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paddythedaddy

paddythedaddy
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Member since: 02.02.2001

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    • Daihatsu Charade / Car / 0 Readings / 6 Ratings
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      19.04.2001 15:43
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      The Daihatsu Charade GTti has a 993 cc, 3 cylinder, twin cam, fuel injected engine. plus a SCREAMING TURBO!!! Lets get the facts out of the way first... 99 bhp may not sound like a lot, but when you put it in a car that weighs the same as a bag of spanners, you get a 0-60 time of approximately 7.9 seconds (manufacturers estimate). Lets put this into perspective, you will beat BMW's (325i's) Escort and Fiesta RST's, and you will probably keep up with the Renault 5 GTT crew as well! Another plus is the fuel economy. With such a small and light frame, you will be rewarded with 35+ mpg. Hoot it around and these figures will drop, although not by much! The 3 cylinder engine can be noisy (check the tappets at every service) and as with all turbo's: "LEAVE THE CAR RUNNING FOR 10 SECONDS SO IT CAN SLOW DOWN!!" This will imncrease the life of the blower. Please Please Please check the service history if you're buying one of these, turbo's can be expensive to replace (if you do need to - UPGRADE TO A HYBRID FOR EXTRA FUN!!!). The turbo on this motor runs on a slightly different principle than normal turbo's (mail me if you want full techy details) which makes fitting an adjustable boost switch a REAL learning experience! Brakes are ok but could do with some harder pads, handling is not bad either, although it can be difficult to get traction in the wet. Inside, everything is (should be!) electric, and as you expect with these Eastern cars, it all works! It is reasonably comfortable inside, I was always comnfortable in the one I had (bear in mind I am 6'1 and weigh nearly 17 stone - hardly any of it fat b.t.w) The main gripe about the car is the lack of parts available, I had to get a new master cylinder and ordered one from a Daihatsu dealership (PLEASE BEAR IN MIND I GO THROUGH MY DAD WHO IS A CAR DEALER SO WE NORMALLY GET THE BEST SERVICE!!) I
      was waiting for 3 weeks whilst they tried to sort it all out. When the 4th week came along I thought sod it and bought an upgraded master cylinder which worked out about 10% cheaper! Plus this included all hoses and brake lines (also upgraded) which meant I could fit some bigger front calipers and discs. In conclusion the Daihatsu Charade GTti is a great little car for your money. Hunt around if you're looking to buy one because there are a lot of dogs around. I would love to own another one, I sold mine because I can't keep a car for more than five minutes (see my other reviews) although I don't think I tapped into the full extremities of this rapid hot hatch. If you want a quick car which is extremely reliable, buy one of these. If you want something different, buy one of these. If you want a big car that you feel safe in... Don't buy one of these.

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        18.04.2001 20:40
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        I am not in any way condoning speeding, it costs lives and is a blatant misuse of the privelage to drive on the UK's fine autoroutes. I apologise if someone has already submitted this info to dooyoo, I couldn't be arsed to search through th 60+ reviews on speeding. This information was provided by someone that (allegedly) worked at the fines and penalties office. It sounds like it could be true, but lets face it, if you have been flashed by a GATSO and received letter, what have you got to lose? It goes like this: 1) Get flashed 2) Swear a lot 3) Receive letter from fines and penalties office informing you (roughly): "You were caught going way to fast. If I was you I would be gutted. Please send a cheque for the amount (£40???) and points will be put on your license. 4) Swear a lot more. 5) Send a cheque for the amount PLUS (THIS IS THE GOOD BIT) a nominal amount e.g. £1 on the same cheque. (If the fine is £40 send a cheque for £41) 6) They will receive your cheque and send you a cheque back to reimburse the difference. 7) DO NOT CASH THIS CHEQUE. Tear it up, eat it, smoke it, do what you want with it, but don't cash it. 8) At the fines office, the advanced computer systems will be confused because the "TRANSACTION IS NOT COMPLETE". 9) You can guess the rest So why not give it a try, can't guarantee it will work, it might just be a load of old poo, but whats the harm in trying? Good luck and if you do try it but a slapped wrist for speeding anyway! ;o)

