Now I hate forms and in particular gubmint forms and I had had enough headaches applying for Herself's pension. The letter told me however that I could apply for the whole thing on-line, and they even gave me a little password. Fucking sweet.
I fired up my trusty laptop and opened my Firefox. I went into the website and found the appropriate page and blow me but my little password worked! They listed two forms for me to fill in. I clicked on the first one. It gave me a file to download. What?
Fortunately I know a little bit about computery shit, and I knew this file wasn't meant to download. It should have opened in Adobe Acrobat which I don't have as Adobe are an ignorant bunch of fucks and as far as they are concerned Linux doesn't exist.
I sighed, rebooted my machine and went into Windows [which shows why I keep a spare copy of it that I normally never use].
I downloaded and installed Adobe Acrobat, fired up my Firefox and went back into the website.
At last, when I clicked on the form link there it was in all its glory. I could now see all the items I had to fill in. The only trouble was that I couldn't. I couldn't type in any of the fields. Then I noticed a tiny warning saying that the form wouldn't work in Chrome, Opera or Firefox and that I had to use Internet Explorer! Fucking Hell! What kind of technical gobshites are these people?
Anyhows, I fired up Internet Explorer, went into the site, opened the form and it actually worked. I was able to fill in all the details.
I worked away for a good while filling in tedious details like my grandmother's maiden name, what I had for breakfast and where I went on my holidays last year. I was nearly finished when I realised I had to leave it and go out and collect Puppychild from school. No problem. The site said that all I had to do was click "Save" and I could go back to it any time. I clicked "Save" but didn't bother switching off as I intended to return to it in an hour or so.
The site had timed out.
No problem, thinks I, as I have the form saved.
How could I be so gullible?
I logged back into the site and went into the form. All blank. All my previous work down the toilet. All those details of where I worked and what years were gone, not that it made much difference as I hadn't a clue what dates I started and finished with previous employers. Fuckit, I couldn't even remember the years, let alone the months or days.
Today I sat down. I had a fresh mug of tea, a bottle of Valium to my left and a bottle of Prozac to my right. I took the phone off the hook and told Herself to expect dire retribution if she interrupted me. I fired up my pipe and my laptop and set to work on the on-line forms.
I filled in the form in its entirety and clicked "Save". Previously whenever I had click that button it whinged about mandatory fields not being filled and how they were highlighted in red, even though there were no red fields that I could find. This was a good sign. No warnings, and no errors. I went to submit the form. The submit button wouldn't work and my form was now empty again. FUCK!
I checked all the settings in the Adobe thing again. I removed all restrictions and basically gave it a free pass to download any virus it wished and to ravage the grandkids into the bargain.
I filled in the form again.
It still saved but still vanished. The only field I hadn't been able to fill in was the very first one – my identity number which was a tad strange. I tried everything under the sun to type into that field but it was having none of it even though it was the most important item on the sheet.
I don't know how many times I filled in that fucking form, trying different moves each time and each time all I ended up with was a blank form, an empty Valium bottle and an empty Prozac bottle.
I went through all the settings again. This was tricky as their instructions were all out of date [naturally] as I think they were giving instructions for Internet Explorer V1 or something. Then I went through all the settings for Adobe Reader [and there is one moxy load of them]. I found one little area where I had given Reader permission to ravage the grandkids and discovered a half hidden little area where I could name the grandkids. I filled that in.
"What are ye fucking at?" asks Herself. [She has a tendency to use foul language these days]
"Trying to fill in this form" I replied in a very calm voice which belied the seething hatred in my head towards cunts who can't set up a web site properly.
"But you've been at that for hours!"
"Just one more try and then I'm giving up."
I gave it one more try.
It fucking worked. The first thing I noticed when I opened the form was that my identity number had automatically filled in. I spent the next while filling in all the fields which at this stage I knew by heart. I got to the end at last and pressed "Save". It refused to save because it claimed I hadn't put a zero in some areas. I went back and filled each of those areas with zeros – 000000.00 and for some reason it was happy with that instead of just plain 0. Apparently zero doesn't equal zero in the surreal world of gubmint mathematics?
I clicked the "Save" button and it saved at last. I submitted it and it vanished off into the ether leaving a pathetic little message – "Your form has been submitted". The least I would expect after all that hassle was a fucking drumroll and trumpet fanfare.
We have a budget looming in the next couple of weeks.
It wouldn't surprise me in the least if they cut or abolished the pension I have just applied for.