The Consumer | Anorak - Part 50

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.

The TV adverts schoolchildren loved to quote

THE Associated Press journeys to Vernon Center Middle School Connecticut middle school. Students are screaming “HUMP DAY”. It’s distracting the teachers.

The news report is here:

It’s all a remarkable non-news story. But it got us wondering what adverts we quoted in our youth. A poll of Anorak Towers revealed these gems:

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Posted: 9th, October 2013 | In: Flashback, Strange But True, The Consumer | Comment

Calculator testing: Morrisons v WHSmith v Canon – an unpacking masterclass

HOW to unpack a Morrison’s calculator; and how it stacks up against a WHSmith calculator and a calculator from Canon, This is not an unboxing video. This is  an unpacking masterclass:

Spotter: Brady Haran

Posted: 8th, October 2013 | In: Technology, The Consumer | Comment

Fear of flying meant boy took 16 months to get from Abu Dhabi to Somerset

flying abu dhabi

JOE Thompson, 12, took 16 months to fly from the Abu Dhabi to his native Weston-super-Mare, in Somerset.  No, not a RyanAir booking gone awry. Young Joe became terrified of flying. The Times reports that he was only able to return to the UK after “months of preparation by a hypnotherapist, who accompanied him on the journey home.”

One word: boats.

But we’d be wrong. His father ways he was unable to obtain the visa required for a trip by land and sea. So. Joe had to fly or remain in AbuDhabi forever.

Or maybe take a cruise ship?

But, then, what about another word: drugs. We get  no word on them. But they do work.

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Posted: 7th, October 2013 | In: Strange But True, The Consumer | Comment (1)

Now Silk Road has been taken down where will we all buy drugs?

silk road

YOU’LL have seen the news that Silk Road, the online drug bazar, has been taken down by the FBI. There’s a number of fun questions surrounding what actually happened.

For those who don’t know Silk Road was part of the “deep web”, the bit where Google doesn’t go. And it was a trading shop for just about anything: from heroin through computer trojans and all the way to hit men. All highly illegal of course and it seems the the bloke running it was a bit of an extreme libertarian. Which is going to cause problems for nice cuddly libertarians like me of course.

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Posted: 7th, October 2013 | In: Money, Technology, The Consumer | Comment

Who stole Thomas Dambo’s My Little Pony statue? He soon finds out

WHO stole Thomas Dambo’s My Little Pony statue? He soon finds out. The pony rustler is contrite and helpful. Dambo, a Danish artist and designer working out of Copenhagen, is now looking for someone to help him rehouse the pony:

Posted: 7th, October 2013 | In: The Consumer | Comment

How Barack Obama, Michael Jackson and Britney Spears can help you evade the NSA and Facebook spooks

HOW can you prevent your face from being known by the authorities searching the American-corporation-owned web? Wear a burqa. A beard? Be old and grey (the ultimate invisibility cloak)? Dutch designer Simone C. Niquille has an idea how you can dodge facial-recognition software: wear clothes covered in pictures of other people. Her “REALFACE Glamoflage” T-shirts are great. She says:

“I was interested in the T-shirt as a mundane commodity. An article of clothing that in most cases does not need much consideration in the morning in front of the closet…I was interested in creating a tool for privacy protection that wouldn’t require much time to think in the morning, an accessory that would seamlessly fit in your existing everyday. No adaption period needed.”

simone C Niquelle 2


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Posted: 6th, October 2013 | In: Fashion, Technology | Comment

King v Kubrick: The Shining sequel will be as unfilmable as all great books are


ARE some books unfilmable? Does reading the book first spoil the film and vice versa?

Stephen King’s The Shining is a cracking read. Stanley Kubrick film adaptation of it is also fantastic, a capacious, sinister  spine-tingler. But when the film came out many of the book’s fans were upset. Scenes had been omitted from the book’s version of life at the Overlook Hotel. But did you see that lift full of blood? Young Danny riding his tricycle over the wooden floor and then onto the oh-so-silent carpet? Once seen, never forgotten.

The book is not the film. The book is the book. The film is the film.

Talk of King and Kubrick’s work is relevant because the author has released a sequel to The Shining, entitled Doctor Sleep. Kubrick has died, so he won’t be any film version.

King might be relieved. As he says:

“I am not a cold guy. And with Kubrick’s The Shining I thought that it was very cold.

“Shelley Duvall as Wendy is really one of the most misogynistic characters ever put on film. She’s basically just there to scream and be stupid. And that’s not the woman I wrote about…I met him [Kubrick] on the set and just on that one meeting, I thought he was a very compulsive man.”

