# Monday, 27 August 2007
I was looking at Crooked Brains the other day and came across this video about how to open a bottle of wine without using a corkscrew. It involves a nail, a screwdriver and a hammer. It looks rather dangerous to me, so I don't think I will be trying it, but for more the more adventurous people out there, you might want to check it out. There is also a good video on how to get red wine stains out of clothing, very useful.

posted on Monday, 27 August 2007 16:29:51 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
Microsoft has started renting its Office suite to users in South Africa. Instead of buying the software users will be able to use it on a pre-pay basis by paying $30 a month. The system is aimed at people who cannot afford to spend $700 for the software. It will be interesting to see whether this works in South Africa, as many users simply use pirated versions of the software so may not be prepared to pay for it.

posted on Monday, 27 August 2007 13:18:25 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, 26 August 2007

I went to Tesco this morning, to buy some burger rolls and despite the fact that I arrived ten minutes after they opened I was surprised to see the shelves were bare. It seems that all it takes is a little bit of sun and people go nuts, buying all the BBQ food. It wasn't just rolls there was a shortage of; there was no salad, no hot dog rolls and no feta cheese. If you were trying to buy burgers, then you had no chance at all. Next time I will have to make sure I keep some rolls in the freezer, just in case we see the sun.

posted on Sunday, 26 August 2007 12:08:38 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Saturday, 25 August 2007

I was reading this article about reasons why people call 999. I generally credit people with enough intelligence to realise that the number is for emergency calls. It seems, however, that people do call for the most ridiculous of reasons. The article mentions people who have called the number because they had a spider in their house. Other examples include a lady who wanted police to turn her water back on and people trying to order a taxi. Whilst, each of these people might have thought their problem was a real emergency, it makes me wonder whether these calls affected people in real need of help.

posted on Saturday, 25 August 2007 12:46:37 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Friday, 24 August 2007

Trutex one of the leading makers of school uniforms has considered adding tracking devices to its clothing. They conducted a survey, the results of which showed that parents would be interested in knowing where their children were. They are now considering putting the tracking devices in blazers or the waistbands of trousers. The company currently sells around 200,000 blazers and 250,000 pairs of trousers every year. The only flaw in the plan, children will soon discover all they need to do is hide their uniform in the place they are meant to be and go off in plain clothes to enjoy themselves.

posted on Friday, 24 August 2007 10:53:10 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Thursday, 23 August 2007

I was on the Virgin Wine website the other day, checking to see when my discovery club case was going to arrive and I discovered wine auctions. Basically they have about ten cases of wine in an auction which usually lasts a couple of hours. The cases start at 99p and have no reserve. However, I haven't seen any cases actually sell for under £30. Anyway I placed a bid, not really thinking I would win and ended up with a case of Merlot, which I will review here shortly. I got the case for just over £30, so it works out to less than £3 a bottle. It looks like I have just found a new way to spend my hard earned cash.

posted on Thursday, 23 August 2007 16:21:15 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I can’t be the only person to notice that all the wet weather in the UK has had a massive impact on the slug population. Usually I see a few slugs but this year they are everywhere, crawling around and devouring all my plants. I was interested to read this article that suggests the slug population has in fact doubled this year. Experts estimate that there are 15 billion in Britain, that’s an awful lot of slugs, and I think a couple of hundred are in my garden. I think its time to get the beer traps out.

posted on Thursday, 23 August 2007 14:51:18 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, 22 August 2007
I just opened a bottle of Las Casas de Vaqueria Merlot 2006. The wine is from Chile and is 13.5% volume, so stronger than it first appears. The wine whilst not having a great deal of aroma to it is surprisingly fruity. It has a really pleasant taste of plums and blackberries and is a particularly smooth wine. At only £5.99 a bottle this is a really nice wine and certainly one that I will buy again. The only problem with it is once you have opened it, you will find it hard not to finish the whole bottle.

posted on Wednesday, 22 August 2007 19:43:12 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I read this article about a virtual farmers market called localfoodshop.com and thought it was a really good idea. The virtual market is not live yet but is due to launch next month. The site will allow farmers to sell their produce online for a £10 a month subscription fee. The farmers will keep 93% of whatever they make on the website, which is currently much more than they make selling their produce through the supermarket.

The reason I liked the idea, was because I like to try and buy all my produce through local farmers if at all possible, mainly because the quality is better and the food is fresher. However, it isn’t always possible. We do have farmers markets in the area but generally if I need something quickly I find myself having to buy it in Tesco. Customers will be able to search the website by postcode to find suppliers near them. The website will also encourage producers in the same area to combine deliveries, making the service more environmentally friendly. I am waiting for the launch of the site with interest and will certainly be giving it a go, so watch this space for the review.

posted on Wednesday, 22 August 2007 13:31:44 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, 21 August 2007
I read this article about a new wine therapy being practised in Ukraine. It is meant to be able to relieve problems such as impotence and heart disease. It includes a medical examination after which the patients are advised on what treatment they should receive. The treatment involves one of seven different wine cocktails which includes Crimean wine and mixed herbs. You then have to take the prescription three times a day for a week or two. It all sounds very interesting but I am a little sceptical as to whether it works.

posted on Tuesday, 21 August 2007 12:19:50 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, 20 August 2007
People in Anglesey have been encouraged to look out for grey squirrels. The squirrels are currently being culled as part of a project to help conserve the endangered red squirrel. There is a special phone line set up for people that spot a grey squirrel. The aim is to eradicate the grey squirrel from the Ireland completely to enable the population of red squirrels to survive.

posted on Monday, 20 August 2007 19:44:11 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
I made these rather yummy poached pears the other day. It was more of an experiment than anything else, but they came out rather well. Basically I peeled the pears and cut them in half. Then I poured half a bottle of red wine into a pan, this is a good excuse to drink the other half of the bottle. Then I added a spoonful of cinnamon, some mixed spice and the pears and just left them to simmer for around an hour. Next just take the pears out and turn the heat up a bit on the sauce until it thickens a bit. Then pour it over the pears.

posted on Monday, 20 August 2007 18:11:45 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

I just opened a bottle of Spier Shiraz 2005. The wine is from the Cape of Good Hope. It has a fruity smell and a full bodied colour. It doesn’t taste as fruity as it smells but has a plum like flavour with oak undertones and a hint of spice. At only £4.99 it’s a good wine for the price.

posted on Monday, 20 August 2007 14:44:14 (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback