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HairyGodmother

HairyGodmother
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Member since: 14.06.2007

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      06.05.2011 17:20
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      Compelling read that will have you either gripped till the end or running for the toilet

      Wetlands
      by Charlotte Roche

      I heard an awful lot about this book. Which strikes me instantly as unusual. Normally, hearing people talking about a book would just pass me by, the mere mention of a book is usually enough to turn my mind to something else in an instant. Not because I don't read, in fact quite the opposite, but because I tend to make up my own mind which books I read, and who they are written by. I don't usually get involved in influence from other sources to determine my next purchase. This was different however. What I was hearing was shocking me, turning me on even. From what I had heard, there was a difference of opinion on whether people liked this book or not, but the important thing I garnered from my overheard conversations was that this was a book about the female body... in all its glory... I was intrigued and needed to know more.

      Without further ado I hopped off down to Waterstones to buy it. Luckily I fell ill with a cold the following day, so I had a whole day in bed to read it. And read it I did.

      About the Author

      When I bought this book, I had never heard of the author. Hardly surprising really. Considering Wetlands is her first book. Charlotte Roche was born in 1978 and was born in High Wycombe, UK, but moved to Germany when she was one year old as her Father was sent out there to work. She remained in Germany, where she lives with her husband and daughter, although all her family live in England. She will be more well known in Germany than she is here in the UK as she is a long running presenter on Viva, the German equivalent of MTV. Who knows, hopefully Wetlands will be the start of a fascinating writing career for her.

      The Story

      Don't worry, I shan't give too much away... I will leave it up to you whether or not you want to read the book depending on what you think of the albeit short synopsis I will give you. The book focuses around a single main character, Helen Memel. Helen is eighteen years old and is in a hospital having an operation on an anal lesion caused by her method of shaving her intimate areas. Whilst in the hospital, she spends hours trying to come up with a plan that might see her long-divorced parents get back together, she knows the chances are pretty slim, but she would like to see it happen. Also whilst she is in hospital she has plenty of time on her own, giving her the peace and quiet to contemplate and discuss with the reader her sexual exploits, ranging from the completely normal, to the "I'm about to be sick" shocking.

      My View

      The story is written in a strange way in that it is about Helen Memel, but is written as though there is a narrator telling you about their sexual exploits. The narrator, of course, is Helen. One thing I will say from the start is that if you are easily offended, puke at the mere mention of an anus or just generally have a weak stomach then this is most definately not the book for you. For me, I guess what made me read it was my curiosity to find out more about the inner workings of the female body, straight from a female.The book, in essence, is basically a form of pornography. At times I did find it turned me on (my partner also said the same happened to her at points), and at other points it can be quite revolting, although I am not easily offended at all so none of the contents were particularly shocking for me.

      The obscenity in this book is not to be taken lightly. The story begins in a hospital room after Helen has had an intimate shaving accident, the narrator then continues to give a detailed and graphic account of her haemorrhoid's. Later in the book the subject of anal intercourse is discussed in some detail and the vulgarness and graphical explanations only continue to get worse throughout the book.
      To me, the book was an important one. I believe Charlotte Roche has discussed some pretty taboo issues and brought female issues to the forefront. I believe that issues of male sexuality and their bodies are quite common place and discussed quite often. Seldom do women get the chance (or maybe they are too shy) to discuss their own bodies, and Roche I believe does this very well. She talks openly about masterbating, perhaps in a way to get women to be more open about such issues, of course there is still much debate that masterbation is very much a male dominated "sport", but this doesn't have to be the case as Roche proves.

      I like the way Helen Memel uses different terminology for her body parts. Instead of referring to her piles as haemorrhoids, she refers to them as "the cauliflower". She calls her clitoris her "snail tail", this kind of detracts slightly from the seriousness of the issues she raises and on occasions raises a smile.
      Helen Memel goes into great depth about hygiene, how she was always brought up to be hygienic, to wash her genitals thoroughly, wear clean knickers, wipe after going to the toilet. Then proceeds to explain how she rebels against that and prefers to go unwashed in her undercarriage department as she feels it attracts more men. She goes into graphic detail as to how she uses her vaginal secretions as a perfume behind her ears. Some of this, I must admit, I did find quite revolting. If my girlfriend started doing any of this I would be quite appauled. Thats why I was hesitant to lend her the book in case she got any funny ideas!

      I totally enjoyed this book, from start to finish. it definately won't be everybodies cup of tea, but for those of you who fancy something quite quite different, then I highly recommend it.

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      • Campo Viejo Rioja Crianza / Wine / 13 Readings / 12 Ratings
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        06.05.2011 17:14
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        Excellent Rioja that ticks all the boxes

        Campo Viejo Rioja Crianza 2007

        Well, here I am, your resident wine expert back again. The last two days I have been waiting for plumbers to fix a leaking toilet. Not worrying for me, but worrying for the kind folks downstairs whose bathroom ceiling has gone blue (I use bloo blocks). A couple of days off work, a royal wedding coming up, and no choice but to stay home and watch the walls. What do I do?
        Drink wine!

        I have had three bottles of this wine now, the first two I purchased from my local off licence (I call it the blue shop because its blue) for £8.99 each. Earlier today I had to pop out quickly to get some pea sticks for the garden and whilst I was out I popped into my local One Stop shop. I managed to pick up a bottle of the same wine for only £7.65. That might sound expensive to some, but Rioja's are rarely cheap, in fact quite the opposite. £7-£9 is an absolute bargain, especially for a wine of this quality.
        For all you snobs out there this wine does not come with a screw top, it comes with a cork, so best start digging your corkscrew out. Problem is, so many cheap and nasty wines these days come with a screw to. Now, I have nothing against screw top wines, in fact a lot of them are excellent quality and it makes it easier to get into. However, I don't feel that a wine like this would be the same with a screw top.

        After you have fathomed out your cork screw remover thing and got the cork out, you are left with a very boring looking bottle to be honest. A standard green glass bottle with a mustard yellow label. Nothing to wrote home about. But looks are deceiving.
        The wine itself is a deep crimson colour, very smooth (unless you are a numpty and get bits of cork in it) and flows easily from the bottle into a (very) large glass. Upon drinking it you are taken into the world of fine wines. The taste is orgasmic, particularly for a wine of this price. I haven't tasted a better wine since I had a glass of Chateau Neuf du Pape at £13 a glass.

        This is a very fruity wine, containing a mix of all flavours from a nose of Cherry to delicate flavours of cranberry and redcurrant. This is a delicious wine to have either on its own (as I am having it now) or with pretty much any kind of food (except fish, I hate fish)
        Yum. So good it gives me funny feelings......

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          07.04.2011 18:07
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          Great OCR software

          I am a big fan of OCR software and find that on occasions it can be very useful. OCR stands for Optical Character Recognition, and these types of applications are used for converting printed documents into editable documents on your screen.
          I recently bought Readiris Pro 10.0 and can truly say that this version is a whole lot better than the previous version, which did not have a very high success rate. Readiris Pro 10.0 now supports a huge range of languages - 117 in total! Ranging from Afaan Oromo right through to Zulu. once text has been recognised by the software, you can save it in 14 different text formats and six different image formats. The new version also has support for the recognition of barcodes.

