Friday 29 April 2011

Royal Wedding = Tat Explosion

Today one of Charles' lads (think it's William)  gets married to Kate Middleton . The gutter press have been going on about the fact that she is a "commoner" and the rules should be changed so that her daughtes can be queen , gawd bless 'em, completely missing the point that monarchty is totally about privilege and putting a barrier between the godlike royals and us mere proles. I mean if you start changing the rules , it'll become a total media freak show like X-Factor or I'm A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here. Then you look and the whole sorry state and realise that William and Kate probably have almost little or no say in the wedding, just like the contestants on X-Fact. Simon Cowell come on down .........

The other thing is the amazing amount of tat that these events generate , destined to fill remainder bins for the next ten years. Just hope Kate and William have a long and happy marraige just like a fairy tale , really do wish the well , although the alternative is another rewrite of "Candle In The Wind" and that we could definitley do without !!

However you could celebrate the day with this cruise available from Groupon , that does show some taste

Friday 22 April 2011

Contactless Cup Cakes

Today has been quite interesting. Was wondering whether to buy a new "thing" , came out of the shop and heard an unmistakeable sound down Northumberland Street. The magnificent Baghdaddies had graced us with their presence outside the defunct Mi-Shake shop next to Burger King. Watched them for ages , trying to spot a break , but their songs have more fals finishes than "The Return of The King". Anyway eventally heard a break and found they had a new CD out and they let me have a copy (for a tenner) , the snappily named "Dancylvania"

After that I went round the corner to the appropriately named "Cake" . And purchased several cup cakes , then noticed they had a "contactless" card thing . I have three cards that are supposedlt kitted out for this technology , however the lovely young lady behind the counter didnt even know they had it , and we coudnt get it to work . So we did the chip and pin , but I intend to go in next week and get "contactless on their ass"!!

Saturday 16 April 2011

A Phone With A 3D Camera

The new LG Optimus has two cameras that allow you to take 3D images. This is a gimmick obviously , but they keep yammering on about the 5 megapixel Cameras and nothing about the lenses . It's the lense that makes the camera , had a 1.3 megapixel Kodak Camera that outperformed a 5 megapixel camera. It's all in the lens.

Nokia produce the best cameras in phones , followed by Sony, so if you have to have one go for a Nokia . Problem is the rest of the phones arent up to much!!!

Thursday 14 April 2011

National Record Shop Day - 2011

This Saturday is National Record Shop Day , where wall the independent record shops put on events , record signings , sell limited special edition records , usually on vinyl , and have a good time. In Newcastle we still have the following that are worth visiting on the day:
  • RPM (back of the Old George off the bigg Market)
  • Reflex (Nunn Street part of the Grainger Market Building)
From Reflex's Page:

"REFLEX is once again proud to be involved with Record Store Day. On Saturday 16th April, we will be throwing our doors open at 8am (brought forward an hour early by the organisers) and offering up hundreds of exclusive records, CDs and memorablia, only available over the counter in Indie Record Shops across the UK.  All releases are only available in the shop on the day, no mail-orders will be taken and no pre-orders/reservations can be made.
There will be entertainment on offer including Mod new boys The Master Colony and others TBA, with guest DJs and refreshments available. Come and join us for what will prove to be a great day and get your hands on as much exclusive product as you can carry!"

Also try out
And while your at it check out the excelelnt Groupon and you might get a cheap meal out or some other bargain!!

Monday 11 April 2011

How Big Can A Tribute Be?

Just seen a couple of tributes listed coming to thw O2 Academy in Newcastle , Cash (Johnny Cash) and The Rising (Bruce Springsteen). It's only a few years back I was seeing Benwell Floyd at the Archer in Sandyford , but now The Australian Pink Floyd Show (no relation) are teh biggest tribute band in the world , lugging along with them Pink Floyd's official light show adapted for the Antipodeans.

With bands like Limehouse Lizzy , Black Rose  , Maiden England and Powerage (AC/DC)  , I wonder how long before one of these outdo the band that they are paying tribute to!!!

Saturday 9 April 2011

Oddbins My Favourite Wine Emporium

Went into Odbins today and they didnt have my wine of choice , given the "current situation" . Was shocked to hear they were in administration. Oddbins have long been my shop of choice for alcohol as they know their stuff and you can usually get what you want. They are percieved as maybe being a bit snooty but they are anything but , being friendly , knowledgeable and the only place I know where you can get a decent bottle of wine for less than a fiver (admittedly this range is small but what do you expect).