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          09.04.2001 17:19
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          I consider myself an extremely privelaged person. In the heart of the Snowdonia National Park, with views over the breathtaking Irish Sea, there sits a modest (actually its pretty big) 18th Century Farmhouse. With the closest neighbour a 20 minute drive away (due to the endless stream of gates) and the ominous peak of Cader Idris looming behind you, you could be forgiven for thinking you had found Nirvana. Owned by my Girlfriends parents, this remote retreat is used as a base to discover (and Re-discover!) the fantastic scenery and wildlife that this beautiful part of the country contains. I will explain a little about the surrounding towns and what there is to do: DOLGELLAU (pronounced: Dog-Eth-Lee {although God knows why!}): A small town which consists of a few pubs (friendly atmospheres), Hotels (fairly cheap), Shops (Kwik Save, Co-op, Boots, an excellent hardware store run by 2 old ladies, a fantastic little shop which sells small gifts and things called 'Francesca's', post office etc.). The main attraction in Dolgellau is the market which happens twice a year, to be honest its all old tat, but still worth a look! The BEST thing about Dolgellau is the bakers (on the one-way, opposite Threshers Off-License) which sells THE most amazing Honey Buns - Do try these! CADER IDRIS One of the highest peaks in the country, walk (or run!) to the top and be rewarded by fantastic views from all angles. CREGENNAN LAKES With Cader Idris looming to one side, and the estuary and Irish Sea to the other, the two Lakes enjoy beautiful views. You can fish for Trout here for about £15 for the day. Unless you are as useless as me at Fly/Float fishing, you will definitely catch a few! Rods and Tackle available for a small fee. FAIRBOURNE A small town with a few shops and little in the way of night life! Fairbourne has a Train Station plus a miniature railway which tak
          es you along the beach front (it is beautiful golden sand when the tide is out!) to the mouth of the estuary. This miniature railway also boast the longest name for a railway station (not to be confused with the Llan diddly gogogoch one - its longer!). In the summer you can also take a little ferry (rowing boat with a motor!) over to: BARMOUTH The biggest town in the area, a real sea side holiday town with excellent restaurants, hotels, gift shops and amusements for the kids. There are all the shops that you could need plus a Doctors Surgery if anyone gets ill. Based around a fishing village, there are still a few chartered and public trips out by boat. Fishing trips are about £20 per person for 6 hours fishing - Very good value! For those who don't wish to venture on to the unpredictable Irish Sea, you can fish for Crabs at the side of the Bay for about £5 an hour! There is also a railway bridge which can be fished off for 2 hours either side of the tide. Using either Lugworm (looks like licqourice) or Sand eels (make sure you secure them on the hook properly) you can more or less guarantee a good sized Sea Bass - which cook up GREAT! Barmouth offers a fairly good night life too, being a preferred holiday destination for the inhabitants of Birmingham, they offer a range of clubs and pubs. WHAT ELSE? The main thing to do in this area is walk. There are some fantastic walks to do ranging from the mild, easy and non-energetic (the 'Torrent Walk' is my GF's fave - it is an easy walk down a stony path past breathtaking water falls) to the more energetic, but rewarding (a nice jog up Cader gets the heart pumping and sets you up for a nice walk down!) I would recommend a holiday here to anyone that likes to do outdoor things. If you want sun and sand, you may well get lucky! See you all at the top of Cader, last one up is a Welshman..... ;o)

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          • Absinth King Gold / Soft Drink / 0 Readings / 11 Ratings
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            27.03.2001 23:17
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            If you haven't tried Absinth, try it now, you will not regret it. I first tried Absinth about 6 years ago in Hungary (where it originates from) and they taught me the RIGHT way to drink it: Step 1: Get a level spoon of Sugar Step 2: Soak it in Absinth Step 3: Set fire to the soaked sugar until the flame begins to die and the sugar starts to caramalise Step 4: Stir the spoon furiously into the shot of Absinth Step 5: Down the shot Step 6: Wait 2 minutes Step 7: Start talking to the orange Penguin now sat in the corner of the pub Step 8: Repeat Step 1 Oh my god, Absinth is a very unforgiving alchoholic beverage. you know how Vodka creeps up on you if you're doing shots? Well Absinthe is less subtle, it grabs you by the Ging Gang's and shouts obscenities into your consciouness. You can get Absinth in many pubs now but get this: It is an unwritten rule within licensed premises (soon to be with precidence I'm sure!) that you can have only 1 Absinth per hour and no more than 3 in an evening. This drink is great fun, it helped Van Gogh live out the famous Shakespearean monologue "Friends, Painters, countrymen, Lend me your ear" (or something like that!). I love it, I don't do drugs and never will, I imagine Absinth to be the closest I will ever get to an LSD trip. Look out for my next album 'The White Room'. Good luck with the "Loopy Juice"!