          As anybody who uses OCR software will tell you, the key most important attribute of the software must be the accuracy of its reading. The makers of Readiris Pro 10.0 claim that the new version has an increase in accuracy of around 30% better than that in version 9.0.
          If you have previously bought a Hewlett Packard Scanner, you may already be semi-familiar with the kind of thing that Readiris proveds, since most HP scanners come bundled with a smaller version of the software - Readiris lite.

          There is also a corporate edition available, which comes in at a much heftier price-tag of around £170, however, as you'd expect it has a huge list of additional features, which makes it much more ideal for processing documents en-mass as it were.
          One of the better things about this software package is that it comes complete with a printed manual, whereas most modern software applications suffer from having only an online help guide.

          I love the new design of the software, as it now encompasses a Windows XP based skin, and I also love this version as it is very easy to use as it contains only two panels to work in, one for the image and one for physical processing.
          ACCURACY
          -----------------

          The most important part of any OCR application is its ability to be accurate when reading and processing printed text. Readiris, along with most other OCR development packages has an excellent ability to do this very accurately. In all the documents I have tried I have had an accuracy of around 100% many times, although on a few occasions there are the odd mistakes - but these can be corrected manually later on.
          Readiris incorporates the ability to read handwriting too, however on my trials with this I found that its ability to do this accurately was embarrassing! My handwritten words were transformed into printed text that could not easily be read.

          SUMMING UP
          --------------------
          In summing up, I would say that if you are looking for a piece of software that delivers accuracy in reading printed media, then Readiris 10.0 is the one for you. However, if you are looking for something that will accurately read handwritten pieces, then I would not recommend Readiris as its accuracy for this type of reading is very poor.

          The standard package will cost you around £100, with the corporate package coming in at around £170
          Iris: 01483 794 444
          www.irislink.com

          Thank you for reading, I hope you have found this helpful.

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          • More +
            07.04.2011 18:04
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            All about my mum

            My Mum is a lovely lass
            She brought us up so well
            And for all the bad things that we did
            She's always been so swell

            My Mum is a sweet little gem
            She loves us all so much
            And when I stop to think of her
            It really means so much
            My Mum is really nice
            She wiped our tears away
            We use to cause her so much trouble
            Every single day

            My Mum is my hero
            Supportive in all we do
            She wiped the bums of all of us
            Free from wee and poo
            My Mum is amazing
            She cares for us so much
            When I was bad, I made her cry
            So I made her a rabbit hutch

            My Mum is like a cauliflower
            All beautiful and grey
            And even though shes getting old
            She still can dance and sway
            My Mum is the bestest Mum
            The bestest there could be
            And I love her with all my heart
            I just hope she can see

            Well there we go, my best attempt at poetry. Not sure if it makes sense but there you are Mum. I love you xxx

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              01.04.2011 19:46
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              A poor attempt at a low calorie lasagne, bland, vile and disgusting

              Weight Watchers Classic Beef Lasagne

              You know how it is, you've had a hard day at the office, a two hour trek on a hot tube train home, packed in like a sardine with your nose up someone else's sweaty armpit and when you get home, what you would really like is a lovely home cooked meal.

              Sadly yesterday, that isn't what I got. After arriving home tired and hungry to find out my other half had cooked her own dinner I was resigned to the fact that I then had to spend time slaving away again over a hot cooker. Looking through the cupboards and the freezer, to my dismay there was nothing of any interest. A few frozen vegetables, yes, a tin of beans, yes, one egg, yes. Not much else. Dammit. I was ravenous as well.

              "Darling, what am I supposed to eat for dinner?" (She does the food shopping)

              Reply, "There's a lasagne in the fridge if you want it."

              Great. Lasagne. My Favourite.

              Wrong.

              On opening the fridge, I discovered it was a weightwatchers lasagne. Typical woman, thinking of her figure before thinking about my vast calorie intake requirements. Still, never min I thought, it might just be alright, after all, lasagne is my most favourite meal.

              My first problem came when trying to pierce the film on top of it so I could put it in the microwave (I was too hungry to wait for it to cook in the oven). I normally use a fork to pierce this kind of thing with no hassle, this one however wouldn't pierce properly, it just ripped great chunks out of the film.

              Anyway, I popped it in the microwave for six minutes and put a few frozen veg on the hob to cook.

              Six minutes later, the familiar, heart warming smell of freshly cooked lasagne was starting to stroke my nostrils lovingly. Yummy. So I dished up my lasagne and that is where things took a massive turn for the worse. And no, I didn't drop it on the floor (although I wish I had done now!)

              The "lasagne" only vaguely represented lasagne. It smelt fine, but looked dire. To start with there was hardly any meat at all, if I had scraped all the meat out, it would have probably only filled one and a half tablespoons. The pasta looked unappetising, and the béchamel sauce looked more like congealed male ejaculate. The whole thing was very runny, not very well structured, and quite frankly looked like vomit on a plate.

              But it smelt delicious. So I sat down to eat.

              The eating experience was pretty much the same as I have described above. It tasted of lasagne..... almost. But there was no tasteable amount of garlic, the taste in general was bland, the béchamel tasted like what it looked like, and the meat was almost non-existent and tasteless.

              My girlfriend likes it. I most certainly do not. Give me a Tesco lasagne any day! At least it would fill me up and give my taste buds the pleasure they deserve.

              I couldn't give a toss that it is a WeightWatchers product. I am not on a diet. Don't need to be, and never will be. But for anybody who is interested in bland, tasteless food, apparently the lasagne is 9 ProPoints per pack - whatever that means!

              I just love the way they describe it on the front of the box! "Tasty layers of egg pasta and a rich beef and red wine ragu, topped with a smooth cheese béchamel"..... Now that's false advertising for you. How about:

              "Dried up layers of egg pasta and a cardboardy beef and vinegar ragu, topped with a smooth uncheesey ejaculation"

              That about sums it up.

              The pack contains 354 calories, which is about half of what one of my usual lasagnes would be, 8.8g of fat - which seems quite high considering the main ingredient is water!

              Ingredients: Water, Beef (15%), Cooked Pasta (14%), Skimmed Milk, Tomato, Tomato Concentrate, Onion, Mushroom, Red Wine (3%), Tomato Puree, Low Fat Hard Cheese (1.5%), Celery, Carrot, Cornflour, Beef Stock, Single Cream, Garlic Puree, Low Fat Soft Cheese, Wheat Flour, Balsamic Vinegar, Basil, Salt, Oregano, Black Pepper, White Pepper.

              This is the first WeightWatchers product I have tried, and almost certainly the last. Quite frankly they have ruined my favourite dish by trying to reduce calories, and ultimately have ruined the taste.

              Oh, and did I mention the portion size is too small?

              I was hungry again an hour later.

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              • Crayola Glitter Glue / Art / Craft / 48 Readings / 48 Ratings
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                31.03.2011 17:06
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                Glitter glue, fun for everyone!

                Crayola Glitter Glue

                I had the misfortune the other day to accidentally dye all my girlfriends underwear pink! She hates pink! WIth a passion! Needless to say she was not best pleased. I did try to hide it by just hanging it all up to dry and hoping she wouldn't notice, but alas, she did. Oh boy she noticed.
                So I felt that I needed to make up for my terrible (and indeed stupid) mistake.

                I racked my brains for a nice way of apologising, and decided I would make her a card to say sorry (soppy I am).
                Off I trundled to the shop to try and find some suitable supplies that would help me make her a lovely card.

                I picked up some plain white card, and then noticed these Crayola glitter glue sticks and thought that they might be just the special touch I needed to really get the message across how sorry I was.
                Popped them in my basket and trundled off back to work...

                Why did I buy them?

                Well good question. I am a 26 year old guy, so glitter glue is hardly at the top of my list of things to buy, but I did really want this card to be very special. More to the point, it was an impulse buy. I just happened to see them and thought they would be nice.

                How much did I pay?

                Well mine cost £4.99 for a pack of 9, which at the time I didnt think was too bad considering it was a last minute purchase so I didnt shop around for them, but looking around elsewhere (ebay etc) I see that this price is probably about right. I am sure you can get cheaper versions of these but Crayola is bound to be a bit more expensive as it is a much better known name.

                What did I use them for?

                Well I could think of many things that these would be useful for, but I printed a card on the computer and then went over the text with these glitter glues to make it stand out and add a personal touch to my card.

                Easy to use?

                Yes and no. Yes mainly, pretty self explanatory but you just squeeze the tube and squirt the glitter and glue out to wherever you want it. The difficult bit is trying to achieve any form of accuracy as the glue is quite thick so it was hard to do my lettering properly, although these would be ideal if you were to colour in a big block or larger lettering or something like that.

                Drying time?

                Well, the pack says dries within 30 minutes, I found that my card took nearly 2 hours to dry, but this may be because I used quite a bit I don't know.

                Would I buy them again?

                Absolutely! Although there is loads left in the ones I have so these will last me for many sorry cards to come :)

                Blurb from the pack

                * Use as an adhesive or for decoration
                * Dries in 30 minutes
                * If clogged, insert paper clip to clean tip


                Squeeze out the glue and attach sequins and sparkling objects to decorate cards, gift tags, posters etc. Crayola washable glitter glue washes off skin and machine washable clothingFor best results

                * Do not use pre-wash or chlorine bleach
                * Wash immediately in hot water cycle
                * Repeat laundering on severe stains
                * Keep away from porous surfaces such as wood, matt paint, wall and floor coverings or materials that cannot be laundered.

                Anything I need to warn you about?

                Unfortunately yes. Considering these glitter glue sticks are designed for children, I was shocked to find a tiny tine stopper in the top of each of the tubes about the size of a small sunflower seed. I should imagine this would pose a choking risk to small children.

                Happy Glittering!!!

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                • More +
                  30.03.2011 21:25
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                  A great alternative to leading brands

                  Tesco Squeezy Tomato Ketchup

                  Once upon a time, Heinz were rulers of the ketchup world, at least in my household. In fact at one point when I was little I would only eat Heinz. Apparently if my Mum gave me anything other than Heinz I could tell the difference - weird that, considering I cant tell the difference now. Mind you, perhaps that is because supermarket own brand products have come on a bundle since I was younger. I do remember eating Tesco's own brand tomato sauce in my teens and remember it as tasting quite vinegary. How things change. These days I only buy Tesco sauce because it's a lot cheaper and in my opinion tastes just as good - if not better than the leading brand.

                  I used to buy the basics ketchup which comes in a glass bottle, but have recently changed to buying the Tesco one that comes in a squeezy bottle. It tastes just the same but its much easier to get the damn sauce out! Although this squeezy version is a tad more expensive than the glass bottle (and I am convinced it's the same sauce inside) - I much prefer to buy this to save me pouring half a bottle on my dinner by mistake!

                  Retailing at 89p (compared to 28p for the basics version) this is still a lot cheaper than buying Heinz (at around £2) and certainly does the job.

                  Like all tomato ketchups the product contains quite a lot of sugar, but then again who goes around drinking bowls and bowls of it everyday? More worrying could be the amount of salt, at 0.3g (or 5%) of your daily allowance per tablespoon. Anyway, I don't care, it tastes yummy!

                  Ingredients: Tomato Puree, Sugar, Spirit Vinegar, Maize Starch, Salt, Tomato Powder, Onion Powder, Clove Extract, Garlic Powder.
                  Prepared with 176g of tomatoes per 100g of finished product

                  I am reviewing the 480g bottle.
                  And the taste? Tomatoey!!!

                  Summary: This tomato ketchup is just the ticket to put on my chips and chicken dippers!
                  1 star knocked off for the excess sugar and salt

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                  • More +
                    30.03.2011 21:20
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                    Fast relief for heartburn and indigestion!

                    Rennie Spearmint Tablets

                    Most of us will have experienced heartburn and/or indigestion at some point in our lives, and to be honest, who among us who has experienced it would descrive it as pleasant? Not me thats for sure, I suffer a lot with acid indigestion and heartburn and this varies from general discomfort and bloating to full blown acid in my throat burning and bubbling away.

                    For most people, symptoms of heartburn are likely to start at night, when lying down, after a heavy meal, or when pregnant. It really is very common, and, not normally something to worry about.

                    Wouldn't it be nice if (especially if the symptoms are at night) that we can find some kind of relief in order that we can drop right off back to sleep again? Well you can! There are a multitude of remedies for indigestion and heartburn on the market, but these Rennie tablets are my favourite and I use these nearly all the time.

                    So What is Rennie designed to help with?

                    Rennie tablets are designed to help relieve the symptoms of a number of common digestive complaints, such as:

                    * Indigestion
                    * Heartburn
                    * Acid Indigestion
                    * Dyspepsia
                    * Hyperacidity
                    * Gastritis
                    * Nervous Indigestion (I get this a lot unfortunately)
                    * Flatulence (Luckily I don't get this a lot!)
                    * Upset Stomach
                    * Indigestion during pregnancy
                    * Biliousness


                    I myself have used Rennie to treat a number of the above, including, indigestion, acid indigestion, heartburn, dyspepsia, nervous indigestion and biliousness.

                    Is Rennie suitable for everyone?

                    Generally, yes. However, there are a few instances where you need to take extra care before you take Rennie tablets. For example, you should not take Rennie tablets if you have severe kidney disease, high calcium levels in the blood or if you are allergic to any of the ingedients. Also, if you are finding you are coming to rely on Rennie tablets to ease persistent digestive disorders you should see a doctor as soon as possible as you may just be masking an underlying (and potentially serious) condition.
                    You should take extra care if you are taking any antibiotics (in particular tetracyclines or quinolones) as Rennie tablets may affect the way that the antibiotics work.

                    So how should you take them?

                    Put them in your mouth and suck.
                    The Rennie's I mean!!!

                    Adults - 2 tablets to be sucked or chewed as required. Up to a maximum of 16 tablets a day
                    Children 8-12 years - 1-2 tablets as required, up to a maximum of 12 tablets a day

                    Children 5-8 years - 1 tablet as required, up to a maximum of 6 tablets a day
                    Children under 5 - not recommended!

                    Rennie can be safely taken during pregnancy or whilst breastfeeding so no worries there.

                    And whats in them?

                    Each tablet contains the active ingredients: calcium carbonate and heavy magnesium carbonate. The other ingredients are sorbitol (E420), magnesium stearate, potato starch, pregelatinised maize starch, talc, spearmint flavour, liquid paraffin (yikes!), saccharin sodium.

                    Very worried about that paraffin - nobody light a match!

                    And finally, do they work?

                    Absolutely! I have taken Rennie tablets for many years now and have always found that they either clear up my symptoms completely, or generally alleviate them to the point that I am comfortable with them. THe time it takes to alleviate symptoms, or the number of tablets I have to take usualy varies, but in general I can expect my symptoms to have abated within around 10 mins or so. The tablets are simple to take just by sucking or chewing on them, but they do have a very chalky texture to them. Having said that, the spearmint ones have a nice refreshing mint taste once you are over the chalkiness and this can also help to alleviate any nausea you may be suffering at the same time.

                    Not to bad either cost wise, they come in at various prices, but around £2.48 for 24 tablets.

                    Absolutely recommend!

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                    • dominos.co.uk / Online Shop / 37 Readings / 34 Ratings
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                      30.03.2011 18:03
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                      Fantastic Pizza

                      Domino's Pizza Online - dominos.co.uk

                      Everyone likes pizza right? Such a versatile dish that can be customised to suit anybodies palate no matter how delicate (unless of course, you cant eat the basic bread and tomato). See, thats the great thing with pizza, especially handy if you have fussy eaters in your household, or indeed you are yourself a fussy eater. Don't like pepperoni? Leave it off the pizza. Love anchovies? Add an extra handful. You see how it works. Pizza must be a godsend to many parents of stubborn children who refuse to eat certain things, and it doesn't have to be unhealthy either! There are many varieties of topping that you could put together that are very healthy indeed.

                      Domino's cook up a storm in the kitchen, they always have done ever since their first outlet opened in 1985. I remember when I was little pizza was a special treat for us (well, pizza delivered was anyway), in my whole childhood I probably had to suffer the heartbreak of only about 4 pizzas in total. As kids we loved it, whether this was because pizzas are delicious or whether it was such a luxury that we virtually went hyper at the thought I don't know.

                      How times have changed

                      Remember the times when you had to pick up the phone to order a pizza? The endless hours spent arguing over the flimsy pizza shop menus hastily shoved through your letterbox in their droves? Things have changed so much since the advent of the first Dominos outlet opening, the dawn of the internet opened up so many new avenues for the company, and indeed for fast food restaurants in general. You now don't have to bother with the hassle of picking up the phone, you don't have to bother with the exertion of actually going to collect your pizza. Instead, you can now order online from the comfort of your own home, take as long as you like over the menu, take advantage of special offers and then place your order over the internet. You don't even need to worry about the small issue of paying for your food when it arrives! Just pay online by card!

                      dominos.co.uk

                      As websites go, dominos.co.uk is appealing. The web designers have done a fantastic job recreating the companies corporate image and dominos red and blue logo and colours are instantly recognisable. The website is easy to navigate and very straightforward to place an order. I have been ordering from Dominos online now for quite some time, and wouldnt ever ever never dream of picking up a phone again! At least by ordering online there are no arguments when the pizza comes of:

                      "Hang on! I ordered ham and pepperoni, NOT spam and pastrami!!!"
                      The website really is so simple. When you first visit the site you are given the option to log in to place an order, or to register for an account before you begin. Obviously you only need to register once and this really only takes a few minutes. Next time you go back to dominos you can just log in with your email address and password and you have the world of all things pizza at your fingertips.

                      The Menu

                      When I first ordered from dominos online (and before I had registered), I assumed that they would have a fairly limited selection of deliciousness available. Oh boy, how wrong I was! They have the full menu available, and you can even take advantage on special offers (although a number of offers, sadly, remain collection only).
                      When you first log into the website you are given a rather friendly welcome message addressing you by name. One aspect I particularly like is that when you first log in (assuming you have ordered before), there is a section right in front of you that says:

                      "Fancy the usual?"
                      Below this is listed the last few things that you have ordered. A fantastic idea, especially if you usually build your own pizza with a number of toppings because you can order it again straight away without having to add (and remember) them all again. Well done dominos on that score, I have used that quite a bit to re-order something I have ordered before.Right then, back to the menu... aside from your previous orders you have the full menu selection available:

                      * Starters
                      * Pizzas
                      * Desserts
                      * Drinks
                      * Meal Deals


                      You can choose anything you want from the menus, gradually go through them, select the items, and just add to basket. It really is that simple. The menu differes slightly depending on where you live and what your local outlet offers, and also the menu is changed occasionally so sometimes you might see a few new things on there. I have had much of the food from dominos now and have always found it all to be of exceptional quality.

                      Starters
                      This is probably my favourite part of the menu. I regularly build an order made up entirely of starters, with no pizza at all, this is entirely acceptable and very very yummy if I say so myself!

                      If you need your taste buds tickling, here is a selection of the starters currently available at my local dominos outlet online:

                      Cheese and Bacon Loaded Potato Skins
                      Positively yummy, I regularly buy these. Quite simply they are mini jacket potato halves loaded with cheese and bacon. You also get two dips with these, garlic and herb and BBQ.


                      Cheese and Onion Loaded Potato Skins
                      Pretty much the same as the above but with cheese and onion instead. These are also very very delicious. You also get two dips with these, garlic and herb and BBQ.

                      Kickers Combo
                      Regardless of what I order, this starter is ALWAYS on my menu. I absolutely love it to pieces. It comprises a portion of potato wedges and domino's chicken kickers (which are spicy goujons of chicken). This dish is served with 3 dips, 2 x garlic and herb and one hot sauce.


                      Chicken Kickers
                      A portion of these consists of 7 chicken goujons that are in a "mildly spicy, crispy coating" that is according to dominos website, however I have found these to be a little to spicy for my liking, but as part of a larger order I always get these in combination with potato wedges.

                      Garlic Pizza Bread
                      Not a regular of my basket I'm afraid but I have had it a few times and it is basically a 6 inch pizza consisting of cheese, tomato and garlic. Very yummy, but I find that shop bought garlic bread is much nicer.


                      Stripper Combo
                      Put away those tongues boys. No, this dish does not come with its very own stripper! Instead it comes with a portion of chicken strippers and a portion of potato wedges. VERY yummy! quite addictive too! Also served with three dips

                      Coleslaw
                      What can I say? I love coleslaw and everyone knows what it is, its such a shame they normally call me after I order this to say they dont have any!


                      You can also buy the potato wedges and chicken strippers separately at £3 for the wedges and £4 for the strippers. Also, you can buy extra dips at a cost of 35p each but to be honest anybody who does so is a fool as I always find I have far to many dips as it is included with the food!

                      Pizzas
                      I do enjoy this part of the menu, although I probably more often order only starters and no pizza, but if I'm feeling extravagant I will order a pizza too! Greedy me!

