Radio phone-ins and intelligence – mutually exclusive?

Still offline, I’ve been wandering in the wasteland that is the wit and wisdom of Magic 105.4 radio (a region we’ve visited previously).

Currently, they’re running a phone-in competition, a general knowledge quiz, with the potential for winning £20,000, so you might expect sensible questions. Ha!

A question just asked – How many dots are there on a standard dial? What dial? Speedometer? Telephone? Sundial? Braille clock? Buggered if I know. Anyway, it’s quite a while since phones had dials, so they’re out.

The answer Continue reading

Always read the label (with caution!)

I use Sainsbury’s cistern blocks in my toilet. Like others of their kind they appear to do very little, but they smell OK and, hell, they’re cheap enough. They’re also, apparently, edible.

Having dropped in the last block, I was about to bin the empty pack when I spotted the words “This product is suitable for vegetarians and vegans”. WTF?

I mean, really, in a world where dumbness seems to be spreading like a plague, is that wise? OK, I can understand the vegan thing – no animal products, not tested on animals – but why veggies? True, they may care about animal testing too, but not, probably, as vehemently as vegans, so the clear implication is that they’re edible. At least, anyway, for the hard of thinking.

There’s a good chance, sooner or later, that some dumb sod will try eating one, as people can be spectacularly dumb. Who can forget the woman who drove off with a scalding paper cup of McD’s coffee tucked between her thighs, with the inevitable consequences (and who, as a result, needed extensive plastic surgery – the coffee was insanely hot)?

How much responsibility, I wonder, would Sainsbury’s accept if a young veggie (but old enough to read, natch), sucked on one of these and expired messily, but sparkling clean? The words “Suitable for vegetarians” have a well-established meaning – suitable for vegetarians to eat.

Just a thought…



The Sky saga (a.k.a. Sky sucks!)…

On May 11 I moved into a new flat (I moved to the flat next door and, leaving my router connected in the old flat, I could access my broadband service from the new one). On May 12 I went onto the Sky website to order the basic TV service, plus broadband and their phone service, including line rental. As my new flat has no phone line, I called the phone number Sky gave for such an eventuality. I discussed what I wanted, pointing out that I quite definitely had no phone line and specifically asked them to confirm that this wouldn’t be a problem. No, I was told, everything will be fine.

On the 16th my Sky dish was installed and Continue reading

BT and Tiscali – avoid both if you value your sanity…

As the observant among you will know, I’ve just moved house – all the way to the flat next door.

My phone, line rental, broadband and TV are all from Tiscali, and I asked them to transfer the service to the new flat. They can’t do that – I’d have to cancel this service and re-order, thus getting stuck with another installation charge! Not to mention all the pain in the butt hassle.

Then I checked Continue reading

Tiscali is now TalkTalk – should we worry?

Tiscali’s UK operation, as you’ll know by now, has been bought out by TalkTalk. As a Tiscali customer (and an extremely satisfied one), this bothers me, given TalkTalk’s shambolic start-up problems which went on for far longer than was acceptable, because they grossly over-reached themselves.

However, they provided a link to a message board where, they said, “We are eager to hear your ideas and address any queries or concerns you may have. Post your comments, and we will get back to you as soon as we can.”

So I posted a comment, expressing the above concerns, and asking Continue reading

There are Lies, Damned Lies, and Journalism…

(…with apologies to Mark Twain…)

This may be my last post for some time. As I say above, I’m moving house tomorrow and will have no Internet connection for a while.

So, the labour expenses “scandal” – isn’t it just awful? Well, no, probably not. What it is is a bunch of figures, mostly taken in isolation and cherry-picked by the egregiously politically-dishonest hacks at the Torygraph** to make Labour politicians look bad (while ignoring the Tories who are,  undoubtedly, no better).

This is a classic example Continue reading

Access problems…

Are you having problems accessing any of my posts?

There is something weird going on and I’m trying to figure it out, so if you are having difficulties with Ron’s Rants, please let me know by posting a comment here. Watch your language, though, or you’ll be filtered and I won’t see it!

Of course, if you have problems accessing this post then we’re screwed.

Note to WordPress bloggers – I do know about the stats re-working for people who can’t calculate their own time zone from the UTC time WP normally uses, but this is different. I’m losing hits from my stats and they’re staying lost (contrary to what WP says – that my data is safe), so I’m trying to establish whether readers are having problems. Something is FUBAR!

The presumption of probable guilt…

In the UK, when using DNA evidence, the presumption seems to be that almost anybody is likely to be guilty of something, sometime. Why else is the government clinging on so grimly to its illegal DNA database?

Despite the DNA database being declared illegal by the European Court of Human Rights (I’m in there – for a ‘kin motoring offence!), the UK government has effectively Continue reading

Swine Flu – the novelty wears off…

It seems, despite all the publicity about the potential  pandemic, people are getting terribly blasé about it. That’s probably a mistake, even though, outside Mexico, it has been extremely undramatic.

In the pharmacy, yesterday, waiting for my monthly meds – which should have been delivered but the doctor’s surgery screwed up – a guy wandered in and asked for Continue reading

Self-image on a mobility scooter…

An unusual item from my search engine list – “Worried how I look on a mobility scooter”.

Only one sensible thing I can say to that. Why?

Why should you care what other people, especially total strangers, think? It’s of no consequence, and if you need a scooter, that’s all that matters.

There will always be some who Continue reading