Monday, December 14, 2009


Just had to share this with you. It is ridiculously nerdy but I love it. It is a handbag made using recycled keyboard keys. Genius!Good idea for a Christmas present if you're in need of inspiration.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Procrastination station

Occasionally I surprise even myself at how long I leave it until I start something. Like an essay that's due the next day. Or due that day.

It's like my mind and body are playing a game of chicken with each other. Mind always starts to panic fairly early on in the build up but Body usually refuses to budge until very shortly before the collision.

This very post is being written when I really should be doing something else.
And the fact that we've recently purchased an alarmingly large bronze statue of Samuel Beckett is not helping matters. I'm being stared out of it by the great man and reminded of how much he somehow managed to get done.

I can't stand his judgmental gaze any longer. I'm off to do important things.

Slán go fóíll!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Back to the future.

I was recently brainstorming ideas for useful gadgets that I could patent and become fabulously wealthy from. Pipe dream, I know. It didn't go extremely well. The two viable ideas I managed to come up with were the milk kettle and an oven/ac/light and heating system that can be controlled remotely by internet/mobile phone technology. It turns out that there is already a patent out on the milk kettle, which I thought would be useful for hot chocolate drinkers like myself and possibly for parents of young babies. The kettle, rather than boiling milk, would stop at the required temperature to heat milk without boiling over.Now, I know this won't happen because you'd have to clean the thing out every time you used it or risk your kettle becoming a giant sour milk container but it was a start!

The second idea is also in the early stages of coming into being. I happened upon this website, where the moderator has taken it upon himself to install webcams in most of the rooms of his house and to wire some of his household appliances up to be controlled remotely by people visiting the site. This means that I can turn his christmas lights on and off despite being on a different continent to him. This, frankly, scared the crap out of me (too much power!) and I did have to question why he would want this. I can only imagine people coming over and lights flickering on and off at random like something out of the exorcist.

But you can see how something like this might be useful. I'm not suggesting you let others control the workings of your house but what if if it was just you that had access to this? You could turn some lights on in your house if you were going to be home late or if you were on holiday and wanted to discourage burglars. With advances in the technology you could turn the heating on while on your commute home so the house would be warm to greet you. You could put a roast in the oven in the morning and control its cooking time from your desk at work.

I think changes like this are a very real possibility and am quite excited by the prospect.I'm off to do more research into how exactly it works.(Rather than doing college work or anything of immediate value...)

Slán go fóill!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Crazy people!

I found something on the web this week that reassured me a great deal that I'm quite a sane person. I was looking for "The Killers" (band) tshirts and put something to that effect into google.

It showed me some tshirts with Brandon Flowers and co., yes. But it also led me to something else...

Serial Killer tshirts.

It's official. You can now pick your favourite serial killer and buy a tshirt with their face and a lot of blood spatter on it to wear with pride.


I really don't know how I survived (pun alert) this long without one.

But seriously, I was completely shocked when I stumbled on this website.I can't imagine someone browsing online and saying to themselves "you know what's missing from my life?A tshirt with Ted Bundy's face on it and a mug with a drawing of one of Black Dahlia's victims on it".
I mean, WTF?!?I'd love to know if there's actually a market out there for this.I'll be the first to admit that I like my share (and possibly some other people's shares) of crime dramas and murder mystery novels.I also have a big interest in the paranormal and gruesome histories. Despite being a complete sceptic, I like the stories and find them interesting.
However, I think there is a line and buying serial killer calendars and wall clocks might just be it for me.

For the rest of you though, if you're interested...Christmas is a-coming!

(I'll take a small polo. Something in the Charles Manson range, surprise me!)

Friday, September 4, 2009

Random observation of the day: Debra Messing in Casablanca?

I was watching Casablanca today and noticed more than once that Ingrid Bergman looks eerily like Debra Messing (of "Will and Grace") fame.Or should that be the other way around?

The similarities are so strong I even went so far as to research whether or not they are related but they don't seem to be!You'd have to watch the film to really see it but I've done my best to find 2 photos that look vaguely similar.

Monday, July 13, 2009

The french happenings

Still in Montpellier and having great craic.The funniest thing about coming over here was discovering that Sarah and Naomi have made names for themselves as complete party animals.We're talking Kate Moss during the heroin chic days.It appears this legendary status is mostly down to the fact that the Americans on Sarah's course are extremely lightweight in the drinking department so Sarah and Naomi's intake looks pretty hardcore and/or alcoholic by comparison.

