• The Tool Box

  • Don't listen to the fools, they're all just tools!

21st August 2009

Did I say there were no tools in Vietnam?

The sign of the headquarters of the National A...

Image via Wikipedia

Apart from the suicide jockeys, who are really just stupid, not tools, until today I hadn’t considered that any real tools lived in Vietnam.
Of course, I’d forgotten about the ex-pats.

I received an email today from a local cricket team who shall remain nameless. It’s purpose was to get the boys revved up for the new season about to start – there’ll be a gathering soon. For some reason it initiated a spate of replies from the yobbos who play in this team, all demanding their spot in the sun for all the wrong reasons.

It started with a simple, yet effective “NO WOMEN!” suggestion. How “Lords” like I thought, but perhaps it was just a very poorly structured joke.  Then I read the rest of the replies. It seems that the vocal members of this club are not only sexist, but boorish and offensive.  Comments ranged from the mildly clever, yet pointedly sexist, to the bluntly disgusting with the addition of an unsuitable photo to go with it. The club in question would seem to be rooted in the seventies, and I want no part of it.

Once I had scrolled to the very end of this long discourse from those possessing nothing but dinosaur testosterone, I got to the part which inspired me to resurrect The Toolbox briefly. The final comment came from none other than the C.O.O. of a rather prominent international bank based in Vietnam. Further investigation revealed more representatives of high-profile companies.

My guess is that if anyone important participated in this type of behaviour back at home they’d be very quickly publicly embarrassed. I’d certainly be forwarding the email to the papers for their enjoyment.  I won’t be doing that here, as burning bridges is not a good idea in the relatively small ex-pat world within Vietnam.

Over here I guess the world of sex equality is still a pipedream, and many male ex-pats revel in the old ways.  I’ve already met more than my fair share of “men” who tell me that over here you have to treat the women like sh*t because the rules of relationships back home just don’t apply and women will accept whatever you throw at them. What a bunch of disgusting pigs is my reaction on the inside. Why do something disrespectful just because you can?

So, without naming any names or showing any faces, I slap the Toolbox paintbrush on those ex-pats in Vietnam deserving of said brush.

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Author: The Handyman | Posted in Womanisers, workplace | 1 Comment

27th August 2008

Symantec CTO – Mark Bregman

I finally have a new tool for the box, following a long trip overseas. I should add that they don’t seem to have any tools in Asia, hence the break.

Mark Bregman is the CTO of Symantec – a data security and management company. At a Sydney conference this week he stated “Facebook is becoming a critical business tool”. Read the report and see if you can find any actual examples of how. All I can see is the usual rubbish about how employees “expect to use” and “are inclined to”. Neither of these phrases can be used to begin a sentence indicating critical business use, but in fact illustrate the ongoing challenge of how to manage your employees (read, make them work for their salary).

Mark, you are the perfect example of why those of us in the engine room don’t often respect those of you who sit up on the top deck smoking cigars and hypothesizing.

The Age – Symantec execs encourage using Facebook at work

Author: The Handyman | Posted in Applications, Facebook, workplace | 0 Comments

27th April 2008

Employees wanting Facebook at work

Should workers be allowed access to Facebook in the office?

Image courtesy UK Daily Mail
Image courtesy UK Daily Mail

Don’t you think the answer to this is obvious?  Of course I shall give any of you that have not heard of Facebook the benefit of the doubt, but seriously, if you are reading this blog you will have heard of Facebook.  And if you’ve heard of it you should know that it’s the most common social networking service in the Western world today.

The reason I am blogging today about Facebook is that there is an increasingly large number of tools out there making noises about how Facebook should be allowed in the workplace.  Guess which of those in the picture above are tools?

Having used Facebook extensively for nearly a year I can categorically state that there is absolutely no business benefit in it’s current incarnation.  The only reason people want it at work is because they believe they have a right to socialise whilst at work.  And they can’t imagine missing out on what their friends might be up to for 5 minutes!  Thank goodness Twittr hasn’t yet caught on in Australia!!!

Yes, you have a right to socialise during the day – but not on work time or using work resources.  You may be ALLOWED to do so, but you do not have a right, and nor should you be even asking for that right.

Some companies will allow you these benefits because they trust you, and want you to feel that they are a modern and open organisation – read “a great place to work”, but the reality is that if you are the kind of employee who needs to be permanently in touch with all your friends, then do you really think you have what it takes to be a valuable employee within the typical workplace?  If you do, you are a tool.  I wouldn’t employ a tool unless I was hammering a nail.  Would you?

