Alix King

Freelance Copywriter

Category Archives: 2012

Moving with the times?

I’m not a fan of so-called ‘festivals’.  Sleeping (trying to) in a tent amongst loud, shouting teenagers who don’t seem to go to bed, while playing their hideous pirate radio station drum ‘n’ bass tunes on their tinny-sounding mobile phones, having to wash for 4 days with wet wipes, queuing for 4 hours behind people 6 deep at a bar to receive a warm, watered-down pint of cheap cider, to then find your way to the ‘toilet’(a sweaty plastic box with a bucket inside) to then realize you haven’t remembered to bring one of your shower wipes™ so have to drip dry, and make your way through discarded toilet paper (wishing you hadnt worn your Russell & Bromley sandals) back to your soggy bench (it is undoubtedly raining)  to try and enjoy the rest of your cheap cider, which has now been diluted in the rain. But, I hear you say, surely the bands are worth seeing? Unless you have arrived at 9am, sat yourself down at the front of the stage armed with enough sustenance to get you through the whole day (no alcohol though – you dont need any unnecessary trips to the toilet) then you are pretty likely to be behind a few thousand people. In the rain. Behind some stinky people that forgot to bring their shower wipes™. Being too hot then being too cold. Being able to see the lead singer when the person in front sways to the left and the person next to them leans over to puke up their watered-down cider. Then realising that the view is much better on your television, from the comfort of your sofa. And there is a free, clean toilet.

Yet, in an effort to keep young, I found myself booking tickets for a concert (sorry, gig) last month. After hearing them on radio 6 (the grown up’s radio 1 with far less drivel-talking disc jockeys) I was much pleased to see that ‘Bombay Bicycle Club’ were playing on my home turf of Bournemouth. The venue, a magnificent renovated theatre. (in my parents youth, the old ballrooms, in my youth, a huge club playing brilliant dance music). The boyfriend quite liked them too. He was in on the plan. To be honest, we went to cure our intrigue as to what it now looked like. Was the sticky carpet still there? Did they still sell Hofbrau lager?  Queuing in the foyet, a young girl commented on how she loved my trainers. A good start, I thought. Fitting in with the youngsters. Feeling chuffed with ourselves, we entered the grand looking front doors, ready to step back in time. Disappointingly, it was now funky fresh new carpets, brightly-lit walkways, and the bars even sold gin and tonics! We decided not to enter the fray of moshing revelers at the front of the dancefloor, but chose a more conservative viewing spot up in the gallery. After their set(which, Ill be honest, sounded better on the radio) they did the usual thanks-everyone-were-off-but-you-know-there-will-be-an-encore. We looked at each other, and, knowing that this would happen, the boyfriend said, with a dead-pan look on his face, If we go now we can beat the traffic. I didnt need to think twice. Oh, how times have changed.

Denifitely Vocal Levels Allowed

A bad day. A hot, sticky, tiring summer’s day spent on the phone to insurance companies, bank answer machines, old ladies who can hardly hear you, fussy clients, NHS hotlines, phone companies… the LAST thing you need is for your day to get worse. But surely it can’t?

An hour spent on the phone to DVLA in Wales sorting out why 3 tax disks haven’t turned up.

After being fobbed off to three different Welsh colleagues, deciding upon picking up a tax disk at the local DVLA office.

Driving the 30 minutes to town and spending 15 minutes to find a parking space.

Entering the sparse waiting room to plastic benches, 8 ‘cashier’ windows, 1 occupied, 1 not and no people waiting.

Ignoring the ‘take a ticket’ sign. There are, of course, no people waiting in front.

Being ignored by the man sitting behind the ‘vacant’ window for 20 minutes.

Two separate people walk in. One young man, one pregnant lady.

‘vacant teller’ looks up and says directly “do you have a ticket? you need one”

‘young man’ ignoring this and plonking himself down at the teller’s window.

My raised voice, in the quiet, almost empty waiting room. “What? is this REALLY happening?”

