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UK_Widowmaker

A new year..A new Beginning

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Well, drink and fireworks have seen in the New Year in a cold, grey Newcastle.

2010 has sucked for many reasons...a business venture I entered into, failed in a catastrophic

manner, and has resulted in a fall out with a family member..money worries have blighted the last 12 months...but it hasn't all been doom and gloom...I have conformation of a Snipe for P4!

 

It looks like I will possibly have less time to play OFF..or indeed visit here as often in 2011...especially if my plan for this year comes to fruition.

 

I am hoping to get a Job at Newcastle Airport, either working Airside on the Ramp, or 'hopefully' even a career in Airfield Operations.

I have passed two online courses, brushed up my CV..and am on good speaking terms with the recruitment division @ Servisair..and am waiting for a vacancy to appear in January/February.

 

Having read posts by people here, It seems I have not been alone in suffering s**t in 2010..and I hope all my friends on here find 2011 a better year.

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I must probably go against the flow here, but as they say there is an exception to the rule... I have a New Job I love (well the people aspect of it), I now live in one of the coolest cities in Europe if not the world Vienna... and I have found a beautiful woman to share it with... Do not get me wrong though I have had a few major downers in the past 5 years so maybe its Karma...

 

So to you all my friends both far and wide on here, I wish that you all where ever you are have great luck in this new year of 2011 may your fortunes both emotionally and otherwise prosper and may at least some of your wishes come true my friends :drinks:

Edited by Slartibartfast

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Many thanks guys...I will still visit all I can,,,maybe just weird times of the day!..haha

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Hope it all works out UKW.

 

2010 has been a bad year here. It's undone ALL the progress I've made in the last 5 years, and I'm not out the woods yet. I can last a few months into the new year, but if the work I have scheduled for the Spring doesn't go ahead, then I'm going to really struggle. If the worst happens, it's 2010 that's done the damage.

 

I lost a lot of productivity with last years winter which didn't let go until well into April, and we really struggled to pick up anything over the summer. I stupidly kept hold of my team for as long as possible, 3 of whom were apprentices, and run down all my resources keeping them on. It was a gamble that didn't pay off, they lost their jobs anyway, and I've badly weakened my company, which was only getting started in the first place. That one decision alone cost me £28k, and that's a lot of money to me. I've only got my unit half built, which I can't sell unfinished, but can't afford to finish. The Bank is as much help as a chocolate teapot, -they'd let me borrow the money to finish my unit, but only if the unit was finished and put up as colateral. A typical catch 22 situation which Banks so enjoy putting their customers into. So we're kind of stagnant at the moment, stuck in the proverbial rutt.

 

Any other year, the 4 degrees and rising temperatures I need usually let me keep building into November and December. With judicious protection, I maybe lose a few weeks to bad weather in the typical winter, and I often have stone to dress anyway. This year, all I have is builderwork/lime pointing, or lime rendering. All of which need the magic 4 degrees. This year, we started getting -16 degrees in November. I haven't earned a bolt since October. Add this winter to last, and that's a whole 6 months I've been shut down by the weather, with the worst summer I can remember for picking up new works. That's like financing a business on a part time wage. It's not been easy. For those guys on a wage, just imagine how half wages would feel for a full year, then add a bill for £28K, and another £6k for redundancy payments. Ouch.

 

Suffice to say, if I'm extra careful, I can run to about April, but without work to pull us away from this trough in performance, that's about as far as I'm going to get. I have options, but not very great options and all of which I'd regret almost at once. So I'm a little stuck and uncertain about the future. Even if things go sweetly, it's going to take 3 or 4 years to undo the damage of 2010. I'll be absolutely gutted if I lose my ground. I've never had money, and it took me to my 40's before I finally managed to get hold of some land. I finally thought I was getting somewhere, and in one year, it's all falling apart and could go t*ts up completely.

 

If I've learned anything, it's have your dreams by all means, but just don't over invest in them.

