On moving swiftly on …

We have been encouraged since the 90s to move swiftly on from almost anything, relationships, jobs, conversations even.  It is part of the disposability culture that we have been encouraged to adopt because it improves  consumption by a fraction of a percentage point.

I have touched upon this in a few previous posts.  Children are encouraged to want things you can buy from a very early age now, one product I am thinking of here is ‘My first album’ which comprises of brightly coloured music for children in a thick plastic player.

This is training, and nothing else.  In order to support the political economy, you are to spend your life thinking of little else but what to want as the answer to any problem.

Likewise, the employment culture of forgetting any notion of ‘do ast thou would be done to’ and regarding people as objects, that I have seen rather too much of this year is a similar construct.  Although this was set up for business, it actually just fosters an atmosphere of vicious vanity, in that the vainest and most vicious thrive by eliminating others.

Interestingly, as we see from the fact I still have Little Shiva and my tiresome sister staring at the site, vain and vicious people do not actually move on.  Instead they continue to focus on the object of hatred in the hope of detecting more suffering.  They do this because they are unwell, and this is the only indication that they have that they exist.  Rather than self-reflecting and going off to do some self-development, they continue to check whether you have noticed them or not.

This is  not rational behaviour.  Rational behaviour would be to say – I have caused this person pain, I do not want to do  that again in case someone does it to me.  Irrational behaviour is to sit and stare at your victim hoping to inflict more suffering later.

There is nothing one can do, however.  The condition is incurable, so as the object of this behaviour, the only way to deal with it is to compartmentalise it and go and do something else yourself.

As we have seen from the case of Wolfe’s wife blocking me (see previous post), it is not always possible to move swiftly on, particularly when you weren’t trying to inflict any pain in the first place.  In this case, the correct course of action was to cry a lot and figure out what was wrong with me.  This introspective way of looking at it was correct, although it felt pretty bonkers at the time.  Not all reverberating thoughts are bad ones, even when you wonder why you are still thinking about somebody you don’t feel you ought to worry about at all. (when I say I love Wolfe, it does not mean that we get on particularly smoothly or that I want to be with him 24/7, it means that he is a rich source of personal inspiration and at times joy.)

So, having said all that, whilst I do not agree that moving on from every problem is a solution that is useful – some things are learning experiences, even if they don’t seem like it at the time – it is important to figure out whether your obsessions are useful.  If they aren’t producing anything useful to you, chances are they are not.

 

The new job is another long term temporary contract.  I actually want another one that is coming up shortly, but whether I will be considered for it is another matter.  In any case, now I can afford the time to think about it, I have three baby businesses to think about.

Four major pieces of writing are being worked on at the moment, I will speak to you once they are in draft form.  Until then I haven’t got the time, sorry.

Ina

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the Frankfurt Book fair and other stories

Apparently I am currently at the Frankfurt Book Fair. Several people in the publishing industry have mentioned that I am there.

I don’t feel as if I am there, and it looks to me as if I am not there, so I am not sure how this works, but okay.  Happy fair!

In the meantime, I have just been given the go ahead for the Supermix venture and landed a surprisingly well paid job.  Waiting to hear about another one, and I am working on the new line for Ina whilst still doing  contracts across the globe.

You would think this means I am busy, but not really.  The global work is such that I can put things down and sew whenever I feel like it.

On recent experience, this is about as good as it gets. I am now getting the American Tax problem sorted so that I can publish books for actual money next year as an experiment.

Still a bit ditsy but I will be taking the weekend off now to prepare for my next appointment.

Just got to thinking about the last year and I was quite shocked about the amount of crazy behavior from people, most of whom still have control of staff.  This is very worrying.

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New work surprise

Oddly, I have picked now to work on some entirely new stuff.  I am not sure why this is but okay.  It is smaller and more affordable than some of the previous stuff, which in any case needs some updating.

The designs on the original Sheep in Wolf’s Clothing collection are fine, and they are nice, but they do need some alterations for wearability in some cases.

Also, I think Tatler was right and some of them are really just very unusual sculptures, perhaps for a fashionista, so some rejigging will be taking place when some of the new stuff is done to fill the fashion page.

I am doing some work for some very large companies at the moment, and the time and money wasting is ferocious, which makes me feel a bit sick.

