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~misfit~
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      02-02-2013
Somewhere on teh intarwebs nospam wrote:
> On Fri, 25 Jan 2013 21:13:19 +1300, Peter Huebner
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> In article <kdt2tt$gls$(E-Mail Removed)>, http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed)
>> says...
>>>
>>> I have a meeting with W&I coming up in a week or so to re-assess my
>>> eligibility for the 'special benefit' (read: reduce it even
>>> further) so I'll raise the issue of getting a house-cleaner in for
>>> an hour a week minimum to vacuum my carpets as I simply can't do it
>>> any more. We won't even talk about the black mould on the walls
>>> and ceilings of the 'wet areas' of the house that I can no longer
>>> clean off! :-/ --
>>> /Shaun.

>>
>> Gods, I am appalled that there isn't better support available for
>> you. I am pretty sure that in our area (Hokianga) the hospital would
>> send someone around to clean and help a few hours a week. Have you
>> tried talking to your community nurse if there's something available
>> in your area?
>>
>> The social security net seems to be gnawed at and whittled away bit
>> by bit by our beloved neo-con political gasbags.

>
> I am also appalled.


That makes three of us. :-/

> Maybe Shaun could post back here and tell us how his meeting with Work
> & Income worked out.


I haven't had it yet. I'm stretching it out to close to the cut-off date as,
not long afer I wrote this I got the forms to also renew / reassess my
eligibility for the Invlaid's Benefit. That requires a(nother!) doctor's
visit and form filling out. I couldn't get in to see my GP before Tuesday
next, and will book my W&I interrogation after that.

> I would like to know
> 1. Do the Doctors and W&I believe the pain levels and disability you
> have?


That's a two-part question so I'll address it as such IYDM? It's hard to
make this short though... I'll try. Firstly "the doctors"....

Up until mid-2010 I'd been with the same GP for a decade. I was getting
increasingly frustrated with my situation. I felt that I wasn't being
listened to, by either my GP or by the (few) specialists I'd seen in that
time. Consequently I requested my medical records from the practice. I was
told that SOP was they forward them to the new GP - and where was I going? I
said it was undecided so I'd like them myself. They didn't like the idea of
a patient having access to their records but complied after I mentioned the
Freedom of Information act. :-/ I shouldn't have had to do that IMO.

On reading them (and between the lines - as I now know you need to do with
correspondence between medical professionals) it became clear why I'd been
treated as I had. The introduction letters my GP was sending out were along
the lines of "presents with apparent pain" and "constantly asks for stronger
pain medication".... It's no wonder that I got treated like I did. One
specialist who I saw in about 2002, widely regarded as one of the best
orthopedic surgeons in NZ treated me particularly badly.

When I visited him he talked for a while, then go me to lie on my back and
he extended my legs, asking me to tell him to stop when it became painful.
He stood at the foot of the 'bed' and lifted a leg, resting it on his
shoulder. It pinched and hurt like quite a lot at about 40 and I told him
so. He stopped there and held it, talking to me for a minute or so. Then he
quickly leaned forwards lifting my leg much higher and causing excruciating
pain (which caused me to limp badly for a week).

I'm a man who had been used to untreated chronic pain - and incidents that
caused pain so intense I'd drop to my knees, even in public - so I didn't
scream like a girl and punch him in the face. Instead I said "ouch" and he
patted me on the shoulder. His report (which I'd not seen until then) said
that "he said he was in pain when my leg was lifted to 40 but, when he was
distracted it could be lifted to more than 60".

So anyway towards the end of 2010 I was looking for a better GP. I asked my
pharmacist - an excellent healthcare professional - who he thought were good
GPs in Pukekohe. He only gave me two names but it turned out one had handed
in his notice and the other was only a few years from retirement and wasn't
taking new patients. When I expressed my frustration to the shrink I
happened to be seeing at the time (depression, anxiety issues) he mentioned
a GP he'd met from Pukekohe who he said seemed competent.

She turned out to be far more than that. She'd postponed university to have
children and, when they'd left home she'd returned and became a doctor. She
was newly-qualified and in her mid/late 40s. She did what no other GP had
done for me since my accident - pushed ACC and, with the help of a
specialist got them to do an MRI. On getting the results the specialist says
that I shouldn't be mowing lawns, vacuuming etc. but acknowledges that there
aren't many options...