 

My salvation rests on a job forecast for the spring. It's a decent six figure job, but it's entirely out of my hands whether it goes ahead or not. If it does, I know I can put the hours in and dig myself out the myre. If it doesn't go ahead, then I'm in trouble. I have other smaller projects, but they'd just keep me ticking over. Ticking over isn't an option. Because the Bank wouldn't help me, I had to look further afield and the finance I could get was short term turnaround. Bottom line is I need to get the work and get it done this coming year or else I may lose everything. -It's not a dodgy loan shark, but private finance is usually shorter term.

 

I have to say 2010 has been a real eye opener, not least for finding out who your friends are. I don't want to sound arrogant about it, but I can cope with the stress. I work best under pressure with a chip on my shoulder, and when the chips are down I like having 'me' to rely upon. If I fail, and lose what I've built, then I had SFA to begin with anyway. I've survived it once.

 

Am I bitter? No. It's the chance you take. When you go self employed, you opt out all the welfare support options which others can depend on. It was my choice, no point crying about it now. I've never signed on welfare anyway, never. Do I blame the banks? Well yes and no. I don't really dwell on the blame thing. It's like the fable about the fox and the scorpion. (Google it - the scorpion stings the fox as it carries him over a stream. The fox says what have you done? We'll both die now! Why did you do that? The scorpion shrugs and says "Because I'm a scorpion. It's in my nature".) The 'bank' is a ruthless and unscrupulous animal which will take whatever opportunity is can to get it's hands on our money. We all know this, it's the nature of what a bank is, but yet we still let the banks decide how much our houses should cost, even if it flies in the face of logic and objective value. Strikes me it's not actually the bank who's being stupid. If we act like sheep, we shouldn't be surprised that we attract wolves.

Edited by Flyby PC

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Your words flypc ring resoundingly in my ears m8...It's us 'self employed' that have kept the backbone of Britains economy going!...we get little help..forget sick pay and a cushy, fat pension..If you don't work..you starve!

 

Far better off, under 'new Liebour' having twenty kids, and claiming benefits, Housing Benefits..and getting 52" TV's on HP, that you'll never have to pay back!!

 

You have to jump through hoops like a performing Dog, worry constantly about Tax, VAT, paperwork, wages, NI...and Banks who don't give a flying f*ck about your business, only theirs.

 

One of the main reasons I now want to go back into employment, is that I want some other bugger to worry for a change!

 

People watch Dragons Den, and think that being self-employed is a cushy bed of money spinning fun...well, as we both know..it aint!...Yes, there are some really good points about it...you rise or fall by your own judgements...and it's great being you're own boss...but it's a damn sight harder than just doing a 9-5 monday to friday job, that's for sure!

 

Whilst I feel sympathy for the Public Sector job loses...a lot of the employees and management in Public Sectors have sat pretty for years, wasting the money earned by private sector people, paying stupid amounts of Tax to keep them in a job!....and I know..I live in Newcastle, with the largest population of public sector jobs in the country...there have been 'suits' here languishing in offices, doing sweet FA for years!...designing useless projects, costing us, the tax payer millions!

 

Sorry lads...the game is up!...tough sh*t!

 

Am I bitter?..YES! :salute:

Edited by UK_Widowmaker

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Spoke to a man in the summer who owned 4 or 5 businesses, haulage, garages, storage etc and who had worked hard all his life. Technically retired, he wasn't and still working. He said he'd no regrets about his life, but if he had his time again and wanted to be richer, he'd have got himself a job and stuck at it for 40 years then retired on a good pension.

 

Sick pay and a pension? I couldn't believe it. If you sign on, you even get £25/week to keep a dog. Somebody's taking the p*$"s.

 

Even so, I don't think I could go employed again. All that crap from foremen, bosses and architects who don't know squat about stone. They make the money and you sort all the fk ups. I'd be the employee from Hell..... in Hell. :lol: (I'd probably meet my accountant down there too).

