Category Archives: Daily Life

Jelly, and the SS Great Britain


A couple of days ago (18/05/12), the self-appointed jellymongers Bombas and Parr replaced the water that normally flows underneath the SS Great Britain in Bristol, with thousands of litres of (vegan-friendly) lime-green jelly.
I went to see (as did many others) and I took some pictures. Here’s a few of the better ones. (Well, in my opinion, that I took. Self praise = no praise.)

Inadequate toasters

I’ve recently moved into a new houseshare. Not just new to me – new to all the people I’m living with. It was let as semi-furnished, so had a couple of fridges and a cooker, but no kettle or toaster. For a few days I made do with using the grill to make toast, but after several very-nearly-burnt-despite-standing-in-the-kitchen-with-it scenarios, a toaster was in order. As I bought the kettle, one of my housemates was going to buy the toaster. But being French, he was unaware of a major problem which must surely be causing distress right across the UK. Continue reading Inadequate toasters

The discothèque?

This week I’ve moved into a new house-share. I imagine I might write a few posts about that (*looks at the two draft ones he’s already started*).

I’m sharing currently with two Hungarian guys, and one Frenchman. There’s another room just been agreed by a girl (British, white), and when she moves in – that will be the house full. The Hungarian guys have been here a week, enjoyed a few days of unseasonably-glorious sunshine, and are now a bit bored/freezing as the cold weather has returned, and their National Insurance numbers haven’t turned up yet, to allow them to try and find work.

The Hungarians have hit upon the idea of going to a “discothèque” this weekend, and as the only ‘local’ in the house, they’ve asked me where a good one is. They also want me to go with them. I’ve told them immediately I hate clubs, dancing, and don’t drink. I couldn’t be less interested if they’d invited me to a live assassination, or a vegan restaurant (come on – there is NOTHING that doesn’t taste better with a bit of butter or honey rubbed all over it). Continue reading The discothèque?

I did something, and it worked!

On Sunday, I got a puncture. Or maybe I didn’t. I was driving along, could smell rubber, stopped and the tyre looked flat. I moved about 20 metres to somewhere sensible, and it no longer looked flat. I searched through my car to find the details for my breakdown cover, and discovered that it ran out the day before. What a bit of bad luck (is NOT what I said at the time).

After I’d spent a couple of minutes swearing, I decided that this gave me two basic options:

  1. Admit defeat, and admit that I’d never before changed a wheel, and phone a breakdown company without being a member, and incur their charge to help me; or
  2. Maybe I should just change it myself?

Continue reading I did something, and it worked!

20mph speed limits?

So according to the Bristol Evening Post, the council are considering a 20mph speed limit on the entire city.

Why don’t you just ban drivers entirely? If you want to encourage cycling and walking that much, just ban all the cars. But you can’t, obviously. How would people get things from one place to another? Have you ever tried getting a wardrobe on a bicycle? Or 8 bags of shopping? Or a desktop computer? (No, I haven’t either.)

“The ruling Liberal Democrats are committed to a citywide 20mph speed limit and set aside £150,000 towards the project in this year’s budget, despite the worst cuts in the council’s history.”

Does this sound like the maddest thing in the world to anyone else? Continue reading 20mph speed limits?

How to advertise a room/property/flatshare

I’ve recently been looking for a room to rent. This is made more complicated because I’m unemployed and need to find someone who accepts that. However, some people seem so clueless when placing adverts, and I’d have some of the same issues if I was an employed person. I’ve actually advertised several rooms before – on behalf of a very hands-off landlord – back when I lived in a shared house a few years ago, so I feel I can safely judge you all for your bad adverts. Ha.

Here’s a list of 15 common mistakes I’ve noticed over and over again (in no particular order): Continue reading How to advertise a room/property/flatshare

Tesco’s Fact of the Day! (they should sell mini/desk ones)

Personally I can’t wait to see what tomorrow’s fact is. Maybe it’ll be how much money they’ve saved by not paying Workfare-acquired staff. One thing I might be intrigued to know – what’s the largest gap between two Tesco stores, in the UK? How far away can you get from a Tesco supermarket, before you’re getting closer to another?

Unemployed man seeks room in Bristol

Short version:

Unemployed man, 29, seeks room to rent in Bristol up to £275 per month (excluding bills/council tax).
If anyone can help, please contact me on twitter @benpark or email <link now removed due to spam>

And now the longer version:

I haven’t always been unemployed, and don’t intend to be forever. Currently though, I don’t have a job, and so am claiming benefits, while looking for work and also looking at starting my own business.

My credit history is fine, and I haven’t paid a bill late in years.

I’m looking for somewhere ASAP, as I have split up with my girlfriend and need to move from the flat we currently share together. This also means I have no notice period to give, so can move straight away.

About me: I’m 29, I don’t smoke, and don’t drink (well not regularly – the occasional one, maybe at New Year). I’m quite quiet and clean, and generally keep myself to myself really. I like the normal things like watching TV, films and a bit of gaming (though I’m not very good). I’ve got a reasonably eclectic taste in music, which means when you ask me what music I enjoy, I’ll instantly forget every song I own and be lost for words.
When I have more money the only places you’d find me in Cabot Circus are the cinema, crazy golf course (though it isn’t very good), or the Apple store looking at products I still can’t afford.

As far as areas-of-Bristol-to-live-in go, I’m not entirely sure. I like Redland/Westbury Park/Henleaze/Bishopston/St Andrews. Realistically though, I’m not sure I can afford such areas, so am open to most parts of Bristol really. I like areas with some trees/birds, and don’t really mind how close (or not) to the centre I am, as I don’t spend a lot of time there. I currently have a car, so if it has some on-street parking available, great. I’m not expecting guaranteed spaces or anything though.

I guess I’d like to live with people who are non-smoking (or who at least don’t do it in the house), reasonably tidy (but not anally so) and are relatively laid back. I’m past the late-night party stage (if I was ever there), so preferably nobody too noisy. I’m quite a fussy eater and not much of a cook so I might not be that useful if shared meals is your thing, but I can make a reasonable victoria sponge so might be handy for the dessert.

If anyone has got this far, hasn’t run a mile and has a room to rent, please get in touch.

Note: Due to my unemployment, I can only pay up to £275 pcm or thereabouts (excluding bills and council tax). If it is an “all-bills-included” type of arrangement, the tenancy agreement will need to break down how much is rent, how much is council tax, and how much is ‘other’ bills.

If anyone can help, please contact me on twitter @benpark or email <link now removed due to spam>

I’m coming back to Facebook

Last year, I quit Facebook. No – not deactivated. A full on account deletion.

I quit it because I wasn’t using it, I didn’t like it, and I was fed up of a lot of aspects of it. I still don’t really see the point of it now, don’t have enough information to share to fill a constantly-expanding photo album, and I almost certainly won’t use it very much this time around either.

I didn’t like their embedded video system, it’s a pain to find people on it, the general search system is shite, it’s slow, it’s cumbersome, and it’s got loads of adverts on it. I didn’t like the way people copied me in on conversations I couldn’t care less about, then watched as every individual replied back to everyone. It was like a return to the shit old ‘reply all’ days of email, before people learnt how to use it properly. Continue reading I’m coming back to Facebook