Shamefaced entry back into blogland


Yes, it has been a while. No, I’m not proud.

So I’m just going to gloss over the whole where-the-fuck-have-you-been thing and carry on as if nothing happened. In brief: I’ve had some health issues.

A new year’s on the horizon, and as ever I’m shockingly behind at the plot. I’m thinking – gasp – of paying a guy to dig it over for me. I know this is the ultimate allotment sin. You may throw rotten tomatoes. But here’s the thing: I don’t think I’ll get back on track unless I do. The plot’s a jungle.

Work is the problem, as I know it is for many folks reading this. The Great Depression has forced us all to work longer and harder as colleagues are lost and budgets are cut. I seem to do little but work – and when I’m not at work, I’m thinking about work. This last is really the bit I resent. It’s bad enough having so few hours uncommitted to work without filling them, too, with work-related thoughts.

Mostly I just shrug and get on with it. That’s life.

But now and then, I’m jolted into moments of purest rage by things I find out about other people’s lives. Take this, for instance: today’s news that European Union civil servants take an average of 15 days off sick. That’s three full weeks off work… to add to their 24 days of official holiday AND (in most EU countries) seven days of official public holidays.

That’s not all. Many EU Commission staff enjoy a flexitime scheme that lets them take 24 days off work every year if they work an extra 45 minutes a day (ie the minimum ‘standard’ overtime everyone in the private sector works for bugger-all money). In other words, some are entitled to take 66 days a year off work – THREE MONTHS – even before they’ve taken a single day sick.

I’m paying for all of this in my taxes. If you’re European, so are you. Not only that, if you’re a private sector employee or self-employed you’re getting a shit pension (if you’ve got one at all). EU bureaucrats get a magnificent one.

These are the moments when I feel I should devote the rest of my life to politics – to fighting the disgusting outrages I see all around me. But you know what? I’m too fucking exhausted from working all the time. And so are you.

Therefore the kind of people who end up doing politics – ie running our lives, and creating the disgusting outrages – are weaselly cunts like this (and only appropriate that he was Minister for Europe under Tony Blair).

2 Responses to “Shamefaced entry back into blogland”

  1. Amanda Says:

    Welcome back Soilman! Sorry you’ve not been well but great to see you writing here again. Pay the man to dig your plot and don’t feel guilty about it. Sometimes we all need help and there’s no shame in that.

  2. Kath Says:

    Welcome back! Hope your health issues are cleared up. I have bad knees and have resorted to raised beds (3 feet raised) and help too….it happens.

    In the US we typically get 10 days of vacation, 10 days of sick leave and employer sponsored health care if you get benefits at all. Millions of working Americans are without health care or vacation…much less sick leave. Yet our government representatives work a whole 144 days per year, have guaranteed healthcare (including their families ) for life, an deluxe federal pension, free postage, free travel (as long as it is for government business, wink, wink) and many other perks. And to add insult to injury they are a world-wide joke and about a useless as 3 sleeves on a shirt.