have your card number please? That’s the long number across the centre of your card that is plainly obviously your card number.

ME: Yes, it’s four, two, nine, six - etc etc

TOM: Thanks, Phil and also for security reasons can I have your date of birth please?

ME: Yes it’s 3rd May, 1982.

TOM: That’s great and finally, can I have the first, the sixth and the eighteenth letters of your nineteen digit security code please, Phil? That’d be lovely, Phil.

ME: Erm… I don’t really know it, I’m afraid Tom.

TOM: Do you want to have a go – or I can ask you some more security questions?

ME: Erm… eff, six, twelvety, zee, romeo.

TOM: Thanks, we’re in. What can I help you with today, Phil?

ME: I just want to change the amount on the Direct Debit I’m paying.

TOM: OK, let me take a look at that for you. Bear with me… bear with me… OK… bear with me… ok ermmmm ahhhhhhh eeeeeeee ooooo huff, puff, huff, puff, huff, puff, ahhhhhh [a strange noise now that I cannot spell but sounds like someone dropping 2 inch nails on a laminate floor.] Ok… so you are currently paying…

ME: Twelvety pounds.

TOM: Yes, twelevety pounds. And how much would you like to pay, Phil?

ME: Well, I’d like to pay £70 a month.

TOM: Ahh. Unfortunately you can only either pay the minimum payment of twelvety pounds or pay the full amount of two billion six hundred and 46 pounds 87 pence by phone.

ME: So I can’t change my Direct Debit?

TOM: No not over the phone, you could do that on our website at double ewe, double ewe, double ewe, dot, CuntyMcCard, forward slash, waste your life away, dot com.

ME: I tried that and it didn’t work and said I should phone up.

TOM: Ah, sorry about that, Phil.

ME: So you can’t help me?

TOM: No.

ME: OK then, thanks for all of your help, Tom.

TOM: Can I interest you in buying a bucket of spunk from us in 4 easy to pay instalments? We can provide you with a bucket of spunk which should cover you for 5 years and with interest you could repay that spunk in 137 easily deposited monthly spunkly repayments.

ME: No, Tom I’m not interested in depositing into your wank bank just now.

TOM: OK, do you love me, Phil? Please let me be loved.

ME: No, Tom. To be honest – although your voice sounds sexy and I’ve already imagined your beautiful face, you kind of already pissed me off as a person when you asked me questions I already answered on the automated thing ages ago. Really, although I think you are probably a lovely person. I just want to hang up now. Can I go?

TOM: Well, Phil if you are unsatisfied with our service I can transfer you to a supervisor who’d be happy to help you?

ME: No, Tom. As tempting as it sounds, I’d then have to type out this whole conversation again to my blog followers. I think they’d get annoyed if I just copied and pasted my entire conversation with you but adding different names and subtle changes!

TOM: Have you not told them you have a free ‘best of’ album out on http://www.musicbymeiosis.com from today with free tracks to stream or download for free, including tracks from your yet to be released new album Songs for Twenty Something Year Olds with the option to download the entire album for free giving them extra exclusive bonus content with interviews, radio sessions, demo tracks, acoustic tracks, live stuff and old songs to keep on their hard drive - before your gigs this spring at The Telegraph on 3rd May, Cluny 2 on Saturday 2nd June and The Bridge Hotel on 22nd June all in Newcastle?

ME: No. I haven’t had the chance to do that. As I’ve been talking to you.

TOM: Is there anything else I can help you with, Phil?

ME: No. You have done quite enough. [hangs up.]

There. I’m thinking of selling this blog to Michael McIntyre as a piece of observational art, the kind he tends to enjoy performing. To be honest that conversation did actually happen – I’ve changed bits here and there obviously, but it was Virgin Credit Cards I based that on. I don’t mind automated services or call centres if they are quick and functional. I called 5 call centres today and dealt with another 4 online. It’s all too much for one man!

So now I’m 30… what else can I tell you about? Bins haven’t been emptied. I know the fuckwit who is leader of the Council in Newcastle. I think he is a cock as a person but quite good at his council duties so let’s leave him alone (I’ve been collecting shit for a good ten years on him).

I don’t understand why if when two tiny digits on your age change, rather than one, then you have to change with it. I think even trying to do that will trip you up. For instance, I feel I have been slowing down since I was about 27. But in another sense I’ve been speeding up. Whilst the ‘going out all night and partying ‘til the early hours ME’ slowed down, the ‘creative, productive, selective I’ has speeded up.

I’m really proud of the stuff I have managed to achieve with Meiosis in the last 18 months of my 20s. I’m glad I started doing this again before I turned 30. As it will give me something to cling onto throughout my early 30s.

Thanks for reading and listening. I’m going to have a week off blogging whilst I do my 30th birthday shit!

As Tom said there’s plenty of stuff to keep you going. Tonight I can release this new album, which I’ll be giving out for free at gigs but you can also download for nothing. If you download the whole thing you get not only the 11 tracks on the album but a further 40-odd tracks of live recordings, demos, interviews, radio sessions and stuff from my old albums + one new recording of a new song I made tonight on my iPhone (I’ll not tell you what it is… it’s Melon Shark).. To me? I think that’s excellent value… for fucking FREE!  

Other than that – I hope all your bins are being emptied on time and nobody hurts you ever.

Martin x

I normally promote by website and music and stuff down here.

Can we just all watch the video again? I think that is the perfect rendition of Greensleeves. If you haven’t watched it – then do. It’s awkward, annoying – but he thinks he’s doing the right thing (although, I suspect he was forced to do it). I love that lad. His (I suspect it’s not his, but his lecturer’s video) has about 65 hits on YouTube. – can we get him up to 165 within the week my friends? I think he’s the unexpected star of the show they made him do… watch it!

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