more insurance crap

You may have read my views on the scandal that is insurance in the UK. Basically as the insured you are guilty until proven innocent and the strategy of insurance companies is not to pay up unless it is the last resort – like having to come home from your holiday ‘cos your Dad died (of course that was all planned) or your kitchen going on fire (because we’re pyromaniacs).

Well, our latest issue was just that – and here’s the photographic evidence that was good enough for the Loss Adjuster, but not the insurance company, as you will read below.


Amazingly, the following letter has, believe it or not, actually elicited a sympathetic response.

No result yet, of course, but at least some consideration.

See what you think. This was my letter to Nationwide Building Society on March the 12th.

Dear Sir/Madam

I write to you in a state of some disbelief.

My understanding of the economics of insurance is that we, the underwritten, undertake to pay you, the underwriter an open ended premium to ensure that if something unexpected happens to us, the cost of that eventuality (less an agreed excess) is paid out to put right the unfortunate occurrance that we have paid for.

You, I understand, set the premiums on the basis of a risk analysis. So that, you pay out less than you collect and make a profit.

We, the underwritten, do exactly the same.

We calculate that if the risk of paying out endless monthly premiums is worth the security of knowing that in the eventuality of something going wrong we will be looked after.

We assume the people we are paying are as good as their word.

In the past year I have lost all of that faith.

Firstly, my father died whilst I was on holiday and had to bring my family home from Portugal.

My trust in Mondial was misplaced (as we were treated like cheats when in fact the reality was precisely the opposite – it was Mondial that was cheating).

We were fed nothing other than lies.

Nationwide, who we bought this policy from, positions itself as the good guys – not the money grubbing swine that the banking network is. So, why is it that when our kitchen goes on fire; when you send out a Loss Adjuster to validate any claim – and he does; when you find out that our kitchen has been discontinued you come back to us and say…

“It’s normal practice to settle for half the cost of the full replacement kitchen.”

Why is that?

Which half were you planning to replace? Top or bottom? Left or right? Inside or outside? Handles? Worktops? Or don’t those count?

What would you have said to me if I had only paid half my premiums?

Would you have settled my claim?

I don’t think so!

And what’s that about quick settlement of claims? The fire was on the 5th of January. It’s now the 12th of March.

And can we have the door back that you’ve had for a month trying to find the kitchen that matched it?

You are being very unfair, very unreasonable and frankly ridiculous.

Please could you respond wearing your sensible hat and tell us when our fully validated claim will be processed with some dignity.

Yours faithfully

Mark Gorman

PS. One other thing. You have replaced the washing machine (minus the excess) but you seem to be treating this as two claims when quite clearly it is not. The washing machine caused the fire, therefore the whole thing is one incident and should be treated as such. In other words, for the avoidance of confusion we have no intention of paying two excesses. Just like we don’t make two monthly payments.

A world first

Jeana discovers a new band and the Altzheimers doesn’t kick in.

She remembers their name!

They are Fleet Foxes and they were (apparently) the darlings of SXSW this year. They remind me a little of Midlake which is probobaly why they are on the fantabulous Bella Union Records label.



It also explains why they do Fleetwood Mac covers.

New golf season starts with a bang

May I introduce you to the Tiger Woods of South Queensferry?


One tournament played in the 2008 season.

One victory.

Yes, I am that good. I may have a late developing career as a professional golfer because today I, dear reader, won the opening day Texas Sramble at Dundas Parks with my team members, Paul, Calum, Trisha and Ewan.

In a nine hole contest we shot six pars and three birdies which, after deducting our handicap of ten, gave us a net score of 22 (13 under par)..

Tiger. When did you last shoot 13 under par?

Tom had to sit watching (total loser) as we walked elegantly and dignified to the stage to receive our trophy. A bottle of Scotmid Red Wine and six quid.

Whoo hoo.

word of the week

Hillary Clinton’s lying about the sniper fire non-incident in Bosnia led to her defending herself by misusing a little used word.

She claims she did “mis-speak”.

To misspeak is to mispronounce or use a word incorrectly.  But which part of lying about an incident is mis-speaking?

Has she been reading ‘Lanark’ by Alistair Gray set in the land of “unthank”?


Perhaps we can add a few more words to the English language.

To swear is to mis-compliment.

To hack someone at football is to mis-tackle.

To murder is to mis-propogate.

To crash your car is to mis-drive.

To miss a putt on the golf course is to mis-not miss.

To bunk school is to mis-attend.

Any more thoughts folks?

Wearing the shirt…

I never even played for my school team but I have played football on and off most of my life, and followed it too.

The Scotland friendly against Croatia rose my cynicism levels way out of control though.

Rangers play Celtic on Saturday and five Old Firm players pull out through injury but will be OK for the weekend?



Scotty Brown turned up though.  And got booked.  Says a lot about his commitment.