This is where I blog

A somewhat random collection of things that have popped into my head. Take nothing too seriously, and nothing too flippantly - like life really. My shorter ramblings are on Twitter at @oxguin.

I've noticed lots of people do food & drink reviews on their blogs. So I thought I'd get in on the act.

I have a friend who regularly reviews cider, and another who has a thing for vegan chocolate. I've also noticed, in these days of gastro-pubs and seemingly endless cookery programmes on telly, it's increasingly hard to buy normal food. Now, instead of going to the pub and getting a bag of salt and vinegar crisps, it's all Anglesey salt and balsamic vinegar.

I've been on this Twitter thing for a time now. But only really active over the last year or so. My biggest problem with Twitter is that it doesn't come with a manual. So I've had to watch and learn what the rules are. Here's what I've learnt - my Twitter manual if you like ...

Spelling & grammar

Do make sure to point out any errors in in people's Tweets. Everybody should be as perfect as you, and make sure that every Tweet is proof red. Other Tweeters will certainly thank you for pointing out there short-comings.

Manual RT & MT

When you particularly like a Tweet, make sure to copy it and send it out as your own. The person that wrote the original Tweet will undoubtedly be delighted to be mentioned in one of your Tweets.

I've recently been sorting out some of the sites and pages I've made over the years. Some of them are not too embarrising, so I thought I'd share.

The first site I ever made was Where's Meredy's Mug. Which, as you might imagine, has a bit of a story to it. In 2006 I was working at People & Planet - a rather excellent student campaigning organisation.

My last post, a work related rant, was so cathartic that I thought I'd give another one a go. This time on that beloved invention - email.

Now please don't get me wrong. Used in the correct way, email is an incredibly effective and efficient tool. I have little patience for those people that say "I worked at home yesterday - it was great. I couldn't access my email so I got loads of work done!" To these people, I normally point out that replying to questions and responding to requests is actually a substantial part of their job.

'Harness your inner negativity' was the title of a book my former housemate wanted to write as an antidote to all of those self help books that think any problem can be overcome with a positive mental attitude to the point that emotions such as grief, anger and frustration are see as inherently bad rather than natural and healthy responses to a bad situation.

I've had several good experiences today but, in the spirit of harnessing my inner negativity, I'm going to share some of today's frustrations because they're just as valid.

You should use the shortener - it has a kittens feature!

My collaborator, Charlie, wrote a link shortener at

It has many cool features, not least:

I recently recieved an email asking me to review a toaster.

The email wasn't as random as all that seeing as I had just bought a toaster. I would normally ignore such an email, but apparently I would also be entered into a prize draw to win £500 for my review. And I am a sucker for free prize draws. So I thought I's write a review.

This isn't in as much bad taste as it may sound at first.

Kittens (like cats, to which they are closely related) can fall from great heights and safely land on their feet (due to their tails and the laws of conservation of angular momentum) and terminal velocity (their weight and the forces of gravity versus air resistance). Perhaps like you, I also doubted the science. But, as my recent trip to the Empire State Building proved, it actually works.


firefox eye
You know that thing where you start typing an address into your browser's address field? You know, the thing where it auto completes and tries to guess the page you're going to visit. I use it a lot. For example, if I want to look at the Guardian I know that all I have to do is type g into the address bar and will be the first option - so if I want to go to the Guardian I just type g, press the down arrow, and hit enter. Well, for some reason, I thought it would be interesting to go through an A-Z of what my browser (Firefox) suggests for each letter of the alphabet. And, for some even less explicable reason, I thought I'd tell you what I found.
A is for Aktivix - they do email and email list hosting. Surprised at this one since I like them, but don't use them a lot.

B is for Be the Media - an offshoot of Indymedia, a site that aggregates lots of radical news sources. One of my fav sites.


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