# Wednesday, July 25, 2007

I have noticed over the last month or so that most of the spam I get seems to contain simply a PDF attachment. I was wondering whether this was a new tactic designed to fool people into opening up a dodgy file. I came across this article today that claim spammers have stopped sending pictures in their emails and instead started attaching PDF’s. It appears that they are doing this to try and get around corporate spam filters. So far, it appears to be getting through my spam filter quite effectively with several hundred of these spam mails with PDF attachments arriving each day. Whilst my daily amount of spam mails continues to rise, I suppose one good thing about this latest trend is I don’t have to read about Viagra or penis enlargement unless I actually open the PDF.

posted on Wednesday, July 25, 2007 11:40:41 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [1] Trackback

A cat was thrown from a car in Cornwall, the frightened cat managed to run across several lanes of traffic to the middle of a roundabout. The cat was left uninjured but very frightened. Hopefully it will soon find a new home with someone who will look after him.

posted on Wednesday, July 25, 2007 11:06:18 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, July 24, 2007

A man found a crispy rodent in his bag of crisps. The mouse had apparently been deep fried but the manufacturers say it could have entered the bag after the crisps left their factory. Either way, finding a crispy mouse is not a pleasant experience.

posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2007 7:41:12 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

With the long hot summers we have been seeing in the UK (not this year) English wine seems to be enjoying something of a boom. I read this interesting article which talks about several different vineyards here in England and what type of wine they produce. It’s given me a few ideas about new wines to try and I will certainly be looking for some English wine next time I visit the supermarket.

posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2007 3:20:13 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A glue has been produced that can attach equally well to both to both wet and dry surfaces. It was inspired by sticky geckos that can climb using their sticky feet. The glue is similar in structure to a gecko’s foot and also contains a polymer that mimics the glue a mussel uses. It is likely to be used for adhesive tapes and water resistant adhesives for bandages.

posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2007 1:42:51 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, July 23, 2007

A German zoo has been accused of selling its animals as food. It is alleged that wild pigs, goats, deer and an anteater have been killed and then sold for their meat. The authorities fear that the Erfurt Zoo has been killing for animals for several years to fulfil people’s tastes for unusual meats.

posted on Monday, July 23, 2007 9:03:35 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

The TV remote could soon be a thing of the past. Scientists in Australia have invented a device that allows viewers to control the TV by using simple hand gestures. The gadget includes a camera that can recognise hand gestures and could be easily incorporated into set top boxes. A clenched fist turns the TV on, a thumbs up sign controls the volume and a sideways sign can change channels.

posted on Monday, July 23, 2007 7:30:47 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A Chihuahua called Zoe attacked a rattlesnake that had tried to bite her owners child. The brave dog jumped in between the snake and the child taking several bites from the snake. Following treatment for her wounds Zoe is now recovering.

posted on Monday, July 23, 2007 2:03:42 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, July 22, 2007

This article is not about big dicks. It's about an article I read recently suggesting that links such as the words big dick seem to generate more traffic to your blog. The article in question was not linking to a porn site but to a blog entitled Big Dick's Blog. Anyway that's enough big dick links, I will be interested to see if my traffic increases.

posted on Sunday, July 22, 2007 9:46:13 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [3] Trackback

My blogging has got a little bit out of control and what started out as a personal blog, now appears to be more of a mini news feed. With this in mind I have started a couple of new blogs to try and split the content up a little bit. This blog will remain a personal blog, and contain all the usual stuff I blog about. However, I am going to post most of the shopping related content at ineedashop and most of the news related content at atheniaglobe which will both be live soon. In addition to these you can already read my design related blog and my travel related blog.

posted on Sunday, July 22, 2007 6:40:31 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

My cats have been hunting frogs for several months now with no success. So little success in fact that I had become secure in the knowledge that the frogs were too smart to be caught. Yesterday Oscar (pictured) came running into the house with a large frog firmly between his teeth. At first I assumed he had caught a bird but upon further inspection I found it was a frog and was still very much alive. After a bit of persuasion I managed to get Oscar to drop his frog and returned it to the pond. Oscar was left with a very bad taste in his mouth, but is still hunting frogs.

posted on Sunday, July 22, 2007 11:27:46 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A man pulled over by police on suspicion of driving whilst drunk was found to be completely naked. The man was wearing only his shoes and socks and had four friends in the car with him. They were so drunk they did not appear to notice that their friend was naked.

posted on Sunday, July 22, 2007 11:13:27 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Saturday, July 21, 2007

With all the bad weather yesterday it was hard to do anything much outside. I was lucky that I didn’t have to use public transport otherwise I would have been stuck. I did, however, have to take some urgent parcels to the post office which is ten minutes away from my house. The trip there and back was interesting in that all the roads and footpaths around here were flooded with water. Not only did I get rained on, I also had to avoid the splashes from passing cars. I got back rather wet, my waterproof jacket had protected the top part of my body but as you can see from the pictures my trousers were a little wet.

