July 29, 2011

America I Love You

OK, I have been accused of USA bashing on this blog. And it’s true, sometimes I have done.

No country is without its problems and issues. I’m from the England, and whilst it may have a reputation for rolling green hillsides and country gentlemen, in the main that’s not England at all. Our inner cities are as bad as anywhere else; gun and knife crime is rising, our teenagers are little shits that only a right good hiding would remedy, drug crimes are a problem, and we have some of the worst rates for violence in Europe, if not the worst. (Can’t be bothered to look it up, you have Google, you go do it).

But I love the UK. I’m proud to be British.

There are many things I like that are American, so it’s time to balance the scales a little.

Firstly, I’ve been, retrospectively, a ‘60s and ‘ 70s Soul fan for a long time! And whilst (it’s fair to say) that that type of Soul is more popular in the UK than it the USA, the music itself 99.99% American. Pretty much all the music I listen to is American. So there’s one thing.

If you ask anyone their all-time top 10 movies, how many people would not have at least one American movie in there? I certainly would. Several in fact.

My favourite TV show has to be The Simpsons. Classic satire that still makes me laugh. And American. Curb Your Enthusiam? Brilliant. Family Guy? Awesome. South Park? Love it. The recent Breaking Bad? Fantastic. I love UK TV too, and our comedy has to be up there with best around, but the USA can certainly churn out some masterpieces too.

I have many American friends over here in Korea. They are nice people. They use some strange phrases! But they are nice people. They are friendly. Really. They are. Are they ‘dumb’ (stupid) as per the American stereotype? Nope. Really, they aren’t. And we have more than our fair share of low IQ in the UK.

Um, what else? I suppose that will do for now. If you look through my blog most anti-American things I’ve said are spelling/grammar/pronunciation related – and as a British English teacher teaching American English to foreigners I have a right, I think, to be bothered by this. It doesn’t mean I hate Americana, I certainly don’t.

Might even visit the place one day. I just hope the notoriously strict American airport security people haven’t read my previous blog entries.

July 20, 2011


You might not know the word captcha, but if you're a regular internet user, you'll know what they are. They are those little pictures of text that you have to type in to prove you are human.

Their scientific name is 'reverse Turing test' - i.e. a computer asks a question to prove that that answerer is not a robot. Simple right? Makes sense? It stops computer hackers setting up auto-bots and sweeping the internet and downloading everything in sight.

Recently, I've noticed that some of these captchas are getting a little obscure. These below are real captchas that I've seen and saved. They are frankly ridiculous:

Come on! How am I supposed to enter this?

Japanese? Chinese? All the keyboards in the world have a Roman alphabet on them as well as the native language. So why have captchas in Japanese?

Just simply illegible.


Anyone who can type in that first symbol wins a cyber-coconut. What is it? A steering wheel?

tuTues esse.......................................eh?


So I need a Russian and a Japanese keyboard?

Looks like someone squashed a bug.

Sorry, Russian, Japanese and Greek?

Apparently I need to type with a scientific calculator.

Just fack off.


"Honey, will you get my upside-down keyboard please?"

All of the above are real captchas I downloaded in half an hour. Incidentally, most captchas have a small 'reload' button next to them, so can can scroll through and see for yourself.

July 06, 2011


I’m an occasional smoker, and am getting ready to quit again. The best ways to stop smoking are the tried and tested ones – pure undiluted will power, joining an NHS (Local Medical Centre) Anti-Smoking Programme, reading Allen Carr’s book, getting some patches or gum, or having the doctor tell you you’re gonna drop dead in six weeks if you don’t quit. All of these methods have a proven track-record.

But what if you wanna stop, right, but…..you know. What if you’re a rebel? What if you’re a bit ‘funky’?

Alternative Methods Of Beating Nicotine Addiction.

Let’s not beat about the tobacco bush here – smoking is nicotine addiction. You DO NOT do it because it tastes nice, because you find it relieves stress or for any other reason. You do it because you are addicted. To nicotine. The only stress you are relieving is the stress of your inner self saying ‘where’s my nicotine hit you bastard? I will cwy and cwy and cwy unless you feed me now.’

Beating it is a bitch. I’ve smoked on and off for years (more off), and have had several successful stops. When I say successful, I mean I lasted at least a year, not just a couple of weeks etc. You may be wondering at this point why I haven’t stayed permanently stopped? Well, being around other smokers and so on….just the usual stuff. But I’ve used many methods of stopping, some recommended, and some not. Here’s three I’ve tried, which really work.


