Inflation, Lies and Watches

Hey, got a watch? (source)

Item One: A gang has robbed a luxurious shop with watches in BTC, Ljubljana’s shopping area. They’ve used mace to knock out salespeople and stole some € 80.000 worth of wrist watches.

Item Two: Prime Minister (an avid golfer) has seen it necesary to visit Croatian president (not prime minister) Stipe Mesić. They met during finals of Umag ATP tennis tournament. Janša apparently didn’t mind tennis, and their tete-a-tete seems to have been very important as its content have not yet been leaked to the press.

Item Three: Croatian Prime Minister (not president) Ivo Sanader is both a political rival of Stipe Mesić and an avid collector of rate wrist watches. His rather expensive hobby has recently drawn some extremely bad PR, as he sported watched worth several 10k euros, whereas people in Croatia are faced with increasing costs of living. Croatian oppostition has repeatedly told Sanader that “it is about time you resign” 😀

Item Four: Croatian Prime Minister and his Slovene counterpart, Ivo Sanader and Janez Janša have met yesterday during a football match between NK Domžale and NK Dinamo Zagreb. Again, the content of their confabulation remains confidential. But both PMs seem to have learned their lesson and have stopped talking shop over the phone. Dinamo Zagreb won 2:1.

I know rhese are just coincidences (more or less), but I can totally picture Janša giving Sanader one of the stolen watches saying “Sorry honey! I know I shouldn’t have been with Stipe. Here. I brought you a little something…

But on a slightly more serious note: Inflation in Slovenia has risen a staggering 2,9 percent from January to July inclusive. In period from July 06 to July 07 there was an even bigger jump in prices – 3,8 percent. At the same time Ministry of Finance has said that everthing is cool and that public spending is being decreased. Which is in stark contradiction with a decision reached a month ago, to increase the budget deficit. So, who’s lying, eh?

It’s just amazing how incompetent aparatchiks can fuck up what others have put together for a decade and a half.

The Joys of Customer Service

Me, yesterday (source)

The Firm™ has had an unusual increase in net-connection failuers over the last 14 days. After a week of so of constant “Turn off cable modem. Unplug. Wait 10 seconds. Recconect. Turn on. Reestablish connections” I finally gave up and called customer service of Ljubljanski kabel, our cable operator. Now, any self-respecting quasi-IT specialist will tell you that is the near-ultimate insult, because we can fix everything.

But fair’s fair and I must admit that LK’s customer service has been quite up to standards. I’ve dealt with them on a couple of occasions (like fixing a friend’s net connection) and they’ve performed admirably. For a customer service, that is. But this time it went like this:

(after being on hold for eternity, because “your call is 27th in line“)

Pengovsky: “Hi! I was wondering if you could help me. My cable modem keeps disconnecting at irregular intervals and claims that it cannot find the DHCP server”

Ljubljanski kabel: “Let me check..(tapping the keybord)… Hmmm, you do have an unusually high number of reconnects. Are you sure your firewall is set up properly?

P: “Yes….”

LK: “How about antivirus software ?”

P: “What about it?”

LK: “It could be causing problems…”

P: “Well, I’ve been using the same SW for years now and all was well until now.”

LK: “Sir, I suggest you chech your computer, because everything is normal on our side”

P: “Uh, oh…. What?”

LK: Click!

P: “Pička ti materina zahojena!!!” (translate yourself)

A week passes by and Pengovsky is none the wiser. Having checked, re-checked and re-re-checked the computer, read every motherfuckin’ forum entry about it on the net and in general doing everything short of transferring data from one server to another in a grocery bag, I start suspecting the cable modem again. The daily routine becomes dangerously familiar to the one described at the beggining and yesterday I make the call again. A different person on the other side:

P: “Hi, I called last week about my cable modem disconnecting and not being able to find the DHCP server”

LK: “Lemme check, sir… (again, the familiar sound of tapping the keyboard)… Sir, are you still using the old Thompson modems”

P: “Well, no one bothered to show up with a replacement for five years now, so I guess it is kindda old”

LK: “These modems are no longer compatible with our network. I’ll send someone with a replacement modem tomorrow morning, sir.”

P: “You do that.”

LK: “Thank you” Click

P: “Pička vam materina….Ti boš men govoru da je bil računalnik, mamicu ti jebem….” (again, translate yourself)

And now, in an hour or so, I’m expecting a new modem. Until then, it’s “Turn off cable modem. Unplug. Wait 10 seconds. Recconect. Turn on. Reestablish connections