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The Consumer Category

We bring you the chic and unique, the best and most bizarre shopping offers both online and offline. We offer you tips on where to buy, and some of the less mainstream and crazy, individual and offbeat items on the internet. Anything that can be bought and sold can be featured here. And we love showcasing the best and worst art and design.

Summer and indoors sunglasses to keep the sun and people at the right distance

Sunglasses should only be worn indoors by professional gamblers, prisoners, Jack Nicholson, Z-listers who wants to be noticed, hungover international cricketers and anyone who understands the risk of being mistaken for Bono. Sunglasses make elderly women look like assassins and elderly men look shifty, especially if they’re wearing a dog collar and / or talking to children. This is how you wear glasses and look the business. It’s about style and need in harmony. And if you want to look sharp and not pay over-the-odds for shades, you can do so at our pals Smart Buy Sunglasses. They offer free shipping and 100-day returns.

Posted: 11th, August 2020 | In: Online-PR, The Consumer | Comment


Madeleine McCann: Old news for sale and who Brueckner did not kill

Madeleine McCann: a look at repotting on the missing child. In the stead of any news on the hunt for the missing child, the Daily Express gawps at the parents. News is that Gerry McCann had an ‘image fixed indelibly’ in his memory from less than an hour before his daughter disappeared”. This was “revealed during a book written by the parents on the missing toddler”. First up, dear Daily Express: get a sub-editor. Yesterday’s garbled news form Reach plc titles (the Express, Star and Mirror) was riddled with typos and literals.

Maddie Mccann book

The scoop is that Kate McCann wrote something in her book, Madeleine: Our Daughter’s Disappearance and the Continuing Search for Her. That book was published in 2011. The Express has taken 9 years to tell its readers what was “revealed in it”.

Here’s the extract – “the heartbreaking account of Gerry’s final memory of seeing his daughter”:

“Madeleine was lying there on her left-hand side, her legs under the covers, in exactly the same position as we’d left her. For Gerry, this became one of those images I described earlier, pictures that fix themselves indelibly, almost photographically, in the memory. He paused for a couple of seconds to look at Madeleine and thought to himself, she’s so beautiful. After pulling the bedroom door to, restoring it to its original angle, he went to the bathroom before leaving the apartment.”

As the Express reads old books to ‘reveal’ nothing new, the Mirror looks at Christian Bruckner, the convicted German peadophile and rapist accused of kidnapping and murdering Madeleine McCann, a claim he denies. The headline is a sort of anti-news:

Madeleine McCann suspect Christian Brueckner ruled out of raping and murdering girl, 11

Any facts?

Claudia Ruf was kidnapped from Grevenbroich, Germany, in 1996, while walking her neighbour’s dog – before her partly burned body was found dumped around 40 miles away

So..?

A police spokesman told German newspaper Bild: “After comparing the information obtained, it can be said that Christian B was not in Grevenbroich at the time in the case of Claudia Ruf. In addition, a DNA comparison is said to have been negative.”

Are we now at the point where every unsolved case of child abduction and murder is to cross-checked with Christian Brueckner’s life? Good to look but why now – why not check him before? It all looks a b it ike PR, as if the police having pointe the finger at the revolting Brueckner are desperate to keep his name in the frame. This might be in hope that someone who knows something comes forward. But right now the is only circumstantial evidence linking Brueckner to the worlds most famous missing child. And in light of any evidence saying he committed a crime against her, we should presume he did not.

Posted: 5th, August 2020 | In: Books, Key Posts, Madeleine McCann, News, Tabloids | Comment


Gorgeous art prints by Walker Evans

The brilliant Flashbak art prints shop has a great collection of work by Walker Evans (November 3, 1903 – April 10, 1975). Evans was an American photographer and photojournalist best known for his work for the Farm Security Administration (FSA) documenting the effects of the Great Depression. Much of Evans’s work from the FSA period uses the large-format, 8×10-inch (200×250 mm) view camera. He said that his goal as a photographer was to make pictures that are “literate, authoritative, transcendent”.

Walker Evans set the tone for the American documentary movement of the 1930s and for street photographers of the 1940s and 50s.

See the great Flashbak art prints shop here.

Posted: 23rd, June 2020 | In: The Consumer | Comment


You Can Buy A Face Mask Featuring A Picture Of Your Own Face

face mask own face

You can wear face mask that looks like your face. San Francisco-based designer Danielle Baskin has adapted the N95 respiratory masks to feature your own face.

We’re a service that prints images onto protective face masks. Whether it’s a replication of your own face or your favorite meme, we care about the details. Our masks are sure to make people around you do double-takes and have a brighter day.

Spotter: Danielle Baskin@djbaskin

Posted: 18th, June 2020 | In: The Consumer | Comment


Fight Coronavirus with a DEVO Energy Dome PPE face guard

Devo Energy Dome PPE

DEVO are helping the world fight coronavirus with their personal protective face shield, modelled on their Energy Dome. You can buy one here.

Against all odds after unfortunate experiences with some bad actors & pandemic related delays, we are now able to offer cool DEVO stuff to any spud who might want it. In addition to the masks and classic T’s we have a spiffy, clear plastic, DEVO PPS Shield that is designed to attach easily to the DEVO Energy Dome to protect you from invisible microbes and unwanted bodily fluids. Stay safe in devolved style!

Devo energy dome coronavirus

Wear one and feel cosmic energy vibrate thought your body”

It was designed according to ancient ziggurat mound proportions used in votive worship. Like the mounds, it collects energy and recirculates it. In this case, the Dome collects the Orgone energy* that escapes from the crown of the human head and pushes it back into the Medulla Oblongata for increased mental energy.

Posted: 16th, May 2020 | In: Music, The Consumer | Comment


The 20 books people are most likely to lie about having read

Word on twitter is that these are the 20 books people are most likely to lie about having read.

The 20 books people are most likely to lie about having read

A friend once worked for a record industry bigwig who used to read the pass notes and then pretend he’d read the book. He did it in the hope it’d impress women. He was an utter bellend, of course. And it was enjoyable watching him founder when he met someone who’d actually read War And Peace.

Posted: 6th, May 2020 | In: Books, The Consumer | Comment


Boris Johnson’s daughter in Prada headband storm

Laura Johnson Boris

When they invented prime ministers, they also created Prime Ministers’ children. Unlike the SADDOS (sons and daughters of stars) who can mime, pose and pout in their instagram branded knickers as they work on their celebrity status, the politicians’ kids can either join the Party or find their own way. Carol Thatcher went into Golliwogs, for her brother Mark it was Africa, and Euan Blair went into the boozer and then vomited over Leicester Square. Lara Walker-Johnson went to Oxfordshire and bought a Prada headband. We know all about her purchase because Laura wrote about for Vogue magazine in a story entitled How Time-travelling To My Teen Wardrobe Helped Me Understand Who I Am Today. It’s the kind of vapid tosh made to reassure the unconvinced that minted toff Meghan Markle’s editing of the expensive magazine that advertises expensive things was not a seismic moment in race relations.

“I’m trying my best not to buy more clothes right now, uncertain about future financial prospects and conscious it isn’t the time to splurge,” says Lara in Oxfordshire. The posh always name the county they’re visiting not the village or town. A town has windows, public transport and numbered doors. A county has sprawling mansions, bridle paths and land. “But, I must confess, I did buy two headbands,” she adds, “one black and fluffy, from Shrimps, and one pink and from Prada – that I’ve been drooling over for months.”

The critics some fast. “Lara who, according to her website, is a fashion writer,” snipes one writer, adding: “I have no idea what her future financial prospects are, but her recent accessories acquisitions make me think that she’ll be okay.” The mind boggles to think what the backstory will do to the bands’ resale value. “In a moment when economic inequality, globally, and in the U.K., has never been more conspicuous – and when so many peoples’ lives are in her father’s hands – I might have kept this confession to myself.”

