Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Adventures in Norfolk - Part Two!

Here's a puzzle for you - what's the meaning of the word "Quaggled"?  The answer will be in my next blog post!

So, what else did we experience in Norfolk?  Hmm.  I unfortunately didn't get a photo of the guys dressed up as druids in Norwich that had built a go kart and was preparing to ride it down a hill.

I'm not sure exactly what the deal was, but I think it was Norfolk Asparagus Month or something - everywhere had asparagus for sale - this is one of the tamer signs:

Not convinced by the "tender".  I actually quite like asparagus but I would never think to call it tender.  Maybe I cook it wrong.

I've never made such a big deal made out of asparagus in a supermarket before.

Genuine Norfolk person holding asparagus, probably grown in Norfolk.

The asparagus wouldn't be that noteworthy except for the following two points:
1) Imagine, if you will, the following.  It is a Saturday lunchtime, and you're travelling back from Davenport's Magic Kingdom.  You're feeling a little worse for wear after the night before, which meant that you didn't have any breakfast.  You're not near to any towns, and you are peckish.  You see a glimpse of a caravan in a layby ahead. Great! You think. We'll stop and grab a burger, I could eat a burger.  You think.
 But it's not a burger van.  It's a caravan, where you can pull over, and buy asparagus and strawberries.  Nothing else.  Not asparagus burgers.  Not strawberry sandwiches.  Just plain asparagus and strawberries.
2) On the way back, passing a farm shop, I saw that it was advertising an "Asparagus wine evening".  Again - might be very nice.  But I didn't stop and book a table.

So, they're big fans of asparagus.

Monday, 27 May 2013

Adventures in Norfolk - Part One!


Again, apologies for the delay in blogging.  I have literally had nothing worthwhile to write about, so I decided not to worry about blogging until I had something that I could talk about that could possibly result in quality content.

Anyhow, I've got just back from a long weekend in Norfolk with my friend Dan aka Dusty, and I've got a pile of stuff to talk about which I'll split into two or three posts (so I'll have this week covered for blogs at least!)

First thing which I must must must tell you about is Davenport's Magic Kingdom, newly opened in North Walsham.  This magic museum, launched by multiple award winning magician Roy Davenport, has been planned by the Davenport family for the last thirty years, and provides the public a unique opportunity to view a fantastic selection of magical items and learn about the history of magic and illusion, touching on various historical and famous magicians such as Houdini.  You also get the opportunity to experience first hand a number of tricks and a magic show - myself and Dusty were fortunate enough to enjoy the attraction on its first day, and indeed were in its very first group of people going around the museum.

Roy Davenport at Davenport's Magic Kingdom - the picture above the fireplace is of his great grandfather Lewis Davenport

Both of us have an interest in magic, particularly Dusty who is quite accomplished (compared to me anyway!) in conjuring tricks and the like.  The museum is fantastic - it's very interactive, and what could have been a somewhat dry exhibit of just pictures and text is brought to life by the people working there, and the illusions and tricks you see firsthand.  As mentioned earlier, the experience also includes a magic show, and the one we attended the magician was none other than Scott Penrose, Vice President of The Magic Circle.

I won't spoil the surprise by saying what exhibits are to be seen there but I'd definitely recommend a visit.  All the staff are extremely friendly (Roy in particular stands out - he couldn't have been nicer even though we got inside before the museum opened and interrupted him while organising everything!), the exhibits are very interesting, decent cafe (licensed too) and it looks as though further plans are in place to further expand the exhibits there.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

New hating nappies video is up


Apologies for the delay in blogging, but I've basically been out of anything decent to blog about, and I don't want to just post stuff for the sake of posting.  It's really weird how it goes - I can go for a week with tons of content, and build up a good three or even four spare posts to use when things go quiet, and then suddenly I haven't got a thing to write about.

Just to let you know, I've done a new comedy (I hope) video - I would love some views, likes and channel subscribes, the video is for a competition so being popular would be very helpful!  As an aside, YouTube is going to bring in live streaming for any channel that has at least a 1000 subscribers!  So, I've got seven...

Anyhow!  Catch my video at

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

It's a secret!

I'm planning something!

It's a secret for now.  And I'm afraid it probably doesn't involve you (but could do depending on who you are!

All I'll say is...

Something is happening later on this year.

Excitement will be had!

Little do you know what it will be!

Because it's a surprise!

Yes, you'll have to wait to find out!

Any thoughts on what it'll be?  Put it in the comments below!

Monday, 13 May 2013


I always think it's important, in the interests of continuous development, to share best practice and lessons learned.

Don't dip a Belvita.

Belvita Breakfast Biscuits are a range of biscuits high in fibre, cereals, wholegrain, and with plenty of vitamins and other good things, and basically if you're too busy to have a proper breakfast they'll fit the bill nicely.  Personally I recommend the Honey & Nut and Fruit & Fibre ones, but they're all good.

So there I sat, at about ten o'clock this morning, freshly made cup of tea at the ready, and a packet of four tasty Honey & Nut Belvitas.

"Hello biscuits!" the innocuous cup of tea seems to say.  If only they knew...
I open the plastic wrapping, and extract the first of the biscuits.  I dip it in my tea to bring out the flavour...

It's broken.

Fully half of the biscuit has become disconnected from the half still clenched in my hand, and is now floating in my tea.

Thinking quickly, I eat the remaining half and grab a second biscuit, with which to scoop out it's submerged friend before it sinks to the bottom of the cup to decompose.

It ventures into the cup to rescue it's companion, the one that it spent so long next to in a darkened cupboard!

It breaks in half and sinks as well.

