Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

My Facebook feed is now a lot more boring

Friday, August 17th, 2018 | Life

On 1 August, Facebook took away everyone’s permissions to post to people’s timelines. Before this, you could authorise an app to be able to automatically post to your timeline at a scheduled point. This is how my blog posts appear here. But, thanks to Cambridge Analytica screwing everything up, they’ve now blanket banned it.

This means that I can no longer syndicate my personal blog to Facebook. Sad face :(.

I can still manually share them from time to time. But as I write my blog posts in advance, I’m not usually around when they go live. And it’s not something I want to do because I already spend too much time on Facebook. So, most of them will not make it.

As a result, I’ve also decided to remove the Facebook Comments feature from my blog because there will be much less of a connection with Facebook.

What to do if you want to keep reading

You can always visit my blog, of course. But I can’t imagine that reading my adventures is that important to you that you will want to mark it in your calendar.

My posts are still syndicated to Twitter, so you can follow me @chrisworfolk.

I also send out a weekly newsletter via MailChimp with any posts I have published that week. You can find the sign-up for that at the bottom of the page. If you’re reading this on the homepage, you will need to click on the post title to get to the page with the form on.

I was getting ripped off for electricity, and maybe you are too

Sunday, August 5th, 2018 | Life

Last month, Ofgem decided that EDF Energy were ripping me off so much that they forced EDF Energy to send me a letter telling me how much they were ripping me off and that I should switch to a new provider immediately.

When I first got the letter, I was annoyed.

First, this was now something I had to deal with it. Until now, I had been telling myself that when I moved in, I did an energy price comparison and found that EDF was the cheapest supplier. And they had been at every other property I had ever sorted electricity out for, too. So, it seemed logical they would still be the cheapest.

Second, I then felt like an idiot for not doing anything about it for so long. Especially given it literally took me less than five minutes to switch providers, from first putting in my details to getting to the “congratulations” screen.

So, the whole business has made me feel crap.

But, on the plus side, we’re not switching to Bulb Energy, which is going to save us several hundred pounds per year. And they use 100% renewable energy, which means I can feel morally superior, too.

The moral of the story is that even if your provider has been the cheapest in the past, it might not be now. No doubt it is engineered to be this way. According to Which, smaller providers typically have higher levels of customer satisfaction, too, so it’s worth putting your details into a price comparison site once a year. Or now. Now is a great time.

Snapped sunglasses

Saturday, August 4th, 2018 | Life

Last month, in an effort not to have to spend hundreds of pounds on some cycling sunglasses, I ordered a £10 Bolle-style pair from Ali Express. They looked awesome.

Then, when I told my friends, one of them pointed me to this story on Cycling Weekly about someone who was almost blinded by a pair of knock-off Oakley’s that snapped during a crash.

Heartbroken, I went back to my Aldi special buy sunglasses. They were told in the UK and would, therefore, be subject to EU legislation, so no problems there I thought. Literally, the week after, this happened:

It didn’t happen in a crash, thankfully, it happened while I was putting something into my bag. However, I was still rather surprised about how little force was required to snap them in two, as I wasn’t jamming anything in hard.

So, the search continues. Hopefully, Roka will expand into the UK, and offer everyone a 90% discount to celebrate, sometime before September.

Finland swimming

Wednesday, August 1st, 2018 | Life

During our recent trip to Finland, we spent some time at the lake and in the sea.

When I first went swimming at the Blue Lagoon, they asked me if I had done open water swimming before. Because I said yes, they assumed I knew all about wetsuits, acclimatisation and how to get rescued. I had to explain to them that in Finland, we just jump in the lake and swim. Some drown, but that must be what god intended.

We went to the same lake we’ve visited during previous trips, which makes sense because it has a nice beach, changing facilities and toilets (both just huts) and a pier to jump off if you so wish.

We also tried to find a nice beach around Uusikaupunki so we could swim in the sea. The beautiful beaches of Pori they were not.