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            • Lowenbrau Special / Beer / Cider / 0 Readings / 4 Ratings
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              27.03.2001 23:03
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              I dread walking in to licensed premises that only sell only Lowenbrau on draught. I like a good lager with the rest of them but Lowenbrau has a habit of repeating on you. I don't mean to be too graphic, but the title of this suggests the effect that Lowenbrau tends to have on the digestive system. **ANY LADYLIKE LADIES TURN AWAY NOW** Guys (and 'Geezer Birds'), Lowenbrau is the alchoholic equivalent of too much turkey and nuts at Christmas. It affects the stomach like a strongly spiced curry and creates the most unusual amount of bottom gas attached to the foulest stench imaginable. Come on now, we all like to cuff and whiff the occasional air biscuit, don't you dare disagree with me now! But PLEASE don't try this after a night out on the Lowenbrau's, I guarantee you will melt your nasal passage. The Lager itself is nice to drink, not too unlike the amazing 'Stella Artois' but the ramifications of 8 pints of this loopy juice will guarantee that you will not wake up next to your dream woman, but a pile of vomit and a note saying "Had to leave, my face melted because of your farts". Its a shame that the Lager has this effect because it really doesn't taste too bad. Attack this beer on a night out at your peril!

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              • Nissan Sunny (1991-95) / Car / 0 Readings / 4 Ratings
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                26.03.2001 19:59
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                Having a father in the motor trade does have its advantages. This will just be a short opinion from me on this car. I normally write these in my lunch hour but I'm off out for a ride in this ridiculous car. I've had it 2 days and I think I have someone to buy it already so minutes spent writing are minutes better spent scaring the crap out of myself. This Sunny is a 94 'L' and is badged up as a 'Pulsar' (it is an import - I know I've said I hate imports before but this car is an exception) which is what the Sunny was called in Japan. There were about 100 UK spec Pulsars sold over here, they are rare and worth a lot more than the usual circa £5-6 k price tag. So if you like a car that produces 227 b.h.p from a 2.0 litre 16 valve DOHC engine, a car that has air con as standard, a car that has 4 wheel drive and handles like baby poo sticks to a blanket, then GET A PULSAR!!! This car is fast, 0-60 in 5.4 seconds (manufacturers estimate) means that you will NEVER be left behind at the lights. I know people will say 'what about Porsches and TVR's?' well, the average porsche driver is 50 ( I said 'average'!!) and does not have lead boots. Also, the average Porsche and all TVR's have only Rear wheel drive to put all their power to the road. The Pulsar wins EVERY time!! Now I know you will all harp on about 'fuel consumption' and price of parts, but for £6000 I don't give a monkeys! I have got a car (not for long though - hopefully) that can even take on big bikes and not be shame faced! There are plenty of tuning parts available to make this 'Pocket Rocket' a real Street Racer, maybe one day I'll buy one to keep and see how quick I can get that 0-60 sprint! If you want a cheap car, that is non-descript (it is after all STILL just a lowly Nissan Sunny!) buy one of these. I am off out now to pick on some Escort Cosworths
                and embarass some TVR drivers. You will recognise me by the HUGE grin on my face and brown stains in my pants! I will be back soon to write a full review and add how few miles I have managed to get to the Gallon (i'm guessing no more than 15-20 - oh well, you only live once!).

