Thursday, April 21, 2011

The British Consumers Association has surveyed mobile phone providers and declared that the worst – or at least the most complained about - is TalkTalk. And the best is O2. As the latter is a subsidiary of Movistar (ex-Telefonica), this might come as something of a surprise to readers in Spain. In contrast, Santander is the bank which harvests the most complaints in Britain. Possibly because they've adopted the standard Spanish catch-and-then-screw-the-customer strategy.

So, Real Madrid have finally beaten Barca and gained some silverware (the King's Cup) in the process. It seems it was an epic match that lived up its billing. The single, winning goal was scored by Ronaldo, whose success in the Real Madrid team was, in all honesty, neither expected nor predicted by yours truly.

A bad week for the EU, it was said on the BBC today, prompting the question of whether “systemic problems will [as usual] be fudged.” One commentator identified one such problem as the divergence of economies, rather than the convergence that the single currency was meant to ensure.

I mentioned Cuba last night. Today, a Guardian columnist labelled the events of this week as the theatre of the absurd. “The so-called reforms announced by Raúl Castro are illusory; a desperate, ridiculous attempt to camouflage repression”. More here.

Interesting to see the Bank of Spain is taking a controlling shareholding in several of the new entities created by the merger of various savings banks. Including ours in Galicia – Novacaixagalicia. Presumably this is to ensure it operates as a real bank and not as a local politicians' plaything.

Also interesting today to see this blog has a market value. An organisation called
Blogshares apparently attributes a “fantasy” value to [leading?] blogs. Quite why, I can't say. But shares are available, if you want to buy in. Send the money to me.

I was pleased to find on my daughter's bookshelves today Bill Bryson's book on the English language. Fascinating stuff and I'll be quoting from it over the coming weeks. Meanwhile, I'll just mention the island of Tangiers, off the eastern coast of the USA. Reading the first few chapters reminded me that . . . The tiny island community has attracted the attention of linguists because its people speak a unique English Restoration era dialect of American English.” But Bryson doesn't mention it, it seems.

Finally . . . Hits to this blog are up today. Could it be because I referred to prostitution last night?


Mike the Traditionalist said...

A London friend who had an account with a UK bank which was taken over by Santander has closed her account because she has had nothing but trouble with them since the takeover. Looks like your prediction, Colin, is coming true.

Colin said...

Hi, Mike. Possibly. Though I can't recall what I predicted. . . . . .

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