The first one had so much plant life that whenever you swam, you ended up getting caught up in it.

Meanwhile, the second one stubbornly refused to get deep no matter how far I waded out. Venla had a good splash in that one, though.

Next time, I think it is worth the drive up to Pori. Or just swim in the lakes, which is always a pleasant experience.

Tour de France 2018

Tuesday, July 31st, 2018 | Life, Sport

It’s not been a strong start to the season for me. Sure, I knocked out my first metric tonne at the Flat n Fast 100, but at grand tour level, my performance has been lacking. My fantasy Giro team put up a mere 3,878 points compared to John’s 6,091. Despite me picking Froome and him taking Dumoulin.

Luckily, Le Tour has gone much better for me. I thought about taking Froome, but he consumed a huge amount of points. G, on the other hand, seemed rather undervalued given how good he is. Turns out that that was a good decision.

Armed with G and Dan Martin on GC, Kittel and Sagan in the sprints, and Gilbert, De Gendt and Barguil in the mountain break-aways, I set forth. Chad Haga and Wout Poels rounded off the team. In the end, it clocked in at 6,899 points, most of which coming from Thomas and Sagan.

And the racing was pretty good, too. Great to see a Welshman on the top step!

Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

Flossing

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2018 | Life

I’m trying to improve my flossing technique. The dental hygiene kind. Apparently, it is a dance, too, which makes it more difficult to find the content I want. I had a similar problem when searching for “oral”.

My first stop was YouTube. Here is a helpful video on what to do.

The problem? My teeth are in my mouth. That spot where her hand is: that’s where my head is in real life.

Here is another video demonstrating the technique.

Look how far that fake mouth is open. No wonder dentists are constantly telling us to open our mouths wider if they think that people could open it to 90 degrees like a cartoon character.

Is this what mansplaining feels like?

Sunday, May 27th, 2018 | Life

We’re runners. Talking about running. Tracey is explaining to me about “Parkrun” (of which I have completed 156 and am in the same running club as the guy who runs the entire thing) which is “lots of people running together”.

Apparently, I can use something called “Google” to find out more.

For background context: Adidas is holding some free running events, but they all take place in London, despite their ads targetting what seems to be everyone in the UK. They’re promoting it through an advertorial in Time Out London.

AA travel essentials first aid kit

Friday, May 25th, 2018 | Life

I’m not sure how many people actually carry a first aid kit around in their car. But, being tediously well-prepared for most things, I do. It’s not something you really test, you just buy one, put it in the car and assume that when it comes to it, it will do its job.

In the case the AA kit I ordered from Amazon, this turned out to be a less than stellar performance. The first time I tried to use the scissors, they snapped.

I tried to duct tape them back together to get a bit of leverage but it was no use. First time I have ever needed the kit and it failed me. It’s a good job it wasn’t an emergency of things could have gone south quickly.

More misleading Coke bottles

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018 | Life

Earlier this month I wrote about how Tesco had begun selling bottles of Coca-Cola that were smaller than usual without making this clear. I went back the next week, and things got worse.

This time, I bought what I thought was a bottle of Coca-Cola peach. I grabbed it because I couldn’t see any 500ml bottles of regular coke, and so I decided this was the next best option.

Only after I had left the shop, I noticed that it was, in fact, a sugar-free version. It does say that on the bottle. But it’s in pretty small letters. And, more importantly, it’s on a red label. Traditionally, all sugar versions have been in red and sugar-free versions have been black. You can see a coke zero sugar bottle in the background on a black label.

Luckily I noticed before I had opened it and returned it for a refund. But I don’t understand Coca-Cola and Tesco are using all of these misleading tactics.

Royal wedding

Sunday, May 20th, 2018 | Life

“So, Venla, now that all of the homeless people have been cleansed from the royal borough, our unelected leader can marry someone the rest of us would not be allowed to bring into the country. Can you give us a facial expression that sums up how many fucks you give about the royal wedding?”

Venla: “Yes. Yes I can.”