Category Archives: Gassbagging

Vans

I was considering some new wheels recently and started to look at the space requirements. For example I need to carry quite a bulky mobility scooter occasionally along with some other stuff such as overnight bags or supplies. I also prefer 4 wheel drive cars. I view 4wd as a safety feature.

I looked at a few cars and got quite concerned about boot space even with vehicles such as the Peugeot Rifter and Ford Tourneo Connect. The Rifter is my favourite choice here and I do like the look of the GT premium model. Peugeot don’t do a 4wd but they do have grip control, which is close and has some rave reviews.

I decided to start looking at vans. Now I don’t need a full size Transit, Transporter or Vivaro. A much smaller van will do. This where I started tearing my hair out. Big thing I want the cab or cabin to be as comfortable as a good car. You know, heated seats, a must for my medical conditions and a few other treats.

This where it started to unravel. You see with all the options I needed the van started to turn out as very expensive and in some cases very difficult to configure using the manufacturer’s configuration tool on their website. Peugeot are a good example. I still cannot work out how to configure a normal length Peugeot Partner with the 130 bhp engine and grip control.

The next thing is that I cannot get close to getting all the treats I would either expect or want to add as options in the van.

Maybe I am in a limited market in wanting a small luxury van and I would not be at all surprised if this is the case. But, there must an easier way to specify vans as I found some configuration tools for vans more confusing than configuring a car!

The other thing I find strange is not being able to specify 4wd with these smaller vans. I cannot really go up to price levels of a Land Rover Defender or Discovery Van (Basic £36,000 ex VAT – which I will have to pay) and I think I would hit the same issue of not being able to specify some of the nicer Land Rover treats to enhance my driving experience. The only thing that would not be in Doubt with the Discovery or Defender are its 4wd credentials.

Then we get to the next option. Customisation. There are so many after market customisation options available that it seems that a whole industry has grown up around van customisation.

Again, very confusing.

So its back to the drawing board.

With best regards

Confused of Warwickshire.

08/06/2021: Throwback Tuesday – Career Changers

This throwback looks at Career changers and the original article is from 2017.

I talk a lot here about career changers who want to buy lifestyle businesses.

I openly advertise for people who want to sell their lifestyle business to contact me as I have buyers available. I receive enquiries on a weekly basis from potential buyers who want to leave their current careers behind to work on a lifestyle business for me to act for them in a confidential capacity.

Who wants to quit a good career for a lifestyle business?

Who are these people and what do they look like?

I took my last 12 months data and extrapolated some figures from it combined with checking some facts with the individuals involved. This data is also compiled into a 27 page report which can be made available to qualified parties.

So Let us take a closer look at these people and their profiles.

First of all we can look at age groups:

Age rangePercentage
under 302.13%
30 – 4016.31%
40 – 5040.43%
50 – 6029.08%
60 +12.06%

Here we can see that the desire for change peaks between the ages of 40 and 50. Much of this age range will have worked for over 20 years. This is one driver for change.

Nest we can take a small glimpse at life at home.

Home LifePercentage
Single7.80%
Co-Habiting28.37%
Married21.28%
Married With Children42.55%

The full report reveals that the stronger the home life in terms of family the desire for a quieter life away from London life strengthens.

Let us now take a look at the staff grade of these people.

GradePercentage
Non-management Junior Grade2.13%
Manager51.77%
Director21.28%
Vice President6.38%
Other senior grade18.44%

At manager level the desire to change career peaks.

Let us also look at their working locations.

Work LocationPercentage
Canary Wharf28.37%
Home4.96%
London City35.46%
London Other9.93%
London West End14.18%
Other7.09%

When I started looking into this I did not expect Canary wharf to show such a high result.

As we carry on looking at the current make-up of the individual looking to change career in to a lifestyle business we can now take a look at annual salaries.

Annual SalaryPercentage
< £50,0005.67%
£50,000 – £75,00029.08%
£75,000 – £100,00055.32%
£100,000 – £200,0005.67%
Over £200,0004.26%

We can see from these figures that the desire for change is strongest in the £50,000 – £100,000 pay bracket.

Just before we move on from who wants to change career let us look at the sectors that they work in:

SectorPercentage
Banking24.82%
Legal10.64%
Accountancy14.18%
Professional Services35.46%
Other14.89%

I was surprised by the figures here when I added everything up. Professional Services features more highly than banking. However I remember some of my earliest clients in the lifestyle business sector who are also career changers. Mostly 40-50 years of age. Manager Grade. Settled or married mostly with children and earning up to £100,000 a year!

Now that we have looked at who the career changer is. Let us look at where they wish to be in life.

First of all let us look how much they are looking to invest in a lifestyle business.

BudgetPercentage
Less than 50,0004.26%
£50,000 – £100,00021.28%
£100,000 – £250,00024.82%
£250,000 – £500,00039.01%
£500,000 – £1,000,0008.51%
Over £1,000,0002.13%

A number of people we speak to take into account the difference in price between housing cost within reasonable commuting distance (<1 hour) of their primary working location and their desired location when changing career.

Lastly for this part of my report let us look at the locations where people are looking to relocate to and base their new lives.

Preferred LocationsPercentage
Central England8.51%
Europe4.96%
International (Non Europe)3.55%
Ireland (Northern and Republic)5.67%
North East England7.09%
North West England6.38%
Scotland14.18%
South East England14.18%
South West England24.82%
Wales10.64%

It is worth noting the following. Those considering relocation outside of the mainland (England Scotland and Wales) generally have very strong family and social ties to their preferred location. Scotland also sees this trend with the South West being an idyllic and profitable choice, whereas South East England is seen as a “safe bet”.

This is all for this part of my report.

I have compiled a lot more data and will share this on this website in due course.

I have a full report available to qualified parties, please fill in the form below.

I will be giving a talk around this report in London in September, please use the form below if you would like a ticket to attend.

If you are interested in working with the career changers I work with or would like to sell a lifestyle business to my client base then I would be delighted to hear from you. Again please use the form below to contact me.

18 Years of WordPress

A few days ago WordPress passed its 18th birthday. This truly is one to mark. I doubt 18 years ago that anyone thought that it would become what it has. The recognised leader amongst CMS systems capturing 40-41% of the market.

Of course I knew about WordPress 18 years ago but dismissed it in favour of Mambo (Later Joomla). When I first came to WordPress in 2009 for a particular task, Mambo had gone and Joomla was on its tail but cracks were starting appear. in 2011 Joomla had problems, big ones. At this point and about version 2.6 WordPress became my go to tool. Replacing Joomla. I only did one site in Joomla after 2011. I have been involved in a large number of WordPress sites since 2011. 10 years ago. This site will reach its 9th WordPress birthday in 15 days time. I will write further about that nearer the time.

We are now on version 5.72 of the WordPress software which is a far cry from 2.6! I am very grateful to the WordPress development team for the time they put in but also to the teams of plugins developers and to the WordPress community too, who are always happy to provide support in internet forums, their wisdom and sage advice which I always greatly appreciate has helped me a lot.

From a simple blogging tool to a system that can accommodate pretty much any flavour of website any would care to dream about is an impressive feat. There are only 2 or 3 cases I can come up with where I would not choose WordPress as the core tool or presentation layer.

I look forward to seeing what the next 18 years of WordPress brings and hope that WordPress builds on its current foundations and becomes even better. There is absolutely no reason why it should not.

The Rise Of The Band 5 Bullshitter!

Band 5 bullshitter is a term first told to me by someone else who also had treatment at Harefield Hospital. It is used to describe a nurse that tells lies.

Bullshit is fairly self explanatory worldwide but some for non UK visitors, please allow me to explain the band 5 bit. Band 5 is the most common pay grade for nurses in the UK.

I personally now use the phrase for any member of NHS staff that tells lies whether or not they are a doctor, nurse, toilet cleaner or the chief executive.

Anyway less of the explanation and more of the celebration. I have managed to get this phrase into the hallowed Urban Dictionary and you can see more here.

This phrase though now applying to the whole of the NHS organisation will always have its roots at Harefield Hospital in Middlesex which is now part of the Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Trust.

The courtg9000 Plan

Many readers have asked about the site at courtg9000.wordpress.com and what the plans are.

The plan at the moment is that courtg9000 will be a regularly updated mirror of this site. This however might change and in that case courtg9000 will become the primary site.

I will be keeping all readers regularly updated. The courtg9000 site is still a bit of a building site so be warned. I shall be changing this in the coming weeks.

Best regards

Court

Band 5 Bullshitter Merchandise Now Available

I am very pleased to be able to announce that as part of The Urban Dictionary platform that Band 5 Bullshitter merchandise is available.

This merchandise consists of mugs, t-shirts, sweatshirts and gaiters.

This is a US site and is priced in US Dollars. For people in the UK this might mean some tax is added to your order/

You can find the merchandise here.

Some pictures.

I Had A Nostalgic Look At The Database Just Now

Ever since I set up the IT Ventures (ITV) division of SystemNet Data back at the turn of the century I have been attracting all sorts of deals. To give a quick history lesson. The IT Ventures was set up in 2000 to do deals in the technology space and was merged into the Irish business of Naytencourt in 2002. Naytencourt bought Systemnet Data. ITV merged into Natencourt HQ and became Naytencourt. Naytencourt closed in 2009 and was reborn 2010 as Court Capital Partners, which was largely decommissioned in 2018 with the remaining business merged into The Trade House.

Since day one a very smart and trusty database has been logging all deals and opportunities that come through the door. I also got a large number of prank calls, for example, someone wanting to sell me the England football team for a fiver! I also had more than my fair share of Nigerian prices wanting to do “deals”. I never logged those in the database sense. Mentally filed is the phrase I think I am looking for! I will talk about some of these another time!