It's nice to see they're getting on well and meeting people anyway.The range of people stopping by the apartment is like a United Nations conference.Sarah is the only Irish person on her course so has to put up with the constant stream of Americans coming up to her and going (in a really thick Texan accent) "Oh, I'm Irish too!My Granny's dog once stayed with that guy from the Quiet Man so I'm pretty much a native."

I'm going to be home to tomorrow but will take with me the knowledge that the only helpful French people are the ones who don't work in customer service; that in a battle between me and the sun the sun will always win; that Guinness is older than America (really!) and that hurling is older than Jesus.Unfortunately I cant smuggle home any lovely bottles of French wine but might attempt to get some cheese home.I managed to get 2 pounds of sausages from Shannon to here so I'm feeling optimistic!

Sin é en ce moment.Slán go fóill!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Bienvenue á Montpellier!

Hey everyone,
I'm in montpellier at the moment visiting that Scully wan and "Anlon" as the French call her.Having a great time but dear god, my poor Irish skin is not able for this heat!Forgot to put suncream on my back yesterday so have a nice pink patch there but am otherwise unscathed.Montpellier is really beautiful and most of the people are really nice.We went to the olympic pool yesterday to have a swim and ended up staying there for about four hours.It was really nice and had slides and diving boards and stuff like that.We all had a go jumping off the 4 metre dive, felt a bit like getting hit by a car but was really exhilarating.Sarah's dad is coming to visit today so we're giving the place a bit of a clean.I'll be home on tuesday unless the TGV screws me again in which case I'll be living in Carcassone train station for the rest of my life.Could be worse I suppose.
A Bientot!

Sunday, June 21, 2009


I went to see Britney last night in the o2 arena in Dublin.It was surreal.Brilliant, but surreal. I grew up with Britney and it was unbelievably odd to be standing a few feet away from her.She is one of those stars that has so much media coverage that they don't seem real anymore.But last night I realised she is in fact one of us.

I was lucky enough to be standing at the front and directly behind her two little boys.She knew they were there and kept coming over to us to wave at the two tots and keep them entertained.It was really sweet to see them dancing along to the songs.(They seemed to like "Slave 4 u" in particular).

I had never seen someone as famous in her in the flesh and it's only when you do that you can appreciate things like Beatlemania.I'm normally a pretty rational controlled person but the minute Britney came on stage I screamed like a crazy person along with the thousands of others that were in the arena.

The show itself was fantastic, one of the best I've ever been to.There were circus performers and amazing backing dancers to keep the audience entertained while Britney was doing her quick-changes.

A great thing about the gig was how nice the other fans were.There was no pushing or shoving and the venue is built in such a way that everyone had a great view of the stage so nobody was disappointed in that regard.

I went to the gig last night not really expecting much.I knew Britney would be miming and thought it would be a nice way to pass the time.However, the minute she stepped on stage she reminded me and everyone else why she is such a superstar.It's simple, there is something about her that people love and are drawn to.There was nothing but goodwill in Dublin last night and it seems like Britney really is back.

I look forward to the next time she comes to Ireland.It's Britney bitch!!

Monday, May 11, 2009


So I'm typing this in bed in Edinburgh looking at a jar of knackers. (That's really what they're called, will post pics soon!)I adore Edinburgh.Every single one of the buildings is gorgeous to look at, even the homeless shelter looks amazing!One things that I've noticed is that there doesn't seem to be a lot of Scottish people here though.It might be that I'm staying with a group who are all Irish (except for one girl from Portugal) but I haven't heard that many scottish accents or seen many kilts, although the ones I have seen were pretty special.

That's what I love about this place. It isn't what you expect.I assumed that being a big city and a popular tourist/stag destination that it would be insanely expensive but I've spent hardly anything here.It really shows you how overpriced Ireland is when yolu manage to get a huge meal of a burger, chips and a pint for £3.50. The exchange rate isn't even an excuse because the euro and sterling are equal at the moment.

The music scene is brilliant here.We went to see "Acoustic Dave" the last night and he was fantastic.Who would have thought a middle-aged guy in a batman tshirt ould be so entertaining!

