P&J Column 21.5.15


‘Deflation’. Sounds exciting, but in fact, it’s a bit of a let-down

Kevin Cash, Money Saving Expert and King of the Grips

Fit a week it’s been for those of us fa like to keep an eye on wir spending. The “One Big Switch” energy bills campaign his certainly got me thinking of switching – switching aff the telly faniver I see Michael Stewart’s crimson fizzog leering oot fae the screen.

Meanwhile, the news that inflation had turned negative for the first time wiz a real boost for consumers. According to the papers, ‘deflation’ means that a basket of goods that wid hiv cost £100 last April noo costs £99.90 (or potentially less, if you buy it fae my pal Mick the Pill, and pey cash. He winna tell the VATman if you dinna, ken fit I’m saying?). I celebrated the good news by blowing my buck-shee 10p on a fifth o’ a can o’ Skol, but the mair prudently-minded might choose to invest theirs. Stick it in an ISA and efter 10 years compound interest at current rates, it wid soar in value to 13p.

The ither story of interest tae value-hunters this wik was the news that First Bus had offered a free travel pass to Decker, the rooster that wiz found waiting by the bus-stop in Drumoak. The company have denied rumours that the bus wiz so late that fan Decker sterted waiting he wiz jist an egg. But news of their generosity got me thinking, and so I clarted myself in wallpaper paste, rolled aboot in some feathers and then pulled a marigold glove over my heid in to approximate a cockscomb. Then I shook my tail-feathers over tae the terminus to get the number 11 into toon. I hiv to report that my attempt to gain free travel did not find favour wi’ the driver. Still, on the plus side, as he clapped the bus doors shut on me, he did at least recognise that I wiz dressed as a cockerel. At least, I think that’s fit he said.

Tanya Soutar, local lifestyle guru

I dinna ken about yous, but I think its a real shame that we’ve seen so much in-fighting and back-biting fae the political parties fit got a hiding in the election. I canna stand tension and hostility in the workplace, cos nae job’s worth yer health, ye ken. Fan things get tetchy in the office it can be difficult, so here’s my guide on foo tae stay classy and rise above it.

First of a’, some disputes tak place afore ye’ve even entered the building. The car park can be a tricky place and some numpties jist hinna got a clue aboot the etiquette. My advice is tae ayewiz park atween the lines and tae tak swift action against onyb’dy that disnae. My preferred form of anonymous complaint is tae scoor abuse on the bonnet of the offending vehicle wi’ a bull-dog clip. Worked a treat wi’ this one quine. Her parking never got ony better, but that didna matter, ’cause her car wis niver oot o’ the garage!

Some fowk leave passive-aggressive notes lying aroond, like “Would people please not use my Billy Elliot mug on my day off?” or “Can people please remove coloured paper from the photocopier when they are done?” These is just an attempt tae lord it ower ab’dy else, so the only wye tae respond is by fighting fire wi’ fire. I tend to leave an equally polite reply, like “I’ll use fitiver mug I like, a’right?” or “Someone’ll need tae remove YOU fae the photocopier if ye dinna shut yer face!” Red ink is a nice touch, or ye could clip letters oot o’ newspaper headlines for that ‘psycho’ effect.

But perhaps the biggest source o’ workplace conflict is the fridge. There’s nithing mair upsetting than discovering that some thieving radge has chored your sandwiches or taen a scoof of your smoothie. It can mak ye a bittie paranoid, suspecting ivry person ye see of snaffling yer pot noodle; and that’s nae wye tae live. Tae get ‘closure’ ye need tae expose the tea-leaf. Fan it was happening at my work I took in a specially prepared lunch. It looked like a boring casserole, but it packed a punch. I’d pit in a hale jar of Naga chillies and twa tablespoons of syrup of figs. Then, eence I’d removed a’ the bog roll fae the lavvies, the trap wiz set. 10 minutes intae the lunchbreak there wiz an affa commotion. It’s safe tae say the culprit made themsel’s kent, fit a state! I wiz creasing masel. Until I minded I wiz the cleaner!