Two headbands in and Boris Johnson is King Herod.

In the Daily Mirror, Lara’s purchases are given no lesser importance: “Meanwhile, more than 100 NHS and care staff have died after testing positive for COVID-19 – as keyworkers beg the government for more vital PPE to protect themselves on the frontline.”

Meanwhile is the literary split screen. There’s Lara shopping online for fancy goods and a fashion philosophy while below her the huddled masses look up beseechingly and wonder if all this coverage of to-die-for Prada headbands means Lara will never need buy one again, and if they make face masks?

Posted: 29th, April 2020 | In: Celebrities, Fashion, News, Politicians, Tabloids | Comment


The contents of a UK Government coronavirus care package

The contents of a UK Government coronavirus care package

If they think you need it, the UK government send you a care package to keep you eating in the coronavirus crisis. The contents are:

1 loaf of white sliced bread

1 bag of apples

1 bag of small oranges

1 bag of potatoes

2 cartons of long life milk

1 roll of toilet tissue

2 tins of cooked peas

1 tin of hotdogs

3 tins of tomato soup

1 can of tuna

1 packet of porridge oats

1 tin of peaches

1 pouch of teabags

1 bag dried pasta

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

1 packet of digestive biscuits

2 tins of backed beans

1 pouch of dried coffee

2 jars of pasta sauce

1 vial of shampoo

1 bar of soap

Posted: 20th, April 2020 | In: News, The Consumer | Comment


The Government Coronavirus advice vs Cards Against Humanity

coronavirus

Lots of us got the Government’s letter telling us to stay indoors for at least 12 weeks and protect the NHS. Amy Allen had updated the missive with a a few rounds of Cards Against Humanity, “a party game for horrible people”. The game simple: “Each round, one player asks a question from a black card, and everyone else answers with their funniest white card.”

Cards Against Humanity coronavirus
Cards Against Humanity coronavirus
Cards Against Humanity coronavirus
Cards Against Humanity coronavirus

Spotter: Amy Allen

Posted: 12th, April 2020 | In: Key Posts, News, The Consumer | Comment


RIP the great American artist Mort Drucker

Mort Drucker

Like many of you, I grew up reading MAD magazine and enjoying the famed getting lampooned. Mort Drucker drew much of the magazine’s best artwork. He died this week aged 91. Why did he draw? Because he had to. As he put it: “My mother told me that when the doctor was delivering me I did a caricature of him on my way out.”

Posted: 10th, April 2020 | In: News, The Consumer | Comment


It’s a Squirrel Picnic Table and Bench

Squirrel Picnic Table and Bench

Why not use your free time to paint a picture, write the great American tweet or build a Squirrel Picnic Table and Bench?

Squirrel Picnic Table and Bench
Squirrel Picnic Table and Bench

Spotter: Etsy

Posted: 7th, April 2020 | In: The Consumer | Comment


Make Your Own Vinyl Records with an Easy Record Maker

Make Your Own Vinyl Records with an Easy Record Maker

You don’t need a factory to make vinyl records. Japanese artist Yuri Suzuki has crested the Easy Record Maker:

To cut a record, you simply play audio through an aux cable and lift the cutting arm onto a blank disc. Once the record is cut, you can instantly play back your recording through the tone arm and the in built speaker!

More like cute your own records — look at how wee this thing is:

Spotter: Kottke, Design Week

Posted: 6th, April 2020 | In: Music, Technology, The Consumer | Comment


The 3D Virtual Tour Through The Ancient Giza Necropolis

Harvard Egyptologist Peter Der Manuelian takes us to ancient Giza and round the Sphinx and Pyramids in this video. “You’ll see we’ve had to remove modern structures and excavators, debris dumps,” says Peter Der Manuelian. “We studied the Nile, and we had to move it much closer to the Giza pyramids, because in antiquity, the Nile did flow closer. And we’ve tried to rebuild each and every structure.”