We also explored the supernatural side to the city.We saw Acoustic Dave in what was supposedly the most haunted pub in Britain but the wailings you might mistake for ghostly anguish are more likely to be a group of drunken Spaniards murdering karaoke songs.We also went on a "Most Haunted" style tour of an underground vault.It was really eerie to be down there in the dark hearing stories about various ghostly happenings that go on down there.It's enough to make your imagination run away with you.It seems it got to one of the little girls who was on the tour; she said she felt someone rubbing her hair. Apart from that, there were no ghostly encounters to report.The guide had said that the spirits sometimes drain your battery devices like your phone but if anything when we came out my phone had gained battery.Cheers Ghosts!

I better toddle off and experience more of Edinburgh, will update later!

Thursday, April 30, 2009


What's a BHAG you say?Well I may have borrowed the anagram from wallofweird on youtube. My BHAG is my Big Hairy Audacious Goal.She wanted to know what ours were and people left their answers as comments. Some people had major ambitions, like running marathons and becoming president. Some people wanted to get Ben&Jerrys.

My BHAG is to get a novel published. It's always been a dream of mine. I still have a copy of the scrawled pages I stapled together when I was six to make my first "book" entitled (and I'm cringing already) "My very own book". This work of art contained innumerable stories which for some reason always included mice, rats and cats declaring their love for one another. Obviously I was very up with the concept of inter-racial relations and was lightyears ahead of my time...

So this new book will be a challenge and sadly will most likely be devoid of mice/rat love. You never know though, maybe we all need a little more mice/rat love in our lives...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

New York, New York?

Wow. It really doesn't feel like a month (give or take) since I last blogged. I guess sometimes you lose track of time. Over the last while, I've suddenly had an urge to do something. Anything, really. Travelling seemed like the simplest option. The least painful. Organising my career path or *cough* relationship *cough* path is far too much effort.

So, I'm going to Edinburgh to visit a friend. And then to New York, with friends. Then to Mexico, to visit a friend. And then to Paris, to visit yet another friend. Have I a really international set of friends? No.

They do seem to migrate once they get to know me though, should I take it personally?

Now obviously that's a hell of a lot of travelling for one summer so I know that it won't be feasible to do all of it at once, or even in two summers. But the point is, that planning these trips is really exciting for me. I love the idea of taking off and going somewhere completely different. seeing how other people live. If you'd approached me a year ago with an itinerary like that, I would have run scared. Now, it's kind of exciting. It's really incredible how much you can change in a short space of time.

To fund all this, I will also be working. Don't worry, I don't have an endless mountain of cash. It pales in comparison to what my friend Niamh is doing though, she's dedicating her entire summer (of about 3 months) to working with poor children in Calcutta. It almost hurts being around her because she's so virtuous. It makes me feel incredibly selfish for some reason. So, to ease my conscience and do my own little bit for charity, I'm doing the Flora Women's mini-marathon in Dublin for GOAL Ireland. It's not much but it is a goal (excuse the pun) to strive for and all in all I'm really looking forward to this summer.

I would love to know what you will be up to. Sky-diving, trying to keep the kids entertained (which is a sport in itself) or taking it easy and enjoying your time off?

Slán go fóill! (Bye for now).

Thursday, February 26, 2009

I'm making a list, checking it twice!

Howdy. I feel sufficiently over the rage (that's right, actual rage) that overtook me when Mickey Rourke was denied an oscar to blog again.
While browsing one of my favourite sites,, I came across a list they had made of the best films to win best picture at the oscars.

I've recently gotten really interested in films and the whole process of how they're conceived and made.Everything about them fascinates me. I don't care if it's black and white, has subtitles or involves Tim Curry in fishnets ( might I add...hubba hubba?Can't me only me?). It doesn't matter what the film, I'm all over it.

To foster this new enthusiasm (or obsession, take your pick) I've been watching a lot of old movies. The masterclass. It is a pleasure to see how films used to be made and just how fantastic some of them are. Films like "Taxi Driver" (admittedly not that old), "Some like it hot", "Rebel without a cause", "Breakfast at Tiffany's", "The Seven Year Itch", "An American in Paris" and others have completely blown me away. Despite being made a long time ago, most have a timeless humour and they are beautiful to look at.

It saddens me to see how diluted and basically un-funny films in general are nowadays. (See "You don't mess with the Zohan" for evidence). Obviously there are still absolutely brilliant films being made (The Wrestler, la Haine, Slumdog millionaire and the Usual Suspects to name a few) but the sheer quantity of films being made means that less time and care is being spent on them and the vast majority of them are pretty sub-par. Very rarely do I leave the cinema having really enjoyed a film. A lot of the time, you find yourself saying something to the effect of "well, it was alright. Nice way to waste away and hour".

