Royal Mail and HRMS Prison Service


Oh boy, the week before last saw me document my week at Channel M, now last week is the reason as to why I have been so heinously negligent of my dear Blog. 


In other news, before I begin, my webcam has arrived but because of the crap student accommodation I currently call home they couldn’t deliver it or even leave it in the reception building so I have to hoik my keester to the sorting office by WEDNESDAY before it disappears into oblivion. The sorting office in Salford is in a… colourful neighborhood which requires a fair amount of walking to get there. I have a class at 10 tomorrow so I am actually going to have to get up at sparrowfart to retrieve it lest I waste £14.99 and a jolly good amount of Royal Mail’s time spent not striking.

Anyway, last week saw the deadline for Innit loom. The official deadline was in fact on Thursday morning in order for the official handover on Thursday afternoon. Especially as our Innit editor, Donna, and myself had to dash to an awards ceremony on Thursday night as ours and Kate, our friend’s radio show on the student radio station was up for the award for Best Show… we didn’t win but it was a good night out which consisted of one white wine and lots of Red Bull (had to be up early the next day, see) and being accosted by a drunken young lady who was the official photographer for the event who then passed the gauntlet onto me because her camera had had bacardi breezers spilled on it or something else highly probable and I looked responsible (old) and had a camera.

Needless to say, being an MA student you feel old anyway but when you are in a private party for an organisation that is predominantly 1st and 2nd years you feel really old. I used to think I could still pass for 18… I still get ID’d after all, but no. I am knowingly older and indeed wiser than your average 18/19 year old because long gone are the days of standing on a table shouting to all who will listen about how shit faced you are after three blue WKDs. 

Anyway, moaning about age aside. No. There’s a bit more age grumbling but thats only because of this Innit issue. I have lines. LINES! The Botox years are fast approaching. I thought I’d at least get till my late thirties! 

Went to prison on Monday with the gang, the computers weren’t working and the women weren’t in as a result. So myself and Donna hung about with David the guard and tried to persuade him to download the free Quark trial online so we could get the issue out. As has been the fashion at the prison, even though we were promised Quark, Her Royal Majesty’s Prison pen-pushers never got it for us and as we had attended 10 hours of night classes in the wretched software we refused to make do with Microsoft Publisher… Publisher is all very well for getting out newsletters for MacMillan Cancer coffee mornings and Primary School sports days but for a semi-professional magazine written by trainee professional journalists it just doesn’t cut the mustard.

So after a lot of “So how long would it take you to retype it all for Publisher?” mind-games we decided to call it a day and head back. Oh, not before the eccentric Drama teacher decided to grab us by the ears and join in a Young Offenders’ Theatre lesson which involved us both in a game with the rather frightening group of a dozen girls most of whom were pregnant, surly and clad in sportswear.

So we had no option but to complete the magazine on our own terms in our own room. On Tuesday not much was achieved because they boys were being distracting. I am easily distracted by boys. So we worked until we were turfed out of the computer lab.

The next day continued in a similar way only we were joined by a woman who was on the Summer Edition and just wanted to “see how we were getting on.” Now I hate rudeness and I try my best not to be rude but when you have an entire magazine to put out for print for the next day its hard not to be slightly preoccupied. 

The team pulled through though and we thought we had it nailed for Thursday. Wrong again. After being in for 8:30 and being told off for not paying attention in Shorthand by Sue we realised we could not finish in time for the handover at the prison in the afternoon. This gave us the afternoon and most of the night to finish after Steve our tutor introduced to us the member of university staff who is overseeing the project (and recieving a fucking fee!) who had nothing but praise for out efforts and apologised for being a bit useless.

A BIT! You didn’t fucking do anything! Hence – the reasonable request that you divide your proposed fee for helping out in this project between the team of 5 who were working on it. Sliding scale of course regards column-inches. 

So the thing was polished off over the weekend by Donna and completed finally and painstakingly by putting them onto PDF files today. Myself and Donna did the honours only about 5 hours ago to which we await the email from the prison that they want it typing up on Publisher.

And so ends the Innit saga. I feel I have deserved my dinner tonight considering I travelled 200 miles and coughed up £8.10 for a taxi back from Picadilly to get to the labs in time to be of some help. 

And tomorrow will see me travel to the arse-hole of the North to collect my shiny new webcam and also I have an exam tomorrow for newswriting for radio.

Fun times.


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