Jason Bailey:

King’s great novels work because they put us into the heads of his characters, because they convey psychological as well as external struggles, because their inner monologues can pour forth out of his prose. It’s part of what makes him a great writer. It’s also why there have been so many lousy films based on Stephen King books — because all of that is lost in the translation. And Kubrick would have been a lousy novelist, his meticulous detachment resulting in, we could presume, so pretty turgid and lifeless writing. But luckily, he was a filmmaker, and his gifts as an aesthete are what made him such a singularly fine one.


Laura Miller says King was right to be unimpressed by Kubrick:

King is, essentially, a novelist of morality. The decisions his characters make — whether it’s to confront a pack of vampires or to break 10 years of sobriety — are what matter to him. But in Kubrick’s “The Shining,” the characters are largely in the grip of forces beyond their control. It’s a film in which domestic violence occurs, while King’s novel is about domestic violence as a choice certain men make when they refuse to abandon a delusional, defensive entitlement. As King sees it, Kubrick treats his characters like “insects” because the director doesn’t really consider them capable of shaping their own fates. Everything they do is subordinate to an overweening, irresistible force, which is Kubrick’s highly developed aesthetic; they are its slaves. In King’s “The Shining,” the monster is Jack. In Kubrick’s, the monster is Kubrick.

Jack Hodge:

Kubrick understood the importance of taking a story and meticulously reworking it for an entirely different medium. The director was a master of genre cinema, stripping it down and blowing it up in its purest form. In fact two other successful King adaptations, Stand By Me (The Body) and The Shawshank Redemption (Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption) are both riddled with inconsistencies between book and film – although not quite as fundamental as The Shining. King has highlighted these two films, along with Misery (1990), as his favourite cinematic interpretations.

It’s all about entertainment. You get to gorge on the book and the film.

Posted: 6th, October 2013 | In: Books, Film | Comment

A guide to Acceptable and Unacceptable facial hair

SAYS artist Mike Mitchell of this guide to facial hair featuring Nick Offerman:

Here is one of the illustrations I did for Nick Offerman’s new book Paddle Your Own Canoe: One Man’s Fundamentals for Delicious Living.

So stoked to be sharing this with everyone. Had a lot of fun working with him on it. He’s the best. 

facial hair

Posted: 4th, October 2013 | In: Fashion | Comment

Project Drive-In: Possibly pointless renaissance for American drive-ins


ZOD knows there aren’t nearly enough stereotypes about lazy Americans spending too much time in their cars, so it’s a good thing Honda and Sony are sponsoring something called “Project Drive-In”  in an attempt to #SaveTheDriveIn,  which is not exactly trending on Twitter even though it has been tweeted (in sponsored posts) by such noted celebrities as Will Ferrell.

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Posted: 4th, October 2013 | In: Film, The Consumer | Comment

Manchester City beaten by a bemused teacher on a Hugo Boss fashion shoot

PA-17799775THE media love former Barcelona coach Pep Guardiola. But what did the current Bayern Munich coach look like as his side beat Manchester City?

The Daily Mail:

Midway through the first half Pep Guardiola withdrew a notebook from the breast pocket of his classic, threequarter-length navy jacket… [he]looks like a man who has just walked off the set of a fashion shoot for GQ magazine.

Daily Telegraph:

Guardiola, a refugee from a Hugo Boss campaign…


He’s stylish. Or as the Daily Mirror see it:

“With his slate-grey woolly jumper and matching regulation drainpipes, Pep Guardiola looks all the world a bemused teacher on a school outing”

Such are teh facts…

Posted: 3rd, October 2013 | In: Fashion, Sports | Comment

How Trendy Are You? Take the 1983 taste chellenge

ON August 18, 1983, Smash Hits magazine asked ‘How Trendy Are You?’ Take the quiz:

1980s trendy

1980s trendy answers


1980s trendy answers 1

1980s trendy answers 2


Posted: 3rd, October 2013 | In: Fashion, Flashback | Comment

Dinosaur erotica exists: fiction for readers aroused by bad teeth and scaly skin


EXHAUSTED by My Little Pony fan fiction erotica, we’ve moved on to read the Velociraptor’s Nest. Yep. Dinosaur erotica is exists.

Azog stood, back to the wall, clad only in damp buckskins, waiting for the beast to slash at her torso until she lay helpless and bleeding on the damp cave floor. She wondered if it would kill her first, or if her limbs would be sliced from her body as the beast gorged on her.

Instead, it reached out with a classed hand to snatch at her damp animal hide as it clung to one shoulder. Azog felt the kiss of sharp claws against her skin as the hide slid from her shoulder and exposed on naked, heaving breast. The raptor paused, curious, sniffing at her as she pressed desperately against the wall.

A reptilian tongue, stiff and hot, dashed out to lick at the tender, naked flesh so suddenly exposed. Azog gasped at the touch, then gradually relaxed as her body warmed to the intoxicating sensation of the beast’s flesh against her own.

