Tuberculosis cases increase in the North East

el hadji ousseynou diouf bolton senegal
Dirty gobbing bastard

True news story from the BBC. Since 2006, cases of tuberculosis have increased in the North East of England by 38%. We all know that it’s passed through saliva – coughing and spitting are a huge part in spreading this disease. I expect cases to increase even further due to the arrival in the North East (though the shitter part) of one man: El-Hadji Diouf.

Given his history of gobbing on anyone who he takes any kind of dislike to, expect full-body hazmat suits to be de rigeur in the land of darkness shortly. In fact, expect Burberry to come up with a whole line to sell the the charva-infested wastelands.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Rhino Car Hire – thank you!

A slightly sideways post this one. I have been dealing with Scott from Rhino Car Hire over the last few days. He came across the 1000 Mile Walk site, and has made a very generous donation to the Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation. I know that site doesn’t get the traffic it did, so I would like to post this quick message here for him.

Look at it this way – every time you rent a car from Rhino, a small amount of the proceeds will be winging its way to Michael and the kids in Vietnam. And Rhino’s prices seem pretty reasonable to me as well. You can’t go wrong!

Again, a massive “thank you” on behalf of BDCF to Scott and his wife, Julie. If I ever get to Cyprus I may well look you up!

And don’t forget, folks, Blue Dragon can always make use of any spare cash you have kicking about. Please, please click on the link above and check out the instructions for donations. Unlike “western” charities, their administration costs are around 10-15% of the money brought in. So well over three quarters of the money raised will go directly to the projects that need it. That’s pretty much a complete reversal of the figures of most charities run over here.

In addition, don’t forget to check out the instructions if you’re donating from the US or Australia which will allow your cash to be passed over with tax exemption.

I’m off to school again tomorrow and then to Geneva on Sunday. More updates then.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

The name’s Brand. Russel Brand. And I fucked your grand-daughter.

And I don’t care. Those outside of the UK likely haven’t heard of the people involved in the current BBC scandal doing the rounds. Russell Brand (who I only heard of this week, but I’ve been out of the country for some time) and Jonathan Ross (a somewhat whacky DJ/TV personality) left telephone messages for Andrew Sachs (who played Manuel in Fawlty Towers many years ago) claiming that Brand had shagged Sach’s grand-daughter Georgina Baillie. Who herself plays a goth vampire in a travelling burlesque show called the Satanic Sluts (look for her there under “Voluptua“).

Are you still with me?

Thing is, it was a joke. Sachs has come out and said that the apologies offered by the Beeb, Brand and Ross are all nice and he sounds like someone who’s pissed off but would rather get over it. His publicist is more angry by all accounts. And Baillie / Voluptua has cancelled some shows in embarrassment. Quite how someone who’s life revolves around wearing hot clothes with her boobs hanging out, pretending to cut other women’s throats in faux-lesbian photos and stage shows can claim to be embarrassed by anything is beyond me, but what the hey.

Sachs has pretty much retired, and his grand-daughter is going to be rolling in publicity through this. She’s been trying to get a career as an actress, and what any film studio wants is a “name”. It’s hard to make someone famous – she’s just had a shitload of free publicity. And she’s hot as fuck.

The Guardian are calling for their heads (surprise), while the Sun’s published photos of Voluptua with her tits out. Nice to see how our media works. And a shame I can’t find those pics online.

What’s teeing me off is the number of people baying for the two DJ’s heads and asking them to be removed from radio for evermore. Hang on, if they were listening then surely they know the kind of stuff these two guys get up to. It’s often near the knuckly and Ross is known for being pretty sexually forward – or at least dropping more double entendres than a 6-year backlog of Finbarr Saunders cartoons.

If you don’t like them… don’t fucking listen. It’s as simple as that. Frankly I think Ross has/had (like I said, been out of the country for a bit) one of the few watchable chat shows on TV and he was the highlight of BBC2’s They Think It’s All Over. He’s genuinely funny. Brand… dunno. He’s some bloke that’s become famous since I left.

If we have to start banning people from the radio, can we please ban Chris Moyles instead? He doesn’t offend me. He’s just incredibly fucking shit.

And to save you googling, here’s some links to pics of the hot chick involved…

I’m also peeved as I just noticed they’ll be “supporting” Wednesday 13 at his Hallowe’en show in London. Which I really wanted to go to but I can’t as I’m flying to Geneva on the Sunday. Feck!

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

New product research

Creative Technology logo

Do any companies these days actually scout out their prospective customers, or do they all just look at the competition and mimic what they’re doing – even if it makes more sense?

Today’s grumble is about Creative Labs and their present range of Zen media players. I’m in the market for something new, since my PSP was pinched, and a friend has one of these and loves it to bits. OK, so hers was bought from the US and the model she has was never made available in the UK though similar ones were. Going through the specs, it seems just what I’m after.


No external battery. So when the battery goes, you’re without the player for the two or four (USB or wall socket) hours it takes to charge it up. Oh, and that wall charger will cost you another £20 or so. It doesn’t come in the box.

With her older model, you can swap batteries around. This gives a much more useful playing life. While 5 hours at a shot is fine for someone commuting when they can charge it up in the office or at home, it’s useles for – say – a long-haul flight. Some hours on a train to get to the airport, waiting to board, 10+ hours in the air, commute when you land… the player’s dead by the time you walk up the steps onto the aeroplane.

Now I mean, who on earth would market a whole range of media players without replaceable batteries?


Fucking Apple.

I don’t know whether to blame Apple for starting this whole thing off, or Creative for being stupid enough to follow in their footsteps. Either way it’s incredibly frustrating. I’m right in the market for one of these things, the Zen looks lovely and with the new models they’s instantly removed one feature I deem an absolutel necessity for any portable electronic device.

Without exception, every single gizmo of the sort I’ve bought for years has had one feature – that extra battery. And without exception, at the time of purchase I’ve forked out more cash for one of them. Usually a long-life alternative. It’s a money-making accessory.

It also means when the battery fails you don’t have to have the player repaired under warranty (or fork out for a specialist to do it outside). Perhaps that’s where they see the cash – customers ditching the failed hardware and buying a new one.

Either way, the sad result is simple. I won’t be buying Creative this time around.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]