Both ‘young man’ and ‘vacant teller’ ignoring me.

Man STILL at occupied teller saying “I can’t hear myself because of this commotion!”

Pregnant woman saying to me sweetly “I just have to pick up a leaflet, i’ll be really quick”

20 minutes later both people exit.

I step up, ticket in had, to very same teller. (Occupied teller is STILL occupied. WHAT is he doing?)

Teller says, as if he has never set eyes on me “Hello! How can I help?”

I say, slightly shocked, “Er, the DVLA should have called this morning about my tax disc…”

Teller holds up his finger to silence me.

Teller then says dramatically “The DVLA do NOT call, they notify!”

Speechless, I nod at him.

Teller gets up and does god knows what for 10 minutes away from the desk out of sight.

seething, I am left to my own devices. Even my phone has no reception. I can’t even share this moment.

He saunters back, to which I take the disc with ‘gritted teeth’ smile and leave.

Teller even waves and says a cheery ‘goodbye’ as I exit.

I look for the candid camera as I walk out the door…

Caffeine crazy

If I said coffee culture would you need me to explain?

I’m no expert, but I try to keep up…

Tall, grande, small, regular, large, supreme, venti, primo, medio, massimo

Latte, cappuccino, espresso, mocha, Americano (surely it should be Columbian?)

Macchiato, frappe, caramelatte, frappuccino, babyccino – do Italians know we do this?

Finely ground, filtered, roasted, baked, freeze dried, percolated

Skinny, full fat, whipped cream, sweetener, soya milk, 1 shot, 2 shot, extra shot, hold a shot…

free wi-fi, free magazines, free papers, free biscuits, free meeting space, free television, free coffee beans

Coffee bar, coffee lounge, coffee table, coffee house, coffee shop, coffee company, coffee market

Coffee break, coffee meeting, coffee date, coffee time, coffee mornings, after dinner coffee, coffee stop

Phew! I’m exhausted. Put the kettle on, Let’s have a cup of tea…

Raining on my parade…

…it’s extremely confusing. Hosepipe ban? Flooding? What’s happening? More importantly, it’s ruining the summer. Yes, yes, we have long days, light evenings, hell, it gets dark at 10.30 most evenings. Perfect for after-work drinks with friends, impromptu barbecues for dinner…BUT – how can we do this when this god damn rain keeps falling? And not just drizzling. (On a separate note, we are the only language that has a word for constant light rain. Probably because we are the only bloody country that has the stuff.)

It’s raining, pelting it down ALL the time. I know English people are known for talking about the weather, but that’s because there is a reason to talk about it. It’s so depressing! Now don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of things to do in the rain – Cornwall B&B owners ‘Bedknobs B&B’ have had a brainwave and created this site for every Cornish B&B owner – which, as we have seen recently, could be the case for most of your trip away.

Even our nation’s capital has organised themselves for this very problem. TimeOut have a whole section devoted to it!

But, and that’s a big BUT, when you are forced to look at the situation properly, actually, London has a lot to offer that can all be spent in the warm and dry. We have the best museums and galleries in the world, we have a fantastic choice of wonderful, talented, clever plays and musicals on the West End – and then where to eat and drink? SO many places to choose from – whatever your taste – and as one of the most cosmopolitan cities in the world, even if you get sick of the English food, you can bet your bottom dollar you will be able to find cuisine from nearly ever nation in the world. And all in walking distance or a short tube ride from each other!

We are a society which has been brought up to don the ‘smile-we-ARE-having fun-we’re-BRITISH’ even if we are picnic-ing in torrential downpours. But I wouldn’t change it for the world. There’s something quite patriotic about walking down the road and nodding with shock at complete strangers because the sun is actually out!

Give me a 99 with a flake and pass me my wellies. I’ll put my hood up.