Spotter: The Kid Should See This

Posted: 2nd, April 2020 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment


Amazon sells dog training book with forward from Nazi Hermann Göring

Barking mad

Hermann Göring wrote the forward to a puppy training manual you can buy on Amazon. Sections are not dedicated to knowing Jews by their scent, teaching your dog to raise a front right leg and going vegetarian. There is, however, lots about obeying orders. The JC reports that shopper Lorraine Phipps bought the Puppy Training manual from Amazon unaware that it contains a eulogy on Adolf Hitler printed inside, namely Adolf Hitler, 1931-1935: Pictures from the Life of the Führer with a forward by Hermann Göring.

“I bought a purported puppy training book from Amazon on March 2,” says Lorraine. “When my husband and I went to read it, despite the cover being as expected, it was actually a reprinting of a 1936 pro-Nazi propaganda book.” She wants Amazon to remove the “awful and misleading item from their listings”. Amazon says they are “investigating”.

Elsewhere you can buy Pictures from the Life of the Führer – without the Puppy Training cover. It is “one of the crowning popular propaganda achievements which helped consolidate Hitler’s hold on power, this book had sold millions of copies by 1940 and was one of those specifically ordered destroyed by the Allied occupation forces after 1945”.

Meanwhile… Somewhere in a German bunker a Nazi is teaching other recreational Herrenvolk to ‘Stay’, ‘Beg’ and ‘Play Dead’.


Posted: 1st, April 2020 | In: Books, News | Comment


The Coronavirus reading list by Ernest Hemingway: 14 books and two shot stories

Ernest Hemingway reading list

Stuck for a good book to read as the coronavirus spread makes staying in doors obligatory? Don’t be. This is a great reading list compiled by Ernest Hemingway. As Paul Gallagher writes at Flashbak:

In 1934, Arnold Samuelson read Ernest Hemingway’s short story One Trip Across. It inspired the 22-year-old student to travel across America and seek out the author. He wanted to ask Hemingway for his advice on how best to write.

Samuelson had just finished a course in journalism at the University of Minnesota. He harboured ambitions to be a writer. Packing a bag, he hitch-hiked his way down to Hemingway’s home in Key West. When he arrived, he found the place, like the rest of America, in the grip of the Great Depression. He spent his first night sleeping rough on a dock. During the night, he was woken by a cop who invited Samuelson to sleep in the local jail. He accepted the offer. The next day, feeling refreshed, Samuelson ventured out in the sun to search for his hero’s home.

When I knocked on the front door of Ernest Hemingway’s house in Key West, he came out and stood squarely in front of me, squinty with annoyance, waiting for me to speak. I had nothing to say. I couldn’t recall a word of my prepared speech. He was a big man, tall, narrow-hipped, wide-shouldered, and he stood with his feet spread apart, his arms hanging at his sides. He was crouched forward slightly with his weight on his toes, in the instinctive poise of a fighter ready to hit.

The full list is at Flashbak. But my pick would be… Well, I don’t know. I need to read them all. It’s a cracking list.

Posted: 30th, March 2020 | In: Books, Key Posts | Comment


Art and design re-imagined for the isolation era

As Coronavirus turns us into hermits, we look at art re-imagined by José Manuel Ballester’s Concealed Spaces reimagines iconic works of art with the people gone:

Coronavirus art
Coronavirus art


Posted: 26th, March 2020 | In: The Consumer | Comment


Internet Archive creates National Emergency Library for instant access to its 1.4million books

Shut indoors you can read and read thanks to the Internet Archive which has suspended waiting lists for the 1.4 million book on it shelves by creating a National Emergency Library.

During the waitlist suspension, users will be able to borrow books from the National Emergency Library without joining a waitlist, ensuring that students will have access to assigned readings and library materials that the Internet Archive has digitized for the remainder of the US academic calendar, and that people who cannot physically access their local libraries because of closure or self-quarantine can continue to read and thrive during this time of crisis, keeping themselves and others safe.  

This library brings together all the books from Phillips Academy Andover and Marygrove College, and much of Trent University’s collections, along with over a million other books donated from other libraries to readers worldwide that are locked out of their libraries.

And you can help:

  1. Read books, recommend books, and teach using books from the National Emergency Library
  2. Sponsor a book to be digitized and preserved
  3. Endorse this effort institutionally or individually
  4. Share news about the National Emergency Library with your social media followers using #NationalEmergencyLibrary
  5. Donate to the Internet Archive

Fantastic.

Posted: 26th, March 2020 | In: Books, Key Posts, News | Comment


Child breaks down as McDonalds, Pizza Hut and the Chinese restaurant close forcing her to eat mum’s cooking (video)

Fast food child

Jo Charlton post the following video of her daughter having a meltdown over the closure of fast food eateries. “Just like to add… we didn’t live off of takeaways!!! The world has ended for layla today x,” says Jo.

Just like to add… we didnt live off of takeaways!!! The world has ended for layla today x

Posted by Jo Charlton on Monday, 23 March 2020

Posted: 24th, March 2020 | In: Key Posts, News, The Consumer | Comment


Coylumbridge Hotel in Aviemore make staff homeless – blame it on admin error

The Colyumbridge Hotel new Aviemore, Scotland, has been making news. The “perfect escape for an unforgettable family vacation” has sent out a letter telling employees to get thee hence. Coronavirus is apparently behind the mass sacking in which some staff were told to leave the hotel accommodation immediately.

The hotel’s owners, Brittania Hotels, says it was all a misunderstanding. The company tell the Liverpool Echo: “With regards to the current situation regarding staff at our Coylumbridge Hotel and being asked to vacate their staff accommodation. Unfortunately, the communication sent to these employees was an administrative error. All affected employees are being immediately contacted. We apologise for any upset caused.”

You know how these errors go: a virus infects your world, types a letter and tells everyone to get out or else. Other companies should take note of this and increase their virus protection.

Posted: 21st, March 2020 | In: Money, News, The Consumer | Comment


Anti-Coronavirus hand gels from Bulgarian vodka and Bristol gin

hand sanitzer alcohol

‘Hand gets?,” asked my Bulgarian friend Vanya. “Nah. Use vodka and tissues.” What;’ good in London is better in Bristol, where Bristol gin distillery Psychopomp is using some of its alcohol as hand sanitizer and giving it to locals in exchange for a donation to charity.

Posted: 19th, March 2020 | In: Key Posts, News, The Consumer | Comment


Nighthawks by Edward Hopper – the Coronavirus Years

Nighthawks by Edward Hopper - the Coronavirus years

Nighthawks by Edward Hopper – the Coronavirus years.

Spotter: https://www.facebook.com/anticajaepetrella

Posted: 13th, March 2020 | In: Strange But True, The Consumer | Comment


Coronavirus: Wash your hand with soap and water – gels, wipes and sanitisers are over-rated

Did you wash your hands with soap and water or did you buy some mix of chemicals and smear it all over them, a gel, a wipe or a hand sanitiser, perhaps? These products are ok if you can’t reach soap and water. But if you can, use them. Here chemistry professor Palli Thordarson explains why washing with soap is best at killing the virus:

The soap takes care of the virus much like it takes care of the oil in the water. “It’s almost like a crowbar; it starts to pull all the things apart,” Thordarson says.

One side of the soap molecule (the one that’s attracted to fat and repelled by water) buries its way into the virus’s fat and protein shell. Fortunately, the chemical bonds holding the virus together aren’t very strong, so this intrusion is enough to break the virus’s coat. “You pull the virus apart, you make it soluble in water, and it disintegrates,” he says.

Then the harmless shards of virus get flushed down the drain. (And even if it the soap doesn’t destroy every virus, you’ll still rid them from your hands with soap and water, as well as any grease they may be clinging to.)

Posted: 13th, March 2020 | In: The Consumer | Comment