Reasons to Be Cheerful Urgently Needed

The one element missing from the government’s slogan to promote care during the pandemic is the phrase ‘that means you’.

Thus wash hands, keep your distance, protect the NHS needs a final element ‘THAT MEANS YOU’. It worked during the enlistment phase of world wars viz. ‘Your country needs you’. Hopefully those with second homes in the country will stay put at their first home, party animals can avoid parties, social groups can think before they gather. That really does mean you.

Have been having a battle with things mechanical lately. A replacement extractor fan for the bathroom started to sound like your average diesel powered fan in hotel bathroom. It was duly replaced – very promptly by the supplier = full marks, but the replacement lasted just two weeks before the rumbling began. Bad batch thought I, maybe the manufacturer’s tech support can advise. Nope they had never heard of the symptom, suggest replace the replacement. In frustration managed to dismantle the fan, add a drop of light oil to the impeller shaft and the squealing disappeared. The dismantling was very straightforward and can be carried out by anyone, no tools required. A pity the tech help at the manufacturers don’t pay a little more attention and maybe, maybe the goods inward inspection of stock from China should batch bench test the fan?

Next for the tech review is the replacement Black and Decker hand held ‘hoover’. These are guaranteed for 2 years and fail ( three samples so far) after 2 years 2 months. The performance is ideal hence the dedication. But reading customer reviews most have jammed on/off switches or failed charging circuits. Batteries are not replaceable thus despite all other functions working perfectly the vacuum is a bin job. Removing the batteries as recommended before recycling is no mean feat and requires more dedication. Apart from that it is a handy device, once you accept it has a 2 year lifespan. The one real operational downside is the thing operates with an horrendous high scream.

Reasons to be cheerful are a tad spartan of late. There is a constant need to censor the news to edit the constant flow of journalistic points scoring to derive the worst case scenario, BBC drama has also fallen into an abyss of gloom. Whist our pandemic sprits are low it appear no one at the Beeb had any training in propaganda. News is dire, drama such as “Serpent” is dire and blow me if that old favourite “Holby City” has degenerated from a light hearted hospital story line (if that can ever exist) to that reflecting the true gritty experience of the front line nursing in a pandemic. Factual it may be, but another reminder of gloom and doom, do we need that? I doubt if any front line hospital staff need reminding of the awful role they are required to play out.

Alistair Owens

The meandering thoughts of someone with too much time on his hands. Tending to see the obscure and irrelevant in most events I have been forced to record this by family members as a means of diverting attention away from them. But I see their plan.

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