 

posted on Saturday, July 21, 2007 9:49:51 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

It seems to me that it’s becoming much more economical to have a smaller car these days. Not only do you pay less tax and less insurance, some council’s are bringing in further measures to force people with larger vehicles to pay more. Richmond council already charges people with the most polluting cars more for a perking permit. They are now also thinking about charging higher fees for parking meters and council car parks for so called gas guzzlers. Having worked in Richmond and seen that most people have large or high performance cars I can see this is likely to prove unpopular with residents, still it might make them think about using their cars slightly less or maybe getting a smaller car.

posted on Saturday, July 21, 2007 10:19:08 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Friday, July 20, 2007

I found a bottle of Fetzer Barrel Select Merlot 2005 in Tesco. I must admit I brought it because it was on offer at Tesco for £3.99 and I thought at that price it was worth a try. The bottle blurb boasts of a range of tastes including plums, vanilla, raspberries, cherries and chocolates. When I tried it the taste of plums was evident and it was a really fruity wine. It did however lack body, although to be honest at £3.99 I was not surprised. In all, it was a nice enough wine that went down fairly well, but about what I would expect from a £3.99 offering, ok, but not great. Not a wine I would buy again.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 10:48:35 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A new moon has been discovered orbiting Saturn. This means there are now 60 known moons orbiting the planet. It was spotted by cameras on the Cassini spacecraft. It has not yet been officially named but is currently nicknamed Frank.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 8:30:23 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A man in Ventura has been arrested for torturing a tortoise. He had tried to cut the endangered tortoise out of its shell before throwing it against a wall. The tortoise is recovering at the Turtle Dreams rehabilitation center. He is currently being fed though a tube in his neck but there are hopes he will make a full recovery.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 8:28:16 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Fishermen in Zanzibar have caught a creature called a Coelacanth. The fish has many fins and a three lobed tail and was thought to be extinct until one was caught in 1938. Since then two other Coelacanth have been caught by fishermen but its still not known how many of the fish still exist.

A Coelacanth.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 8:09:45 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A seagull in Aberdeen has developed a taste for cheese Doritos. The seagull has been nicknamed Sam. He walks into the newsagents when the door is open and steals the crisps but only seems to like the cheese flavoured Doritos. Once he is outside he rips the bag open and is joined by other birds that help him eat them.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 7:45:39 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Facebook can now claim to have created its first boy band. A group of four musicians met on Facebook after discovering they had similar interests. They later tracked down Daniel Glatman, former boss of the band Blue and asked him if he would become their manager. They have now signed a £1 million album deal with Universal. The group called Blake have already recorded their first album which includes classic tracks such as Moon River and Jerusalem.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 7:23:24 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

An owl shaped maze has been created into a farmer’s field to mark the lance of the latest Harry Potter book. The maze is 600ft/ 193m long. Amazing.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 7:15:34 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Armed police called to a crime scene in Wuppertal in Germany were surprised to find a large stuffed toy. A woman had reported seeing a masked criminal through the window of a parked van. It turned out the suspect was actually a large toy beaver in the passenger seat of a car.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 7:13:44 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A man in West Sussex is celebrating after placing a £2 bet on a series of horse races and winning and amazing £427.000. He placed what is called a Scoop 6 bet with William Hill. He is now planning to move to Spain.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 7:00:38 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Firefighters taking part in a training exercise were meant to cut holes in the roof and walls of an empty house. Unfortunately they managed to cut holes in another house which was two blocks away from the empty one. The owner of the house is now claiming compensation for the damage.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 6:57:12 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A father and son have unearthed a hoard of Viking treasure. It contained 617 silver coins and 65 other objects including a gold arm ring and a silver vessel. It’s thought to be worth around £750,000. The proceeds of the find will be split between the finders and the landowners.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 5:55:55 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I read this interesting article about how Britain became an island. The evidence shows that Britain was split from France hundreds of thousand years ago by a huge flood. The evidence is based upon high resolution sonar images of the English Channel that show a deep scar in the limestone rock caused by a huge torrent of water. Its an interesting read and makes me wonder hoe different Britain would be today if it were still joined to France

