Archive for the ‘consumerism’ Category

Today I have bought KnackerBrod, Kanel Snacka and Choklad Kex.

Can you guess where I’ve been in order to buy such rare delicacies?

Here’s a clue: check out this picture of the coffee I had whilst I was there:

That’s right, Gothenburg!

Only kidding, Ikea. Don’t ask.

Am now having much better coffee in Crouch End central’s lovely Riley’s:

Still formatting House of Dreams for Smashwords. Publication could be as early as next week. You’re all going to buy it, right?

Following yesterday’s post on Internet-as-wild-animal-for-pet facilitator, I have decided to ask the Internet some other stupid questions. I have posted the following  questions on a well know Answers forum:

1. ‘Is it okay to eat worms?’

2.Is it worth chopping off my finger for the insurance money?

3. Can I save on air fares by packing myself in a box and sending myself through the mail?

I’ll let you know what deep wisdom I uncover.

Today’s haiku:

Sweden- land of snow.

I guess; I’ve never been there.

Maybe it’s quite warm?

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So today I made a big decision… I am going to self-publish.

I know what you’re thinking – vanity publishing. Yuech! Well, there was a time where I would never have even considered this route. Ever since I wanted to be a writer I wanted to do it a certain way, i.e. have a big publishing house call me a goddamn literary genius and throw a shit-ton of cash at me for my work. I haven’t exactly given up on this, but it looks like there may be other ways to go about it.

E-books, so I’m led to believe, are the future. And setting up your own E-book seems to be pretty simple and has none (okay , not so much) of the stigma of vanity press.

Well, you know simple is as simple does. I have spent the last 4 hours reading the instructions on Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing, and the Smashwords website, and it honestly looks like a massive fucking hassle. There’s all this shit about formatting, file types, blah blah blah, not to mention creating some kind of cover image.

This is not stuff I do well.

I can bake bread, I’m nice to my kids,I like to think I can write a little, but tech stuff? That’s a big no. The only reason I’m able to write this blog at all is with a good deal of help from my Canadian buddy, Andrew.

Anyway, I’m going to do it. My first novel House of Dreams is going to be available to download, er, well pretty soon.

I’d very much appreciate you checking it out and like, you know, buying it.

It’s not all been wasted time today though; I  spent the first hour of the day composing the following letter to Barnet Parking Services in regard to a totally unjust parking fine. See what you think:

Dear Shit-balls,

Are you fucking retarded? Did you even bother to read my explanation? I did buy a ticket from your fucking pay-by-phone service, even though I now have to pay a minimum charge of £1 (twice the previous amount) AND a charge for using the frigging service I never wanted to use in the first place. It took me 2o minutes to register on your crappy website and give you all my details and then buy the ticket, by which time you’d issued the fine.

You massive fuckwads.

Kind Regards

C Jacobs.

Okay, I didn’t actually send that; I sent a nice polite letter outlining their errors. I didn’t use the word fuckwad once. I did however use my standard ploy when dealing with bureaucratic cornholes of copying their superiors in to the e-mail, in this case the chief exec. of Barnet Council. That usually gets them to pull their fingers out.

And in regards to my buy-nothing project, just 1 coffee to day. Here it is:

photo.JPG

Not bad, huh? ( I mean me not buying much; the coffee looks pretty ordinary).

And today’s haiku:

Mild again today.

It’s hardly felt like winter.

I’m glad; cold sucks balls.

 

The other day I mentioned that, partly in response to the general economic shit-storm we’re in the midst of, and partly as a psychological challenge, I’m trying to spend no money. Okay, obviously not no money, that’s too hard. But I’m consciously cutting down on buying shit I probably don’t need. Just, you know, stuff, like magazines, sandwiches, that kind of thing.

In Tesco’s today, I didn’t buy capers (no one actually needs capers, ever, right?) but I did buy yoghurt. Okay, no-one needs yoghurt either, but it’s one of the few good things my five year old son eats, and whose diet otherwise is made up primarily of crackers, black pudding and sweets, so it’s a justified purchase.

Whilst in the yoghurt aisle I was struck by the choice I faced, re the yoghurts. I counted in excess of 100 different types of yoghurt for sale, including: Greek, organic, soya, high fibre, low fat, fat free, pouring, bio-live, fruity, incredibly fruity (who is ever going to buy ‘fruity’ once they see this one?), probiotic, intensely creamy, and naturally good†. This is not counting a further 25 plus varieties of yoghurt drinks and around the same number of ‘kids’ yoghurts. To anyone who considers this for even a moment, it is a situation that cannot be judged as anything other than absolutely fucking insane.

As I recall, when I was a kid, there was only Ski yoghurt, and you could choose natural or hazelnut. Maybe strawberry.

Were we better off then?

Here is today’s coffee,

photo.JPG

taken at The Whittington hospital where I went to have the stitches removed following my major knee surgery.

And today’s haiku:

Intensely creamy,

Probiotic or low cal.

Whatevs; it’s sour milk!

†This is possibly an example of the sort of thing Ludwig Wittgenstein‡ was referring to when he discussed the way in which we are bewitched by language –‘naturally good’ seems to convey all the promise of being beneficial to your health, the environment, perhaps even your soul, without actually meaning anything at all.

‡From what I have read about Wittgenstein I find it hard to picture him eating yoghurt, so maybe not this specific example.