Room 101: James Grindall – Bristol scrum-half

James Grindal1. Cold Callers

I’m constantly bombarded with random people calling both my mobile and landline trying to get me to invest money or buy insurance! You say hello, and before you know it, they have been babbling for two minutes. I just hang up now!

I probably forgot to ‘tick a box’ when filling out a form somewhere, but it is getting ridiculous. The other day a cold caller wanted me to invest £1000s on the Diamond Market through him. As if! Is it me or are they getting more conniving with the use of numbers that you don’t normally associate with cold calls like 0843, 0845 etc.?

TRP verdict:  Hang up? Surely you can do better than that. At least answer the phone, say ‘hold on’ and then disappear for a couple of minutes. A lack of imagination means you’re out

2. Toilets you have to pay for

I’m not being tight when I say this, but you really shouldn’t have to pay for a necessity like going for a ‘number 1 or 2’. Maybe they should update the phrase, ‘to spend a penny’ because it costs a darn sight more than that nowadays, although ‘spend 20 pence’, admittedly, doesn’t have quite the same ring to it. I’ve been caught short before when I haven’t had any coins on me, resulting in a very painful walk to a cashpoint and then to a kiosk to get the right small change. Surely this is way too much effort just to take a pee! I suppose they could argue it’s a premium service because in the laws of supply and demand there are not enough town centre loos around to meet the needs of the public.

TRP verdict:  Perhaps the hard-up phrase, ‘I haven’t got a pot to piss in’, comes from the lack of free loos. You’re in.

3. Quick tap penalty kill-joys

Along with most other scrum-halves, this is a pet hate of mine. Yes, it’s gamesmanship from your ‘oppo’ to roll or kick the ball a few metres away to prevent the quick tap, I even do it myself when I think I can get away with it! But it is certainly something referees and their assistants could clamp down on a lot harder; it would add to more attacking plays from penalties, rather than always kicking to touch. I’d also like to see refs become less fussy about where a tap penalty is taken from. I wouldn’t be surprised if a few of them had a tape measure on them, they can be that particular.

TRP verdict:  The feeling of relief when a referee actually allows a quick-tap is almost as good as finding that elusive free toilet. You’re in again.

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