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                • Citroën Saxo 1.6i VTR / Car / 2 Readings / 10 Ratings
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                  19.03.2001 19:55
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                  I thought I better set the record straight seeing as my friends review on this car was rudely removed. The Citroen Saxo VTR has a 1600 cc engine which shares its design with the Peugeot 106. It also shares the floorpan and many other little bits scattered here and there. The engine is ok, it won't set the world alight but if properly looked after it should stay running sweet for a few years yet. Handling is as you would expect from a car with the wheels at all four corners, excellent. My mates was lowered from the factory which made for a bumpy but fun ride. I have driven a number of other VTR's (father in motor trade: see my other reviews)and they all handle very similarly. Now to my actual opinion. The VTR is unreliable. Simple as that. Due to its crap French build, bits fall off, bits don't work and bits rust. If I had a 2 year old car that had rust on it I would be very worried indeed. The only people that should buy the VTR are 17 year olds that work in McDonalds and drive around with the windows down and the stereo booming. I say this because we already know you are thick and haven't got a clue, so buying this car will only strengthen my opinion of you. The VTR is made of paper and seeing as the average owner IS 17, finding a 2nd hand one that hasn't been bent will be a chore in years to come. Speaking of buying them 2nd hand, everyone knows new cars lose their value as soon as they're bought but jeez this little car loses money quicker than Nick Leeson. The only other person that buys this car is the 20 year old receptionist that lives at home with mum and dad. She can afford the monthly payments (whatever happened to saving up?) and likes the idea of free insurance. When I was learning to drive the Nova SR was the car to have if your name was Wayne and you wanted to drive 15 year olds around. The VTR has firmly taken the crown as the wannabe boy racers preferred chariot o
                  f the Y2K's. Now without wishing to contradict myself too much, the Citroen did redeem themselves by releasing the VTS. Although it still looks like a girly Saxo, the 16 valve engine makes up for it. For those of you that remember the late 80's, the VTS is like the difference between the Pug 205 1.6 and the 1.9. Everyone wants the faster one, but by the time they get to the age to afford the insurance, they have grown out of the silly idea and bought a gron-up car. One that isn't made enitrely of paper and rust. So Wayne and Katie (our 20 year old receptionist) have fun in your Saxo. Remember to keep up the payments so that when someone buys it from you in the near future (when you get bored - and you will very soon!), you can take their money right back to Citroen Finance, add about £2000 from your savings and pay off the car you 'always wanted'. Then you can start from scratch and buy another car on Higher Purchase and continue your lives of living on the never never. My advice is save up and buy a car for cash, 2nd hand, save your money for enjoying a life.

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                  • Peugeot 605 / Car / 0 Readings / 2 Ratings
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                    08.02.2001 22:30

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                    Having a father in the motor industry does have its advantages.... I have driven alot of cars, I tried the peugeot 605 SRi which is a 2.0 litre Turbo which returns about 25 miles to the gallon. Its boring, ugly, comfortable, uneconomical and uninspiring (did you spot the nice word in there?). Let me explain further. The diesel Engine is great, returning figures over 40 mpg. The SRi however would be lucky to return 25 mpg. Peugeot build quality is not the best in the world. The electric bits have a tendancy to fall off and not work plus they are definitely not cheap to replace. The 605 is no exception because it was never a really popular car on these shores so bits are even more! The SRi engine may be good if you shoe horned it into your 106, but in this 'tank', it will never give you butterflies. If I was you i would avoid this particular model, the diesels may well be better, seeing as minicab drivers tend to swear by them. I do know that Peugeot put this engine in the 406, made it more efficient and created a car which is actually not bad. The 406 would be a better car to buy if you want my advice. I wouldn't buy one even though they are cheap. Peugeot build quality is appaling and parts are expensive.