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 5:36:02 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A tractor and trailer carrying blocks of cheese caught light in West Sacramento. The result was that hundreds of pounds of cheese erupted in flames causing a huge fondue effect.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 5:26:10 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I read this really interesting article about how London is slowly sinking. A combination of subsidence and rising water levels mean that every year London is around 3mm lower. This is according to the Environment Agency who has been monitoring the situation. With these findings they hope to be able to adapt London’s current flood defences to make use of a better natural floodplain as well as get a clear timeline of how much time they have to carry out existing improvements before the situation gets too critical.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 2:08:41 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Last time we moved we did it ourselves hiring a van which my Dad drove. Since then we have gained a lot more stuff and next time we move we will certainly be using a moving company.  I found this useful directory of moving companies. You can search by area and by the type of service you need. They also include services for moving internationally as well as storage rentals.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 2:06:07 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I came across these great Simpsons quotes. Among some of the good ones are “Your questions have become more redundant and annoying than the last three “Highlander movies” from Comic Book Guy and “I’m normally not a praying man, but if you’re up there, please save me, Superman” from Homer.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 10:33:05 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I have been caught out in the past when my account has gone overdrawn by a few pounds and the bank has charged a lot of fees on the top increasing the debt dramatically. This article, however, highlights what I hope is an extreme case of unfair charges. The article talks about an HSBC account that went £5.60 overdrawn. In the first month £184 of charges were added to the account. In subsequent months amounts of £152 and £176 were also added, making the total debt more than £500. The bank said it wrote to the customer informing them of the problem but no letters were received until nearly four months later when the debt had mounted up. In this instance the bank did apologize although the article does not state whether the customer still had to pay the charges. It makes me wonder how many other people have been caught out by this tactic.

posted on Friday, July 20, 2007 9:41:50 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Thursday, July 19, 2007

Have you ever wondered what you would do if you have the luck to get a bank error in your favour. It’s usually the kind of event that we only see on a chance card when playing Monopoly. Obviously in the game you are allowed to spend it but in real life you know you should really give it back. One lady finding £135,000 in her bank account decided to take a chance (literally) and spend the cash. She managed to work her way through £33,000 of the money before being arrested for theft. She will also have to pay back the money.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 9:39:11 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Retailers are now starting to offer free laptops as incentives to customers who sign two year broadband contracts. PC World was the first to introduce the offer, giving free laptops to people who signed up for a two year contract with Orange broadband. Now the Carphone Warehouse has introduced a deal to give a Dell laptop to each customer who signs up with AOL Broadband and signs a contract for 24 months.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 7:01:47 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Australia’s worst drought in around a hundred years is forcing kangaroos into its cities. The droughts mean that food is scarce and kangaroos have to compete with sheep and cattle for food water and water. This forces them into the city to look for food.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 5:03:31 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I read this article about the alcohol content of wines. It’s interesting that most wines used to be around 12% per bottle and nowadays most bottles that you see are around 14 or 15%. More alcohol does not necessarily mean a nicer wine and I find that some wines are spoilt by the fact they are simply so strong. Like the author of this article I would much rather have a nice bottle of wine rather than have one glass and start to feel tired because it is so strong. Luckily some supermarkets are now starting to stock some wine with lower alcohol content. The article suggests some to try including a Moscato from Brown Brothers.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 4:36:30 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

It always seems to be the cute cuddly creatures that get most of the press when it comes to conservation. Other animals are overlooked because they are not so attractive. When it comes to sharks they have a really bad press, everyone remembers Jaws and most people will probably admit to finding them rather frightening. Maybe that’s why there doesn’t seem to be much effort to try and save these creatures from extinction. A recent report by a conservation group suggests that sharks could well become extinct within a generation if the practice of eating shark fin soup is not stopped. The soup is popular as a luxury item in China and is often eaten at wedding, mainly because its expensive, you need a lot of sharks to make the soup and they are few and far between. The Chinese currently account for around 90% of the world’s consumption of shark fins. The current demand for shark fin soup continues to rise and as the demand cannot be sustained by the population of wild sharks, the future looks bleak for the shark.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 3:47:42 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

