Archive for April, 2008


Targeting Thieves

On my last trip, I awoke from a wee nap on a Ryanair flight to find my trusty iPod Shuffle had disappeared out of sight. Rummaging the floor wasn’t fruitful, nor did it show up in lost property. I wouldn’t want to appear prejudice, but the whippersnapper who was sitting in front of me is clearly guilty.

Being quite satisfied by what the Shuffle has to offer, I decided to get another one. This time around, I took advantage of the free engraving service. If this one gets nabbed, at least I’ll get some free promotion.

 Tags: Random   Published: 25th April '08

Banksy

I just recently got introduced to the world of Banksy, the anonymous British graffiti artist whose social and political commentary has created quite a stir. Despite his clear anti-establishment sentiments, I’m confident that his £13 book and £288k auction windfalls keep him safely off the dole. Still an absolute legend, nonetheless. For me, it has instilled a new level of respect for the art form. Turns out that there is even a Dublin-based copycat.

A fellow co-worker just recently commented that rather than painting the garden fence himself, he might instead invite over a group of Dublin’s finest knackers street artists for a fun-filled day of graffiti, BBQ, and some cold beers. Sounds like an interesting experiment, and it’d be a wonder whether his fence ends up with fire-breathing dragons or graphic representations of the female anatomy.

 Tags: Random   Published: 5th April '08

Decapitated Bargain

Another successful Saturday bargain hunt. Highlights include a €2.49 wall clock, €1.49 hand towel, and a 49¢ pencil case.

Unfortunately, I arrived too late to unleash fury upon the €2 store this week.

Although I did splash out on an unnecessary, but very groovy, €19 Banksy coffee table book. I also picked up some empty jars for my new sands-of-the-word collection.

But the super frugal bargain of the day has to be the decapitated Gingerbread Men, that had a 50% reduction.

Disclaimer: My photography skills are particularly weak, hence why most pictures on the blog are nabbed from Flickr. This, however, is a Mander original.

 Tags: Random   Published: 5th April '08

Milk Float: Perfect Urban Vehicle?

Unconvinced? Let’s review the perks:

  • Ample storage space (perfect for trips to Ikea).
  • Cheap (a penny a mile) and clean source of fuel.
  • Just open the door to get some fresh air in the Summer.
  • As fast as you’d need to be for an inner-city environment (20Mph).
  • Free parking in most London boroughs.
  • No Congestion charges for London.
  • Typically has a refrigerator (perfect for groceries).
  • Exempt from requiring an annual MOT.
  • No Road Tax needed.
  • Lower insurance premium.
  • Usually well maintained by their previous owners.

One can pick up a second-hand float on eBay for around £500 – a true Keith style bargain.

 Tags: Random   Published: 3rd April '08

Sound as a Pound

The Royal Mint has just announced the winning design for the new coinage that is due to hit circulation this Summer. Whilst the coins do look pretty nifty, I’m not totally convinced it was a needed change.

However, my imperialist heart is glad to see the harp making its mark on the £1 coin. My Irish comrades are less amused, I suspect.

 Tags: Random   Published: 3rd April '08

Container City

Thanks to trade deficits on specific shipping routes and the looming economic downturn, there is a growing surplus of shipping containers sitting under-utilised at docks across the world.

Consequently, they can be acquired for around $1,000 a pop. Their uniform size and super strength make for them to be an ideal building block to create a pre-fabricated home. Moreover, construction can be performed on-site in a matter of days, significantly reducing the total build cost.

London Container City

Think the interior will be cold and ugly? Think again. YouTube has a neat video showing Container City, the London residential/office development pictured above.

Given the grave difficultly in stepping onto the property ladder, I’m keeping my eyes peeled for a quirky way to get acquire a bargain home.

I’m curious if it’d be possible to find a tiny plot that developers don’t desire and that could contain a couple of stacked containers. Or whether it would be viable to buy and later resell a property with a large enough garden to facilitate a new backyard development. Thoughts?

 Tags: Random   Published: 2nd April '08

Speakers’ Corner

Loitering around Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park remains to be my favourite Sunday pastime.

Here below you’ll find Diane, who is utterly set on the belief that the world is set to immanently crumble – kicking off with Ireland. Fair enough really. YouTube also has some nice clips of her, and her chums, in action.

Nikolai Segura is my favourite speaker and his blog makes for quite an interesting read.

 Tags: Random   Published: 1st April '08