Saturday 8 June 2024

Dentistry - Look away if you're queasy!

I said I'd feed back after my dentistry, so I am now. It all happened yesterday. Wuss that I am, I found it all very traumatic really though the dentist chappie, Ivan Sasu, was very nice, but it would have been terrible without the Diazepam I think.

Two gaping holes in m'gob now, very, very clean 6 teeth at the front and a seriously numb gob! I was in the chair for over an hour. 
Hopefully that will be the end of the big work now though. Being fitted for dentures will be a breeze at my next appointment in August after these extractions (and severe cleaning). I have 7 teeth left for the dentures to anchor.

I took 40mg in the end. I tried 30mg but 45 minutes later into the waiting hour, it didn't feel like enough, so I took 10mg more. Glad I did. I got local anaesthetic (even) on the sites where he was going inject. When he pulled them, I really didn't know they'd gone. That's what I call numb! And I was numb for 8 hours after!

It's a lovely dentist though. The nicest ever seen. And all the people there are just lovely. It's more like a plush office suite really with soft chairs/sofas, loads of space, big rooms, tall ceilings - not the usual nasty, pokey, claustrophobic places one usually faces.

They said no alcohol for 24 hours but after a day like that, bollocks to that! Ha! I took the risk! This morning, I feel sore, yes, but with a huge sense of relief. The dangling sword of Damocles has been cut down. £285 charged, which, for the way I was treated, I thought to be a bargain. Arch Dental of North Wales recommended.

Saturday 1 June 2024

PodHubUK Podcasts for the Month of May 2024

  ...a roundup of our month of podcasting. Links to the team, communities and podcast homes on the net at the foot, so scroll down!

Phones Show Chat
Episode 800 - Eight Hundred!
Friday 3rd May
How time flies. Was it 2008 or 2009 we started? Can't remember. But we muse on this week's show with special guest Juan Carlos Bagnell about how many other Tech Pods have notched up that number! Regardless, it's always great to have Juan on the show and he's always welcome with Steve and I. And I'm sure you, too. We nerd-out for an hour, so do join us.

Phones Show Chat
Episode 801 - Private DJ
Friday 10th May
Steve and I chat with Kai Barry this week, from one side of the globe to the other. We find out what tech he's using with a focus on privacy and de-googling Android. All interesting stuff, so do join us for an hour.

Tech Addicts Podcast
...with a hint of Mint
Sunday 12th May
Gareth and I are back again this week with a dig through all sorts of tech stuff (and intimate moments) that have caught our eye in the last fortnight! Smart Rings, dumb Sharks, Spatial audio, water-powered cars, AI Warplanes, side-bars, snapping and all manner of bargains in the basement. Be there or be square!

Whatever Works
Episode 206 - Sloppy Seconds!
Monday 13th May
Aidan and I are here again to declare Whatever Works for us and you. Why not join us for an hour as we whack weeds, visit Vsitoo, Beko our Moko, let Harry shave us and allow The Oracle to play in the company of a Ninja!

Projector Room
Episode 162 - A Reindeer Massacre
Thursday 16th May
Gareth, Allan and I are here at last! Sorry about the delays, but our bumper show will make up for it, now available in the usual places. We Monk(ey) about with apes and all creatures Jurassic, indulge in the work of Dennis Hopper, cook up Sweetbitter stuff in a huge Microwave oven and hit The Road as Knox Goes Away. Plus loads more as always. Enjoy!

Phones Show Chat
Episode 802 - OnePlus Open and AI
Sunday 19th May
Steve and I are back this week with a deep dive and interesting insight into AI with Mike Warner. Plenty of chat about other stuff too of course including the Sony announcements, Nokia Bygones, prime Pixel, Moto musings and even a brand new Launcher for your Android phone! Available in the usual places, so do join us. POTW @Ian Furlong

Phones Show Chat
Episode 803 - Never Ending Tech Addiction
Saturday 25th May
Steve and I are back this weekend with Jeremy Harpham as he talks folding, flipping, wearables, Microsoft InTune and loads more. I get first hands-on with a new/old Moto and Steve's soldiering on with Sony, in hope.

Tech Addicts Podcast
Something has come to the Surface
Sunday 26th May
Gareth and I chat this time about being a YouTuber (or not!), Logitech MX Keys Mechanical, Microsoft's plans for Copilot Plus PCs at the Surface event, screenshotting your personal information, UGreen's latest portable station, the forthcoming Moto G85, a WD 6TB 2.5" portable HDD, the HMD T21 and loads more! So do join us and make your day complete!

Projector Room
Episode 163 - Furiosa Fall Guy
Wednesday 29th May
Gareth, Allan and I are back again with another chinwag on film, cinema and TV. In the lens this time is Abigail's Atlas in the After Life, Wicked Little Letters from The Innocents, a Sleepless Red Dragon at Chernobyl, Bodkin's Corpse Bride and oodles more, including what's Coming Soon and a focus on Emily Watson.

The Podcasts
PodHubUK - Phones Show Chat - The Phones Show - Whatever Works - Chewing Gum for the Ears - Projector Room - Tech Addicts

Tuesday 28 May 2024

Headless (2015)

Blimey! Hold onto your hats - well, heads, actually. This is not one for the faint hearted for sure. A gore-fest from start to finish in which a man randomly, mostly, selects women in order to get them back to his den where he lops their heads of, cuts various other bits of their bodies apart, copulates with the severed head and eats their eyeballs! I warned you!