Instead of making basic decisions about simple things, apparently once you become a sufficiently wealthy brand, you exploit people in other countries so that you can then waste the money they should have had on employing teams of meaningless consultants, who then squander hours and hours of your staff’s time asking them simple questions with a view to drawing obvious conclusions and reporting back to you.

Needless to say, I do not feel I missed out on anything by not working for such companies over the last decade.

The star of the show so far has been a Chinese lady, who solved the company’s quandary in two sentences.  Excessively well paid Indian managers are more concerned that they will somehow be punished for being remotely creative, and so I have seen a few sweats break out when they fail to ingratiate for a millisecond.

I can’t help but think this is not good for either business or the economy, but who is going to stop it if nobody is willing to stop gawking at brand names?

Anyway, more news coming shortly I suspect,

Ina

 

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Accept that TV is bad for you.

I am working on some teaching material at the moment, and from what the teachers are saying, children are even more difficult than they were ten years ago.

When are we going to just accept that TV is bad for you?

We have all heard plenty about computer games being bad for you, suggestions of movies being bad for you, but what about the audio visual drug pumped into your home every day?

It is a propaganda machine drilling your head full of political ideas, whether you agree with them or vehemently disagree, soap operas telling you to be unhappy, because family instability is good for the economy (think of the furniture you will have to replace and the new dates you will have to go on)  a nanny to dump your increasingly unhappy children in front of.

My father used to use it as a method of subduing any possible input from the family when he returned from work, turning it up in response to any attempt at conversation.  I developed my dislike of this challenge early on in life.

That is not to say I have never watched it, nor does it mean I fail to appreciate the work that goes into creating and producing the drivel.  I just don’t allow it to determine what I do, how I think or what happens next.

I am sure my father was tired of listening to the two eldest listing their wants every day, and he certainly worked very hard, so I can’t really blame him for not wanting to be forced to deal with the family.  I don’t want to either, they are very unpleasant.  I objected to the idea that I wasn’t to get to know him at all, and the volume change in response to any question was just plain rude.  Therefore I see TV as an unwanted guest.

The later generations are not so lucky.  They have been encouraged to spend their lives looking for validation from a screen, and I do not see that they derive much in the way of happiness, connection with others or basic decency out of it.  A meme drifts past, reminding them to be nice, and once they have clicked like the job is done.  Then they go back to pointing, staring and getting people fired for a laugh.

So when are we going to accept that TV is poison?  It causes unhappiness to make you buy more stuff.  It ruins your relationships.  It makes you unfit. It tries to tell you what to think and how to vote. It dissuades you from asking any questions in case you look stupid.

It is a dictator’s dream, and these teachers have just nailed it.  People are losing their ability to parent their children or function.

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FTAO the Blank company

The problem is that your staff are so obsessed with boring and mundane gossip about people that they are spending time at work staring at the website.

I think if you are going to implement policy destroying somebody’s career on the basis of supporting  contracting companies who basically burn people’s money you should implement it across the company.  Fire anybody you find looking at a website, never mind sending personal email or attempting to resolve work situations via normal grown-up conversation.

Therefore, rather than having the nervous wreck that caused the problem in the first place sitting worrying about who his vile sadistic manager spread the website to, the simple solution is to simply get IT to block the website from the server.  It is really not a difficult thing to do.  Just add it to your blacklist.

In addition the idiot that caused the problem still works for you, and I do not want him to be dragged into further problems.  He is still obsessively clicking it, but he at least does it with his own equipment, usually when he is off work.

I have no idea who is in charge of HR, data, internet or contracts management at your bank, nor do I care.  The fact is that some inexperienced and piss-poor managers colluded to get somebody fired for a laugh, openly admitted it and you apparently have no problem with it.  I certainly don’t condone what they did, but I don’t have to worry about it.

This is however, not the problem here.  I just want not to see your tedious staff on my website analytics when they are supposed to be working.  With rare exceptions they are a very boring and narrow-minded bunch and it is doubtful that they will get anything out of it other than some tired gossip about something that is not even relevant.

I did nothing wrong, my career is contracting is destroyed and nobody is prepared to take any responsibility for putting things right. That is now your problem, not mine.

I hope this clears up the issue.  Blanker, who works for customer assist is at least trying to get the problem solved, although why the legal department should be involved in adding a website address to a blacklist I do not know.

Thank God I don’t have to deal with you any more.  I am busy working in the USA, Saudi, India, Australia at the moment, and I can tell you it is a lot more interesting and culturally relevant than your third world policy on how you treat people who work for you.

