Saturday 26 March 2011

On the phone in the quiet coach

(Names have been changed to protect the guilty)

Last week on a Virgin train to Birmingham, someone was on the phone….

“Oh hi yeah can I speak to Jane Davenport please. It’s Andrew Price. Thanks.

JANE! Hi, it’s Andy… Andy Price… it’s Andrew Price, I’m covering the Black Sofa concert in Birmingham tonight? Black Sofa? It’s a band. No it’s not a sofa contest, and they’re not black. We’re trying them out, I think they’re brilliant.”

He goes on like this. Another call, brags to his friends Alan, Blake and Piers about how he was just chillin’ with Jane.

He then lowers his voice, but because he’s been SCREAMING, his lowered voice is merely what we can hear, rather than what we’d been assaulted with. He is driving everyone in the coach to distraction, but no-one says anything. I start plotting.

He rings Steve. “Steve mate, can you retrieve my emails from your computer for me? My login name is the usual format for Universal employees, and the password is las revinu – it’s ‘Universal’ backwards. Clever eh.”

I’m sitting across the aisle from him, doing the crossword, and writing all this down.

In Birmingham, I get to the hotel, get on the computer. I Google Universal and find their email format. Login as password lasrevinu and at two am email Jane Davenport.

“Dear Jane, Well what a disaster. I was so wrong. They were terrible. All the effort this company has put into Black Sofa is wasted, just like I am actually, wasted that is! Ha ha ha! Seriously though Jane I think we’ve been duped, we’ve been taken for a ride. Although I wouldn’t mind taking you for a ride any day! From a distance Jane you know you’re not half bad looking. Anyway must go, feel my curry’s having an effect. Love ya! Andy xxx”

The next morning I log on with an anonymous email address and copy this email to Andy, with the accompanying message:

“Hi Andy, I sent this to Jane last night. I suggest you get round to Universal straight away. I’ve also sent copies to Alfie, Blake and Piers. It’s cool. Just explain that you shouted out your login details on a train for all to hear. As Abraham Lincoln once said. Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt. And in future Andy, in the quiet carriage of the train, keep your voice down, there’s a good lad.”

That's what I could have done. If only I had...