30 December 2005

AOL Can't Understand The Point Of Adverts

Has anyone seeing that annoying advert for AOL saying they don't have download limits (very bad thing)? It shows some guy looking at pictures of "Steve's Stag Night" online. He seems to be getting to the interesting pictures (I think I remember a police woman in one of them, I guessing that may not be her real job. Just then a woman walks in and tries to grab control from Steve himself or one of Steve's friends who was there. He's just to get in big trouble when BING - your download limit has been reached. What a relief, he's safe! AOL then say then don't have download limits so chose them and get busted by your girlfriend. [There is the remote possibility that the girl is that main focal point of the advert in which case why is she on screen for such little time and why is she commandeering his PC and invading his privacy?]

27 December 2005

Four Years In A Strange And Distant Land

For four years I lived in the North West of England and having recently gone back there I find it amazing the differences between there and just about anywhere else. There are some things I will never stop doing or using, such as saying "barmcake" instead of "roll" or "bap" when referring to bread. There are something I miss, like good cod (Scotland just serves haddock) that can be ordered "without batter" meaning lightly battered so it doesn't take away from the fresh taste of the fish. There are somethings I am indifferent to, such as a overhearing a mother use the word "cock" in front of her 8 year old son. Why am I indifferent to that? Because she said "stay there cock", which is just a friendly term of endearment. Finally there are things I really am glad I don't see each day, such as fresh pig's feet, cow's heels or tripe (cow's stomachs). Incidentally I saw the tripe the next day and it was so flat, that picture can be your guide to make sure you get good quality fresh tripe the next time you go out ;-)

24 December 2005

What A Sad State British Comedy Is In

I watch the Christmas shows of Little Britain and The Green Green Grass and never even flicked one half smile during the very long one and a half hours. At least last year's The Office Christmas show was an interesting storyline if sadly no jokes or humour of any known kind. John Sullivan made some very good episodes of Only Fools and Horses but he also made some really bad ones, some bad specials too. In the end it was almost like watching a soap with a few one liners thrown in. The same soap opera effect engulfed The Office when hacks described it in the same breathe as Fawlty Towers. The Green Green Grass is an abomination and the executives at the BBC should be ashamed of the rubbish that has been produced, if I were John Challis I'd have walked out after episode three. Little Britain on the other hand is less than moronic, school ground catch phrase comedy. When Harry Enfield did this he at least added some satire and the tiniest amount of life into his characters, Little Britain is void of any noticeable talent. I'm sure some people will try to defend British Sitcoms but there has not been any truly great sitcoms (bar maybe a few Coupling episodes) for well over a decade, maybe longer. In that time there have been three or four excellent series (yes, twenty plus episodes) of The Simpsons (not for a good six years, it should have been cancelled after it went into free fall around series ten, now the series is the joke itself), three brilliant years of Futurama and Family Guy, five or six years of excellent Frasier and the same of exceptional Seinfeld episodes. There are still producing excellent stuff on the other side of the pond including the current couple of series of Two and a Half Men. Yes folks, as much as it pains me to say it, the US talent has got our arses firmly whipped when it comes to comedy.

23 December 2005

Noel Edmonds Can't Read

It's true, I caught a few seconds of his "Deal or No Deal" show today (interesting concept) and heard him say the guy in the chair still could have "one pence" in his box. That's impossible! Pence is plural, penny is the singular. Noel, when you get around to reading this, here's a picture of one penny, have a good read of it.

20 December 2005

New Craze For Home Owners - Watch Paint Dry

Dulux have a very cool white paint that goes on pink and dries white so you can see where you've painted - genius! (Although if your wall is that white already why are you painting it?) I can't wait to get someone I know to do this and coerce them into it, but bring the paint around already poured out or in a temporary container. That way when it's finished they'll be sitting there staring at the walls asking each other "is it me or has that not changed colour in a while?" and "was he just having a laugh? Have we painted our room a light shade of pink?". Kudos Dulux.

18 December 2005

We Should Be The Champions ... Of The World!

21 shots compared to only 4. 17 corners to none. 62% possession compared to just over 37%. A perfectly good goal ruled out incorrectly for offside (Sinama's goal). They should have been reduced to 10 men for an incredibly dangerous tackle on Gerrard. As has been reported *everywhere*, we were the better team in the World Club Championship on Sunday and that's what leaves a really nasty bitter taste having lost the game. Don't bet against us being there again, Steven Gerrard will lift that trophy, who's that for a bold prediction?

12 December 2005

Who Says Tony Blair Talks Bollocks?

Over the years many people have accused Tony Blair of talking more rubbish than a dozen con-men and being unable to give straight answers. He talked about going to war in Iraq as it was something he "believed" was right. No evidence, no justification, just multiple uses of the word belief. A famous piece of Tony bollocks came on the day of the Good Friday Agreement, one of the most important days in the history of Northern Ireland. He started off very commendable but got slightly off-message towards the end: "A day like today is not a day for sound bites really. We can leave those at home. But I feel the hand of history on our shoulder." The other day he was asked if new Tory leader David Cameron was a serious opponent he said: "All I would say at the moment is, you have got to say, well, let's just wait and see about that, because leadership is about taking decisions, it is not just about being personable." What a straight talker...

8 December 2005

Transporter 2: Mind Blowing Sequences of Selling-Out Action *** Spoiler ***

I'd just watched Le Transporteur at the weekend and it was okay, let's say 3 briefcases out of five. The end was rather annoying, everyone turning up in the middle of nowhere at exactly the right time to save Frank (the main star). Last night we went to see Transporter 2 (notice the title). As Neil and I left, the first thing I said was "I rarely use the word 'sell-out'...". The film-makers sold out big time. The film is set in Miami, the French police chief returns as almost a comic aside, there is *so* much product placement, the title of the film is no longer in French (even though the original film was entirely in English), I could go on. Okay, I'll go on: the plot was wafer-thin, the action sequences went on far too long and over the top, a Caribbean guy was added in for the final 20 minutes for some cheap jokes, the time-line of the movie was all messed up (the French lieutenant only stayed for two days?), the whole virus angle was ridiculously unbelievable and the "everybody lives happily every after" wrap up was physically and biologically impossible, even for mainstream fiction. If you want an okay action film with martial arts, I'd watch Le Transporteur. Ignoring the rubbish "film" I saw in the Film Festival this year, this is the worse film of the year ... at least Fantastic Four carried you along with it on its journey. Two placed-products out of five.

7 December 2005

Michael Essien is Reckless and Should Be Banned for 2 Months!

This evening Liverpool secured top spot in their group with a 0-0 draw against Chelsea (Why is it a "Nil-Nil draw" or a "One-One draw"? Shouldn't it just be a "Nil draw" or a "One draw"...). In the first half Michael Essien came in with a raised leg and studs showing and went straight into the knee of Didi Hamann. The referee saw this and remarkably did nothing, not even a booking. Even in the more physical Premiership that would be a straight red card and a five match ban. This comes a month or so after Essien got a yellow card in a Premiership match against Bolton where he did an equally dangerous tackle (he feigned injury immediately after making the tackle) and after the match the referee apologised and said it should have been a straight red card but the FA said he wasn't allowed to change it! Both victims described themselves as "fearing their legs were broken" and Essien has escaped a total of a 10 match ban in his first few months in the Premiership. £24million pounds for "the best midfielder in Europe" (according to Houllier although that may have been to bump up his price to Chelsea) ... more like a reckless player who shone in a much smaller pond.

4 December 2005

We Have A Lost Child Here ... Anyone Want Her?

I know the functions of supermarket life inside as I spent over eight years working for Sainsburys in a variety of positions (oh er!), the last few years I was senior checkout supervisor. This means I know what to do in emergency situations, unlike most of the supermarkets I've been into recently. Allow me to explain with examples:
1. Very common: [Over the PA system] "Would Mrs Smith please come to customer services as we have your daughter here". So they have a lost child and they manage to get the surname out of them. Instead of just asking for Mrs Smith they state they have her young child with them. Is Mrs Smith really walking around the store thinking, "Hmm, peas, ham, but there is something else I'm missing ... oh yes! My little girl!". Instead it allows any nutter to try to claim to be Mrs Smith, or better yet claim to be another Mrs Smith: "Hi I'm Mrs Smith, I believe you have my daughter her. How did you manage that, she's been dead for three years?"
2. Sadly this happens occasionally: [PA] "We have a lost child at reception, he's about three years old, wearing a brown coat and blue jeans". WTF! This is just insane! I'm a nutter and I now know a good description of the boy. I can walk up to reception and immediately lock eyes with the child (who won't recognise me). If I act very annoyed and bark things at him like "I've told you never to run off" he'll be upset and not want to come with me, covering the fact that he'd not want to come with me anyway. There is no identification needed as the child clearly can't speak properly and will be screaming from being chastised as a bad boy. The only way to handle this situation is keep the child safe and search the shop floor as the "parent of guardian" will be the one running around like a headless chicken wondering where their little child has gone. A few quick questions like "Have you lost something?" and "Can you describe him?" and you know you have the real person.
3. Finally the worst of all and I've only heard this once. [PA] "We have a lost boy in the store, he's about four years old wearing a jacket with a bulls-eye on and white trainers. If anyone sees him please contact customer services". These people need to be shot. As a general rule there aren't too many four year olds shopping by themselves so when you see one running around crying or pretending to be an aeroplane and there's no parent in sight there is a strong chance you've found them. Not hard is it?

While we are on the subject listen out for other bad supermarket calls like "First Aider to Checkout 23". If your hear that you can be safely assured that is a good enough distraction at the front end to cover some random stealing. Heaven forbid they give you a license to kill with "Security to the main entrance". Instead both these calls should be coded either as "Code 3 to CO23" (don't use Code 1 or 13, it's easy to guess they are serious) or for added security do it in some form of Morse/African/Dolphin speak "ka-ka-ka-klick, klick".

2 December 2005

Eurosport Shows Two Wrestling Shows In Uk

Not much of an exciting title but bear with me. Earlier tonight Eurosport 2 screened Japanese Pro-Wrestling. In Japan pro-wrestling (not amateur as in Olympics) is both real and scripted. The real version involves having 13 points to start with and you lose 1 for every time you grab the ropes to break a hold or get planted hard on your back and 3 if you take a referee's count. You lose when you have no points left, you submit or are counted out (to 10 like in boxing). I watched a bit of it and it was interesting to see but it was quite violent (almost like Ultimate Fighting). Between 9 and 10pm on the original Eurosport they had more wrestling on so i flicked it on - I couldn't believe it, it was TNA ("Total Non-stop Action" not "Tits 'n' Arse" a much smaller rival to the big WWE, former WWF, that entertained us with Hulk Hogan when we could believe a man could rise from a severe beating and win just because we were cheering for him). Not a surprise in itself, the bigger Sky Sports shows WWE. The big shocker was this ... Eurosport had dubbed the American commentary with two real sports commentators and they were calling it as if it was a real physical contest! The guys stood there show-boating to the crowd and the reporters had to act as if it was perfectly normal behaviour for this type of sporting contest! Why Eurosport, why? If you want to show it as an entertainment show then fine, but who is honestly going to watch it as some form of sport addict? Don't you think the names "Shark Boy" and "Shocker" are a little clue? All that said two people, AJ Styles and Christopher Daniels are two of the most agile and acrobatic "martial artists" I have ever seen.

Reasons Not To Have Children #1

You have to name them. I always felt sorry for boys with girls names (like a boy named Sue), such as Stacey Jones, but then he grew up and became the scrum half for the New Zealand Warriors as they just won the Tri-Nations Championship so I guess it did toughen him up!

I always thought America had the most idiots when it came to baby names but some "parents" in the UK in 2005 have named their children: Storm (girl), Wolverine (boy, both X-Men characters), Tia (girl, as in Maria), Caramel (girl), Paprica (sic) and ... Ikea (girl) and Moet (boy). Words fail me.