The problem is that supermarkets and big brands do cut price deals that eventually force smaller traders out of business/ Due you really want  your only choice for everything to be between Tesco and Asda?

First Day Out

Today was the first time I've taken the Advent Vega out since I bought it. The tablet is great but I seem unable to connect to my mobile internet , and can't download from Android Marketplace. I'm sure these problems will be ironed out in the near future. Still think it is a wonderful piece of kit. It's fast , easy to use and does the job , which is quite good for something these days. Will  keep you posted on it's progrss.

Friday 8 April 2011

Groupon - Everyone Seems To Like It

When I first heard of Groupon I thought the idea was awkward and flawed , having to pay for a voucher then use the voucher to pay for goods. I did'nt use it at forst , but noticed that there were some very good offers. The concept is that you pay upfront for goods or service and get a significant discount for this, such as £20 worth of food for a fiver at As You Like It.

The concept was featured on the Jeremt Vine show and got unanimous thumbs up from customers and merchats alike. I've now used it four or five times and saved a fortune , think you could do the same...

Wednesday 6 April 2011

My New Toy

Just bought myself an Advent Vega. Impressed so far, very nice toy. Connnects via wifi , very fast , android based , full internet browser , 10" for those who like it bigger and significantly cheaper than even an iPad 1.

Having said that the screen is covered in my grubby greasy finger marks, but it's easy to use and I've hardly touched the thing. Will try it as an e Reader and with a couple of apps , so will report back sporadically on it

Saturday 2 April 2011

Me and My Content Delivery Device (A Short History of Me & Mobile Phones)

About ten years ago my daughter forced on me an old Pay as you go Motorola phone, and through the years I eventually got a contract , a bike , and then became employed by my present company who provide me with a phone and pay my bill.

When I started I saw article that one of the big cheeses in Orange had hoped for a 25% take up of mobile phones by the population - at that time it was around  130% (a number of people have multiple phones , personal and business). Apart from being able to make calls , you can communicate by text, take photographs , send pictures , browse the internet and interact with social networks as well as playing music and watching video. The latter option could bring some truth to the phrase "It'll Make You Go Blind!!" as watching films of a certain kind on such a small screen cannot be good for your eyes!!

Thr rise of smart phones (big hitters being Apple / iPhone and Google's Android) mean that phones can do anything bar teleportation.. Apples main failing is that you need a PC with iTunes on but they do the job , though the iPad is a big iPhone you cant make calls on!!.

Anyway here's my progression:

  • Samsung Tocco - My first touch screen phone - generally very good apart from the fact if you had the number pad on and put it to your ear it started pressing keys and cut you off.
  • Nokia X6 - Nokia have great cameras but a terrible operating system and it wmanaged to wipe my contacts twice so it went in exchange for ..
  • LG Chocolate - A Gorgeous Looking phone , absolutely brilliant until you switch it on!! This went in exchange for
  • LG 505 - Worse than the Chocolate and without the looks
  • Orange San Francisco - Android Phone , processor to slow , camera rubbish , but dirt cheap and brilliat in every other department - I do love this phone despite it's few drawbacks . Still have it and can't see anything I want to upgrade it for. Bought myself a tiny Panasonic camera to make up for the picture shortfall
I still can't believe how far mobiile phones have moved on since thefirst ones came out....

How Many Silver Shiny Things?

This week I've bought one or two CDs , I am a fan of music and always looking for new albums and decent compilations. This is what I bought that I can remember (only spent £50-£60):
  • Aerosmith - Pandora's Box - 4 CDs
  • Miles Davis & John Coltrane - The Complete Columbia Recordings - 6 CDs
  • The Great Scottish Songbook - 5 CDs
  • Steve Hackett - The Genesis Files - 2CDs
  • Glasvegas - Euphoric /// Heartbreak \\\ - 1 CD and 1 7" Orange single
  • Syd Barret - Introduduction , Jim Jones Revue - Burning Down Your House, Black Angels - Phosp[hene Dream, Ellie Goulding , Lissie and a few others 10 CDs
 I know people with CD collection smaller than what I bought this week , but there's still more that I want. Some of the packages could not be done justice by iTunes and the like , so I'm still a huge fan of the format. And this is a precursor to National Record Shop Day coming up in two weeks time .

Listening to Ellie Goulding now , very good - much better than here "Your Song" interpretation.