Unfortunately for me after six months with that GP she got a better job
offer in Auckland - where she lived - and so she left. The one I'm seeing
now is OK... FWIW here are a couple of images from my MRI.

The first pretty much shows the extent of the injury (as of two years ago).
It shows the badly damaged lower disc which has ruptured and lost over 50%
of it's fluid. Also the first 'fused vertebra' at the top of my pelvis is
broken and out of place, resulting in my spine being out-of-line at that
point by 1.2cm. What is less obvious is the disc above it is also ruptured
but backwards instead of forwards - resulting on pressure on the spinal
nerve

http://test.internet-webmaster.de/upload/1298068953.jpg

The second shows how the nerves for my lower extremeties are pinched where
they exit the spinal column - causing all sorts of issues with my legs.

http://test.internet-webmaster.de/upload/1298068978.jpg

It seems that my only (govt. funded) option is a spinal fusion operation
which has a 50% chance of making things worse and that none of the
specialists I've seen recommends - And I don't have the funds to do anything
else.

As to whether W&I believe the levels of pain and disability I suffer - I
couldn't honestly tell you. Frankly I don't think they care. All they seem
to care about is paying me as little as they can get away with.

> 2. Is shared accommodation a possibility?


I guess - although, with my psych issues I have trouble relaxing (hah!) when
other people are around. Also for most of my life I've had a preferece for
living alone. I've never minded having visitors and I used to socialise a
lot - but at he end of the day I need my tranquility. Also I've got a
room-and-a-half full of hoarded 'junk' (old audio equipment, a collection of
IBM ThinkPads, most of which require working on to get them going...) to
keep me busy (as if I ever get the.... energy and low-pain time to do it). I
keep them as I can't afford 'entertainment' so I have 'stuff' to keep me
entertained - keep my mind busy.

A couple of times in desperation I've advertised for boarders but it seems
the only people interested in living in this part of town are people who I
wouldn't want in my home. <shrug>

Sorry for the long-winded reply but it's not something I could have
adequately explained in a few sentences.

Cheers,
--
/Shaun.

"Humans will have advanced a long, long, way when religious belief has a
cozy little classification in the DSM."
David Melville (in r.a.s.f1)


 
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nospam
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      02-02-2013
On Sat, 2 Feb 2013 19:27:09 +1300, "~misfit~"
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>
>Sorry for the long-winded reply but it's not something I could have
>adequately explained in a few sentences.
>


Didn't take long to read and thanks for replying. I too have had some
bad experiences with specialists and skeptical doctors but not quite
like yours.

Maybe there's some people in Auckland reading this who have enough
humanity to take some notice. In Christchurch we have an organization
called Lifelinks
http://www.lifelinks.co.nz/Default.aspx
and you sound like a classic case for help from an organization like
them. I don't know if there's something like this in Auckland. I
will call them on Monday to find out. In Christchurch they help
people with disabilities and mental health issues to get together in
shared accommodation. I too live by myself and wish I didn't so I
have an idea how you feel. Anyway, I hope you can post back here if
W&I don't give you better help. You can gmail me at shane dot 2471958
if you want.
 
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~misfit~
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-02-2013
Somewhere on teh intarwebs nospam wrote:
> On Sat, 2 Feb 2013 19:27:09 +1300, "~misfit~"
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> Sorry for the long-winded reply but it's not something I could have
>> adequately explained in a few sentences.

>
> Didn't take long to read and thanks for replying. I too have had some
> bad experiences with specialists and skeptical doctors but not quite
> like yours.


Yeah sucks huh? Sorry to hear about your problems.With mine, for the first
three or four years after my injury I got into the habit of going to a
chiropractor every time it 'went out', about three times a year. It got
harder and harder to 'pop back in', until I was told they couldn't help me
any more. (Turns out that would have been about when enough of the disc
fluid had leaked out and been absorbed so that there wasn't enough disc
left.)

Following that I finally had to accept that I couldn't keep my business
going - It'd already gone from going really well to barely ticking over. By
the time that was sorted I'd lost my life's savings and my equity in the
house. As it was about four years from accident to getting serious about
pain relief (and a benefit) that may have influenced how I was dealt with.
<shrug> I didn't stop work straight away, I really tried to keep going until
I had to accept I couldn't. If I'd accepted it sooner I *might* have been
able to get out with a few dollars and there wouldn't have been a break of a
few years (from a medical point of view - as they don't liase with
chiropracters) from three months after injury to me saying I couldn't work.

