An extra instalment for your perusal. Incandescent does not even begin to do justice to my state of agitation and disbelief.
I have just been to sign-on. I explained, with some pleasure, that I had succeeded at last in getting a job to start in the New Year. I was told, as I had indeed expected, that if I wanted to continue to receive my NI credits I would need to continue signing-on until the new job actually started. A minor inconvenience, but rules is rules. Then the bombshell. An interview has been arranged for me with a careers advisor next week. This, I was told, is in order for me to receive advice on how to go about getting a job. I feel the need for a verbatim record of the exchange.
“Oh, well that’s kind. But obviously it would be a silly waste of everyone’s time in the circumstances, wouldn’t it?”
“Well, you still have to come.”
“But why? What use will it be for me, or for you?”
“I’m sorry, but you have to come to see the advisor, and if you refuse you will have your benefit stopped.”
“But you don’t pay me any benefit! We’ve been here before.” (See an earlier post for details.)
“We give you NI credits, so you have to come.”
“How much is it costing for me to have to come – not even at my normal signing-on time – to see an advisor for advice I palpably don’t need.”
“That’s not the point.”
“But it is the point. That’s why unemployment costs us all so much. Why can’t you use your common sense, and realise that in these circumstances what you are asking me to do is silly, and a waste of time and money.”
“There’s no need to be aggressive.”
“You think that’s aggressive? It’s aggressive for me to ask you to use your intelligence?”
“I’ll ask my manager if an exception can be made.”
A slight pause.
“No, you have to come because the regulations say you must.”
“Could you please raise my concern and incredulity formally in some way. It’s not acceptable for you to hide behind rules that defy simple common sense!”
“You’ve made your point several times, sir, and I must now ask you to leave.”
“Will you convey my frustration and dismay?”
“Please leave now, or I will have to call the security guard.”
I think my blood pressure has returned to normal now, but my sense of frustration remains as potent as ever. What a load of fatuous bollocks.