                      I shant go into too much detail on the pizzas currently available as they are subject to change but here is a selection that are currently available:

                      Chicken Tikka Pizza - Tikka Masala Sauce, Tandoori Chicken, Green Peppers, Onions, Tomatoes - Served with Mango Dip
                      Prices range from personal (7") at £9.00 to large (13.5") at £17.00

                      Original Cheese & Tomato - Topped with 100% mozzarella cheese and Domino's own tomato sauce
                      Prices range from personal (7") at £6.00 to large (13.5") at £13.00
                      Pepperoni Passion - Extra Pepperoni and double mozzarella cheese on Domino's tomato sauce base
                      Prices range from personal (7") at £8.00 to large (13.5") at £16.00

                      Chicken Feast - Chicken, Mushrooms, Sweetcorn
                      Prices range from personal (7") at £8.00 to large (13.5") at £16.00
                      Domino's Premiere - Spicy chorizo, pepperoni, sizzling steak and pastrami together with Domino's tomato sauce and mozzarella cheese
                      Prices range from personal (7") at £9.00 to large (13.5") at £17.00

                      Full House - Onions, green peppers, pepperoni, sausage, mushrooms, ground beef, ham, sweetcorn, pineapple
                      Prices range from personal (7") at £9.00 to large (13.5") at £17.00

                      The above is really just a sample of the many pizza's available. My personal favourite is the Full House, but maybe I am just a pig??

                      You can also build your own pizza from scratch from a huge range of available toppings. First choose your base from small to large, ranging in price up to £13.00 or more. Then add your toppings. Additional toppings cost £0.90 each for a small pizza and £1.30 each for a lrage pizza (you can also put double toppings on but this of course doubles the price). An excellent way though, of coping with fussy eaters!

                      Desserts
                      I am afraid I can't really vouch much for this section as I have never ordered desserts (like to watch my waistline). The desserts on offer range from cookies to waffles, chocolate brownies and dips. I seem to remember they used to sell ice-cream, but they don't appear to now, but maybe thats just my local dominos. Perhaps their freezer has broken ;)

                      Drinks
                      As with all fast food restaurants, Domino's offers the standard range of soft drinks:

                      * Coca Cola
                      * Diet Coca Cola
                      * Fanta
                      * Sprite


                      These are 1.25 litre bottles of the first three at £2.00 and a 2l bottle of sprite for £2.00.
                      Meal Deals
                      The meal deals section is used to advertise any special offers. Regrettably these do seem to be few and far away, for example today is Monday, and if I look on there now, there is an offer "Two for Tuesday". Clearly I cannot use this offer until tomorrow, good job I dont want pizza today else I will probably cry!

                      Ordering and Checkout

                      Ordering is so easy a fly could do it! Seriously!. Just pick the items you want, add them to your basket, and then click on checkout. It will take you few just a few steps asking if you want the items delivered or if you will collect from store. If you want them delivered you can choose to have them delivered as soon as possible or to choose a time later that day.

                      Payment

                      Payment is easy too! If you collect from store you can pay at the store when you get there. If you choose to have your pizza delivered, then you can choose to pay either online by card, or cash on delivery. Personally I prefer paying online as the drivers don't stand there waiting for a tip if you have already paid!

                      Delivery

                      Can't fault it to be perfectly honest. I always ask for delivery to be made as soon as possible and I have never had to wait more than about 40 minutes, and that is on a friday evening when they are probably at their busiest.
                      Would I recommend?
                      Absolutely!!! Grab a pizza the action!
                      Anything to watch out for?

                      Yep! Just be careful you dont get carried away! The first time I ordered from dominos online I had eyes bigger than my belly and ended up spending about £45 just on myself!!! Its so easy to do if you go willy nilly adding things to your basket.

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                        30.03.2011 15:36
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                        yummy in my tummy!

                        Tesco Chicken Caesar Wrap

                        Well, its lunchtime again already and I am just settling down to one of my favourite lunchtime treats. I have grown to love the Tesco Chicken Caesar wrap above all other sandwiches and wraps that I can buy at lunchtime. Why? Because quite simply it tastes absolutely divine!
                        So I went to Tesco's this morning on the way to work and picked up my standard Tesco Chicken Caesar Wrap at a cost of £2.20. They have recently changed the packaging so it doesn't look quite like the picture included with this listing, as they are now producing it in a cardboard wrapper which they claim is much easier to recycle as only 13% of the package is plastic. At least Tesco's are doing their bit to promote recycling, however, I do wonder how many of the new cartons will just end up being thrown in the standard bins by peoples desks!

                        Before I even open the packaging I can smell the wonderful aroma of chicken caesar wafting up towards me, making my mouth salivate like mad. On opening the package, the smell is very pleasant, and very strong.
                        The wraps are neatly presented and look very appetizing. Taking my first bite my mouth becomes an explosion of taste. Delicious pieces of chicken, with lettuce in a caesar dressing, wrapped in a tomato tortilla. Simply delicious. Sadly they don't seem to last very long, I wish they put three wraps in a pack as two isn't quite enough for me.

                        I've eaten them both now and am craving for more!
                        These wraps are available at all tesco stores, both small and large, cost £2.20 and you can find them in the prepared sandwiches aisle.

                        For those of you who are watching your waistline the wrap contains 480 calories but to be honest I could eat hundreds of them!
                        Get down to Tesco and buy yourself one for lunch, see for yourself how utterly delicious they are!

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                        30.03.2011 15:34
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                        an ok lubricant if you arent fussy about the smell or taste

                        Durex Play - Aloe Vera

                        When it comes to those intimate moments that never seem to come round often enough, it is essential that you make the most of them whilst you are both in the mood. Using a lubricant during love making can help to increase the level of sensuality by reducing friction and in some cases by adding an extra texture or sensation to the mix. Durex are well known for their range of sexual aids, from condoms to lubricants. There are a wide variety of lubricants on the market, some of these are just plain lubricant, others are specific flavours, and yet more others provide tingling or warming sensations. The product that I am reviewing is Durex Play with Aloe Vera.

                        Look, Feel, Smell and Usage

                        All Durex lubricants come in similar tubes. This one comes in a white tube with green writing to represent Aloe Vera. The tubes themselves are very easy to use without making too much mess. The user simply depresses the top to squirt a nice amount of lubricant onto their fingers before massaging this on their pink bits. I think there are two sizes of tubes available, but mine is 50ml. Depending on how often you use the product, and how much you use during each session I have found that these lubes last me quite some time. This is not my favourite lubricant; I am not particularly fond of the Aloe Vera smell which does remind me somewhat of washing up liquid. I much prefer their cherry one!

                        Slippery Sloppery Sensations

                        Most users of a sexual lubricant probably use it for the simple reason of reducing friction and particularly for women, topping up their natural level of drippiness. My partner has no problems with regards to self lubrication, but after a little while her natural lubricant seems to run out and this can make her particularly dry and uncomfortable. During sex we often resort to a little added lubricant, and this means that sex can last longer and be more fulfilling.

                        Mixed action or solo performance?

                        This lubricant is not only useful for lubrication during sex; it is also very good when it comes to a little solo fun. My girlfriend in particular regularly uses this when she is basting her turkey and she says that it gives her a heightened feeling of sensitivity. I myself have been known to use a little added lubricant when bashing my bishop but these days I tend to just knock one out very quickly removing the need for messy lubrication.

