Monday, July 6, 2015

Long Overdue Rants

It's been a while. I'd like to say I've reasons for this, but I think the blurgh of life just gets in the way sometimes, even of my ranting time. (More fuel for future rants.) And so, here are some overdue rants that I've been storing up just for you guys. Enjoy.

Stress-ful Gelato Vs Stress-free Gelato

Ah Gelato. (Italian ice cream for those of you who live under a rock and/or don't enjoy tasty cold treats.) A delight for the taste buds. A summer miracle - of course you can get it all year round, but an especially summer treat. And usually seen as a stress free pursuit.

Unless, like hundreds of other people two weekends ago, you attended the slightly misleadingly titled 'Gelato Festival' at Spitalfields Market.

In my head this equated to lots of little stands from local Gelaterias, chains and possibly some international Gelato makers, all coming together in a bunting strewn room, competing for your custom with a huge variety of flavours and prices, and lots of charm and fun and ........

No. wait a minute. This is London. At the weekend. In the midst of a heat wave. And there is just one van from one International Gelateria - Italian of course - and there are people everywhere. And the usual market is still going on around you, so you've got angry shopkeepers not wanting you to stand in front of their stalls in case you scare away customers. And there's only about 8 flavours, at least four of which are nutty, or have oyster in them - yes, what the actual fuck - and there's barely any space to queue, which you have to do countless times:

  • To purchase a ticket/voucher for how many ice creams you'd like to purchase, at £3.50 a scoop. (Daylight robbery).
  • For each separate flavour you would like to sample, you join yet another queue. 
  • If you bought the Gelato card which bought you five scoops, a bag, a bottle of water, an espresso, a wafer and the promise of a sixth extra scoop if you voted for your favourite ice cream, you then had to queue for your freebies.
  • Then they gave you a form to fill out. A feckin' form. To vote for your favourite ice cream. I mean come on, couldn't you just have a touch screen device where you tap a button and your vote is cast? They didn't even provide pens. 
  • And then you would have had to queue again to give it in, receive an additional voucher, and then queue once more for whichever flavour you decided on. 
I mean, I'm British and so were my friends I was with, but come on, even that's too much queuing for one afternoon. 

I had purchased a Gelato card between the four of us, so we could each have one scoop, and could share the final scoop plus our free scoop. Well, that was the plan, but one guy was being an arse saying that you could only have one of any scoop with the Gelato card and that each symbol on the card corresponded to a flavour. Yet the guy on the other side that had served my friends 3 of the same flavour, because that's what they wanted, had no qualms. In the end I had to play the 'nut' card. I'm not allergic but I don't like them. So I got my assertive on, and I told him that not only had we not tried this flavour yet, but that most of the other flavours have nuts in and I don't eat nuts. Thankfully, this shut him up and he eventually granted me my white mint ice cream, which was lovely, but tainted with queues and unnecessary stress and having to get my assertive on. 

We never got out free scoop. We'd had enough of queuing for one day, and left the crowds to fight it out over the super expensive Gelato, that was actually nothing spectacular. They probably designed it this way, so that people would give up and not bother with the free scoop. Little buggers. 

Stress-ful Gelato is not the way to go. 

On the other hand I went to Vignola in North Italy, this past weekend, to visit my partner in life and crime's family. We parked the car, walked to the Gelateria (K2) bought a cone with two flavours - you can have up to three on one cone, for the same price - for 2 Euro (about £1.40). It was HUGE!!!!
And we sat on a bench in the sun, listening to busking band sing an array of chilled out covers.

Ah. Stress free Gelato. The way it should be. 

Tennis Heat Equality

Yeah! It's Wimbledon again. I love Wimbledon, and bless them they're actually getting some pretty decent weather this year, and some crazy temperatures down on the courts. So. Gender equality, I hear you cry. This should work both ways, right?

So there's this tennis heat rule thing at Wimbledon, and I'm presuming it's in force at the other grand slam tournaments, and it's starting to tick me off. The rule - if I understand it correctly - is that if the temperature on court is 41 degrees or over and a women's match goes to three sets, the women are allowed a break off court after the second set.  

Yet. There is no such rule for the men, who often have to play five sets in the same heat. Now. You either abolish the rule for women, or at least bring one in for the men too. Surely there is no physical reason why women shouldn't be able to play three sets in that heat? They are professional athletes, who more often than not, train in really hot countries anyway. I know there is a temperature at which it is deemed unsafe for anyone to play, regardless of gender, but this rule, as it stands, seems to demean and belittle women. It feels like some relic from a time when women were still considered delicate little flowers that couldn't possibly handle what a man can. Also, I feel it is harsh on the men, as the rule seems to punish and ignore them. 

Either way, it annoys me. Be fair to both sexes please. And realise it's the freakin' 21st Century. 

Ass in Door

Anyone else ever got their ass trapped in the tube door as it closed? 
No. Me either. *cough cough*
It really nips - so I've heard. 
And there's not much you can do other than hide your yelp of shock pain and continue to ignore everyone on there and pretend nothing happened. 
I've had a bag strap and coat sleeve trapped in there before, but never an ass cheek. 
First time for everything, as they say. 
Not that this happened. I'm just warning you that it could do. 


I seem to have lost the ability to remember dates, which is particularly unhelpful when writing multiple music letters for your summer music classes, to different schools, that I teach on different days. 

Twice I have tried to tell parents at my Wednesday schools, that lessons will take place on Wednesdays, despite having written Monday dates down. Twice! I'm losing it. My marbles are so scattered. 

And now I have to write multiple apology emails, hopefully with the correct dates on them. Doh!

This is also the week when I addressed a parent email to the child instead of the parent. Luckily the parent didn't seem to mind that a complete nutter is teaching his kid. He sent a smiley face in response. To be honest, I'm shocked that's the first time it's happened. 

And so, end of rants for now. Thank you for reading and enjoy the sun while it lasts. 

Remember, stress free Gelato is the only way to go, and make sure your ass is fully in the tube car before the doors close. 

Happy Monday - or is it Wednesday? I don't know. What date is it? AHHHHHHH!


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