Episode #326 part 2…

Monday morning has arrived. Lixy drives through the pouring rain, arrives at the car park and thinks her luck is in as she finds a space nearest to the building entrance. Perhaps this day has started off well! She parks her car, and, as she opens the door and steps out, she hears a shout from the ‘coffee room’ (where the damp smell must be getting worse in this rain) window. Fat ugly sales girl (*7) shouts out “Oi! You can’t park there! Matt parks in that space. He will just ask you to move!” charming. Lixy feels that her luck has ended for that day and parks miles away from the building.
After arriving in reception soaking wet, Lixy makes her way through the office amongst the animals, models and hooray Henry’s to find the welcoming sight of Emma fellow temp, and Zoe, a girl who she has temped with before. (*8)
She has just said her hello’s and has started to settle down when FUSG appears. She bulldozes through the room, and as she walks the full length of the bank of desks, whilst still pounding (*9) she rudely points at Lixy. “You. What’s your name?” she enquires. Lixy, rather put out with her tone, breathes deeply and keeps her cool. She retorts “Well it isn’t ‘Oi’. It’s Lixy.”
FUSG, who realises she has been caught out (and made a fool of herself) plonks (*10herself down in her seat, red-faced and embarrassed. She stumbles “Yeah well, yeah I, I didn’t know your name.” (Er, well yes you did, and that doesn’t excuse the rudeness).
Everyone gets back to their telephoning; Lixy is amazed to see even more members of staff in today; (what do they all do?) and is pleased to see that they all conform to the pretty-girl-in-office rule.
Lixy pops out to make the tea, sorts out who she will be telephoning today and can’t have been sat sorting her day’s plan for longer than 5 minutes when Jobsworth(*11) has appeared, standing over Lixy is a rather threatening manner. She barks “Is there a problem? Do you have a problem?” to which a rather confused Lixy replies “Errrr no?.” Jobsworth continues. “Because I heard there was some sort of problem about the car earlier?” 
A-ha. Jobsworth has been talking to FUSG while she was in the ‘coffee room’. Lixy looks over at FUSG. “Is there still a problem with the car? Am I parked in the right place now?” To which FUSG (who cannot get any MORE in the wrong by now) shrugs her shoulders and mumbles “Yeah s’pose.” Lixy then turns to Jobsworth (who has spoken so loud and rudely to her that she can feel the whole room looking) and says “Is there a problem with my work? Am I doing that wrong?” The whole room waits for a response from Jobsworth. “Err no, I don’t think so.” She retreats and sits back at her desk, which overlooks the worker bees. I mean temps.
Lixy looks over at fellow temp Emma and mouths ‘how rude!’ to which Emma replies. Mouthing ‘fuck that. I would leave’. Lixy mouths back ‘I think I will.’
Lixy shuffles together her papers, evidence of who she has telephoned so far. She gets up from  her seat, and walks over to Jobsworth’s desk. Lixy calmly, in a more polite volume, so not everyone in the office can hear, says “Here are my papers, of the work that I have done correctly. I didn’t have a problem, until you did that. Therefore I am going to leave. Thanks.”
Lixy smiles, turns, picks up her bag and, when out of eyeline of everyone else apart from Emma, gives her the ‘phone’ sign with her fingers and mouths ‘call me’. As she walks out, she can almost hear the silent cheers from the temps.
As she has almost reached the door, she hears Jobsworth shout out “yeah…thanks!” Great retort. I don’t think.
(*7) Oh yes, there was one. She must have been hired by mistake. Now known as ‘FUSG’
(*8) Maybe ‘welcoming sight’ is a slight over exaggeration. Although compared to the            ridiculousness it was relatively normal and welcoming.
(*9) FUSG didn’t really walk; she was more of a ‘pounder’. She pounded the carpet.
(*10) FUSG was a plonker; no that doesn’t mean……well it kind of does…oh, you get the idea.
(*11) Unforgettable name. Or her position. But you would imagine she was ‘overseeing’ something in some kind of way.

Temping Episode # 326 – it’s a long one!

