I spent the day working on my novel -- the novel I've been working on for years. I just keep working on it and working on it. It's like building a really nice boat in the desert. My ego insists that the book is actually worth something, so I keep on building that ship.
The child bride spent the day waiting to hear the results of the two job interviews she had last week. Both had promised to call her back "early" this week, but it's hard to say what the hell that means.
By the end of the day she was in a pretty low mood. The process of applying for jobs and waiting to hear back on them can be emotionally trying. I think just the slightest possibility that I could somehow escape ever having to go through that again is part of what keeps me banging my head against the wall with my book.
For those of you playing along at home, I'll explain what everyone's talking about with this TV licensing stuff. Here in the UK, you have to purchase a license to watch television. A license costs £131.50 ($248.66 or €193.26) a year. That money goes toward funding the British Broadcasting Corp.
I tend to think it's worth the money, but a lot of Britons really don't like paying a TV license. They point out that the BBC also receives money from the government and then they bring up EastEnders, a mindless soap opera that is one of the most popular programmes in the UK (and it is the No. 1 watched programme Wales). My taxes and £131.50 a year are too much to pay for a load of people screaming at each other in Cockney accents, goes the argument.
Fair enough. And I don't think ChuckleVision helps things any. But, the BBC runs at least eight television channels, upward of 57 radio stations, countless websites, and produces one of the most reliable news products in the world. That news product can and does get it wrong from time to time, but it's still far better than anything I worked with in my journalism career.
Beyond that is the fact that so much of the BBC product is shipped out all over the world, most identifiably by the World Service. This exportation of news, information and entertainment translates to influence. Much of the world's understanding of the rest of the world is shaped by Britain. It's like a larger, more trustworthy, less evil version of TV Martí.
Thousands and thousands and thousands of hours of media and world influence for 36p a day.
It's a deal.
It's also the law.
People in vans drive around using crazy spy techniques ("Some aspects of the equipment have been developed in such secrecy that engineers working on specific detection methods work in isolation -- so not even they know how the other detection methods work," according to the TV licensing website) to catch people watching TV without a license. Those caught face fines of £1,000 ($1,891.78 or €1,472.26).