How To Dismantle A Compact Disc

If I didn’t know better, I’d swear it was a new (and actually effective) anti-piracy measure: the dodgy copy of the new U2 album that I’ve been listening to for the last couple of weeks has just started to disintegrate: it started by just skipping, but then I took the disc out of the machine and noticed some really funny blotches on the non playing side of the disc. I tried rubbing them gently to…

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(Not) Paying For An Argument

Earlier in the week Sal and I happened to watch a new BBC show about food that raised an interesting question: what does it take for British people to complain in a restaurant. The show addressed this in the way that TV tends to do these days, by throwing hidden cameras at the question, and sending the two presenters undercover to provide shockingly poor service to a couple of tables of unsuspecting punters, who, predictably,…

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Doing a Damien Rice

A couple of weeks ago I booked tickets to see a band about which I knew very little, beyond the fact that they were big down under, so to speak. This may have proved to be a mistake: I think Sal summed it up best when she described the John Butler Trio, who we saw last night at our local venue, Islington’s Islington Academy, as being “good musicians…” That much is certainly true–Mr Butler plays…

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Bad Decision

Sal and I popped up to Southport this weekend to spend a quiet, relaxing couple of days staying with my parents. Well, it was a relaxing weekend, just as soon as we managed to get there: We’d taken the environmentally dubious decision to avoid Richard Branson’s Train Hell, and instead take advantage of the short flights now being offered by the small Belgian airline VLM between London City airport and Liverpool’s recently renamed (and I’m…

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Nah Nah Nah. I can’t hear you…

I think the only way to really come to terms with what has happened is to pretend it didn’t happen. Go on, ask me who won the election? Go on…. You: So, Matt, who won the election? Me: No, sorry, I have absolutely no idea. Was it Howard Dean? Anyway. I’ve been working on my NaNoWriMo thing off and on for the past couple of days. Despite getting off to a good start on Monday…

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Four More Years

And so, with a crushing inevitability, (barring some kind of miracle in Ohio), it looks like four more years of isolationist, neo-conservative rule in the US. On the one hand, this is a matter for the American people, and, if that is what they want, who am I to argue with their right to screw up their country? Who am I to argue with their choice of another four years of recession, job losses, and…

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Ill Repute

There are many things I have failed to do so far in my 27 years on this planet, but probably should have got round to doing by now. One example is the fact that I’ve never been in a betting shop. It’s not because I hold any sort of moral objections to gambling, more just out of a fear of social awkwardness–of not knowing what to do in one of those slightly intimidating smoke- and…

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Comedy Hands

Apart from finishing off the new look for the site, I also found time this weekend for three very good, but different, nights out. On Friday, we caught up with Sal’s cousin’s fiance, Wayne, who was over in the UK for a quick holiday, at a bar off Covent Garden called The Langley. Despite sounding a bit like a private members club of some kind, it turned out to be a slick, undergound bar below…

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New Look

After a week or so of hacking about with my CSS and HTML, the new look for Paste is finally live… phew! Do hope you like it. Please let me know if you spot anything funny, particularly if you’re using a non-standard browser. (It should all work perfectly in IE 5.5/6, Firefox and Opera). If you’ve got an older browser, then it might not be quite right (and you’ll get a text-only display if you’re…

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