Okay, I think to myself, I've lost two halves.  That's the equivalent of one full biscuit.  Twenty five percent of the packet of biscuits is now somewhere in my mug.

They've gone, there's no saving them, I decide.  More cautiously than before, I take a third biscuit and dip it really quick-

It's broken.

I eat the fourth biscuit dry and drink my biscuity tea.

Don't dip a Belvita.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Adventures in Mikeland Part 1


Apologies for the delay in blogging, it's been a busy week for two reasons:

a) We held our latest G4C Yorkshire & Humber event Thursday night - Addleshaw Goddard's very kindly put on an event for us on the topic of Risk Management and Dispute Avoidance.  The organisation was absolutely top-notch and the folks at Addleshaw Goddard's had gone to a ton of effort to make sure the night went well (which it did).  Many thanks for them for their time and effort.

and b...


Yes, I've got Minecraft and I'm addicted to it.  I've been aware of the game for a while (who hasn't?) and I've been loving the videos Blue Xephos aka the Yogscast make of their guys playing Minecraft, so thought it was about time to try it myself.

Hence "Mikeland".

Mikeland is obviously my land which I am building, it's a bit slow going as I don't really know what I'm doing but it's great fun.  I made a video of my first ever five minutes playing Minecraft (below):

And beyond that, I'm now starting to get the hang of it.  I've got two little caves now that I can sleep in, a chicken and sheep farm, I'm growing sugar canes (not sure why) and wheat, and after defusing a boobytrapped chest I've got some bits of redstone and the like.  I've also got a route down into a deep chasm to do some mining so it's all good.  Here's some pics:

Home sweet home.  The flowers didn't last long - a creeper detonated and took half of them out, which spoilt the view.

A view of my home from above.  You'll see my fenced wheat farm middle-left, my home in the middle (with the flowers), and behind the trees on the right is my chicken farm

The wheat farm.  I built this before discovering that wheat grows quicker if it's planted near water.

My chicken farm, which has recently been complimented with the addition of two sheep.

A rather silly zombie attacking me in daylight and therefore catching fire.

All my chickens hoping that the Ocelot in the back won't kill them.  I didn't kill the Ocelet, just chased it off.  So when I checked the farm later, there was about seven of them eating chicken.

My chicken farm.  With a creeper in with the chicken.  Barbecued chicken anyone?

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Running out of time to be curious about curiosity

Time is against you is you want to experience the social experiment that is Curiosity.  Curiosity:What's Inside The Cube is an iOS and Android game by games studio 22Cans.  22Cans, if you're not aware, has amongst its people the one and only Peter Molyneux, which if you're a serious gamer is a name that you'll know, and even a casual gamer will have heard of some of the games he's designed or produced - Populus, Theme Park, Dungeon Keeper and the Fable series.

Curiosity is not your normal computer game.  Essentially, it's a huge cube, and at the centre of the cube is something cool.  No one knows what it is - well to be precise, three people know what it is.  But to get to it, you, and many other people that play the game with you, have to destroy the cube.  With a little pick.  And the cube is built up of many billions of cubelets, each of which has to be chipped away.  So essentially there are thousands of people chipping away at this cube at any one time, and only one person will discover the secret at the centre, which is likely to happen in the next few days.

But the interesting thing is how people have played the game.  There has been wedding proposals chipped into the cube, the twin towers, palm trees, all kinds of weird and wonderful things.

So if you want to be part of this, get the app soon and get involved.  Beyond this 22Cans are working on releasing their new god game, Godus, with an alpha version expected in a few weeks.  Definitely one to keep an eye on.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

New Video - Monkey Fetches Book - and a whinge about the word literally

Apologies for the delay in blogging - I've had a few busy evenings this week, plus I've not really had anything noteworthy to say (as much as I enjoy making noise, on occasion I do feel that I ought to try to make my blogs vaguely interesting!)

So, what's been happening?

I have a new video, "Monkey fetches book"!  And it's probably better than most of my other ones - one of the really important points for creators of content is that the content is good quality, and to be fair a lot of the stuff I've produced in the past hasn't really been there.  This video isn't the best (the lighting needs improving, and there's a rogue knee in a couple of shots) but I'm getting a few positive comments which is great!

Watch it below:

If you liked it, please do stop by my YouTube channel and subscribe - I'd love to get to the heady heights of perhaps ten subscribers :)

Okay, time for a whinge...

I'm not really entitled to complain about the use of English, bearing in mind the only relevant qualification I have is a Grade C GCSE in English Language & Literature, but it does niggle at me when people use the word "literally" in a non-literal context.

An example - "I was so embarrassed, I literally died."

No, you didn't.

The Oatmeal have a great pic here about "literally", do check it out - I'm thinking about ordering a poster of it.

While I'm on a language rant, people in World of Warcraft with really long names, or with tildes (you know, like รณ instead of o) - it's really hard to invite you to our guild when you have them!  (Yes, I am being totally and unacceptably British here and essentially saying "What?  Your name isn't Derek or Amanda?  Well I'm very sorry but you simply can't expect to play with us. Tally ho!")

Of course we'll invite you to the guild.  But you might need to whisper us so we can click on your name rather than type it in.

Sticking on the topic of being British, did you know that we now have seven different social classes in Britain?  Try the very very fast test on the BBC website to find out which one you are.  I am apparently part of the small group known as "Technical Middle Class" - so technically I'm middle class but I don't own a melon baller.  Worryingly the average age of this class is 52 so either I'm ahead of the game or prematurely old.  If I check my beard in the mirror I'm tempted to plump for the latter.
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