Buildaburger Conference 29 May 2014 – How British Is One?


Chicken fillet burger with cheese, spicy tomato sauce and chips (but no bacon)

It’s been a week of frustrations and failures. Mostly not of one’s own making, but that is no consolation.

Here are the culprits: UK Independence Party (UKIP), The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), One Insurance Solutions, UK Mail, Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) , The Conservatives (as always) and, of course, the British Weather.

Also, to a much lesser degree one hopes, yours truly.

Everyone knows British people don’t like to complain and one is no exception. However, needs must when the devil farts in one’s face.

One has already waxed lyrical about the failures of UKIP and one will not repeat that now.

However, one’s wife is second-generation immigrant of cliché-reinforcing, hot-blooded mediterranean stock. People think one is unforgiving but, believe one, once that particular Greek-Cypriot Kraken wakes, one had better seek cover.

She made an official complaint to the BBC because of the biassed coverage of the local and European elections. Like her, one used to view the BBC as the gold-standard of journalism but, in one’s case, not since the coverage of Margaret Thatcher’s funeral. That was a truly depressing moment when one realised that the BBC was misrepresenting public opinion. The eulogising of Margaret Thatcher, the most divisive and socially destructive politician in modern British history, was an unforgivable transgression. They had their chance and they blew it.

Later in the week, One Insurance Solutions (doesn’t one hate that use of the word “solution”?) provided one with public liability insurance for an imminent freelance job but somehow managed to charge one an unrelated random amount, almost twice the quoted figure. The representative one spoke to called one back immediately and rectified the mistake, but having issued the request for payment from one’s bank, the incorrect amount is now not available for one to draw upon. However, it’s just not available. It doesn’t appear on one’s statement, it’s just lost in the ether until whichever time RBS see fit to update one’s accounts.

It’s not the first time that RBS have royally fucked up one’s finances and one will be leaving RBS as as soon as possible. On at least two occasions previously they have taken standing orders out of one’s account several days early, leaving one with nothing to draw upon. One would be happy to drive that particular irreplaceable talent, so beloved of George Osborne, to the airport oneself.

One didn’t complain exactly, but one told One Insurance Solutions to feedback that this was an unacceptable mistake to make, and it could lead one being excessively indebted when it was not one’s own fault.

Next, UK Mail perpetrated a monumental failure by posting two cards through one’s door claiming to have delivered a parcel that they had not. One originally thought that the two cards were for different parcels.


One feels a little foolish having not checked the card numbers on their website for delivery details, but why would one? The cards said they had delivered the parcel(s). One contacted the company via Twitter, but so far they have ignored one’s request for reimbursement of the surcharge for redelivery. I am familiar with the technique of just ignoring something in the hope that it will go away, and I think they must be professionals. One will keep you posted on that one.

Perversely, the highlight of my week so far was the funeral of a friend. Not for the loss, but for a truly life-affirming and moving ceremony in the carefully chosen corner of some British field.

Yesterday, one took one’s car for the annual Ministry of Transport (MOT) test for roadworthiness only to be told that one had arrived a day early. One was contrite at the time, but one’s missus was adamant that she had booked it on the correct day.

I didn’t complain but God help them when that particular chicken burger comes home to roost.


Build a burger – everyone’s getting in on the act.

One returned the following day and had 90 minutes to put in until one could drive away. Above is the lunch one had at the local Morrisons (sic) supermarket. It seemed like such a gift, an actual “build a burger” moment, so I ordered a chicken burger with cheese and bacon, chips and and spicy tomato sauce.

Much as one is a fan of Morrisons (sic) as a supermarket, it was a singularly disappointing experience. Whilst the burger was as advertised, and a proper chicken fillet, the rest was less than impressive. The chips were of the starchy, tasteless frozen variety and the bread an undistinguished emulsion of bleached ignominy.

Anyway, the detail you’re all waiting for is this; they forgot to include the bacon on the burger.

One was tempted to, not exactly complain, but correct them. However, it’s a tough call. If they still need to cook the bacon, then one’s burger is getting cold. But one has paid for it, but does one want to wait? (one was monumentally hungry). So maybe one could get a refund. For 60p? Would that make one look cheap? OMG it’s a minefield of white, British, middle-class anxiety.

If you ever met one, you can tell by looking at one, and by talking to one, that one is about as White British and middle-class as one comes, so complaining is a foreign country to one.

In the end, one decided not to complain. This final failure was certainly a disappointment, but hardly a catastrophe. The staff work very hard and all the meals are produced to order, so it seemed mean to complain. Or is one just too British?

p.s. One often uses other supermarkets, but one mostly shops at Morrisons (sic). In the end, one just has more reasons to do so.


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