The result is a database of over 20,000 business opportunities. This continued through with The Trade House Magazine which added another 7,000 opportunities in the space of 2 years. Some are fairly standard such as reseller agreements for some fantastic software and hardware products, some fantastic websites for sale and investments in businesses like SystemNet Data.

However I did get some rather weird and wonderful ones. This morning I was having a nostalgic look back at the database. Here are some of the more interesting things that I have been called about.

  1. A gentleman’s bar and grill with an interesting sideline – drugs. The owner was quite open about it which was even more surprising. Naturally, I declined.
  2. A vodka distillery in Russia
  3. Yacht moulds for a range of trailer sailers.
  4. A South African IT company which very nearly became SystemNet Data South Africa. This was an excellent business and it is a crying shame that the deal fell through.
  5. A castle in the West Midlands UK, that was crying out for a hotel and lifestyle activities conversion.
  6. A chain of British hot food takeaway shops in the Far East.
  7. A football team and ground/”stadium” in the North West of England.
  8. A private beach in the South West of England.
  9. A 5-star hotel and Beach resort in Dubai. Asking £214,000,000!
  10. A company producing cladding similar to that involved in the Grenfell fire. This was quickly declined!
  11. The UK dealership for a range of Malaysian electric cars
  12. An integrated business management and finance app that was ahead of its time. Much earlier than Xero or FreeAgent with a SalesForce like app bundled on.
  13. A high profile Central London Hotel
  14. An Oil Rig for sale for £16,000,000
  15. A hotel with interesting links to English royalty.

I remember working on all of these well, most of them were a pleasure to work on. Unfortunately, some were not a pleasure to work on, I think you can guess which those were! There are others but I think that these were the most memorable.

Brucie Bonuses Available 09/05/2020

I have the following opportunities available on behalf of friends that carry “brucie bonuses”*.

  1. Finance and Mortgage Broker Required who can deal with a complex requirement.
  2. Franchisee Advertising and Recruitment. Wanted is someone who can succesfully advertise for and recruit franchisees for a professional services franchise
  3. HMO’s in the North East of England required.
  4. A good friend requires, holiday comples/Gite complexes in the UK, Ireland and Mainland Europe.

If you can help with any of these please do to contact me using the form below.

  • *Brucie Bonus – A brucie bonus is a fee paid for a referral leading to a successful outcome in the case of the above the people that these are advertised for will discuss the bonus level with anyone concerned.

    Court Guinness Update 03/05/2021

    I apologise for the lack of blogs in April. I had a data corruption issue with this site. I also decided to The Club to a new site because of this but also to improve performance of both this site and The Club. The Club is growing nicely but owing to a huge spike in spam registrations The Club is now by invitation only. This assists performance and preserves the high quality of content in The Club. I will repost “brucie bonus” opportunities here.

    I have so far resisted the temptation to visit a pub since the easing of restrictions I seriously cannot be arsed to book an appointment to go for a pint for 3. I will wait if I need to for restrictions to be completely lifted.

    On this note I have booked for certain events and will book more into the schedule on an as and when basis.

    So far I have managed to completely redo my media setup only to change the scope and add to it at the close of the project. Last minute scope creep. Scope. I have managed to add some new toys to it and an additional webserver. I still need to purchase more storage, about another 6TB should do it! Having a dozen favoured old school games consoles with plenty of classic games on tap in from one interface is rather cool and I have finally managed to get to grips with Kodi which is a rather good media tool. I am rather pleased that I added a projector to the kit list as playing old-school Sega Megadrive games on the back wall is a rather cool thing. More Raspberry Pi’s have been ordered! I should have a small “farm” of about 5 Pi’s when the end of the month update comes around.

    A number of health conditions have transpired to keep my coding in Python short in April this is down to me sleeping a lot more and not having as much time on my hands.

    I am more actively looking at moving house and a number of possible options are under consideration. I do wonder however if I am only the only one that does not like the Right Move website. I have to say I much prefer Zoopla or On The Market. As is usual with these things I am fast getting more than annoyed with estate agents. It is a sad thing that in all my dealings in residential property (and there have been very many) over the years I have only met one estate agent that isn’t a complete and utter fucking cockwomble. I do wish the government would bring in legislation to extinguish this horrible trade and their clip-on ties and polyester trousers. I don’t think I am alone in having these views.

    The Trade House is still looking for someone to take it on its next journey. Covid is not assisting the market for businesses such as these.

    Thats all for now

    Regards

    Court

    Property Required – West Midlands

    I require a 2 bedroom property in the West Midlands.

    Preferably with good local infrastructure and close to good local and national transport links.

    Property must be accessible. Ground Floor access and preferably on one floor.

    Please contact me using the form below if you have anything available.