After finishing a placement the previous week within a law firm, the recruitment girls at DN(*1) call her the following Thursday with an assignment, which starts the next day. Lixy is informed that she will be on the phones, calling schools, but will definitely NOT be selling or even cold-calling.
The business is only 10 minutes drive from her home, which is perfect as she is instructed to be there for 8.30 am.
Wanting to be early for her first day, Lixy arrives at the industrial estate at 8.20 and finds the correct offices. As she walks into the foyer, she calls on the phone which is marked “call for reception”. A voice answers and tells her to walk upstairs and enter through the double doors. She does this and is greeted by pretty girl (*2), who walks Lixy through to the second open-plan room and introduces her to two other temporary staff; Paul (who is there to undertake data entry) and Emma, who reveals that she is also representing the same agency, DT.   
Emma tells her that the job is a teensy bit ridiculous; the firm sells ‘community trips’ to South America, Asia and Africa for 15-18 year olds, in return for UCAS points towards their applications for University. Lixy’s role, much as hers, would be to call schools from a database and try to get someone of authority to agree to one of the company’s sales team to travel to the school, present to an assembly the trip idea, which hopefully the receiving pupils would then inform their parents, who then would return to the school on a separate occasion for that sales person to present the details of the trip to them; including the extortionate £3,500 fee for each child.
Lixy and Emma both agree that with it being the end of June and nearing the end of term, the frantic calls to the schools will probably be met by stressed teachers, which will not be helped by the fact that the temp staff doing the telephone calls do not know the ins and outs of the business. In fact both girls are left wondering why the sales staff, when not out at schools, are not doing the telephone calls themselves.
To make matters worse, Lixy is taken to the ‘coffee room’(*3) by Katherine, one of the sales team, to bring me ‘up to speed’ on what the company does/sells/hopes to do/delivers. She, to give her credit, believed in the product. I asked her what her background was and did she go to University. She replied ‘oh yes to do an IT degree but I moved down here to be with my boyfriend and found this.’ Lixy is then introduced to one of the founders of the company, Matt. He is extremely well spoken and wearing a pinky ring.  She establishes with him (as she guesses this company is his baby) exactly what he would like her to say to the member of the school she was calling. Excellent. Feeling up to speed, she is then led back upstairs to the ‘main floor’ where she is greeted by another founder, Jim and the rest of the office, who have arrived, as they are obviously not telephoning schools, at 9.00 am. Jim was even more (much to her disbelief) well spoken; one could even say plumy. Lixy looked closely for his leather elbow patches. No such luck but indeed a matching pinky ring.
Lixy settles down next to Emma and begins to make calls to schools, as required. After a while she offers to make tea and coffee for the few of them sat around the table. As she walks through the first open plan room to the ‘coffee room’ she finally gets to view the other employees. And an extremely strange view it is. There are no less than 20 employees; 4 of these being male, and that includes the 2 owners, Paul the data entry temp and a particularly geeky looking fella surrounded by 3 computer screens. The rest, oh yes the rest, were all females between the ages of 20 and 30, tall, leggy and not one of them would have trouble finding a suitor. Yes Lixy had walked into ‘office full of pretty girls employed by public school toffs who have too much money and a shoddy idea’. As she makes her hot drinks, she cannot wait to see what unfolds…
As Lixy makes her way upstairs, she is not disappointed. Not only are there 3 (yes that is 3) dogs (presumably owned by employees) roaming freely within the OFFICE.
Lixy delivers her drinks with a bemused expression. After a time (and many rejections from schools all over the country) posh Matt the MD enters the office with an older couple and points out several aspects of the business/office/kennel to them. As the male remarks that ‘this is where it all happens then’ it all becomes clear to Lixy. These are posh Matt’s plummy parents, the funding of the company, the silent partners, the naïve owners of this pretty-but-thick-staffed, good-idea-but-not-well-thought-out, extortionate-product-therefore-making-little-profit company.
But hey, Lixy thinks, she is but a temp and what is she to think of this company? She gets on with her telephoning, does as she is told, and towards the end of the day is greeted by Will(*4) who is, he says, the most senior member of the sales staff.  After telling her his complete life story, amongst which how he was a badminton champion (*5) and obtained a law degree in the USA which was pointless here (*6), he asks Lixy how her day has been. She tells him that she has had no joy with schools and tells him what Matt has told her to say on the telephone. Will immediately rolls his eyes, says that ‘That is NOT what you are meant to be saying. I must talk to Matt.’ He then disappears, to come back just before it is time for Lixy to leave for the day. He nervously asks if she will be returning the next week. She honestly replies that she was thinking of not returning, but if he could promise a better(!) day on Monday, then yes, she would return for him. She picks up her bag, steps over a Jack Russell, walks down the steps, holds her breath past the damp-smelling hallway, and steps into the open air for the weekend. What an interesting day!

(*1) ‘Dozy Numpties’. It is advisable to keep them anonymous; they could sue….
(*2) They were all pretty; differentiating between them was difficult.
(*3) Actually a pretty awful office kitchenette which had a severe damp problem.
(*4) Cocky salesman. Nothing he said was to be believed
(*5) See? Utter bullshit.
(*6) More bullshit.

Bourgeoisie Jubilee?

While I may be ‘pulling the tail feathers’ of those hardcore patriots, is it wise to say that the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee may have been a tad excessive? Let’s be Swiss about this.
It is excellent, amazing, even fantastic that we have a monarch, hell not just a monarch, but a whole royal family who tend to want, even at times seem to actually be thrilled, about taking part and being included in royal events, celebrations, fundraisers and even just an appearance in public. We have monarchs who date back to (as far as we know) 774 A.D. and have films, television programmes, books, plays, portraits, magazine features, clothing, furniture, crockery (the list goes on…) that feature our royals. And we are very proud. People come far and wide, from around the globe, to stand where they have stood, see where they marry, be in the country in which they live and breathe. And, as far as I am aware, people call our queen ‘The Queen’ as if she is the only one in the world. Well, do you know any others? We, Britain, in comparison to other nations, are extremely patriotic. The latest royal wedding, Prince William to his Princess Katherine, caused a national bank holiday, and an estimated 24.5 million people watched the ceremony on British television. Now that is a popular family. Something to definitely be celebrated. Street party, here we come!
BUT, we are a nation in trouble. We are in a five-year long recession – which optimistically the media says we are coming out of – but, to many, is showing no sign of ending. Unemployment is rising weekly, businesses are closing daily, and the weather seems to be getting worse. (okay, nothing to do with the economy but we are British – must talk about the weather. Which is also depressing.) And I do see that we all need a bit of cheering  up, and yes, what better way than to have a good ol’ knees-up as queenie has been on the throne for a remarkable 60 years – nearly the longest reign of a British monarch (after Queen Victoria) but – did we have to have four whole days of it? My goodness, Union Jack bunting has been up for weeks, cakes have been baked, outfits made, concerts planned, servicemen rallied together, television stars and crews drafted in, police forces to man the streets, and all while the normal worker is given 2 days off work. How much, I hear you ask, has this cost, and who, pray tell, is paying for it? Well, I’m glad you ask, because allegedly costs were incurred of over £3million and was paid for you, I, the average taxpayer. I wonder how Joe Bloggs, local shop owner who has had to close recently as he cannot compete with another Tesco opening nearby, is celebrating his free 2 days off? Oh no, that’s right, he has the next 365 days off. Keep calm and carry on? It’s enough to cause a riot.

Just how important is writing?

Copywriting – what is it?? Wikipedia (the bible) says ‘Copywriting is the act of writing copy (text) for the purpose of advertising or marketing a product, business, person, opinion or idea.’

copy – text – for the promotion of any business, may not seem that important. These are some of the biggest reasons why copywriters are needed:

1. Time is money.

If advertising is your expertise, if running your business is important to you – you don’t have the extra time to write copy. Letting someone do your writing, in whatever capacity, will not only relieve the pressure of a BIG part of your business, but will give you the time to focus on other things. You have enough to do anyway!

2. It isn’t just writing.

Copywriting involves research, grammatical knowledge, liaising with the press, creating copy that gets people’s attention, putting information into something thats readable, capturing the imagination of the readers, knowing your audience and creating something that appeals to them which involves choosing a tone, voice and message for that particular audience…phew!

3. Copywriting takes study, hard work and commitment.

Keeping up with trends, industry changes and updates, new technology, changes in marketing base, updating writing skills to enable continual effective sales-driven copy. And thats just for starters…

4. Good copy brings good return.

It’s a simple concept – well written copy can make you/your company more money. Industries will pay thousands of pounds for, example, a mail shot to all their clients. Words can have an extraordinary effect, and if mistakes are made, it could have an extraordinary impact on that business. If they are safe in the knowledge that it was written by a professional, there is less chance of a negative impact. Start as you mean to go on.

5. An outside perspective

Copywriters have fresh eyes, a new look on the product. A new addition, with new perspectives, who is trained to research and promoting a product through words? And who loves writing? What a great idea!

In a nutshell –

Copywriters are experts in using words to make you money!

Summer sadness?

Well hold on a minute – summer is finally here! Socks are being discarded, car heaters are turned off (how does the air con work again please?) and cosy nights in with a DVD are making way for drinks in the last of the evening sun. But still there seems to be a hint of sadness in the air. Whatever happened to carefree summers? In the 1960s and 70s it was all ‘summer of love’ with The Beach Boys, Mungo Jerry’s ‘In the Summertime’ and the broody anthem ‘Summer Nights’ from John Travolta and Olivia N-J. The 1980s touched on it with the infamous Bryan Adams’ ‘Summer of ’69’ (Don’t act like you haven’t sung along with your air guitar) but then you have the completely conflicting Bananarama‘s ‘cruel summer’ full of angst and being left alone in the city while the love of their life (thats a big job, I think. Did you see Bananarama in the 80s? They could floor you with their ‘death stares’) was elsewhere. The mood was lifted briefly in the 90s – Jazzy Jeff and The Fresh Prince singing about ‘Summertime‘, aimed to put a smile on anyone’s face…and it did! We had colourful clothes, colourful music and it seemed like everything was fun. Then the craziness of the millennium hit us and we thought everything would be completely different. Shock horror! nothing changed. we weren’t driving flying cars, robots didn’t do our housework, and we still had to go out to work. dammit! But surely, yes surely,the music had gone all ‘carefree and happy’! yes? Well, once we had all got over the crazy change(!) that happened at the millennium, women got feisty – think Christina Aguilera, Maya, Pink and Lil’ Kim with a cover of ‘Lady Marmalade’ and moody faced Avril Lavigne with ‘complicated’…but no jolly summer anthem. Nelly went sexy in 2002 with ‘hot in here’, Usher continued to dominate the charts with many including ‘burn‘ (in fact 2004 was basically Usher’s summer; he was EVERYWHERE) but where was our funky summer lovin’ song? The famous ex-of-Britney, Justin Timerlake, formerly of NSync turned a corner when he brought out the perfectly-titled ‘Summer Love’ in 2007…yay! But unlike Mungo Jerry’s fabulous ‘In the summertime’, a relaxed, breezy number, JT had to move with the times with a poppy, electronic tune. With a LOT of sexy. Most recently we have since been introduced to rainbow-haired Katy Perry, with her non-stop summer/beach/sunny pop hits. And yes, they DO make you feel good. They DO make you feel summery. But does an ickle part of you miss the likes of ‘Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polka Dot Bikini’ by Bryan Hyland? If you can believe it, that hit the charts in 1960. And you know what? We have to move with the times. We have to sing along to Katie in her jeep in sunny LA. Because no-one dreamed of how easy it would be to do just that nowadays, back in the swinging sixties. And at least we still have the memories. And our parents’ record collection.