She wasn’t sure if her sudden arousal was because of her earlier thwarted climax in the cool stream, or if she was just desperate for one last pleasant sensation before being torn limb from limb by the great, scaly beast. Either way, Azog relished the rasp of its tongue, hot and rough, on her sensitive skin.

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Posted: 3rd, October 2013 | In: Books, Strange But True | Comment

Mark Twain’s Advice to Little Girls

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MARK Twain has Advice to Little Girls. As told to them in 1865:

Good little girls ought not to make mouths at their teachers for every trifling offense. This retaliation should only be resorted to under peculiarly aggravated circumstances.

If you have nothing but a rag-doll stuffed with sawdust, while one of your more fortunate little playmates has a costly China one, you should treat her with a show of kindness nevertheless. And you ought not to attempt to make a forcible swap with her unless your conscience would justify you in it, and you know you are able to do it.

You ought never to take your little brother’s “chewing-gum” away from him by main force; it is better to rope him in with the promise of the first two dollars and a half you find floating down the river on a grindstone. In the artless simplicity natural to this time of life, he will regard it as a perfectly fair transaction. In all ages of the world this eminently plausible fiction has lured the obtuse infant to financial ruin and disaster.

If at any time you find it necessary to correct your brother, do not correct him with mud—never, on any account, throw mud at him, because it will spoil his clothes. It is better to scald him a little, for then you obtain desirable results. You secure his immediate attention to the lessons you are inculcating, and at the same time your hot water will have a tendency to move impurities from his person, and possibly the skin, in spots.

If your mother tells you to do a thing, it is wrong to reply that you won’t. It is better and more becoming to intimate that you will do as she bids you, and then afterward act quietly in the matter according to the dictates of your best judgment.

You should ever bear in mind that it is to your kind parents that you are indebted for your food, and for the privilege of staying home from school when you let on that you are sick. Therefore you ought to respect their little prejudices, and humor their little whims, and put up with their little foibles until they get to crowding you too much.

Good little girls always show marked deference for the aged. You ought never to “sass” old people unless they “sass” you first.

Spotter: NYRB


Posted: 2nd, October 2013 | In: Books, Flashback | Comment

Criminal record for London shopper who mistook an avocado for loose onions

onions 3

SELF-scanning dodge of the day: the man who classed all his shopping as “loose onions” at the self-service checkout in Sainsbury’s.

City recruitment consultant Nicholas Long, 25, classed his food as “loose onions” 20 times in the space of just three months.

His ruse might have worked had a security guard not spotted the scam – and that Sainsbury’s doesn’t sell loose onions.

Prosecutor Denise Murrin tells the court:

“It is a straight forward allegation that he went to Sainsbury’s and was seen scanning various items in at the self-service checkout. All items were being scanned as loose onions, but the store does not sell loose onions. It was an inexpensive way of doing his shopping.”

Odd, indeed, that Sainsbury’s has a code for loose onions but no loose onions.

Angus Mathieson, representing Long, says:

“It was a stupid thing he has done”, he said. “He was not getting a stupid amount, not substituting champagne or anything like that, but just getting an avocado and claiming it was an onion. He had got a good job at the time, but committed an offence as he felt his job was under threat and he was imminently likely to be made redundant. His girlfriend had become pregnant and he was worried about money, because in addition he had debts.”

The man who mistook an onion for an avocado is either the title of a follow up to Oliver Sachs’ book, The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat, or the title of a new TV cooking show in which hapless men get taught in the basics.

Long was sentenced to 180-hours community service, to be completed within a year, and ordered to pay £250 costs.

Posted: 2nd, October 2013 | In: Strange But True, The Consumer | Comments (4)

Third Bridget Jones novel to have monumental character death


REMEMBER Bridget Jones and her big knickers, kissing and vague alcoholism? Well, she’s due a new book called ‘Mad About The Boy’ which will look at the now 51 year-old Bridget, only with one notable absence in her life.


Helen Fielding has announced that she has decided to kill off Mark Darcy, the man played by Colin Firth in the flicks, leaving our Isn’t She Just Like Us? heroine massively widowed.

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Posted: 1st, October 2013 | In: Books | Comment

The London Underground Tube Map in German

THe London Underground Tube map in German is what places in London could have been called had the Germans won the war.  As one reader notes: “This is the 2003 version and omits extensions to the London Overground such as Kristalpalast and Tugendeichenpark.”

london underground in german


To see it full size please click this link: londonundergroundmapgerman (1)

Spotter: SlippedDisc

Posted: 30th, September 2013 | In: The Consumer | Comment

Things that exist: the Nutella dispenser

THE Nutella dispenser is for when the ketchup runs out and Aunt Jeanie from Des Moins is willing to try the brown sauce:


Posted: 29th, September 2013 | In: The Consumer | Comment