I was woken this morning by... well in fact that's not true; what woke me up was a few kids "leaving" the Clyde Hotel at 3am, singing and kicking over bottle bins. That's par for a Tuesday night, of course. But I wasn't able to get back to sleep because, at 4:30am, a work crew began tearing into the asphalt outside my window with an excavator. It was kinda surreal.

I gave it about 20 minutes before I headed down there to enquire, or I guess more accurately, to remonstrate. I am not especially articulate at 5am, so after getting told to check the "Essential Services Act" and collecting my wits enough to get the boss' phone number, I sheepishly went back inside.

Well, I looked up the Essential Services Act. This, for me at least, is the moral of the story. The internet, nay, Google, rocks. There was nothing in the Essential Services Act stating that workmen could begin routine maintenance at 4:30am (should I have been surprised?) so I made that phone call. Left a message. (I had been kinda hoping it was a home number -- might as well get someone else out of bed if I have to be. Of course it wasn't.)

I thought I'd further exploit Google's capacity in this matter, and turned up the Environmental Protection (Residential Noise) Act, which clearly stated that the workcrew had begun work two and a half hours before they were allowed to by law (I had thought it was three and a half, but close enough). No-one rang me in the morning, so I called again, and got onto some bloke who quickly became very apologetic. I took advantage of this to extort from him a guarantee that this would never happen again, to me or to anyone, and declined the "bottle of drink" he offered to bring around by way of recompense (still, that was pretty nice of him, I reckon).

Power to the people, eh? (..I like the other moral better, though.)

Joseph | 3 Sep 2003

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stuff & nonsense

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