This is another one of those stories that makes me sick. This poor kitten was set alight by two teenage girls. The cat was in a cage at the time so had no way of getting away when the two girls poured flammable liquid on him and set to light to it. The skin on his back was burnt off leaving raw tissue and he has had his tail and ear tips amputated because they were so badly damaged. How someone can be this cruel to an animal is beyond me.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 3:32:44 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A pair of Montagu’s harriers nesting in Lincolnshire has successfully hatched three chicks. There are currently only around 10 to 14 pairs of these rare birds nesting in the UK so this could be good news for the species.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 3:21:22 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A couple in Vancouver are currently living with 80 bats which have built a nest inside the walls of their condo. Despite the fact that they risk exposure to rabies a court has ruled the bats cannot be evicted for another three weeks. Under the current legislation the bats are protected during the breeding season, so until it is over they are allowed to stay. The human residents of the condo are looking forward to the day when their unwelcome guests can be re-homed.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 11:17:47 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A bomb threat in Pittsburgh turned out to be someone’s lunch. The threat was taken seriously and sniffer dogs were sent in, only to find a salad in a brown paper bag. The suspicious package had been left in a women’s bathroom under a sink. The moral of this story, be careful where you store your lunch.

posted on Thursday, July 19, 2007 9:54:42 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Police in South Korea are hunting a rouge monkey after the creature stole a pair of glasses. The monkey apparently broke into a tourist’s hotel room and nicked his reading glasses. Police have a good description of the monkey but are not sure what they will do if they find it, as there are currently no laws under which a wild monkey can be charged. The tourist should be able to claim the cost of his glasses on hi travel insurance.

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 8:26:16 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A boy who brought a Playstation 2 on Ebay was surprised when he received a parcel containing 65,400 Euros, that’s about £44,000. The boy parents contacted the police who are now trying to find out who owns the money. If no one claims it the boy’s family may be able to apply to have it returned to them. Now that I think about I remember posting a large sum of money to Norfolk last week, I wonder if they will believe me.

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 6:37:15 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Police arrested a kennel on legs as they saw it leaving a pet store. The kennel was leaving a Pets at Home store when police spotted it and pulled it over thinking it was slightly odd. It turned out the kennel contained a man who was stealing a kennel. What a master of disguise!

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 6:31:16 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A man who went to the doctor with what he thought was shingles found out he actually had creatures living in his head. He had picked up an infection whilst in Belize and it turned out the creatures were bot fly lava. The bugs were successfully removed.

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 5:08:15 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

A man at a gas station in Wawa got a shock when he stopped at the pump to fill up and a snake crawled out of the engine compartment of his car. The snake was a boa constrictor which had crawled into the engine for warmth. The snake which measures 5 feet in length was later caught by police but was not charged with an offence.

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 4:48:13 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Parts of China have been invaded by plagues of rats caused by heavy rainfall. The unusually high rainfall has caused around two billion rats to leave their flooded holes and move into the surrounding farmland where they have caused havoc eating crops. Villagers at first tried to poison them but eventually some people came up with a better idea. They have been catching the rats and selling them on to restaurants. The rats are the used to make rat stew which is a traditional delicacy.

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 4:28:18 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I read this interesting article about a group of giant apes that been discovered in the Congolese jungle. The chimps are much larger than normal and due to their remote location are not afraid of people. They also exhibit different behaviour from most chimps building large nests on the ground rather than sleeping in the trees to avoid predators, as is more common. Local hunters claim that the large apes have also been known to kill and eat lions, although so far there is no evidence to support this claim other than the fact that one chimp was found eating a leopard. Once again it reminds me of those pub arguments, who will win chimp or lion? .... but what if its a giant lion eating chimp?

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 4:03:35 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Further to my last post about the rubber duck army about to hit Britain, the first ducks have now arrived. A retired teacher claims to found the first duck in Devon as she was walking her dog on the beach. There is a $100 finder’s fee for any recovered ducks.

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 3:58:35 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

Cheese prices are set to rise dramatically due to a combination of freak weather and the demand for milk. The price of wholesale cheddar has increased in Britain by £350 a ton in the last three months, meaning consumers will start seeing the cost of cheese rise. The rise in prices will not also affect cheese prices; the price of pizza is also likely to rise as cheese makes up around 40% of the cost of producing a pizza. Bad news for cheese lovers everywhere.

posted on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 8:37:29 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback