April 2007 Archives - wibbler.com

The Invisible Grip

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I’ve always been interested in body language. It’s seems to be a tool that everyone can master, and can help in so many subtle ways. I’ve got a couple of books – The Definitive Guide to Body Language being the best – on it that I’ve never got round to fully reading (much like the “Time Management” book that I’ve never had time to read…). So, here’s a first step for you readers on a Sunday evening – The Invisible Grip, which marvels at the power of the stare. Don’t go getting all freaky-looking, though.

It’s a Wii-velation.

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To beef up the recent apologetically-late housewarming, Nintendo Wii
I bought a Nintendo Wii (get them here), which for the uninitiated is a games console where you actually move around to play (ably demonstrated by this rather racy video). Good party fun, I thought. And so it proved all night, with Shunta getting so into it he managed to break a ceiling light. But there are so many other benefits of getting one. It’s games are more fun than difficult, meaning you can pick them up straight away. You can browse the internet wirelessly (for this you’ll need a good router, I got mine from http://factschronicle.com/), read the news, buy things like these top games for Xbox, chat to people, all sorts of stuff. And now, having become addicted to the WiiSports game (boxing, bowling, golf, baseball and tennis all in one fantabulous game), a hidden benefit is coming to light – I’m burning a whole load of calories while having fun (and it appears I’m not the only one…)! It’s a win-win revelation, I tell ya…
Update: I’ve had a load of questions asking how I managed to get the console within a week of ordering, when everywhere appears to be sold out. I heartily recommend signing up at Wii-Consoles.co.uk for instant updates on stock.

Shunta on the beat

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Hearty congratulations to Simon Hunter, who after a good long effort has managed to become a street-pounding policeman! This, of course, completes the total change from a drunken, funny loon to a married Mondeo-driving policeman and father-of-one. Utterly astounding, but very well done old chum…

Suits and Housewarmings

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Saturday was a busy day which rolled into a drunken night. My best man duties entailed me driving to Epsom with Nick, his brother and dad for suit fittings. Handily, it proved a good opportunity to test out the Lexus. We discovered that rear leg room was an issue (“I can’t feel my legs anymore”, Nick’s dad exclaimed halfway through the journey) and that most of the controls were unnecessarily complicated. And I can certainly vouch for the build quality of the rear bumper, which was tested to destruction by a Ford Fiesta that missed my plethora of brakelights and plowed into the back of me. Epsom is not a place I’d recommend driving round on a Saturday afternoon…
Nick had a set idea of the kind of get-up he’d be wearing at his wedding. A red waistcoat, apparently, was a must – and there was a red and gold theme that had to considered. I never knew weddings were so complicated. After a good hour and a half choosing the waistcoats (eventually settling on one that has to be ordered in, bless him) and half an hour verifying the choices with the wife-to-be, we burst out into the dazzling sunlight of the unseasonally warm weather.
Sadly, I was expecting to be back about an hour earlier to plan for the first party in our new house – it was more of an apology party for not organising a housewarming sooner. Michelle and I had prepared the legendary party bags earlier in the week, and she and Sarah had gone shopping in the early afternoon for food-based essentials. Jac and Shaun had turned up early to watch the Grand National. Jac had managed to win money for the last four years, and he wasn’t going to miss this one. News filtered through while we were suit fitting that his horse had fallen, much to the secret joy of everyone around. When I arrived back at the house the food had been lovingly prepared and they were all playing cricket in the garden. The garden, however, isn’t quite as big as a cricket pitch. Jac and Shaun’s competitive edge saw the softball regularly ending up in both neighbours’ gardens, with one of them eventually offering to leave their garden gate open so we could pop over whenever the ball strayed. “Can we put a fielder in there too?” Nick enquired, pushing the boundaries of neighbourly conduct.
As the sun set, 20 people came through the front door and joined in the revelry. We’d decided on a barbeque, but forgot that fact that I’m useless at them. Nick and Sarah eventually had to take over as the arrival of guests and drinking eventually took its toll on my concentration. Shaun and Michelle found some strings for my guitar and managed to plug away at it through the drunken haze for a good hour or so. The newly-installed Nintendo Wii and Xbox360 were put to full use (an enthusiastic punch from Shunta on Wii Boxing managed to break a ceiling light) and a lot of us managed to stay up until the early hours drinking, laughing and strumming.
The next morning, however, was not so enjoyable…

Trading In

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The time has come for a new company car. My three-year stint with the Peugeot 407 comes to an end in August, and as it takes an unfathomably lengthy time to order a car, I have to settle on one about now. The Peugeot 407, I have to say, was a revelation. Okay, so it’s not the coolest car in existence, but my requirements were a bit different three years ago. My job dictated that I needed a car for sitting in endless traffic jams with, and one that had a load of buttons and gadgets. It’s been reliable, it’s big enough to support my ample frame, and unlike the Audis and BMWs it manages to cram a whole lot of extras in for a reasonable cost. The built-in satellite navigation has been a revelation – at least until recently, when the lack of updates and a scratched CD has caused minor frustration.
So, what next? After the “family car”, I’m looking for a more sporty number. There are two rules to my company car choice – it must be a diesel (thanks to company car tax) and it must have a decent-sized boot. These two rules, cunningly, rule out most of the funky cars. Top of my list, I think, is the Lexus IS200. For some reason, I’ve always wanted a Lexus – again, I think it’s to do with all the gadgets. I managed to wangle one to test over the weekend, and it’s frankly looking awesome. It’s small enough for Michelle to drive back home when I get too drunk at the pub, and has enough buttons to kill a few hours in traffic jams. Second and third place go to the Audi A4 and VW Golf. Anyone have any other recommendations?

Cadbury’s Creme Eggs – are they smaller?

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Happy Easter everyone! For me, every year the the time-old debate comes round: have Cadbury’s Creme Eggs got smaller, or have I got bigger? Thankfully, the answer is in the below clip, thanks to the intrepid investigative techniques of Conan O’Brien’s assistant…

Pinocchio Jac

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jacnose-sm.jpgJac had another birthday the other week, and his colleagues helpfully made him a Happy Birthday self-portrait. And there it is, to the right. If you click on it, you can see the full horror – as he said, “Look at the size of that nose! I was drunk.” As if, ladies and gentlemen, being drunk increases nose size…

All hooked up, nowhere to go…

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So, the aftermath of The Engagement announcement was enjoyable! Most people said it was about time, others were amazed that I’d started settling down, and Jac tried to guess the event from my mysterious non-committal “I have news” email to him. “Before looking at the answer,” he wittered on, “let’s take the following facts into mind: Valentine’s Day has just passed, you spent the weekend in Bath, you have bought a house together, you’ve been with Michelle for longer than I have been with all my girlfriends put together. You must be engaged. SPLENDID. Now, let’s just check…”
And the rest of the people? Well, amusingly some seemed to be using my commitment-phobia as justification that they shouldn’t settle down themselves. That’s pulled the rug, hasn’t it.. 😉
Still, what I didn’t realise is that as soon as an engagement is announced, everyone asks, “Do you have a date for the wedding?”. God knows I’m not the best planner in the world, and of course the answer is “no”. However, to get a date, you need to know a venue, and to get a venue you need to know what kind of wedding you want. I may well be using my friend and Event Manager Extraordinaire Paul D regularly, and my Best Man status at Nick’s wedding in October will be a useful learning ground. Where on earth do you start, though? Confetti.co.uk seems as good a place as any. And, as many will know, my decision-making is legendarily lengthy – so any advice from you guys would be great…