Big Bertha Thing balloon Page
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From the book
The Ingoldsby Legends
by the Rev. Richard H. Barham
Published by Richard Edward King,
88 Curtain Road,
London E.C.
Inscribed;-
Barbara Death
From Aunt Emma
March 6th 1921
(C) Copyright Tony Lance 1999
Distribute complete and free of charge to comply.

Big Bertha Thing welfare

29th April 1999
Operations Manager,
The Benefits Agency,

Dear Sirs,

Further to your letter of 28th April 1999, regarding a list of questions, on the possibility of my working at all.

I will attempt to answer your questions, in order as listed in your letter.

  1. I am not working, I am just pottering arround on the internet. I last registered for course work with the Open University in 1997. This would have involved 6 hours work per week. I could only manage half-an-hour per day, so totally failed to do the work or complete the course. Not even one homework assignment was completed.
    In August 1997, I bought a second hand computer for 150 pounds sterling, and was given free access to the Open University computer along local telephone lines at a call charge of 1p per minute.
    Since that time, I managed to build up a body of correspondence, within the limits of half-an-hour per day mental or physical work.
    In January 1999, this correspondence was transfered by me to my web site; www.bertha.ndirect.co.uk(since disabled.) I have to pay 14 pounds and 9p per month for this site.

  2. Nobody suggested it, it just happened.
  3. My doctor does not know that I have a web site.
  4. See answer 1 for description of my activities. No job is being done, so no job description exists.

  5. No employer exists or payments have been recieved.
  6. I can think straight for half-an-hour per day. The rest of the time is spent pottering arround. I can do one side of A4 paper of mathematics or computer work per day.

  7. On any day free of a major shopping expedition, I can do half-an-hour of original work and about an hour of copy typing at non-typist speeds.

  8. My principle interest is a 50 year scientific project, which was started 30 years ago. If I could spend 48 hours per week doing it I would. However half-an-hour work and an hour pottering, seems to be all I can manage and at that not every day of the week.
    Due to my condition, I asked Mrs. Pam S...., a fellow Open University student to be the project archivist for my work on the Open University computer. She agreed and kept the archive of the correspondence which is now on my web site. This is both an unusual request and an unusually generous service to a fellow student on incapacity benefit.

  9. Zero income for as far as the eye can see.
  10. Not applicable, zero wages or income.
  11. August 1997 and is ongoing.
I trust that the above will put the internet feeding frenzy of the newspaper hype into some perspective.

Yours faithfully.
Tony Lance Dip.Math(Open)