Friday, 12 September 2008

The Arabic for hat-trick

You want to get to the cash machine. But there’s someone standing in the way. He’s perfectly polite, but this is his job, it’s what he’s paid for.

Waterstones cannot order the new CBe books because they are not on the System. They are on the central book data thing, they are in boxes around me, they exist, but in Waterstones’ eyes they don’t. Yet. Today I discover the reason: the book data place, although they were told that that the distributor of the books is Central Books, did not enter this in their own System. So sorted now, almost.

Some of the poems in the Ponge book couldn’t be included, said the French publisher, because people in America had English-language rights in them. But these are different translations, completely new, not the same as the Americans printed. Gallic shrug. Of course you can print the new translations, said the Americans. Oh no you can’t, said the French. (This too was sorted, eventually. They’re in.)

Yeserday afternoon I had a hankering to see highlights of the England game, and Walcott’s goals. But because there was someone standing in the way – he was mumbling about rights deals – they’d been taken off YouTube and pretty well everywhere else, except for sites that showed them with Arabic commentary. The Arabic for hat-trick appears to be hat-trick.

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