Regular readers will remember my describing the ninth circle of bureaucratic, business-obstructing, hell this time last month.
Yes, it's still rumbling on. In fact, one of our more experienced office staff has been almost exclusively working on solving the whole state-created mess so, in time and motion terms, this entirely irrelevant episode has already cost us in the region of £2k.
Sometimes, though, even when taking on the role of a prize in some public service inter-departmental game of pass-the-parcel, there are still moments which stand out as world class form-filling ineptitude. Here is a prime cut.
Having booked one vehicle in for a DVLA inspection last week as a test case (this exercise in itself took best part of two hours and could only be arranged for three weeks from the time of phoning), we decided that it would be more indicative for our purposes if a different vehicle was sent, so rang up to notify them for their records.
You're probably ahead of me already here. Of course it wasn't as easy as merely changing the vehicle registration on their computer - what were we thinking?
Naturally (for the public sector), the appointment would have to be cancelled and re-booked ... at the back of the queue. Still, we had already paid the - customarily-extortionate - £280 fee, so at least that wasn't a concern. Right?
Wrong. That would have to be cancelled too or, more accurately, the fee refunded by the same method as our remittance.
So, the simple process of changing a vehicle registration number for an inspection, which has yet to take place, finishes up as a cancellation, a re-booking, a further delay of another week, a cheque drawn by the DVLA and posted to us, and our writing a fresh cheque and remitting it back to them.
Because, presumably, the computer said no.
Still, what are businesses for if not to provide employment and circumlocution opportunities for mentally under-endowed box-tickers and water-cooler gossipers, eh?
To boost the economy by injecting profits, did you say? How very last century. Get with the programme, Grandad.