What Is All This #32dishes Stuff About?

The other week I received a coded message from a secret agent whose name I cannot reveal so I shall call him Mr D.  The message read as follows:

Agent 007,

Hope you are well.

Can I introduce my colleague Fox who is working with ******* on a new mission which I thought you would like to get involved in. It’s called 32dishes and it involves us sending you packages.

We are only sending these assets out to a very small number of agents, so do not leave the country.

They will not fit in the letter box, so please send over an address where you would be able to collect the package.

This message will self destruct,

D and Fox

I know it’s a bit cliché but my number really is 007.

Shortly after this, I received a phone call from Agent Fox telling me to unlearn everything I had learnt from previous messages and conversations or pay with my life.

I was a little concerned…  Perhaps even a little nervous…  I waited for the first package to arrive.

The package arrived the next day, as expected.  It was soft and round.  I opened it cautiously to find a foam football (that’s a spherical ball that some folk call a soccer ball) that had been cut in half to serve as a transportation device for four very small men as pictured here:

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I’d love to say that the picture became clearer at this point but I just couldn’t tune in.  What did it mean?

While all this was going on I had received word that a giant of a man only known as “The Big Fella” travelling the length and breadth of the country installing what appeared to be a network of microwave frequency antennae disguised as satellite dishes.  The total number of dishes will be 32 if he completes his mission.  These dishes had been painted in the colours of various nations to make them less conspicuous.  The Big Fella is a fully trained ninja.  He once told me that to blend in, sometimes you need to stand out.  I guessed that was the case with these dishes.

Details of his travels can be found here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/32dishes

Days passed.  More of the 32 dishes were erected.  Things were hotting up out there but I was being left in the dark until today.  I knew I was being kept out of the loop for a reason.  Perhaps this was the end for me.  I was ready to make my peace with the world and move on.  I have had a good run and let’s face it, in the secret agent business you’re lucky if you live past 30.

But earlier today another package turned up for me.  I quickly scanned and swabbed it to make sure it wasn’t going to explode on me and opened it up.  It contained four Dutch beers, some beermats and a pint glass:

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I think this was my contacts at the agency’s way of telling me to disappear before they make me vanish.  A leaving drinks party of sorts.  Usually, agents have to become ghosts if they are to leave the service alive, so leaving drinks have to be done like this.  There’s no other way.

This is me, though.  I wasn’t going to leave it there so I had to find The Big Fella.  He didn’t know it but I planted a bug in his mobile handset some time ago.  I did this with all agency contacts.  You don’t want agency folk creeping up on you unawares so it’s good to know where they are at all times.  I switched on my iPhone and homed in on his beacon.  He was with agent Fox and a cluster of other agents in Soho so I made my way over there.

After an initial struggle with The Big Fella, I made it into a building where lo and behold, Agent Fox appeared to be making adjustments to the remaining numbers of the 32 dishes.  I could tell she was lying.  She was a terrible liar.  She tried to tell me that the dishes were a part of a campaign for UK satellite TV company, Freesat who were promoting the fact that you can watch the FIFA 2010 World Cup via satellite, in HD and without a subscription.  Poppycock.  Like that’s ever going to happen.  According to Agent Fox, they were running a competition to win a load of Freesat HD gear including receivers, recorders and a massive TV too.  I didn’t believe a word of it and I still don’t now.  I know it looks like that is exactly the case when you visit [URL no longer exists] but I don’t trust these agents.  I know damn well that they are trying to intercept our communications with these dishes and we must be vigilant.

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If you want to be safe, secure and value your privacy, I suggest lining your walls with lead and your windows with aluminium foil.  It is also worth making a hat out of the aforementioned foil in case you have to leave the house to get supplies.

I actually made all of that up.  It really is a campaign for Freesat and there really is a competition.