                        Oral Sex

                        Durex lubes are all suitable for oral sex, although the majority of them don't taste very good. This Aloe Vera one is not one I would recommend for oral sex, unless you particularly like the taste of washing up liquid! Again I would recommend the cherry one!

                        Final Notes

                        If you are trying for a baby you should talk to your doctor before using Durex lubricants as they may slow the sperm down meaning they just don't make it to the jackpot. All Durex lubricants are suitable for use with condoms but do not contain a spermicide. These lubricants are available all over the place from chemists to supermarkets and cost around the £3 mark for 50ml, or around a fiver for 100ml tubes.All in all I will say that if you fancy spicing up your love life a little bit, get to the shop and come back feeling just a little juicier!

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                      • Stella Artois / Beer / Cider / 30 Readings / 27 Ratings
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                        28.03.2011 12:57
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                        Lovely premium lager

                        Stella Artois

                        Everyone likes a nice drink every now and then, some more than others. But the endless amount of choice when you visit a supermarket or off-licence can be bewildering. I love my red wine as many of you may know, but I also love lager. I never used to like Stella Artois because it always used to give me terrible hangovers, but since the amount of alcohol was reduced from 5.2% to 5% I have found I can tolerate it much better. Sadly because of the reduction in its alcohol content, the taste has suffered. I used to love the taste of Stella before the alcohol content was reduced, but used to suffer hangovers. Now I can drink it and not suffer such terrible hangovers, but the taste has suffered as a result.
                        Stella used to be a premium lager that was always a higher price than all the others, however recently, I have noticed more and more off-licenses are offering Stella at the same price as more traditional lagers such as Fosters and Heineken. My local off licence sells Stella at £1 a can, or 6 cans for £5.50, which is the same price they sell most other lagers/beers for. Recently, because of the drop in alcohol content, and because I can get it at a relatively good price at our local off-licence, I have been buying it and drinking it. I was surprised at first at how I managed to drink it without suffering that nightmare hangover, but it was only then that I realised that the alcohol content had been reduced. Only slightly, (by 0/.2%) but it seems to have had a massive difference, not just in terms of the hangovers but also in terms of the taste. I now have a kind of middle of the road attitude to this beer now, once upon a time I would have slated it as being a hangover monster, but now, I can drink it without suffering such extreme hangovers. Although the taste has suffered somewhat I would still recommend.

                        One thing that draws me to Stella is the design of the can. It is a whit can with red, regal style writing, and it just makes one think that the product is more superior to others. I do like the can design, although it is quite basic.
                        Stella Artois these days is available in strengths of 5% only in the United Kingdom. If you go abroad, you may well still be able to get the traditional strength of 5.2% alcohol. In essence, Stella is a Belgian beer, but it is available worldwide, particularly within Europe. The name Stella by the way means Star in Latin.

                        I would definitely recommend this lager these days now that the alcohol content has been reduced. Although I would say to look out for it in your local off-licence where it is likely to be cheaper than supermarkets. The taste is very crisp and although the higher alcohol content used to give it a unique taste, recently since the change in alcohol content the taste has changed. It is still very very nice, but doesn't quite have that kick that it once used to. Overall I would say Stella Artois is a premium lager and is worth paying more for. Yummy in my tummy.

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                      • Greene King IPA / Beer / Cider / 10 Readings / 10 Ratings
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                        28.03.2011 12:56
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                        lovely refreshing beer

                        Greene King IPA

                        Followers of my reviews may know that I am partial to a drop of red wine from time to time, however my favourite tipples do not end there. I also enjoy both lagers and bitters, and, particularly if I am in for a session, will choose something less strong in order that I don't end up under the table before the night is out. Greene King IPA is one of my favourite beers, and at only 3.6% ABV, it is definitely what I would call a session beer.

                        Greene King

                        For more than 200 years, Greene King has been at the forefront of brewing success. From its humble beginnings in Bury St Edmunds, Greene King has steadily grown to become one of the most well known brewers in the UK. Sadly in recent years I have seen fewer and fewer Greene King Pubs, probably as they seek to serve free houses rather than keep to many of their own brand pubs under their umbrella.

                        IPA

                        IPA stands for Indian Pale Ale. I first drunk Greene King IPA many years ago, in a Greene King private members club in Holland-on-Sea (The Tavern) - its still there if anybody is interested. Greene King IPA offers a refreshing drink, with a very fresh, clean taste. Some people are wary of certain chemicals that are loaded into beers and lagers, but Greene King IPA uses only four ingredients. Water, Barley, Yeast and Hops. For so little ingredients, you have to admire the skill of the brewers in producing such a tasty and refreshing beverage. Greene King uses two different varieties of hops (Challenger and First Gold) to give IPA its distinctive taste and aroma.

                        Cost wise, I bought four cans of IPA in ASDA for £4.14, and it available at most other stores and off licences for a similar price. As I said before IPA is one of those beers that I can sit down and relax with, and due to its low(ish) alcohol content, I can get a little carried away without ending up too inebriated. For anybody who has yet to try IPA, but likes similar bitters, I would definitely recommend you try it. Alternatively, if you are in a Greene King pub or fancy trying another of Greene Kings great beers, I would recommend Abbots Ale - although this is definitely not a session beer.

                        Greene King IPA is also the official beer of England Rugby so some people may remember seeing advertising and sponsorship whilst watching the sport. Greene King IPA also features in the top 50 worlds best beers list.

                        Greene King IPA is a great beer to enjoy particularly with certain foods such as curry, Mexican and other spicy food. But it's equally enjoyable on its own.

                        In conclusion, this is a beer not to be missed and has become an established and well known British beer that is not going to be leaving us anytime soon. It's definitely not going to be leaving my favourite beer list that's for sure!

                        Grab a few cans when you can, pull the ring pull and enjoy. Best served chilled.

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                        25.03.2011 15:01
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                        Lovely smelling deodorant

                        Lynx Fever

                        - Deodorant Bodyspray - with Brazilian Orange Essence

                        Well hello folks, its me again! The Hairy One back to review another of my favourite products, and oh boy do I have a biggy here for you today... product I mean!!!
                        You see I came by this stuff completely by accident. Literally it just happened, but ever since that fateful day I have been hooked.

                        Let me tell you a story...
                        I have been with my girlfriend now for 6 months. We moved in together on 31st August 2009. Everythings great. Except one thing. A big thing. Which is absolutely killing me inside.....

                        ... I'm lying to her.
                        ... But for a very good reason.

                        Read on...

                        Why I bought it
                        OK I'm lying to her. As far as I see it, its not a big lie, and its something I'm working on so very very hard so I don't have to lie anymore, but let me explain why I have to...

                        My girlfriend is adoreable, we get on so well, life has been so good since I met her. When we first met, we talked quite a bit about our likes and dislikes and it transpired that the one thing she hates most in the whole wide world is smokers....
                        ... I smoke.