> Maybe there's some people in Auckland reading this who have enough
> humanity to take some notice. In Christchurch we have an organization
> called Lifelinks
> http://www.lifelinks.co.nz/Default.aspx
> and you sound like a classic case for help from an organization like
> them.


Looks interesting. At this stage I only really need W&I to realise that I
need a few more $$ a week (my benefit hasn't gone up for years - the
opposite in fact) and some help with the housework. Perhaps a couple
two-hour stints a week or so - that should do it.

> I don't know if there's something like this in Auckland. I
> will call them on Monday to find out. In Christchurch they help
> people with disabilities and mental health issues to get together in
> shared accommodation. I too live by myself and wish I didn't so I
> have an idea how you feel. Anyway, I hope you can post back here if
> W&I don't give you better help. You can gmail me at shane dot 2471958
> if you want.


Thanks mate.
--
/Shaun.

"Humans will have advanced a long, long, way when religious belief has a
cozy little classification in the DSM."
David Melville (in r.a.s.f1)


 
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~misfit~
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-26-2013
Somewhere on teh intarwebs nospam wrote:
> On Fri, 25 Jan 2013 21:13:19 +1300, Peter Huebner
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>> In article <kdt2tt$gls$(E-Mail Removed)>, (E-Mail Removed)
>> says...
>>> I have a meeting with W&I coming up in a week or so to re-assess my
>>> eligibility for the 'special benefit' (read: reduce it even
>>> further) so I'll raise the issue of getting a house-cleaner in for
>>> an hour a week minimum to vacuum my carpets as I simply can't do it
>>> any more. We won't even talk about the black mould on the walls
>>> and ceilings of the 'wet areas' of the house that I can no longer
>>> clean off! :-/ --

>>
>> Gods, I am appalled that there isn't better support available for
>> you. I am pretty sure that in our area (Hokianga) the hospital would
>> send someone around to clean and help a few hours a week. Have you
>> tried talking to your community nurse if there's something available
>> in your area?
>>
>> The social security net seems to be gnawed at and whittled away bit
>> by bit by our beloved neo-con political gasbags.

>
> I am also appalled.
>
> Maybe Shaun could post back here and tell us how his meeting with Work
> & Income worked out.


Hi guys. There's SFA traffic in here right now so I may as well answer this.

My benefit was *reduced* by $10/week!

Apparently I was put on the 'Special Benefit' a few years (before National
got their teeth into the rules) back when I needed to get into fairly large
debt to buy the new, very firm bed that I'd been being told for a decade I
needed (to replace the saggy thing I bought second-hand over 20 years ago).
Also I had a potential job at Mahurangi Technical Institute, teaching short
courses on aquarium fish care and maintenance to petshop staff, an NZQA
thing that they need.

Anyway, if I was to teach it I had to hold the certs myself (NZQA
requirement), even though a lot of the staff there know me from my previous
life as an ornamental fish breeder and captive aquatic environments
consultant. I still needed to hold the certs (which are so basic compared to
what I used to do). MTI gave me a significant discount but it still cost me
a chunk of dosh.

So I paid for the courses and was granted the certs courtesy of 'current
competency (after an hour or so of answering random questions from each
exam - rather than doing the full courses). I hoped that with a new bed, a
course of Transforminal Epidural Steroid Injections (TFESI) over a few
months and a different med regime that I'd be able to do the job. (I was
told it was mine if I felt I could do it. Most of the guys in the key
positions at MTI have had previous dealings with me and were keen to bring
me on-board.)

Man, I was hoping that it would work! To be able to get back into my chosen
field, on a reasonable wage - and not be reliant on the soulless W&I machine
for income. A dream - that stayed a dream. If anything my back got worse
after the TFESI - partly due to the fact that it reduced my pain
considerably for ~6 weeks at a time and, during those times, although I
tried not to, I 'over-did it' trying to catch up on things that had been let
slide for years. So, when the TFESI wore off I was in more pain than before!