This is a method I’ve employed to varying degrees. In essence, what this means is that when stopping, and especially during those crucial first few days, deny yourself NOTHING except nicotine. Wanna cake? Have one. Want two cakes? Have three. Want cake, orgasm and whisky simultaneously? Off you go, so to speak. In short, deny yourself nothing pleasurable whatsoever, until the nicotine pangs go away. Three Cadbury’s Flakes and a milkshake might not replace the urges for a ciggie, but they won’t half cheer you up while you’re waiting.

Obviously this has after effects, and shouldn’t be done for longer than a week or two, especially if you put on weight easily, but worth it if you beat smoking.


This is simply a reversal of Method 1. STOP EVERYTHING. Sex/masturbation. Chocolate. Desserts. Caffeine. Alcohol. Everything bad. FOR ONE WEEK. Then, give yourself one thing back per day in the second week, or whatever you feel like.

What works here is that your mind is taken off smoking during that first week because you haven’t had your caffeine/booze/orgasm that your body/mind likes. You are distracting your nicotine cravings with more subtle cravings for other things. This helps to put smoking in perspective with your other (real) desires, and also, actually, stops some situations where you are likely to want to smoke – eg, with booze, after tea and coffee or after sex. Genius. Live like a monk for a week. Worth doing in itself. This works. I’ve tried it.

It’s a great exercise in self-control – and you’ll be proud of yourself for achieving it.

It’s also a lot cheaper than method one, unless you own a corner shop.


You don’t hear about this one from the NHS, for obvious reasons. But it works. Also please note, that this is only achievable in countries where certain things are either legal, or is highly available and not-that-illegal. If you live in Korea, only some of this below is relevant. Read on…

If, like many, you have partaken in the occasional ‘illegal’ cigarette – you know, a spliff, well, it’s possible to make joints without tobacco – or even better, make a bong, or buy a small pipe, available cheaply from most good head shops, and just smoke the weed, sans-tobacco. This really helps and works if you are a pot smoker wanting to give up tobacco. You might find yourself stoned a lot during those first few days though, as the points in the day where you might have just had a ciggie, e.g. first thing in the morning, you find yourself getting the bong out. Make no mistake, nicotine cravings are a bitch to handle.

Also, you can try herbal cigarettes if marijuana is not your thing. Again, especially for those first crucial three or four days, having something to smoke that contains no nicotine can be extremely helpful in relieving those nicotine cravings.

You can also make joints with these in place of tobacco if needs be.

Both marijuana and herbal cigarettes are non-addictive, although if you’ve never smoked pot, I wouldn’t recommend that to start with. Get some herbal fags.

The point here is that smoking SOMETHING ELSE, something non-addictive, during that first week, can really help you. I’ve tried this (though I’m not saying whether I tried herbal ciggies or pot!) and it really works, by helping you when you really REALLY wanna smoke….something.

The three methods above all work, as do the traditional ones mentioned at the top of the article.

I’m about to stop again. I’m not sure which method I’ll pick. I’ll write about it afterwards.

Smoking is evil. It’s an addiction. Almost everyone I know who smokes wants to stop. Why don’t they? Coz it’s fucking hard that’s why, so give them a break and show them this article, and if you’re his/her lover, you better hope he doesn’t pick method one.

July 04, 2011

If You Enjoy These Songs, There Is No Hope For You

Every mother-funking time I go into a so-called dance club, or a bar that’s playing dance music I hear these three shit fucking songs over and over and fucking over. And to be fair to Korea, none of them are Korean.

Before going further, I am aware that posting them on here gives them yet more undeserved air time due to my millions (dozens, if that) readers.

However, I must say, if you have debased yourself by enjoying any of these songs in a club or bar, or you don’t hate them with a passion, well, simply, eat my turds. These three songs are the worst, shittiest, lowest-common-denominator stupid-assed bullshit retard songs I’ve ever heard passed off as ‘credible’ dance music in my entire life. And if that wasn’t bad enough, they are lapped up by us westerners in bars over and over and goddam fucking over again.

It’s not like there aren’t thousands of classics in the dance music genre to choose from. There are! Just take techno and house for example – anyone with a smattering of knowledge could name dozens of credible, acceptable, beautiful dance tracks. Also, every week hundreds of no-doubt-superior cheezy dance tracks are released. Why do we have to listen to the same shitty three? And like I said, if the songs weren’t bad enough, hearing the fuckers over and over again everywhere, for months on end, is a fucking insult to all but the entirely uncultured.

I know Korea has good clubs and bars – it does – I love it here, but I swear, any bar that thinks these three tracks are good, seemingly most of the ones I end up in or walk by, needs to take a time-out and check out some proper dance music. There is much, much better stuff out there, stuff that’s not embarrassing. Find it.

Lastly, if you’re a DJ playing any of these tracks. Just shoot yourself.