• I think the Story of Mel should be viewed as a modern(ish)-day myth or legend, a sort of set of Platonic ideals, rather than a blueprint for how to actually behave.

    Note, for example, that Mel is not programming in assembly or anything wasteful like that — it’s machine op codes. And you can’t port his game from one machine to another for the…[Read more]

  • I don’t have much to offer on breakups or narcissism, thankfully.

    However, as someone whose parents split up when I was quite young, I would echo the encouragement to avoid making negative comments about your ex in front of the kids.

    By and large, my parents had a very civil relationship while I was growing up, which I think in retrospect was…[Read more]

  • Gonga’s a new one on me. I’m glad to see someone posted All Them Witches too, I was in two minds about including them 🙂

    And 3 by 4 are good too, eh?

    One more — a band named after an album by another band! And they say this genre is self-referential.

  • Fu Manchu are indeed rad. I love “The Action is Go” but also “Godzilla’s / Eatin’ Dust” which I believe was produced by Josh Homme:

    Keeping the fuzz dialed up, Mars Red Sky are worth checking out:

    And so are Rama, for this EP at least (their later stuff…[Read more]

  • What’s the purpose of the compass? Do you have a map to go with it? Generally I’d have a map on my GPS and then often a paper map or a map on my phone

    Backup for phones, etc, really. We had a paper map in the group, although I didn’t have the appropriate OL to hand.

    You never know what will happen to you, your buddy, your group or for tha…

    [Read more]

  • Helvellyn? very little, it’s not as if you can get lost, really. Extra shell jacket and trews in case I come a cropper and have to sit it out through some inclement weather.

    At this time of year I don’t generally bother with water either, my thirst drops right off in cold weather, as I’m generally well hydrated anyway.

    If I could ditch the w…[Read more]

  • I’d have probably had a similar set of kit to you OP. Was there time to do a bit of a kit check in the group so some stuff could have been shared?

    There was a bit of de-facto sharing, but yes — some pre-ride arrangements would have been a reasonable idea, good suggestion.

    The first aid kit always feels like a bit of an overkill but does get a…[Read more]

  • Yeah, my wallet is (sadly) very slim 🙂

    TWO LITRES of water when there must be beautiful mountain water running down all the streams at the moment?

    Good point, I didn’t really think of that. I reckon I probably absorbed a few hundred ml through my skin while traipsing around in the mist.

    I did use the full 2L though, and I hate running out…[Read more]

  • I rode Helvellyn at the weekend. It was my first “big mountain” ride (inasmuch as Helvellyn qualifies) and I rode with a group of much more experienced riders, most of whom had done the route before. We rode Sticks Pass and Seldom Seen, and were probably out for between three and four hours once we’d gotten back to the car park.

    I was struck by…[Read more]

  • Keeping my fingers crossed for a bottle of scotch and a 9 speed wide range cassette.

  • Close the account.

    Open new account.

    Tell everyone you know that your email address has changed, plus update all your accounts around the internet, and tell any government agencies who have your email on record. Pick some memorable new address like “” in place of your current boring “”.


  • I get quite a few misdirected emails, probably because my email address is a very obvious one for someone with my name.

    My most prolific alter-ego is some chap in Canada — I get quite a lot of stuff for him relating to little-league baseball and the Democrat party. I usually respond to these mails politely asking them to check their recipient’s…[Read more]

  • You just need to own it. It’s a state of mind.

    I think this applies either way to some extent.

    Obviously there are hair styles which look a bit dicey when you’ve got a massive bald patch. But equally well, there are styles which work. E.g. Mark Bonnar (recently played Max in Guilt on the BBC, if you’ve watched it) is fairly thin on top but s…[Read more]

  • My first ever “proper” MTB ride was for a friend’s stag do. My BIL and I were camping up the night before, and then he was going to lend me his hardtail to do the ride on.

    Friday after work I’m trying to get all my bits together — camping stuff, plus the things I imagine I’ll need for the ride. He’s driving us down, and turns up about half an…[Read more]

  • Some bits and bobs about bikes. Apparently there are some cyclists on here along with all the balloon pilots and racing drivers.

    But really, the best thing I learnt is this one amazing trick that a normal bloke figured out: when getting up for a widdle in the middle of the night, you can sit on the toilet (yes, like a lady!) and thereby empty…[Read more]

  • tomparkin replied to the topic New Octavia in the forum Chat Forum 1 month ago

    I don’t know all that much about new cars. However I *do* know that…

    The screen measures between 8.25 and 10 inches depending on spec – the flashier ones can be controlled through gesture or voice (Skoda’s voice assistant is called Laura – seriously) and get a built-in eSim so you’re always online. Beneath the screen is a touch-slider for c…

    [Read more]

  • I’m in the process of doing so. It might be done sometime in the Spring at this rate 🙂

    TBH it’s not really a “winter hardtail”, more a companion to complement the FS bike and replace the mk1 Soul which, while ace, is just a bit small for me.

    NS Eccentric Evo Alu 29er frame
    2nd-hand RS Yari @ 140mm
    2nd-hand DT Swiss 27.5″ wheels
    2nd-hand SLX…[Read more]

  • Strava has a “Beacon” function. You can send an autogenerated link to your partner / riding buddy / whatever, which gives a real-time map of where you are.

    You need pay a subscription to get access to this, IIRC it’s about £20 per year. I use it and it’s well worth the money for the peace of mind and utility.

  • tomparkin replied to the topic Tumble Driers in the forum Chat Forum 1 month ago

    One thing to be aware of if comparing energy ratings is that condenser and vented driers work on their own scales. So an A vented drier is better than a B vended drier; and an A condenser drier is better than a B condenser drier. But to compare vented and condenser driers you need to look at the actual figures (ask me how I know). I imagine…[Read more]

  • It’s really not massively different, is it?

    30-ish mm more reach will be noticable I’d say: it’ll feel a bit longer although not radically so.

    The Dee Dar also has about 25mm less seat tube so your saddle might feel a bit more “out of the way” when fully dropped.

    I’d imagine all in all it’ll feel pretty similar though.

  • Load More