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I saw a statistic that said 80% of those employed in the United States were employed by a small business, those with 25 - 250 employees. This was in a text book in my intro to small business class. I can believe it. Even a franchise, like McDonalds, has a bunch of people that own the individual stores the each employ around 30 people. Its business like this that keeps all economies going. I have had to sign on to welfare, and it was the most painful thing I have done. Still not out of the rutt yet, but every week is another week closer. The two infants don't help the situation, but I wouldn't trade them for the world. And the girlfriend is psychotic, but what can you do right? I hope all works out for you folks, 2010 was crap all around, and I have hopes that 2011 is much, much, much better!

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It was a tough year for sure. College and health problems within my family battered me around quite a bit, even while I personally have been okay overall. There's, unfortunately, very little anyone can do to support one another, besides offer moral support. Everyone has to work to dig themselves out of their own hole I'm afraid. Still, I figure as long as I have an internet connection and time to play Flanders Fields and others it can't be -all- bad! Also, nobody is shooting at me here in Madison, Wisconsin, and that is most welcome.

 

During the hard times I always find it helpful to maintain a strong mental discipline. For me I do that by committing to a strenuous exercise routine, more for my mental health than my physical. Without that I tend to lounge around and accomplish nothing.

 

Good luck to all in 2011. Even if you find yourself extremely busy, do try and find the time to visit us here now and then to provide updates on your progress drinks.gif

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certainly will Javito..thanks

 

and good luck to you Sakai too...I guess, when you're down...there's only one way to go! :drinks:

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Guest British_eh

Hey there,

 

My brother in Surrey has his own business, and he said it is only beginning to turn around after a dreadful year last. Good luck mate!

 

Cheers,

 

British_eh

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Thin ice here - getting political, but hopefully neutrally.

 

I don't prefer labour over tory, or even the liberals. Truth be known I just think the UK has had very poor government for decades now. - And I mean criminally bad. They've failed wholesale to defend our industry, they've consistently squandered initiatives and denied many of our young people the opportunity to look after themselves independently and contribute to their community. All governments have lied to us, lined their own pockets, and spent waaaay beyond their means, and taxed every living thing they could to the hilt. I read or heard somewhere that somebody earning £12k a year in the UK will pay £7k of that back in tax - thats income tax, National insurance, VAT, fuel duty, drink duty, tobacco duty, road tax,.... That's not a high roller, £12k isn't a big wage. And Scotland? Scotland's a joke - the only country to discover oil and get poorer.

 

What the UK needs is a new thinking government with some vision and imagination, and a degree of integrity to deliver it. Not just hot air and good PR, I mean REAL substance, - build a productive economy from scratch if needs be, but for the love of god, forget the 'vested interest' mentality and get our communities engaged with it. Make successful people something we ALL aspire to become, not seen by many as some smarmy white collar criminal who must have greased a few palms to have got where he is. Either that or a chump who still goes to work because he's never discovered the benefit system. It's not right. The current formula isn't working and the tail is beginning to wag the dog.

 

Part of the reason I hate the TV is that the very people who might be 'thinking' the country in the right direction are sat in front of the TV each night, mortgaged to the hilt so they can't actually afford to take any chances with their lives, and permanently sedated until bedtime by dull and uninspirational 'entertainment'. If nothing happens to change their circumstances, they're going to stay like that their entire lives and call themselves happy. What a waste.

 

We now have something like 70% home ownership in the UK. 100 years ago it was 10%. Why the change? Why, after centuries of history, in the latter half of the 20th C was it suddenly so vitally important to own our own house? And look at those houses - compare what they built 100 years ago to the garbage they build now. Despite what the TV would have us believe, widespread ownership of property not a traditional feature of our culture. We should spend our money in our communities, - start buying our own produce and investing in our countries again, - not paying everything we earn as interest to a bank. What is wrong with us? Our banks are a big success story? No kidding!