Ina.

 

 

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Train your child to bully and lie

Well, today I learned that the best thing you can teach your children, that is if you actually had the opportunity of having any, is to bully other people and lie.

We celebrate bullies and liars in many ways. Primarily by promoting them.

The Bagel Study, which you are welcome to look up, established this some years ago, when it was shown that people higher up in the company are more likely to steal bagels than people on the ground level.

Therefore, with the benefit of quite considerable experience of being a nice person and having got to the miserable position I am in today, I now advise you to teach your children to lie, steal and bully other people.  In this way they will get on well in life, they will be respected at work, and they will get on much better generally.

The fact that they will spit in your face for being old shouldn’t bother you because you will have done your job and the ‘professionals’ that your disgusting offspring pay to get you out of the way can then have a free hand to mistreat you in a care home or hospital.  You can be given inappropriate medication, based on the assumptions of stupid people who don’t care about you, probably someone else’s dishonest and bullying child who didn’t quite make the big time in sadism.

When your child bullies people, lies or steals, they are to be praised.  This will reflect the promotions they will get later on in life.

And did I mention that they should be male?  Yes, please drown your female children, because they are clearly useless and will not even get decent training at work because they aren’t worthwhile.  I used to think it was just women of child bearing age, but today we have established that simply being female is sufficient.

On no account should you encourage any type of empathy, because that will get them fired.  Any kindness, any willingness to help others, any stopping to assist must be punished.

So, next time your child shows any negativity towards others, make sure that it is potentially violent, spiteful and dishonest negativity, because that is the best thing you can do for them.

 

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Life Changing Moments

One of my friends on Facebook is an writer from Australia, and this week he decided to ask about life changing moments.

Out of all the horrible, interesting things that have happened the first thing that sprang to mind was

David Wolfe’s wife blocking me on Facebook.

Now at the time, I was on a knife edge.  I was grieving for my father, uncle, 2 cats and my best friend.  I had just spent 2 years researching a huge book which morphed several times as I hadn’t written anything with any purpose before, and I wanted to speak to David about the direction and how it could be used to help him.

I live in a different continent but it just so happens that we were born 12 days apart and we are oddly similar facially in photographs, despite me being a small sturdy Scottish person and him being a slight, German-American-Iranian.  This was not sufficient however, it was the whacky yet compelling presentation of usually fairly mundane health information that I was interested in.

Anyway, after years of being told how shite I was by my friends, who really just wanted me to be shite because they (probably) still feel that they are shite, I had found over a very careful year dropping in on David’s page every fortnight that we got on very well, apart from sporadic flaming tantrums on both sides, so when I was blocked by a person on his page, I just assumed it was him and was duly devastated.

When I say devastated, I mean completely destroyed.  I had just spent 6 weeks working on an incredibly well thought out yet bizarre film about him and Durianrider and I was still waiting to have a conversation about the book I was intently working on instead of wasting my time playing Farmville.

This was 2011 or 12, I forget which.  I had got through a horrific family experience and lost about 160lb at the time thanks to him, so I felt I owed him, regardless.  It was not until probably two years after this happened that I accepted that I was terribly in love, with a random stranger who just happened to be extremely famous.

Anyway after a few false starts on projects that did not work out, I finally descended into despondency but had sponged up enough of what David had to say to say fuck it, nobody wants to listen to me anyway, I might as well be louder about it.  Hence Ina Disguise was born, sometime during the writing of Best Scandal Ever.

The only reason I wrote anything at all was because I could not speak to him, and I thought it had been him that had blocked me as I knew nothing about his wife.

So now, five years after Best Scandal Ever, this has become a pivotal moment in that having been so incredibly damaged by trying to compensate for whatever anybody said was wrong with me, no longer giving a fuck allowed me to finally speak.

Admittedly, I have just done what I felt like doing, when I felt like doing it, because 24 hour care for my mother has always come first and everything else took a second place to that.  Now I have the problem of day to day survival, and that has to come first.  However, I have put time in every day, whether that is:

15 minutes to write this blog,

half an hour to spam the books to a few million people,

a couple of hours on putting a story together ,

a month of intense sewing to create a handbag

three months of intense work to create a carpet,

18 months to create the resin pieces, due to money

conceptualising new ways of putting out work, although that has been scuppered by my lack of support from other people.