Also, as was explained to me afterwards, if I'd had the course earlier, when
there was still fluid in my ruptured discs (and no 'osteophytes', bony
growths where my back's tried to fuse that part of my spine to immobilise
the affected area over the last decade-and-a-half), my spine could have been
re-aligned. As it is..... Eh!

Anyway it seems that I no longer qualify for this Special Benefit (my
understanding is that it's been redacted, it no longer exists) even though I
still have over half of the debt incurred at that time (and I've not been
frivolous, I hate debt and have been paying it as best and as fast as I
reasonably could). It seems that I was still getting the 'extra' to the tune
of $40/week and they wanted to stop it all. However, after me gathering much
documentation, having several meetings and essentially begging (for my life)
they agreed to reduce it in four $10 stages over two years, every six
months[*].

So now I'm basically fooked. Death by four cuts? I have some pretty certs
that I could hang on the walls (and a bunch of credits at a website), I got
an MRI, some procedures and a chance to see a better class of specialist...
But my back's no better (worse actually) - and I owe a bunch of money. I
tried... I really tried to find something that I could do, a way to get off
a benefit and into work. (Hence the debt - I was being as positive as I
could, looking at it as an investment in my future.) Alas, the only way I
could teach that class for more than an hour a day would be if I were
medicated to the point where I couldn't teach the class... My own Catch 22.
[*]My latest doctor's eval states that I won't need to be reassessed for
between two and three years. Options were; a) Less than 6 months b) 6 to
12 months c) 1 to 2 years d) 2 to 3 years e) permanent (never
reassess).

My GP said that although my injury's irreversible and permanent if e) is
ticked then it makes me ineligible for certain future funding of medical
procedures or treatments - even if they might benefit me and/or reduce my
pain etc. Consequently I'm classified as d) reassess in 2 to 3 years.

Anyway, thanks for your sympathies Peter and Shane. There's the requested
report of what happened...

Now, back to the ones and zeros......
--
/Shaun.

"Humans will have advanced a long, long, way when religious belief has a
cozy little classification in the DSM."
David Melville (in r.a.s.f1)


 
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Bruce Sinclair
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-27-2013
In article <kghal8$c02$(E-Mail Removed)>, "~misfit~" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
(snip horror story)

>So now I'm basically fooked. Death by four cuts? I have some pretty certs
>that I could hang on the walls (and a bunch of credits at a website), I got
>an MRI, some procedures and a chance to see a better class of specialist...
>But my back's no better (worse actually) - and I owe a bunch of money. I
>tried... I really tried to find something that I could do, a way to get off
>a benefit and into work. (Hence the debt - I was being as positive as I
>could, looking at it as an investment in my future.) Alas, the only way I
>could teach that class for more than an hour a day would be if I were
>medicated to the point where I couldn't teach the class... My own Catch 22.
>
>[*]My latest doctor's eval states that I won't need to be reassessed for
>between two and three years. Options were; a) Less than 6 months b) 6 to
>12 months c) 1 to 2 years d) 2 to 3 years e) permanent (never
>reassess).
>
>My GP said that although my injury's irreversible and permanent if e) is
>ticked then it makes me ineligible for certain future funding of medical
>procedures or treatments - even if they might benefit me and/or reduce my
>pain etc. Consequently I'm classified as d) reassess in 2 to 3 years.
>
>Anyway, thanks for your sympathies Peter and Shane. There's the requested
>report of what happened...
>
>Now, back to the ones and zeros......


That's as sucky as a sucky thing can be.

Care to say (privately if you like) how much your debt is ? I'm thinking we
could take up a collection to help out a helper.




 
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Frank Williams
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-27-2013
On Wed, 27 Feb 2013 00:03:34 GMT,
(E-Mail Removed) (Bruce Sinclair)
wrote:

>In article <kghal8$c02$(E-Mail Removed)>, "~misfit~" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>(snip horror story)
>
>>So now I'm basically fooked. Death by four cuts? I have some pretty certs
>>that I could hang on the walls (and a bunch of credits at a website), I got
>>an MRI, some procedures and a chance to see a better class of specialist...
>>But my back's no better (worse actually) - and I owe a bunch of money. I
>>tried... I really tried to find something that I could do, a way to get off
>>a benefit and into work. (Hence the debt - I was being as positive as I
>>could, looking at it as an investment in my future.) Alas, the only way I
>>could teach that class for more than an hour a day would be if I were
>>medicated to the point where I couldn't teach the class... My own Catch 22.
>>
>>[*]My latest doctor's eval states that I won't need to be reassessed for
>>between two and three years. Options were; a) Less than 6 months b) 6 to
>>12 months c) 1 to 2 years d) 2 to 3 years e) permanent (never
>>reassess).
>>
>>My GP said that although my injury's irreversible and permanent if e) is
>>ticked then it makes me ineligible for certain future funding of medical
>>procedures or treatments - even if they might benefit me and/or reduce my
>>pain etc. Consequently I'm classified as d) reassess in 2 to 3 years.
>>
>>Anyway, thanks for your sympathies Peter and Shane. There's the requested
>>report of what happened...
>>
>>Now, back to the ones and zeros......

>
>That's as sucky as a sucky thing can be.
>
>Care to say (privately if you like) how much your debt is ? I'm thinking we
>could take up a collection to help out a helper.
>
>
>



Plus me on the list I have a double slipped Disk and 2 Cortisone Jabs
have not help, but I fort ACC and won, plus I get the independence
allowance some $3000+ for 5 years on my second 5Y one now.


 
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~misfit~
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      02-27-2013
Somewhere on teh intarwebs Bruce Sinclair wrote:
> In article <kghal8$c02$(E-Mail Removed)>, "~misfit~"
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote: (snip horror story)
>
>> So now I'm basically fooked. Death by four cuts? I have some pretty
>> certs that I could hang on the walls (and a bunch of credits at a
>> website), I got an MRI, some procedures and a chance to see a better
>> class of specialist... But my back's no better (worse actually) -
>> and I owe a bunch of money. I tried... I really tried to find
>> something that I could do, a way to get off a benefit and into work.
>> (Hence the debt - I was being as positive as I could, looking at it
>> as an investment in my future.) Alas, the only way I could teach
>> that class for more than an hour a day would be if I were medicated
>> to the point where I couldn't teach the class... My own Catch 22.
>>
>>[*]My latest doctor's eval states that I won't need to be reassessed
>> for between two and three years. Options were; a) Less than 6 months
>> b) 6 to 12 months c) 1 to 2 years d) 2 to 3 years e) permanent
>> (never reassess).
>>
>> My GP said that although my injury's irreversible and permanent if
>> e) is ticked then it makes me ineligible for certain future funding
>> of medical procedures or treatments - even if they might benefit me
>> and/or reduce my pain etc. Consequently I'm classified as d)
>> reassess in 2 to 3 years.
>>
>> Anyway, thanks for your sympathies Peter and Shane. There's the
>> requested report of what happened...
>>
>> Now, back to the ones and zeros......

>
> That's as sucky as a sucky thing can be.
>
> Care to say (privately if you like) how much your debt is ? I'm
> thinking we
> could take up a collection to help out a helper.


Hi Bruce. Yeah, sucky is right. I still owe around five grand. It was over
seven two and-a-half years ago, right after I'd got the bed and quals. So,
'til now I've been able to pay off around a grand a year. The trouble is
last year alone it cost me nearly a grand just to service the debt ($949
actually).

I've managed to stay on-target paying it off despite the first $10/week
reduction last September. (I figured that, if I didn't get a job at the end
of it all, as I'd given up smoking and just about everything else that
wasn't essential I'd be able to pay off a grand a year if I implemented
'austerity measures'. Mind you, that was calculated before there was a large
jump in inflation and assuming my benefit would increase inline with
inflation. Instead it's reduced.)

However there's no way I'll be able to keep up paying it off at that rate
now. With the second cut in place and the next less than six months away
I'll probably be lucky to be able to even pay the interest. It's split
between two low-interest credit cards and, once or twice when I had
high-expense months last year I had to pay some off one with the other. (As
the minimum monthly payments are at least double the interest I can get away
with that in a pinch - I hate it though.)

Sorry mate, I hate to bleat - I'll try to keep it to myself in future. The
only reason I've mentioned it here from time-to-time is it's never far from
the front of my mind - it can be hard to concentrate on a post when you're
stressed out over meeting the bills. This *isn't* where I saw myself being
at 51.

Cheers,
--
/Shaun.