To rectify this wrong, I decided to make a list. With the help of rottentomatoes, I found some films that are universally touted as "to see before you die". As I get through them I will let you know what I think and I would love any suggestions you have to bulk up my list with.
Here are the first few that I plan to watch soon.
P.S. Don't be mad at me for never having seen the Big Lebowski", I apologise!

The list:
  • The Godfather (Part I and II)
  • Rear window
  • Citizen Kane
  • Casablanca
  • All about Eve
  • On the waterfront
  • Annie Hall
  • It happened one night
  • In the heat of the night
  • Gone with the wind
  • Amadeus
  • The Big Lebowski
Let me know if you've seen any on the list or if you have any more you think I should get my film education with!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

My Oscar predictions 2009

Best picture: Slumdog Millionaire. Will and should win, I think. The ommission of "The Wrestler and "Wall-E" in this category have upset some however.

Best Actor: Mickey Rourke. Couldn't deserve it more but I have a niggling feeling that Sean Penn could sneak in there and take it from him.

Best Actress: Kate Winslet. Meryl could steal it from her, as could Anne Hathaway but I think this is Kate's year.

Best supporting Actor: Heath Ledger. No-brainer, and well deserved.

Best supporting Actress: Penelope Cruz. I would really like Marisa Tomei to win this one and think she is a definite dark horse. *fingers crossed that it doesn't go to Cruz*

Best Director: Danny Boyle. I'm fairly confident about this one and am happy with it.

Best animated film: Wall-E. Another winner in this category would cause uproar.

They're my main predictions for this year, I would love to hear yours!

Monday, February 16, 2009

New facebook Terms of Service (TOS)

Many of you will have heard about the recent changes made to the Facebook Terms of service. The new terms, which grant Facebook rights of ownership to content published on its site were obviously received cautiously.

The outcry against what many people consider an invasion of privacy kicked off

on the 16th of February.
Mark Zuckerburg from Facebook was quick to reply in the facebook blog but glossed over the most contentious issue, the intellectual rights to photos and videos you may upload to the site.
I, for one, am deleting all photos (of which there were only a few anyway), changing my privacy settings and deleting original videos I uploaded to protect my claim on them.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Review of Darren Aronofsky's "The Wrestler".

I just had to write a quick post about the Aronofsky film, “The Wrestler”. It went pretty much under my radar and I didn’t intend to see it, not thinking I would enjoy it. Boredom prompted me to watch it online. Without a doubt it’s one of the best decisions I’ve made in a while. It turns out all the hype about Mickey Rourke’s performance is more than justified.
Not having been around for Rourke’s heyday or subsequent fall, I didn’t focus on finding parallels between Rourke and his character’s status as a “has-been” amongst the public and his peers. Instead, I surprised myself by feeling more for this scarred, perma-tanned wrestler than I did for any other film character this year. Having an interest in the awards season, I’ve also seen films like “Slumdog Millionaire” and “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button”. Neither had as much of an impact on me as this performance.
It’s absolutely heart-breaking to watch at times (and also rather bloody, not for the faint-hearted). Rourke gives a very quiet, dignified performance. Simple scenes like when he waits outside the hospital only to realise that no-one is coming to collect him pack more of an emotional punch and will stay with me longer than any special effects could ever do. The terrifying lonlieness that he experiences and deals with by trying to reconcile his relationship with his estranged daughter is incredibly real. You find yourself worring about this man, really investing in him.
Refreshingly, Aronofsky does not paint Randy “The Ram” as a perfect character. The beauty of the film is that both the audience and Rourke’s character are very aware that he is flawed. He is a screwup and he knows it.One of the highlights of the film is Rourke’s interaction with Evan Rachel Wood, who plays his daughter. Wood turns in a fine performance and I think if there had been a bit more room in the Best Supporting actress category this season, she would have stood a good chance.
I really can't recommend this film highly enough. It is definitely worth a look, if only to witness Rourke's magnificent return to form.

So...I've given in to vanity.

Blogging. Surely an obvious sign of vanity. Why would anyone feel the need to broadcast their thoughts and ideas, to share their experiences with the world?

This was my opinion until I started a more active presence on the internet, using social networking sites. Suddenly I came around to the idea that maybe people would be interested in what I have to say? If only to thank God their life is the polar opposite.

So here goes! As I tend to get bored doing the same thing, this blog will inevitably be an odd mix of random thoughts, film reviews, rants about politics and the absurdities of life.

I would love it if you hung around for the ride.