White Lines


Squaddies in Helmand Province have it easy compared with Vodafone soldiers pushed beyond the limits of human endurance with all those training courses, meetings, conferences, queues at the staff canteen etc.

Fortunately there is light at the end of the migraine. An internal email offers: “Executive Grooming for men. Special Offer – HALF PRICE Men’s Treatments Available throughout September 2007. Relax, unwind and revitalise with our Executive Grooming Treatments. Most are express treatments which will fit into even the most gruelling work schedule. Feel free to pop in or call for a free consultation. All our treatments can be discussed in private and are confidential.”

So what remedies are available to soothe the overworked managers at Vodafone Central?
How about a back, neck and shoulder massage for a stress-inducing £20? Or a full body pummelling for a mere £32? Stick a couple of Hopi ear candles in your lug-holes for £36.
Enjoy a body therapy hydro wrap for £30 (apparently this is a different treatment to being caught in rising and swirling flood waters).

Vodafone girlies who like their chaps to be old smoothies may like to refer their monkey man line managers to the hair removal service.

Depilate those furred-up backs, chest, arms, shoulders, legs and abdomens for around £30 for each body panel (What? No B, S and C?). Get browned off with a fake tan or £35.

So, should you encounter any hairless Vodafone blokes who are clean-pored, bronzed and manicured, you’ll know they haven’t necessarily come back from two weeks in the Med.

Cracking car

New Jersey electronics genius George Holtz swapped his iPhone for a Nissan 350Z with Kentucky logistics firm CertiCell.

But no ordinary iPhone this. The kid spent 500 hours working out how to unlock it, just so he could use it on T-Mobile (how many people spend 500 hours calling T-Mobile’s customer service centres?).

Anyway. Here’s one small step on the road to unlocking an iPhone: “See how the bootrom check works; it reads from 0xA0000030 0xA000A5A0 0xA 0015C58 0xA0017370 and all these addresses must read as blank, or 0xFFFFFFFF. When you erase flash, it becomes 0xFFFFFFFF. But you can’t erase those locations, because they are in the bootloader. So that’s where the testpoint comes in. Pulling A17 high hardware OR’s the address bus with 0x00040000 (offset one because data bus is 16 bit) So the bootrom instead checks locations 0xA004 0030 0xA004A5A0 0xA0045C58 0xA0047370, which are in the main firmware and can be erased.”

That’s worth a sports car just to have someone translate.

iPhone cover up

Claire Hickman of PR agency Ranieri Communications gives us the hot scoop that: “OverBoard, designer and manufacturer of waterproof travel and sports gear, has just released a rather stylish 100 per cent waterproof case for the iPhone. If you ever wanted to go swimming with your iPhone, now you can!”

Wow. How amazing is that? It would even be even more amazing if there was a single person in the UK and Europe who actually had a working iPhone, let alone one they would be mad enough to dunk in a swimming pool.

Water works

Caught short with a flat battery and a full bladder?

No problemo. Just fill the amazing NoPoPo Aqua mobile phone up with a bit of bodily fluid (or any liquid) and resume talking until you can find a more conventional power source. How you actually manage to fill the NoPoPo is, of course, your own business.

The ‘missing’ link

Mobile phone insurer Lifeline ended the Silly Season in fine form. The Carphone Warehouse insurance division has soared to the top of White Lines’ ‘Dumbest Market Research’ league with astounding news, “People are seriously emotionally attached to their mobiles and would really miss them if they were lost or damaged”. Let’s hold that incredible thought, “People would really miss their mobiles if they were lost or damaged”. Now read my book, Don’t Tell My Mother I’m A Market Researcher – She thinks I Play The Piano In A Bordello.

State of the reunion

Remember in Godfather III when Al grunts, “Just when I thought that I was out, they pull me back in”? It’s kinda like that being a Vodafone Old Boy/Girl. Every year there’s a reunion in which refugees from the 1980s meet to compare notes on the old days and compliment each other on looking well.

This year’s reunion is at a Solihull hotel on September 28 and is expected to attract ex-Voda lags such as David Goldie, Andy Smith and Andy Tow. If you served in the ranks and want to revisit your sordid past, call Graham Sedgley (07831 877777) or email vodac@peplow.co.uk to reserve a place.