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                  • Road Rage / Discussion / 0 Readings / 11 Ratings
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                    08.02.2001 14:34
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                    I'm an angry person, I also have a low tolerance level for stupid drivers. You should remember this the next time you decide to drive so close to my back bumper I might as well be towing you. And to the man that decided to get out of his car when I slowed down so you could either back off or overtake, I know you will remember me... Or the next time you decide to pull out in front of me on a roundabout when I am clearly indicating to go around it. How about the next time you decide to blatantly exceed the speed limit around the area I live? Yes, you know the one, with lots of cars parked along the road and kids playing football on the patches of grass? And you will remember this, the next time you decide to sit in the middle lane of the motorway doing 55 bloody m.p.h completely oblivious to the fact there is a 10 mile tailback in your rear view MIRROR. Yes, you have a mirror in your car, its the shiny reflective thing that lets you see whats going on behind you, try using it sometime its a hoot. And Mr. White Van man, you will know me the next time you ride my bumper or pull straight in front with no indication (god I'm starting to sound like whotsisname in Pulp Fiction), And I will lay my vengeance apon thee... And finally, to the idiots that prefer to carry their children on their laps rather than use a proper seat. You probably won't remember me.. but you will remember one of the prats mentioned above when they cause an accident and its your child that is seriously injured, or worse. I took my advanced driving test about 4 years ago. They teach you a lot of good things that make you more aware on the road. I reccommend it to anyone that 'thinks' they are a good driver. No matter how good you think you are, there's always some other prat on the road that could smash into you. If we want to stop road rage I think we need to get rid of the stupid drivers, or at least make
                    them realise what they are doing is wrong. If I make a mistake whilst driving (which I often do, those of you that say you don't are either ignorant or lying - probably both) I always make a point of apologising, a wave of the hand (or the middle finger if you think the other person won't notice!) can calm the situation down. I also strongly believe in re-testing people every 2 years or so to make sure that the driving is of a safe standard. My nan is 80 (bless her) and we have only just convinced her to stop driving. She is stone deaf and drove at a constant 50 m.p.h (motorway or urban!) and I don't think she used her indicators or brakes in about 7 years. She was rarely in an accident, but how many did she cause behind her that she was oblivious to? I've never actually been the victim of road rage, I think my size has always put people off (except obviously the angry man mentioned before). I do get angry in the car and sometimes I do get the whole 'Rage' thing flushing over me. I know this is wrong and i am an otherwise rational person, perhaps I should cut down on caffeine? Anyway, love to everyone, and remember me next time you think about pulling out in front of someone. Please note, this was written with my tongue firmly in my cheek. ;O)

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                    • Fiat Uno / Car / 0 Readings / 3 Ratings
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                      07.02.2001 15:00
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                      Having a Father in the motor industry has its advantages.... With a string of cars already to my name, I bought a 1.3 Uno Turbo to blow off the cobwebs about 4 years ago. I'm not going to bore you with performance figures, but this old shed is quick people! Take the badges off and all other road users think your just another weirdo in an old heap, until you blast past them with ridiculous acceleration. I've had turbo'd motors since and none seemed to have the same sense of urgency as the Uno, which is built entirely out of paper and rust (which makes the already dodgy cornering even more life threatening). The car was not designed to have an engine like this in it, in fact the Uno was not really designed to have an engine at all. It would appear it was designed to rust and disintegrate. So the turbo is a fast barrel of fun, if you can find one where the blower is ok (they do go people, and are not cheap to replace!). If you are learning to drive and want a cheap car for a while, try the 1.0 litre with the bomb proof 'Fire' engine. This engine was built to last, unlike the rest of the car. With its cast ally design it surpasses the 957cc Ford engine, fitted into the Fiesta of old. However, although the engine is good, the car is not. You will often see just engines sitting in peoples drive ways, these are not pikey people, it is just where the car has rusted away into nothing and left the block standing there. I kid you not people, avoid the Uno, or forever live in fear of the car collapsing beneath you. Please note, this is just my opinion, please leave a comment

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                      • Fiat Tempra / Car / 1 Reading / 1 Rating
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                        07.02.2001 14:44
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                        Having a father in the motor industry has its advantages.... Or not if he gives you the use of a Fiat Tempra for a week. That was slightly unfair, it was about 5 years ago when i was but a mere slip of an 18 year old. The model I tried was a 1.6, I can't remember the specification letter (LXE - god knows and lets be honest, who cares?) but it had all electrics P.A.S and VERY comfortable seats (and a lot of room in the back, wink wink)! At the time the car was not very old so the obligatory Fiat rust had not yet settled in. It was a good reliable car and it had the most fantastic Digital Dashboard readout! God knows how good these are nowadays, the Italians are not famous for their electrical expertise. OK, so now the car looks dated (i suppose it was never really 'sexy' then) but if you want a CHEAP car to get you from a 2 b you could do alot worse. The tempra was the Italian equvalent of the Orion, and i HATE orions (even though i am a Ford fan), so given the choice, I would have the Fancy Fiat any day. Please note, this is just my opinion, Please leave a comment.

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                        • Videodrome (DVD) / DVD / 1 Reading / 3 Ratings
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                          07.02.2001 14:25

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                          Kronenberg is most definitely messed up in the head. Videodrome looks at a man obsessed with hard core violence, violent sex and sado-masochism. The film looks at how media has got out of hand, especially relevant with todays 'Reality TV' methinks? The film itself spawned a cult following and created a market for 'Snuff videos' that many of you may remember in the early 80's. Don't get me wrong, although this film is distinctly provocative and grotesquely violent (at least in its insinuations) it does kick butt in a major way. The film is not easy to watch, although the sturyline lacks the 'twists' of more modern titles, Kronenbergs style makes for often tedious viewing. Clever Special FX and effective directing make Videodrome one of those films you might watch on a night in by yourself, or with someone that won't immediately dismiss it as a cr@p 'B' movie. It is a film for discussion but don't go and hire it out if you plan on watching it with your new girlfriend, there are some disturbing scenes which squeamish people may find offensive. You must take this film with a pinch of salt like all Kronenberg films. He is renowned for stimulating thought on Sociological issues, not for making 'Sunday Afternoon' films. I didn't like Kronenberg's 'Crash', I thought it was just for the sake of shocking. Perhaps we have become hardened to it all? But videodrome was made when Betamax was still in the running and people were just having their eyes opened to what media could actually do. I love this film, but not as much as I love Existenz.....

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                        • THX 1138 (DVD) / DVD / 1 Reading / 2 Ratings
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                          07.02.2001 14:03
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                          THX 1138 is a film that came from the clever mind of a man that also invented the 'Star Wars Universe'. The film itself is set in the near future where humans are almost homogenous and are happy to take mind altering drugs to supress their natural instincts and to conform to a society that expects only hard work. George Lucas was a clever man with this film, after his cult success with 'American Graffitti', he created a film that could either be watched and thought of as 'scary' or when looked into more deeply could be regarded as 'terrifyingly thought provoking'. The acting within the film is of a fairly high standard, Robert Duvall playing well the 'man who wants to know more', something that we all perhaps aspire to. The parallels to Lucas' story and the idea of Capatalism are clearly evident if you start to look through the cleverly created plot. It shows how we are all 'sheep' following goals that we rarely truly comprehend, we work towards something for the good of society almost numb to our own wants. (Ever felt like this after a hard day at work?) Lucas makes constant pokes at society, showing how social deviants will be put back into line ( a la Big Brother - 1984) by monotonous robots that are programmed to react like mis-informed councillors. The jibes at religion are tongue in cheek, as Duvall visits a computerised confession box which offers advice from a script. Are we to believe that Lucas is an atheist? I would say no, merely that Lucas is trying to show how we worship false gods and rely too much upon them, by this I mean the materialism which we choose to shrowd our lives with. The main point of the film for me was the fact that people rarely questioned what they were doing. Humans walk around in a drug induced state, believing everything they are told and doing what 'society' calls of them. In real life we are guided by the media and our knowl
                          edge is defined by what we read in the papers and what we are told on TV. Lucas showed this well with one of the underlying conclusions being that we never really see just WHO or WHAT is behind the control's of the way that we think. On a lighter note, the film is well directed for a first stab at Sci-Fi, bearing in mind the year it was made. It is frighteningly plain and bright, with confusingly brilliant montages of voices and images behind the scenes of life, guiding the humans in their daily routines. It is not the easiest film to watch, but it is a must see for any star wars fan wanting an insight into the strange mind of its creator. A creator which in fact, it could be argued, fell into his own materialistic trap by becoming one of the richest men on the planet and guiding the way that society thinks!? You won't get any of the cutesy visual 'wipes' or character development which Lucas has become famous for. It would appear his childhood liking for westerns where the obviously good meet the obviously evil and good wins, was not his main priority in this film. Perhaps the fact that Lucas had not been out of film school for long and his friend, mentor (and it would appear financial benefactor) Coppolla was making films that provoked thought and judgement, spurned Lucas to make a film that would be critically acclaimed for years to come. Please note, this is just my opinion, please leave a comment!!