 

As a nation, or nations, we need to think about where we are and where we want to be, because our problems get bigger with every generation we abandon, disown or alienate. It used to be said that Scotlands best export was it's people. So why are so many of them flung on the scrapheap or wasted in unproductive service industries? Exactly what are we waiting for? Somebody to come and help us? Hate to say it, but a lot of the young people I come across hardly seem like good embassadors for our country, nor it's education system. That HAS to be undone and put right, but seems to me that repeated governments don't know how to do it or just aren't interested. We've been ahead here, we've had a lead on the rest of the world, but it's just been squandered like everything else. We need to get ourselves sorted, quickly, and get back in the race or else be left behind and be ever more impoverished in our culture.

OK, that's me off the soap box now. (quick tug of the forelock), beggin your pardon, I'll get meself back back down't pit now. :salute:

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Tell you what Flypc...I wish to god YOU were running the Country..and I mean that! :drinks::salute:

 

 

Part of the reason I hate the TV is that the very people who might be 'thinking' the country in the right direction are sat in front of the TV each night, mortgaged to the hilt so they can't actually afford to take any chances with their lives, and permanently sedated until bedtime by dull and uninspirational 'entertainment'. If nothing happens to change their circumstances, they're going to stay like that their entire lives and call themselves happy. What a waste.

 

That is what the Power-Mongers want!...a braindead society, unable to stand against their greed!

Edited by UK_Widowmaker

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Well, it might be fun right enough,.... for about a day.

 

Talk is cheap though. If I thought for a moment that people were actually listening and taking me seriously, I rather suspect I'd 'fill my breeks' then run away and hide.

 

On the other hand, come the Spring, I might have lots of spare time on my hands anyway ....

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Well, it might be fun right enough,.... for about a day.

 

Talk is cheap though. If I thought for a moment that people were actually listening and taking me seriously, I rather suspect I'd 'fill my breeks' then run away and hide.

 

On the other hand, come the Spring, I might have lots of spare time on my hands anyway ....

 

You and me against the World!...When do we attack? :lol:

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You and me against the World!...When do we attack? :lol:

 

 

Best of luck Widow in your new employment when it comes. You can always look forward to retirement and gettin old bones and knowing you might have to go back to work on a part time or full time basis. I've done it both ways and never have been able to get caught up in the last 10 years. THe 90's were great, just wish I/all of us would have invested our money wisely. Some have, some didn't. I guess i was of the latter group. As long as we have food on the table and good health, there is something good ahead. Best wishes. Ras

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Best of luck Widow in your new employment when it comes. You can always look forward to retirement and gettin old bones and knowing you might have to go back to work on a part time or full time basis. I've done it both ways and never have been able to get caught up in the last 10 years. THe 90's were great, just wish I/all of us would have invested our money wisely. Some have, some didn't. I guess i was of the latter group. As long as we have food on the table and good health, there is something good ahead. Best wishes. Ras

 

Thank you Ras...the difference with you of course is, you're an artist...and a Craftsman!...I know, I have the fish you sent me sitting in front of me!...I salute you Sir! :salute:

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You and me against the World!...When do we attack? :lol:

 

 

Stand to before dawn and wait for the whistle.....

 

I have to add one last thing, - the one thing that keeps me going is that I actually love my job. If I didn't do it for a living, I would still do it for free as a hobby. That's a big incentive to help get me out of bed in the morning. If you really get into doing something intricate, you might start in the morning and next time you lift your head it's dark outside. Hours and hours will just disappear. You can really connect, and it leaves you a great feeling. I've got the best job in the world. It still has it's grim times and s**tty clients, but the job itself is always rewarding. If I get to 90, I hope I'm still fit and strong enough to do it.

 

On top of Ras' food on the table and good health, I'd have to add happiness, or at the very least contentment with what you do with your life. As they say, life isn't a rehearsal.

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Stand to before dawn and wait for the whistle.....