 

Within a year of putting out any artwork I was in GQ.  Tatler and World of Interiors, and I now, after five years and five months have about 80,000 readers.

I do not make money out of this, but I did it on the basis that I could not otherwise ever get the message across to David, and the notion of a subversive marketing strategy that didn’t actually cost anything.

There is far more that I could be doing.  I have been quite lazy.  I should try some of the other stuff that I have in the armory – for those interested January 2016 entries have a lot of useful links you can try.

There are an awful lot of authors out there who do not understand how the marketing in publishing works, because it is not at all obvious.  I have heard some horrific stories about people spending nine years writing a book and then squandering their life savings on trying to make it sell.

This is not how it works any more.  As an author, you should regard it far more as being a pop singer.  Nobody is going to pay a pop singer they haven’t heard before, and by far the biggest challenge is getting them to notice your name in the first place.

So, although I have not made any money, I probably have more readers than David now.  This in itself is not important, this is not the point. The point is that it doesn’t matter who you are or why you do what you do.  The important thing is that you do it. I have a friend in Slovenia, an international level political journalist, that is still resisting writing her first book, on the basis that she is concerned about how it is regarded.

“Use a pseudonym and get on with it.” is my response.

The general thinking on online marketing is that you have to get people to see your name nine times before they even read the byline, so focus on that.  Wolfe is crazy like a fox, not to put too fine a point on it.  I was open enough to figure this before I started the experiment, but not everybody gets the point of Wolfe. He is a complex creature.

By the looks of things, it is time I did some edits and took this more seriously now.  To start with, it was a case of spitting the words onto a page next to a name and then throwing it out there.  Now I definitely have some attention, it is probably time to up the quality and time somewhat before I even think about money.

For those authors who read me and think how dreadful I am for putting work out free, here is the comparison:

You can spend 3 or 4k per book on marketing on the basis of getting a small proportion of it back, put out only long titles and wait for 30 years or so for someone to notice, or you can accept that nobody knows or cares who you are or what you have to say.

I think my way is better, and it is certainly cheaper and more rewarding.

Discuss.

 

 

 

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Stupid People are Nasty

We finally seem to have gotten rid of Little Shiva.

It was around about the post to his wife this week.  I am not sure if he is actually so far gone that he had not previously noticed that she knew about the website in July.

She presumably lied to him.  People do, for all sorts of twisted reasons. He certainly never told her about it, her complaint in this regard is in the conversation we had.

I’m sure he was expecting to be rewarded by hoovering up me sounding confused, hurt and increasingly desperate because, after all, he did ensure that an already bad situation was made considerably worse, for no reason at all.

The sadist, I can imagine, regarded this as a form of ‘blooding’.  It appears from everything I have witnessed to do with the company involved, that this is how they spend their working day.

I can confirm that they certainly don’t spend it working.  The higher up the food chain in banking contracting, the less work you do and the more unpleasant you get to be.  I have hundreds of friends doing it, and taken as a collective, I have never seen so many posts complaining of mental illness and the stifling of their careers.

By all accounts, however, Little Shiva had done this before, several times that the people in the office had witnessed.  I am probably unusual in that the long term staff actually told me.

His wife seemed to think this was hilarious, to the point of being stupid enough to put it in writing.  So, as you can see, brains do not go with the stinking attitude you apparently require in this business.  She is a new graduate, with limited experience, so it is only when it is done to her that she will understand that this is not OK.

I however, have had people doing similar things to me for most of my life.  In fact, I am doing a job at the moment in which I have no reason to see or speak to anyone and apparently even producing anonymous work has attracted some unwanted attention.

You can take it from this that I am a magnet for people’s bile, and there seems to be no escape from it.  I don’t think that there is now an alternative to rising above it, since there is so much of it about.

The problem with being stupid and nasty, is that there is always a bigger, stupider and nastier person to take advantage of it, and if you suffer from these conditions, they inevitably will.

When I started on the contract, the first thing I noticed was that Little Shiva was being dumped with work nobody else wanted and belittled by his extremely small minded sadistic friend.  He made a series of blisteringly stupid assumptions about everybody in the office.  Somebody somewhere had told him that Africans were stupid, Indians were to be manipulated and women were to be bullied into whatever you wanted to do to them.

You would think that this would be noticed and this guy would be sent to the abattoir that such people usually work in, but no, not in contracting.  In contracting the man who creates the pivot table is apparently king, regardless of his ability to actually do the more important and expensive elements of the job.