Episode # 1045

Lixy G has been offered a day of temping at the local water company. A rather established and respected company , she is grateful for the work, even though it is for only a day. Emma(*1) calls her on the Monday afternoon, and says it is for the whole day the next day, Tuesday. Lixy is looking forward to it.

She then gets another call from Emma approximately two hours later, who says that even better, she can offer her Tuesday to Friday reception work at a local company, Bournemouth Colour Print(*2), starting in the morning, and paying slightly better per hour. Lixy agrees to this, and to giving the day’s local water company work to someone else. (as she has the rest of the week covered, yay!)

The next morning, a rather (deservedly) assertive Lixy gets ready for work, excited and looking forward to starting her (belated) week at the printing company. It is a rather warm day in March, and the sun is shining on her drive to work.

She follows the given directions and arrives at the correct car park. Lixy walks into the building and introduces herself to the first person she comes across, and says she is from the agency. He introduces himself as Craig(*3) the Director, and that Simon(*4) (who is stood behind him) will show her around the place. Simon is very forthcoming, showing her the kitchen, toilets, printing factory, where every department sits, introducing her to everyone, finally ending at her desk in the front vestibule area. She sets herself up; getting better acquainted with the telephone switchboard/email systems.

Craig then re-appears, clutching a huge pile of papers, placing them on her desk. He then says ‘how long have you been doing payment ledgers for?’ To which Lixy has one answer. ‘Um, I haven’t?’ He looks at her, perplexed. He says ‘How long have you been in accountancy for?’ It is now Lixy’s turn to look perplexed. ‘err, I haven’t. I am legally trained…!’ Craig is now, and quite rightly so, looking a bit peeved. He explains to Lixy that he explicitly asked for an accountancy-trained individual, as their books were now quite behind, and needed someone for that specific reason. Lixy then offers to call the agency and find out exactly what was happening.

Lixy calls, locates Emma, who is (one can only desribe as) ‘vacant’ on the phone, and says that Craig didn’t explain that he wanted someone to do the books (at which point Lixy thinks that of COURSE he would have asked for that; as that is the job that he wanted doing) and that she will speak to him. She puts her through to him, when he then shuts the door to his office. The call gets put back to her. Dippy Emma asks if Lixy is sure she can’t do purchase ledger (she really can’t, well she probably could if she was taught, but Craig doesn’t have the time OR the patience right now.) She tells Emma NO, who then says for Lixy to ‘do her best’ and she will call her back. Lixy continues to answer the phone. A girl then turns up with her baby, to visit the office, Lixy presumes. She then introduces herself to Lixy as Jane(*5); she usually does the books but is on maternity leave. It transpires that the baby’s father is actually the Director (very strange) who then picks up his baby, and gets Jane to start on the books…

10 minutes later, Karen(*6), area manager of Lixy’s temping company enters the office. She explains she was in the area visiting clients when the office called her and tell her of the mistake(*7). She apologises profusely, goes in to apologise to the Director, comes out again and promises that the agency, NOT the client, will pay Lixy for the whole day.

She leaves, Lixy asks Craig if he would like her to stay, and he says yes please to answer the phones, and as they are paying her, they could both benefit from it. When she leaves for lunch she asks him if he would like her to come back, he says yes. Lixy returns from lunch at about 1.30, when she get a call from dippy Emma who then says that they will not pay her after 2.00 and can she leave then.

Lixy tells Craig, and leaves half an hour later rather bewildered….

(*1) Her name has not been changed, as she deserves to be ‘named and shamed’.
(*2) This is the company’s real name; a suitable alternative would be too difficult.
(*3) Lixy couldn’t remember his name – it doesn’t really matter.
(*4) Or his.
(*5) see above
(*6) Lixy remember hers! Liar liar pants on fire….
(*7) Fuck-up