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                          06.02.2001 21:04
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                          I am a smoker. I am sorry. I feel I have to apologise for my filthy habit a lot. If you are a smoker too, you may or may not feel like I do about the subject of smoking in public places. I do have a choice when its comes to smoking, I know if I really wanted to quit, I could kick the habit straight away.... who am I kidding? Smoking is a difficult thing to give up, we all know the chemical and psychological reasons why, so I won't bore you anymore with them. If you're a smoker or not, you may be able to empathise with me. I started smoking when I was 15 'cos I thought I looked cool (this was only 7 years ago, but before mobile phones were the 'in' thing). Before I knew it, I was hooked - but I am not looking for sympathy! I know how stupid smoking is, as does every other smoker in the world. We are the most stubborn 'Cult' ever, smokers rarely ever admit, or mean it when they say how horrible it is to smoke (not to other people anyway!). This is why I think smoking should be banned in public places. When I have kids (god forbid!), I don't want them passively inhaling someones smoke! We all know the dangers of passive smoking, those of you that remember Roy Castle (trumpeter and Guiness book of records host) know how fatal even being in smokey atmospheres and never smoking a ciggy can be. Smoking is also quite tacky, it makes me cringe to see pretty girls with a 'fag' in their hand. It does make you look cheap and common (God I sound like a bore) but thats the way I feel! Stopping me from smoking in Public places will not only benefit you non-smokers, it will help me give up and hopefully persuade the more militant smokers to kick the habit firmly in the yellow teeth. By taking away our privelage to kill ourselves, you and your children (I don't mean to mince my words!)it could help make the world a better place! So in conclusion (con
                          clusion? I hear you ask! Was there ever a point to this?) I just want smokers to realise that I know how the game is! We all want to give up really! And to those non-smokers, perhaps you could all help the likes of me to give up the dreaded 'Cancer Sticks', come to sense and start enjoying a healthy life!