Author: The Handyman | Posted in workplace | 0 Comments

23rd February 2008

Harbhajan Singh

In what I promise will be the last sportsperson for a little while, I am going to start by declaring that Harbhajan Singh is a tool.  However, the more I think about the situation that leads me to dislike Harbhajan, the more I wonder whether the label should be transferred to the India Board of Cricket, or perhaps even the International Cricket Council (ICC) itself.

Harbhajan Singh

You see, I have always said that some sportspeople are made, not born.  Those who don’t have a natural gift often have to develop mental techniques to overcome their physical inadequacies, and the most common example of this is over-confidence or arrogance.  Many think Lleyton Hewitt is a tool – I don’t.  I believe he is a fighter, and does everything he can to make himself believe he is good enough, which can alienate the common person who simply doesn’t understand this headspace.   Perhaps this is what is going on with Singh?

Perhaps not.

Harbhajan Singh is a serial on-field trouble-maker, with transgressions ranging from common dissent to very common (as in the type of person you are if you do this) racial abuse.  See Cricket’s Day of Shame for details about his latest and most disgusting episode.  Large sections of the Indian cricket fans took to calling Andrew Symonds a “big monkey” whilst he was touring their country.  Whilst this may sound cute to some of you, it is a genuine racial slur over there.  Harbhajan, rather than correctly taking up a stance against that behaviour, chose to carry it onto the field.  For those of you who think he is just taking Australia’s reputation for sledging to another level, take one look into his eyes.  The eyes are the windows to the soul, and that look is enough to tell you he is not one of the gentlemen of cricket.

Cricket in India is pretty much a religion, and in their fervor it’s followers do and say some very stupid things.  I’m currently watching “An Aussie Goes Bolly”, which documents an Aussie’s adventures travelling around India to watch Australia’s most recent tour.  It’s scary how supposedly civilized people can become so uncivilized when emotions take over.  It is this emotion and passion, and a lot of money, that seems to result in India’s special treatment from the ICC when it comes to applying discipline to it’s team and players.

India’s Board of Control thinks it rules the game and can determine it’s future because they have so much money and support.  The last time I checked, the custodian of the game of cricket was the MCC (Marylbone Cricket Club), not India,  and the governing body is the ICC.  So that Harbhajan Singh has been able to get away with so much unruly and unacceptable behavior is as much the ICC’s fault as his own.  I do think the ICC is staffed by a bunch of tools, but ultimately there is no way Harbhajan can transfer blame to them for what are truly personal character flaws.

So, welcome to my Tool Box, Harbhajan Singh.  And whilst you’re in there, don’t try calling my hammer a spanner.  He’s not afraid of the Indian Board of Control and is likely to give you a well-deserved hammering.

Author: The Handyman | Posted in dissent, Harbhajan Singh, India, racism, Sports | 0 Comments

19th February 2008

Ben Cousins

I’ll announce up front that the following post is probably going to alienate many women.  But I qualify this with the statement that if there was a female version of the word “tool”, I would most likely apply it to all women who find Ben Cousins attractive.  With the exception of someone in particular who knows they are wrong, but can’t bear to admit it. 😉

Ben Cousins

OK, so Ben is another footballer.  I’ll run out of these quickly and move onto more global subjects next, but right now footy is dominating my mind.   Ben Cousins was once the king of AFL.  King of the West Coast.  Public king-pin of the Perth underworld, some might say.  Well, maybe I’m overstating that just a little too much.  Let’s just say that his choice of friends was poor at best.  Ben is a very good looking man – even I can see that.  It’s fortunate that most intelligent women need more than a great body to float their boat, and Ben currently sucks at anything other than footy and looks.  The massive tattoo across his stomach says it all “Such is Life”.  Shows he really thinks about consequences, eh?

Ben Cousins started life like any boy with greater than average sporting ability, joined the West Coast Eagles at the time of their ascension to power and rose through the ranks of the AFL to become it’s most elite representative – a winner of the Brownlow medal.  (Overseas folk – Wikipedia is your friend).  Whilst doing so he got caught up in the excesses associated with the level of hero worship applied by the locals to this bunch of pseudo-gods.  This included social drug use,  crazy escapades with gun-toting underworld figures, and rampant night-clubbing often ending in members of the public witnessing Ben at his drunken, drugged worst.  Ben has since been caught, banned from AFL, and is supposedly in rehab – although at the time of writing he doesn’t seem to take that seriously.