                        BUT
                        I am trying very very hard to give it up - have been since I first met her in March. But as any smoker will tell you it is very very very hard. I have discussed this with Sarah, but unfortunately she seems to have the brain cells of a budgie and just can't comprehend this. As much as I've told her I am trying so hard... so hard I'm left in tears sometimes, her attitude is... "It's easy, just dont do it. Stop making excuses".

                        But it really isn't that easy.
                        And so I am forced to lie to her. On a small scale admittedly. Thankfully.

                        But its killing me now, I have to focus my mind even further and just do this for her. If I do nothing else for her, I just have to do this and very very fast now.
                        And so it happened like this...

                        Firstly you need to understand that this started before we moved in together. Way before we moved in together, but this theme has continued.
                        I had been smoking all day at work, stupid I know for someone who is trying so hard to give up, but stressful situations call for desperate measures. So there you have it, I had been puffing away like a chimney all day, not expecting to see my beloved until the weekend.

                        Oh yea and one other thing you need to know about me... I absolutely hate letting people down. i.e. saying no.
                        And so during the afternoon, I receive a text message, from Sarah, along the lines of "Hello darling, how are you? Wondering if you fancy a drink straight after work tonight? I'm missing you and really want to see you"

                        Knickers.

                        Panic set in... what do I do? I've been smoking all day, I've tried spraying myself over with sprays before but they just don't hide the smell well enough, but at any rate I don't have any, and at least if I did, it might hide it just enough for her not to realise.

                        (in case you are wondering why I have to hide it, the last time she found out I had been smoking (and it was a desperate time, I smoked right in front of her) I only had one cigarette and she went into one for over a week over a silly little thing like one cigarette)
                        In hindsight I should have replied and said I was already doing something, but sadly I was too much in love to do that, so I (like a fool) replied, "I would love to"

                        The moment I sent it I went quiet.

                        I had no sprays or aftershave with me at work (having run out on the previous occasion), was not satisfied that they hide it enough anyway, and at the same time knew I had an emergency situation on my hands here.

                        And so in desperation I thought I would wander down to the off licence (its just a few hundred yards from where I work) for some chocolate to focus my mind.

                        This is where it gets weird

                        The last thing you expect an off licence to sell is deodorant. But for some reason (paranoia?) the first thing I spotted when I walked in the door was a row of deodorants on a shelf behind the counter.
                        "There is a god!"
                        I thought!I chose the brightest one I could see and bought it... just one.

                        Never had it before, didn't expect much to be honest, but still, I had this bright orange can of smelly stuff in my pocket with which I had the challenge of hiding my smoky smell. impossible I thought....
                        Wrong...

                        The Spray Test

                        So I got back to the office and proceeded in spraying this stuff methodically over every square inch of my suit in a desperate attempt to cover my wrongdoings. 10 minutes later the office smelt like a boys changing room just after a swimming lesson!!! I drew furious glances from some colleagues, bemused looks from others but to be honest I had only one thing on my mind. Not losing Sarah!
                        I left work for the evening, still very conscious that I might still smell (I had already brushed my teeth). On my way past reception, I asked Sandra if I could ask her a question without offending her...

                        "Whats that" she said...
                        ... "Could you just sniff me please"

                        The look on her face changed from her normal look to an "oh christ I have a pervert on my hands" kind of look, but I managed to reassure her by explaining that I didnt want to smell of smoke and could she just take a quick sniff and see if she can detect any smoke (after all, the best person to ask is a non-smoker!)
                        And so she sniffed me up and down (politely!) and then said something I thought my ears would never hear....
                        ... It smells gorgeous...

                        Crikey!
                        That was not what I was expecting at all! I expected her to say that I still smelt like a chain smoker and that you cannot hide it from a girl. But she said the complete opposite, and this is a woman I trust. I admit that all I could smell was this delicious orangey smell, but I am also aware that I am a smoker so may not detect the smell of smoke as much as someone else might do.

                        Brazilian Orange Essence - What is that? who cares! Never heard of it before, and I only bought the spray by chance when I was in the Off Licence. And I only chose it because of its bright orange colour. Just goes to show how bright colours can market a product all by itself!
                        Orange ...
                        yes kind of. I really don't know how to explain the smell but yes it is indeed quite orangey, but in a pleasant way rather than in a bitter fruity kind of way. It also has some kind of vanillary smell to go with it.

                        One thing I will warn you is that the smell is very sweet and very strong. Although I usually use a can at a time so yes I suppose it will smell quite strong to me!
                        The can is pretty standard, much like any other Lynx can with their special twist top made of plastic and their distinctive livery spread across the can. As with all Lynx cans I love the cartoon on the back. Obviously I can't replicate that here but I can translate the pictures into words...

                        ... Lynx + Mans body = Women
                        Just exactly what I need! My cup runneth over!

                        Actually I have eyes for one woman and one woman only... Sarah. Thats why I really owe my relationship to Lynx because without it I would have been doomed some time ago.
                        And after that first time?
                        Christ! I became addicted! I absolutely love the stuff, way before I've run out I buy more, I just love it (the pictures prove this), finally Lynx have created not only a scent that I absolutely love, but a spray that I have gone back to purchase again and again and again.
                        But how can I get my hands on some of this?

                        The shop dumbo! most shops seem to sell it. Boots currently have it on offer, 2 for £4
                        Hmm... i wonder if the priory offers sessions for Lynx addiction?

                        Please don't use if you are allergic to any of the ingredients
                        Alcohol Denat., Butane, Isobutane , Propane, Parfum, Propylene Glycol, Polyaminopropyl Biguanide Stearate, Citral, Limonene, Linalool

                        Oh and just one other word of warning...
                        Use this stuff in a ventilated area and please
                        Don't Smoke!

                        Don't want you blowing yourselves up!

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                          24.03.2011 18:34
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                          • Reliability
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                          Fujifilm, bringing the world to life

                          Introduction

                          Photos. They're everywhere these days! With the advent of social networking, camera manufacturers are doing a roaring trade selling digital cameras to the masses. The masses that are dead set on trying to outdo their friends with the quality and quantity of photos on sites such as facebook. I was fortunate enough to get the facebook bug some time ago and sailed along happily for months. But something was missing. Whilst all my friends and co-workers were busy uploading photos in the hundreds to their profile, detailing every aspect of their lives from holidays to family occasions, and even sometimes, photos I would deem wholly inappropriate to share with hundreds of "friends", I was stuck with only a few photos taken on my webcam or my phone. I decided it would be nice to start taking photography more seriously and so I set out to buy a digital camera that would enable me to take quality photo's at all those unique moments that just seem to crop up all the time.

                          Choosing the camera

                          I'm not much of a person to research into things before I buy them, usually I buy something because I like the look of it, or I buy solely because of a specification I have seen or a special offer. Buying my camera was much the same. I asked around at work to see if anybody could point me to a shop that sold cameras, I was in rather a hurry as we were going on holiday the following week and really wanted to get something before we went so that I would be able to take it with us. My boss recommended Jessops. I browsed their website for small cameras, and sorted the list showing the highest price cameras first. My budget was around £300, and I figured the best way to go would be to get something towards the top end of my budget, thinking that it would be of superior quality to some of the much lower priced cameras.
                          Scrolling down the list, I came across the F200EXR, the first thing I noticed was how it looks, it is very smart, and it appealed to my desire to always try and have the latest flash gadgets. It looked very smart indeed. I took a quick look at the spec and decided I would buy it. £290 later (including delivery) I just had to sit back and wait. My camera arrived the next day and I couldn't wait to get started, I took it out of the box and started taking pictures of myself.... Before deciding that I would probably break it with my ugly mug.