 

I have to add one last thing, - the one thing that keeps me going is that I actually love my job. If I didn't do it for a living, I would still do it for free as a hobby. That's a big incentive to help get me out of bed in the morning. If you really get into doing something intricate, you might start in the morning and next time you lift your head it's dark outside. Hours and hours will just disappear. You can really connect, and it leaves you a great feeling. I've got the best job in the world. It still has it's grim times and s**tty clients, but the job itself is always rewarding. If I get to 90, I hope I'm still fit and strong enough to do it.

 

On top of Ras' food on the table and good health, I'd have to add happiness, or at the very least contentment with what you do with your life. As they say, life isn't a rehearsal.

 

Amen to that!...I used to feel the same way about IT

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My long-departed dad once told me that life is a big sandwich made of s$%t, and the more bread you have, the less s$%t you have to eat. Unfortunately for me, so far I've only managed to get a couple slices at a time, but I keep chewing anyway.

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Thank you Ras...the difference with you of course is, you're an artist...and a Craftsman!...I know, I have the fish you sent me sitting in front of me!...I salute you Sir! :salute:

 

 

Thank you Simon. That is one of the nicest things said about my work that i've heard.

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Thank you Simon. That is one of the nicest things said about my work that i've heard.

 

And I was sober! :grin:

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All the best for your new job, Widowmaker!

 

Flyby, I know how you feel. I won't write all my self-employment history

down here, but I have gone through good 80s and most of the 90s as a

sign-write for vans, trucks and tarpaulins.

Then in 1998, my biggest customer collapsed and closed, and my other

big customer pushed down the prices for my work more and more. I never

found the right partner to share the responsibility and the work with me

(well, I know I wasn't easy to deal with), and so I did all the work plus

the books and finances alone.

In 2002 I collapsed - doctors called it "burn-out syndrom" plus depression.

I have now recovered, and learned, what was wrong for me. I gave up the

sign-writing and work rooms, and now I only do graphic design.

I can do that on my home PC. I have far less income, but also far less

spendings, and I feel better, cause I have more time for myself.

 

I wish you the very luck you seem to need now - you are a fighter; if you

don't finally make, it isn't your fault. Think about this: VW Volkswagen - one

of Germany's biggest and most successful companies need new fresh capital

every year.

Now, if even those guys can't make it with their own earnings - how should we?

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Thanks Olham, but I'm fine.

 

The bad stuff is a bit depressing naturally, but there's always an up side too. Like I said, I really do like my job, but actually doing it, hands on. At one stage I had 7 people working for me, and while 7 isn't a lot, I'd still spend the bulk of my time chasing customers and doing admin to keep things running. I'm not an administrator, I'm a mason. I'm at my best with a mell and chisel in my hand. Pens just annoy me because it always take me half an hour just to find one! What do I know about paperwork? I hate it. It's no use to anybody, but days even weeks would go by without me picking up a chisel. One of the ironys about this kind of work is that you grow as a tradesman and develop a reputation so you can set up your own business, and once you do, you get new responsibilities and a mountain of paperwork which interferes with and obstructs you doing those things that you were good at. You'd never make an accountant to stonework, so why do I have to do so much paperwork?

 

I don't enjoy the whole 'boss' thing, I can take it or leave it. I'm no "leader of men", never will be, but I do like the freedom to steer the company wherever I want to take it. That is priceless, but to do it you have to be the boss, reluctant or otherwise. For better or worse, richer or poorer, I'm back in the groove now, and loving it.

 

I hope I manage to keep hold of my land, I really do. If I can just get that one issue stablised, then not much else really matters. I can adjust to whatever work is available, but this little 1/3 of an acre is mine, and I'm really rather fond of it. There's a saying here that "ye cannae sue the breeks off a heeland man", which kind of means don't worry about stuff, if you haven't got something in the first place, then nobody can't take it off you.

 

To quote Mel Gibson in Braveheart, "they can take away our land, but they'll never take away our freedom". Yes that's true I suppose, but it's the 'take away our land' bit that I'm currently just not liking. :yikes:

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