What makes Ben a tool is his inability to understand his position of responsibility, and to act in a mature fashion.  Let’s face it, many of the general public act no differently to he.  In his favour he has a level of intelligence that, if applied correctly,  and combined with a recognition of the need to grow up, will result in a resurrection of sorts.  For now, he appears to be only interesting in partying.

Wayne Carey is a lost cause.  Ben Cousins, whilst made of the same raw material, may yet be saved.

Author: The Handyman | Posted in Ben Cousins, drugs, Sports | 0 Comments

11th February 2008

Heath Ledger – Tool or Ledgend?

Note: The following solicitation may not fully reflect the personal views of The Handyman. Please direct all flames to the author. 🙂

Heath Ledger

By any account Heath Ledger was a great success. As an actor, family man and all around nice guy. But somehow he was dumb enough to mix up a cocktail of prescription drugs and destroy all of that. Does this make him a tool, or simply a bit of an idiot who made a huge mistake? After all, is there anyone reading this who hasn’t very nearly accidentally taken an overdose of five different prescription only painkillers and anti-anxiety meds and then washed them all down with a bottle of cough medicine? It could happen to anyone, couldn’t it? So that doesn’t make him a tool.

Or is he a tool for the utterly mundane and boring method of death? An accidental overdose in Hollywood should involve heroin or at the very least unfeasibly huge amounts of alcohol. It almost seems that there are those in the mainstream media who feel offended that he died in such a normal way. But again, I don’t think that makes him a tool, just a normal bloke.

So who is the tool in this tale? Maybe it’s the masseuse who found him. I imagine that most people on finding a dying movie star would call for a paramedic, or some form of medical assistance. But not a Hollywood masseuse. No, she chose to call Mary-Kate Olsen. Does this mean the masseuse is the tool here? Not necessarily, she may just have been a simpleton who believed that Mary-Kate, along with her sister Ashley, would use her Wonder-Twin powers and fly over to save the day. She was calling the person she genuinely thought would be able to provide the quickest assistance. But Ashley was not around and Mary-Kate was powerless.

What did Mary-Kate do? Did she call the paramedics? Did she alert the emergency services? No, she called her security people and had them rush over. Maybe she’s the tool? Well, maybe not. I’m sure Mary-Kate realised that it wouldn’t take too long before the masseuse realised that photos of a movie star in his deathbed would be worth more than a whole year of “happy endings” – so she sent her security over to protect Heath’s privacy. What a good friend.

Which leaves us with the question, who are the tools in this story? Heath made a human mistake; the masseuse tried her best to find someone to help him; Mary-Kate protected his privacy. The tools must be the paramedics. Why do they travel everywhere in ground vehicles, having to deal with traffic and taking far too long to get to their destination? They should be jumping out of planes like the paratroopers they are named after. The tools.

Author: Plankman | Posted in accident, actor, drugs, Heath Ledger, hollywood, media, movies | 0 Comments

5th February 2008

Wayne Carey

What a great way to kick off a new year, a new blog, and The Tool Box.

Wayne Carey media

Wayne Carey.

I could end it right there, and you’d all have read enough. However, this being a global internet, there are many of you out there who could use more information.
Where do I start? Firstly, Wayne Carey was a very good Aussie Rules footballer. A very, very good one. One we all loved to hate unless we barracked for his team, North Melbourne (The Kangaroos to you modern young things).
Wayne began to allow his on-field arrogance ooze over into his personal, and unfortunately oh so public life, resulting in some of the following alleged and actual acts:

  • Sexual harrassment
  • Drunken violence
  • Having an affair with his vice-captain’s wife
  • Sleeping with anything that moved
  • Giving character evidence for a well-known underworld figure
  • Attacking his girlfriend more than once
  • Attacking police more than once
  • Arrogance beyond mortal limits
  • Being a very unattractive man

Wayne Carey collage

From the first day I laid eyes on Wayne Carey, I just knew he was a man to be naturally disliked. I have since been proven right, and the inaugural Tool Box award could not be given to a more deserving individual.

Congratulations Wayne, your trophy is in the mail. Or it will be if you ever come back out of hiding…

Author: The Handyman | Posted in Sports, Violent, Wayne Carey, Womanisers | 0 Comments

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