"Humans will have advanced a long, long, way when religious belief has a
cozy little classification in the DSM."
David Melville (in r.a.s.f1)


 
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Bruce Sinclair
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Posts: n/a
 
      02-28-2013
In article <kgk8aj$ukc$(E-Mail Removed)>, "~misfit~" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
(snip)

>Sorry mate, I hate to bleat - I'll try to keep it to myself in future. The
>only reason I've mentioned it here from time-to-time is it's never far from
>the front of my mind - it can be hard to concentrate on a post when you're
>stressed out over meeting the bills. This *isn't* where I saw myself being
>at 51.


At a similar 56, all I can offer by typing is ...
there but for the grace of the big spaggetti monster ...

Nil illegitimus carborundum.

Loosely (and probably badly) translated ... don't let the bastards grind you
down. I still want that T shirt.


 
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~misfit~
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      02-28-2013
Somewhere on teh intarwebs Bruce Sinclair wrote:
> In article <kgk8aj$ukc$(E-Mail Removed)>, "~misfit~"
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote: (snip)
>
>> Sorry mate, I hate to bleat - I'll try to keep it to myself in
>> future. The only reason I've mentioned it here from time-to-time is
>> it's never far from the front of my mind - it can be hard to
>> concentrate on a post when you're stressed out over meeting the
>> bills. This *isn't* where I saw myself being at 51.

>
> At a similar 56, all I can offer by typing is ...
> there but for the grace of the big spaggetti monster ...


Yep, chance. A random occurance while doing something that didn't even seem
remotely dangerous changed my life forever. I went from a rising star in my
chosen field to a virtual shut-in in a nasty neighbourhood. Broke as a
destitute person who's been bankrutpted, then robbed and cursed with pain so
bad that I'm too sore to wipe my own arse if it's too soon after getting up!

> Nil illegitimus carborundum.


Heh! Yeah, a term I like lots. I actually studied Latin briefly in a British
grammar school before my parents whisked me off to live in NZ. I seem to
remember 'noli illegitimi carborundum' but it's faux-Latin anyway and I'm
accessing my memories through a haze of opiates so who cares?

> Loosely (and probably badly) translated ... don't let the bastards
> grind you
> down. I still want that T shirt.


Speaking of T shirts I think I saw a guy wearing one that I had custom
made[*] in the 80s. However I only saw it from a distance when I was driving
so I don't know if someone robbed my 'slogan' from back in my care-free
days.

On the front of mine it said "I only sleep with the best" in large letters,
underneath that, in much smaller text it said " ... but I'll shag anything".
<g>
[*] Word of the decade; 'Bespoke'. I learned it years ago, used to read it
maybe twice a year (and I used to read a *lot*) and used it myself from
time-to-time - when I thought I was in company where it would be understood.
Hell, I think that I might have gone half-a-decade once without reading or
hearing it.

(I used to have to dumb-down my.... Damn pain meds befuddle my mind...
diction? No. Vocabulary? That'll have to do, gotta wrap this up. I had
someone's female companion take exception to me using words she couldn't
understand and he was going to beat the snot out of me for 'making her feel
dumb'. I didn't say the obvious as it was plain he had an anger-management
problem and I didn't want to get into a fight. As it wasn't the first time
I'd had a negative response to me using the English language in all of it's
glory I learned to dumb it down when talking with the hoi polloi. I could
have really used an English-to-Redneck dictionary. <g>)

Anyway, back to 'bespoke'. Now I hear it weekly on TV shows, movies, news
etc. Heck, I even heard it twice in an hour the other night! Funny how words
come into fashion. Who would have forseen that 'bespoke' would become a
(relatively) common word?
--
/Shaun.

"Humans will have advanced a long, long, way when religious belief has a
cozy little classification in the DSM."
David Melville (in r.a.s.f1)


 
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JohnO
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      02-28-2013
On Thursday, 24 January 2013 12:09:18 UTC+13, Gib Bogle wrote:
<snip>

By odd coincidence we've just inherited a 'Kirby' vacuum cleaner. This think looks like it is straight from the 1950's but is near new, and apparently retails for some horrendous price (i.e. >$1k ???)

Have not powered this thing up, but it weighs a ton so definitely not recommended for you, Shaun!

It looks like it could suck a golf ball through a garden hose though.

 
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