This is about responsibility.  The people in charge of these contracts only understand the paperwork.  They do not understand about costings, people, training or anything else, and this is what the company needs to resolve.

As I have said, the previous contracting company that I worked with was not like this at all.  Why the company concerned has become so bloated and incompetent is a mystery, however I am now forced to deal with it, so perhaps we can encourage them to understand a bit about really quite basic business.

It is sad yet hilarious to think that these are the very people at the heart of the banking crisis.  There is a literal ocean of similar incompetence in the world of banking, all outstandingly well paid, if you can tolerate the waste.

So why is it that stupid people are nasty, in the form of taking your job, killing your mother, spending years of their time twisted up in their beds, getting off on thinking of ways of making your life more miserable?

Wolfe would say it is bad gut bacteria, but I would take that a step further to incorporate their love of self-indulgence.  They only think about themselves, and that is a stultifyingly boring thing to do.

 

 

 

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Why are men like this?

So today I had a ‘meeting’ with a bunch of people in town.

Not very interesting.

The guy who had been put in charge of this meeting was a drippy 50 something.  As we sat in the lobby waiting to go in he greeted everyone but me warmly.

Jesus, not again. I thought.

Sure enough he got to looking at the stuff we had been asked to bring, and immediately started insulting me.

Every time I opened my mouth he interrupted me, smiling continuously throughout.

I was the most qualified and experienced person there, including him.

Now, I do realise that this is the social equivalent of the dick pic, but it doesn’t make it any less tiresome, so let us get something very clear.

There is absolutely no reason why I should be interested, and I certainly don’t feel any compulsion to be interested, so why are you bothering to try and get my attention?

It is really sad that this is what passes for flirting.  I have no idea why we chose to give the gender most susceptible to the foibles of their genitals so much power, but really it is a screaming bore.

Life was much easier as a head chef.  I used to just point at things and get them to run towards them.

Now I am supposed to want to be liked.  I don’t give a shit if you like me, just get on with your boring paperwork and then leave me the fuck alone.

The first thing I learned as a manager was that power always carries the responsibility of taking care of people.

The second thing I learned  as a manager was not to care about being liked.

The third thing I learned was how to create a nice safe honest bubble for people to actually function in.  I see almost no office management that understands this.

I see people anxious to be liked, anxious to be feared, anxious to be remembered.  None of these things matter. Doing the job well and making people feel safe, that matters.  Your tiny penis anxiety doesn’t matter at all.

I am hoping to hear some positive news from India in the next few days, if so, I won’t have to deal with this crap any more.

 

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Sexism is Alive and Well in Banking Contracting

So, I decided to make some nice friends today, and have been looking at standards in banking contracting.

I see that other people have far less trouble either securing work or being promoted, despite having less relevant degrees, considerably less experience and less interest in the sector.

So, it seems we have a ‘useless boy network’ issue.  I also see from online reviews such as this one, that the problems I encountered are nothing new:

 

The Ops managers are loathsome cretins. They sack people for fun, walking them out of the office in front of everyone, and have next to no true intelligence outside of creating pivot tables. Complete and utter sociopaths.

Terrible daily rates for Case Handlers (based on the pitiful internal banking systems and poor training)

Lack of support

Terrible Team Leaders who are chosen because they’re ‘yes people.’……

Good people are abused and let go because senior members of the team are threatened by kindness and intelligence.

Advice to Management

Too many managers, not enough sense. They get paid a huge daily rate to gossip and throw people under the bus. A project in London is carrying some serious deadweight across senior management. Stop sacking 20 entry-levels in a day, and start sacking Ops Managers – useless and a drain on company resources.

 

This is a review from the same project I was working on, for the same company, however this person was situated in London in 2015.  This review is publicly available online.  It could easily be from the same office I was in.

So, we ask ourselves, given that there seems to be an element of Hurtcore/sociopathy in the very company culture, is there any hope for this industry?

Not if they carry on like this.  Anybody who has any sense will walk away.  I have been trying to get this mess fixed for four months now.  The people who did it took pleasure in it, and the people who should be in a position to fix it are only concerned about themselves.

This is not either healthy or economical, and the sooner companies realise that hiring this ‘consultancy’ company is like handing out a box of matches and a pile of their money the better.  The last one I worked for was not like this.

 

 

 

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