                          The Look and Feel
                          The F200EXR looks amazing, it is really very smart, and very small too. It fits easily into my pocket for safe keeping. It is black and silver and the colours go together very well whilst also matching with my existing gadgets. The camera is only about 10cm wide, 6cm tall and just over 2cm deep, about the same size as a small block of cheese.... Only lighter. The camera is very light and easy to carry around and use without feeling cumbersome at all.


                          Taking Pictures
                          Taking pictures is simple, just put it into record mode and shoot! There is a big LCD display on the back which is very handy for viewing the pictures you have taken and deleting/retaking them if necessary. Nearly all of my pictures have come out perfectly so far, except for one where I stupidly had my finger half over the lense!

                          There are loads of options you can set before taking your pictures and I haven't gone through all these yet as I have had no need to, the standard settings seem to adjust for any situation.
                          The main function that most people will use is the zoom. We have an old camera at work with a zoom function, and although pictures taken on this camera (at work) are ok, if we zoom in on anything we seem to lose all clarity in the image. My new camera is different. Everything I have zoomed in on has looked just as clear as if I hadn't zoomed in, you can zoom to 5x the original size with absolutely (or no perceptible) loss of quality.

                          I also found a nifty little function whereby you can apply image effects to your photos as you take them. For example, you can take photos in black and white, or sepia, or a couple of other styles which I haven't used much because they didn't make my pictures look too good, but I think that may be the situations that I was taking the pictures in.
                          Overall for most people they will only need to press the button and not change any of the options as the camera appears to perform just as well at night as it does during the day, just as well close up as it does from a distance.

                          The on screen interface is easy to understand, just as the wheel and buttons on the back and top are. Mostly its just logic, but I did have to look in the manual to find out what all the options did on the wheel, although like I said, I haven't had the need to use any of these, the standard recording one works just fine for me.
                          The only downsize is it only has 48mb of memory, which is fine for most people, but if you are going away anywhere for any length of time you will probably need to buy an SD card to boost your memory capacity. If you will be deleting or uploading pictures fairly regularly you should find that the camera has enough storage for your needs.
                          Battery Life and Connectivity
                          So far I have not needed to recharge my camera, I charged it when I first got it, and then I have had it a few weeks, took it away with us, and have taken a few random photos whenever we have gone out and the battery is now half empty so the battery life is very good. Uploading photos to my computer is easy, just connect via USB and away you go!
                          Specifications

                          * Number of effective pixels
                          12 million pixels
                          * CCD sensor
                          1/ 1.6-inch Super CCD HR
                          * Storage media
                          Internal memory (approx. 48MB) / xD-Picture CardTM ( 16MB - 2 GB ) /SD memory card / SDHC
                          * File format
                          Still image: JPEG (Exif Ver 2.2 ) Movie: AVI (Motion JPEG ) Audio: WAVE format, Monaural sound
                          * Lens
                          Fujinon 5x optical zoom lens, F3.3 (Wide) - F5.1 (Telephoto)
                          * Lens focal length
                          f=6.4 - 32.0mm, equivalent to 28 - 140mm on a 35mm camera
                          * Focus
                          Auto focus (Area, Multi, Centre) / Continuous AF, AF assist illuminator available
                          * Focus distance
                          Normal Wide: Approx. 45cm / 1.5ft. to infinity Telephoto: Approx. 80cm / 2.6ft. to infinity Macro Wide: Approx. 5cm - 80cm / 0.2ft. - 2.6ft. Telephoto: Approx. 50cm - 1m / 1.6ft. - 3.3ft.
                          * Shutter speed
                          (Auto mode) 1/4 sec. to 1/1500 sec., (All other modes) 8 sec. to 1/1500 sec.
                          * Aperture
                          Wide: F3.3 / F9.0, Telephoto: F5.1 / F14.0
                          * Sensitivity
                          Auto / Auto(3200) / Auto(1600) / Auto(800) / Auto(400) / Equivalent to ISO 100 / 200 / 400 / 800 / 1600 / 3200 / 6400 / 12800 (Standard Output Sensitivity) * Number of recorded pixels: ISO6400: "M" or "S", ISO12800: "S"only
                          * Exposure modes
                          Programmed AE, Aperture Priority AE, Manual
                          * White balance
                          Automatic scene recognition Preset: Fine, Shade, Fluorescent light (Daylight), Fluorescent light (Warm white), Fluorescent light (Cool white), Incandescent light, Underwater lighting Custom
                          * LCD Monitor
                          3.0-inch, Approx. 230,000 dots, TFT color LCD monitor, Approx. 100% coverage
                          * Self-timer
                          Approx. 10 sec./2 sec. delay
                          * Video Output
                          NTSC / PAL selectable
                          * Digital Interface
                          USB 2.0 High-speed
                          * Power source
                          Rechargeable NP-50 Li-ion battery (included) / CP-50 with AC power adapter AC-5VX (sold separately)
                          * Dimensions
                          97.7(W) x 58.9(H) x 23.4(D)mm / 3.8(W) x 2.3(H) x 0.9(D)in. (excluding accessories and attachments)
                          * Weight
                          Approx. 175g/6.2oz. (excluding accessories, batteries and memory card)
                          * Digital Zoom
                          Approx 4.4 X
                          * Shooting modes
                          Mode dial: Auto, EXR, Natural Light, Natural Light & with Flash, SP, P, M, Movie SP: Portrait, Portrait Enhancer, Landscape, Sport, Night, Fireworks, Night (Tripod), Sunset, Snow, Beach, Underwater, Museum, Party, Flower, Text
                          * Movie recording
                          640 x 480 pixels, 30 frames/sec. b320 x 240 pixels, 30 frames/sec. With monaural sound, AVI format (Motion JPEG) * Zoom cannot be used during recording
                          * Playback
                          Face Detection (with Red-eye removal), Slideshow, Trimming, Multi-frame playback (with Micro Thumbnail), Sorting by date, Image rotate, Resize, Voice memo
                          * Voice memo
                          Up to 30 sec. WAV format

                          Conclusion
                          I am very happy with my little camera, I know I could have probably got the same quality for less money but I really don't care. I am sure this camera is going to bring me many hours of enjoyment and memories for years to come. I do want to get an SD card very soon just so I can be sure that I have plenty of space to store my photos, but other than that this camera is perfect in every way. I definitely do not think I could have got anything better than this, even for a higher price, overall I am very glad that I picked this one out and think it may have been one of my better choices in life.

                          I cannot fault the exceptional image quality and ease of use, I even gave it to my girlfriend whilst we were away and asked her to take a picture of me, and she didn't ask how it works, amazing considering she asked me the other day how to open a bottle of wine with a corkscrew when it was a screw top bottle!
                          Highly recommended. Cheese!

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