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                          • Buyers Guide: Car Stereo / Discussion / 0 Readings / 8 Ratings
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                            05.02.2001 21:58
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                            ***Please Rate this opinion!!*** Having a father in the motor trade has its advantages.... I have had too many cars to list. When I started driving I had a 957 cc fiesta with a stereo that was complete pants. I soon sorted this with a Blaupunkt Montreal Head Unit (It was cool at the time!) and some 6 x 9's. Every car I've had since I have moved my stereo into, added onto it, and upgraded into the system I have now. This is the cool thing about In Car Entertainment (I.C.E), you need not spend a fortune straight off, just build and add bits as and when you can afford it. I am not an I.C.E expert, rather a hobby enthusiast so those of you who know the score may find this guide a little too simple. This is really for people new to I.C.E, or those with some knowledge wishing to build further. If you have ANY questions feel free to contact me. The place to start should be the head unit. Nowadays you can choose from cassette, CD, minidisc, Sat Nav, TV blah blah blah... (MP3 is also available from some companies!). The choice really is endless, but lets face it, you'll probably either listen to a CD or the Radio, so this is probably the best place for most of you to start! Prices range from £50 up to £1000's. Kenwood are a firm favourite amongst the boy racers with their mix of feature, reliability and low cost. Their 'Mask' and 'D-Mask' Range are also good theft deterrents. It is important to find the right quality head unit. You could find yourself spending a fortune on something just because it has the latest feature, that you will never use! My advice is to go into a shop where you can have a fiddle with all the different models and get a feel for what it is you need/want. When I first started, I wanted the ones with all the flashing bits and extra features, but now that I prefer quality of sound reproduction, I have plumped for a Nakamichi. This has less features than say, a
                            Pioneer head unit, but once you have heard it, you will never regret the £1200 price tag! For most people the comparable change in sound quality is negligible and not worth the extra cash. To improve overall sound we need to think about changing speakers, amps and extra bits. 1.) DIRECT REPLACEMENT SPEAKERS Most cars have 4 speakers. You will find that manufacturers such as Kenwood and Pioneer do direct replacement speakers, that fit into the factory standard holes. These will better the sound quite a bit, make sure you go for 'Co-Axial' speakers, these are sectioned into 2 parts of the speaker for better sound. 2.) 6 X 9's There was a fashion at one time to fit 6 X 9's into the rear shelf of your car. The 6 x 9's are able to offer more 'mid-bass' sound (as well as higher frequencies provided by other speakers in the car). The fashion was to cut dirty great holes out of your parcel shelf to fit them in. Not only does this get expensive if you want to by a new shelf when you sell the car (or build one out of MDF - handy andy's fave) but it only really adds to the rear fill sound in the car. Use 6 x 9's if you want a loud system, for quality use: 3.) COMPONENT SPEAKERS These are 2 seperate speakers, normally fitted in the front of the vehicle to produce mid range and high range (through the 'TWEETER') sound. It might be necessary to make some room in your front doors for the speakers to go. Fitting Components will give you an excellent front sound stage. If fitted correctly (angled slightly towards the drivers ears) the sound stage should be like it is filling the car up from dashboard level. 4.) SUB-WOOFERS Sub Woofers are the larger speakers which produce Bass. There are 2 main types: a. Free Air - can be fitted to parcel shelf or ported sub-box b. Boxed - require an enclosure (sealed or ported depending on manufacturers spec) For the reasons of size, Subs are normally fitted into the boot of the car. Most require a box in which to fit them, if yours does not have one, check with the manufacturer as to what size box your sub requires. Box sizes are very specific to each sub, a wrong size box could make your expensive sub sound pants. Many people choose to use multiple subs so that when they are at the traffic lights their car vibrates (normally Ford Orion drivers - or Novas). This is all a matter of choice. I once ran 4 x 12inch subs in a band pass box in an Astramax, it was very loud but over powering. For quality now, I have 2 x 10 inchers, dual voice coils which require smaller boxes. WARNING: Using multiple sub set ups seriously encroach on your boot space!!! 5.) AMPLIFIERS If you try to run all your speakers off of your head unit, there will a. not be enough power and b. Sound quality will suffer Most people tend to fit Amplifiers which run straight off the battery and are linked to your head unit to increase the power signal of the sound. Most Amp's require RCA leads, check that these connections are available at the back of your head unit. If they are not, you can patch the sound to SOME amps by using the ordinary wire speaker outs (the AMP will require the ability for 'HI-LEVEL INPUTS' make sure you remember this!!) Amps come in all shapes and sizes. Most people start by amping up their sub for more bass. It is important to match the power figures up. XX IMPORTANT NOTE XX When looking at power figures, look at the RMS figure, not the peak power figure. The peak figures are often over exaggerated and mismatching can result in a blown AMP/Speaker or just poor quailty sound. Wiring in an Amp can be an easy job if you know a little about electrics. If you want more info on this, please feel free to e-mail me! 6.) CROSS OVERS What a cross over
                            basically does is seperate the different levels of sound (I mentioned high end, mid range and Sub bass) and sends the RIGHT SOUND to the RIGHT SPEAKER. Amps often have built in X-Overs to send bass signals to your sub. This can help keep the best sound and prevent the wrong ones going to the Sub and damaging it. Passive cross overs are connected just before the speakers and are often used with the component sets mentioned. Active X-Overs are used before the Signal is Amplified and seperate the sound to the correct amp. These are especially useful for multiple-amp set-ups. 6.) EXTRA GOODIES If you are like me and love a gadget, you can fit some more advanced parts to your I.C.E system. Sat Nav is a like an on-board route and traffic planner. You can get T.V tuners and screens for either video, DVD, games consoles or even your lap top if you want! 7.) CONCLUSION There is really no limit to what you can do to your I.C.E. You can spend as little or as much as you want. There are other avenues of I.C.E i have not mentioned e.g wiring, fusing, earthing, capacitors etc. If demand is great enough i will write another guide, So please leave a comment if you found this useful!

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