Almost time for launch

This morning I related my conversation from yesterday to a colleague. “Well, you don’t have any EQ” she said.

I had the last laugh, because only people who don’t have any EQ would be confident in making bold statements about other people lacking EQ.

Oh, hang on. That’s not right…
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I’m not the guy you think I am

I get adverts piped straight into my Gmail inbox these days, hot piping adverts based on deductions Google has made about me. Delicious, highly relevant ads, like, well, like this one:
This is not typical dating website
I’m pretty sure this is not typical dating site. It may even be not a typical dating website. It’s a shame that Google hasn’t figured out that I’ve been married for the past five years, but then maybe our Automated Overlords in Mountain View figure there’s a five-and-a-half-year-itch to scratch. My wife wasn’t too pleased to see the dead-eyed ladies staring out from my inbox, and although I explained it’s probably because I went to a postgres database site 4 years ago and ever since have been classified as “sad-sack, can’t get a date” by the Internet, she still seemed to think it was my fault. All I wanted was a better understanding of page swap techniques, not a procession of ladies of indeterminate virtue.
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I love you so please shut up

First, a history lesson:

There is no such thing as a bad idea on the internet, just an idea that isn’t ready yet.  Back in 2000, Urbanfetch and Kozmo both had the same idea – (similar to the point that one sued the other) that you could make money by delivering things to people as quickly as possible after they’d paid for them on a website.

Unfortunately, as quickly as possible and as quickly as you can afford don’t always overlap, and although there were a certain number of internet-connected, cash rich time poor individuals in London at the turn of the century, they didn’t live close enough together to Urbanfetch’s distribution centres and they didn’t spend often enough to keep these companies from going out of business.  Which is the longwinded way of me saying damn it, Urbanfetch, I still want that carton of ice cream and Leaving Las Vegas DVD* I ordered from you 16 years ago, that never turned up.

But ideas don’t die; they just wait until there are sufficient people online and close enough to one another that the network effects mount up and make their execution feasible. Which was why late last year, Deliveroo launched in Singapore and (so far so good) have not gone bust with a business model that consisted of transporting hot food from restaurant to person-with-a-smartphone, when Urbanfetch couldn’t even manage it with bags of peanuts and ice cream a decade and a half ago.
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Nervous flyer

I have a flight at 2am tomorrow morning to Tokyo. That’s not the bad bit. The bad bit is that I’m flying with JAL, and JAL have the most aggravating website I’ve used for some time. It’s impossible for me to check in online, which means it’s impossible for me to get out of the aisle seat that’s been assigned to me, when the one thing I want to do if I’m flying on a 2am flight is to get myself a window seat so I don’t have to be disturbed for the whole flight and can sleep in peace.
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Some minor frustrations

I had been planning to go for a run this evening, but what with not leaving the office until 7, and then having to feed and water the kids, and after La Serpiente went to sleep at 9, going back to the office to scan in some forms that I need for Destroyer’s insurance claim, and then coming home and losing half an hour of my life trying to log into my Paypal account, and only then getting a phone call from a client and spending another half hour setting the world to rights, it got to 11:45 in the evening without me feeling I’d really had a moment to myself.

But on the positive side, it’s been more than 24 hours without a vomitting incident, and I haven’t lapsed and eaten another Terry’s Chocolate Orange. Yet.
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Lost in the ether

I wrote a specification document about a month ago for a friend who wanted to do some analysis of some regulations in a country a long way away. I sent it to him, went off on holiday, and never heard anything back.

Well, I thought, that was a little bit disappointing, but perhaps he was too busy or too polite to say what a pile of steaming ordure I’d sent him.

Then this evening he emailed me to ask me if I was going to write up the document we’d spoken about.

I checked my outbox. Unsent. I checked my drafts. The first quarter of a long and carefully written email was there, and the rest was gone, gone forever.

Enraged, I began to type again, trying to rediscover that which I’d once been so certain of.
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What we talk about when we talk about loss

My wife lost her phone today. She still had the ability to communicate with me because I read all my email on my phone, so she could cajole and plead with me to call her phone to help her find it. I rang it repeatedly to no avail, and eventually when I came home from work, rather than lie on the sofa slothfully for an hour or two, ruminating upon the day and occasionally begging La Serpiente not to punch me in the face, the whole family decamped to the supermarket to see if she’d left her phone amongst the frozen peas this afternoon.
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