Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Cold Comfort

It has been a busy few days. On top of the tail end of our building work, I have had to mop up leaks, move half our furniture to pull up carpets, and also deal with insurance companies, neighbours and tradesmen who may or may not have any liability insurance. As well as have discussions with script editors about why it is OK to show a cartoon character's head being blown off on children's television, but another character simply dying is a bit odd. (I agreed with him, but couldn't quite put my finger on why.)

I was absolutely starving last night (my girlfriend is not around to cook for me on Tuesdays and Thursdays), so I just put a frozen ready meal in the oven and set about my last job – writing a letter to Homebase explaining why they are idiots.

It was a long letter (of the five things that I ordered from them, one was missing, one was scratched and two were just completely wrong – to be fair to them the shower screen is great, so well done on the 20% customer satisfaction rating), but just as I was signing off with a flourish of hate-filled invective the oven beeped. Perfect timing – everything in the flat was being sorted out, and now I could cue up a recorded Grand Designs (always nice to see other people having a worse time than me), get out a lap tray and relax.

I prodded the lasagne. Something was not quite right about it. I am not a very good cook, but even I can tell the difference between “piping hot” and “still frozen”. I peered inside the fan oven. As far as I could tell it seemed to be doing only 50% of its job description. I couldn't fault the “fan”-ing side of things, but there was definite room for improvement in the “oven”-ing area. It is a while since I studied thermodynamics, but I'm pretty sure that my meal would be past its use by date long before I managed to cook it by blowing cold air at it.

I put down my knife and fork, switched off the television and looked up the phone numbers of a takeaway and an oven repairers.