You have to wonder why people would make a film like this really. I guess it must appeal to some. I tend to watch films like this out of fascination to see how low everyone can stoop. And this one's pretty low. Diabolical acting, low-budget, hardly any dialogue - just this fruit-loop doing the above.

There is a backstory of course, which gets flashed back to, involving him being locked up in a cage as a child by the female members of his family and fed raw rabbit's heads, and the appearance of some boy, who appears as an (I think) imaginary friend - then comes back later in this film to direct the grown-up boy's antics and validate his actions. Well, to him at least!

It is a completely bonkers blood-bath, not terribly well made, though they seem to have shot it in the style of a 1970's underground movie - there's even a Coming Soon/Feature Presentation (Tarantino style) at the beginning, like you'd see in a cinema outing back then!

Oh yes, and the 'highlights' of the action, for some reason, are all pretty much flashed-forward to in the first few minutes of the film. So you don't really need to watch it! Anyway, if anyone fancies the challenge, it's currently being screened for free on the Plex directory. Bonkers!

Wednesday 22 May 2024

Wicked Little Letters (2023)

This is a delightful British comedy/drama which could have been in danger of meandering off into Last of the Summer Wine territory in a tired old BBC kind of way but doesn't, because of the way in which it's been produced, written, directed and shot. It's ended up instead a decidedly large cut above that drivel of yesteryear.

Apparently based on truth and a book written by Christopher Hilliard entitled The Littlehampton Libels: A Miscarriage of Justice and a Mystery about Words in 1920s England, the story takes us back to the 1920's and the south coast of England seaside town of Littlehampton (which I happen to know well). It's the tale of two families who live next door to each other, one headed by a wild and fiesty immigrant from Ireland following WWI and the other a puritanical religious bunch, not sure whether or not they can cope with those next door or not!

Edith Swan, the ageing daughter in the latter of the households, keeps getting letters through the post packed with obscenities and insults. Rose Gooding, the foul-mouthed Irish girl is squarely nominated by anyone who knows about the events as the guilty party and responsible for the deeds. Edith is played by Olivia Colman (The Night Manager, Tyrannosaur, Empire of Light) and Rose, Jessie Buckley (Men, Fingernails, I'm Thinking of Ending Things).

The local incompetent police force don't quite know what to do about it, under pressure from some of the townsfolk and Edith's father to arrest Rose for the 'crime' of libel! The boss is trying to hold the force's actions together, staffed by the buffoon Constable Papperwick, played by Hugh Skinner (The Romanoffs), with rookie 'woman police officer' Gladys Moss, played by Anjana Vasan - seemingly the only one with a brain between them! In the end, they give into social pressure and arrest Rose, throw her in jail, only for the women townsfolk to club together to raise the bail and get her out whilst she awaited trial.

Gladys isn't happy and thinks she knows that Rose is innocent, so heads off, with no permission, to investigate. This gets her suspended, but also presents her with a golden opportunity to team up with the women of the town in order to investigate and clear Rose's name.

In the midst of all this, we get an insight into the racist and sexist behaviour and attitudes of the time and place, around the era of the Suffragette Movement, raising awareness in enlightened circles of things to come regarding value-bases and equality of human beings. The filmmakers may have taken this a step too far, perhaps for further emphasis of those issues by placing people from ethnic minorities into key roles in the story/film, like Gladys and the judge in the court, particularly, which was very highly unlikely to be the case in that prejudiced era.

Timothy Spall (Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street) plays Edith's father, Edward, ruling his household, centred around religion and alleged moral high-ground, with wife Victoria, played by Gemma Jones, under his thumb alongside Edith - their individuality well and truly stamped out. It is clear that the women of the house don't dare step out of line, do as he says and what is expected of them - or face his wrath and punishment/correction.

It's actually a very funny film partly because of the profanities in the letters which are read out aloud by the most unlikely people in the mix, the characters shocking themselves that they could even utter such words. The biggest laugh out loud moments are centred around this and, yes, that runs out of steam eventually. But there's enough else too, as the comic antics of the ladies swinging into action to uncover what they think to be the truth, gets underway.

The mainly British cast do a fabulous job, every one of them. Jessie Buckley is hilarious throughout and Olivia Colman similarly, but dark and eerie when she needs to be. They're the two leads, but Timothy Spall is quite superb in his nasty character's role, Hugh Skinner convincing as the numbskull and there's other actors popping in and out who you will, no doubt, recognise - such as Jason Watkins (The Last Honour of Christopher Jefferies).

The sets are delightful as well, with fine attention to detail for the town at that time in history, the vehicles, clothing and muted colours. Director Thea Sharrock brings the very best out of the cast - they all look like they're having great fun with the project - and keeps the visuals interesting - and somewhat artistic. It really is a lovely film. Hopefully the new kind of British entertainment, so that we can put the old and tired to bed. Highly recommended.

Saturday 18 May 2024

Pixel USB-C Earbuds

Remember these? The ones Google used to bundle with the Pixel 3? I think it ended there. I was amazed to learn that the UK Google Store still stocked them, forget Amazon et al..! 20% Voucher and £24.

They sound great. Plugged into all sorts of USB-C devices here - phones, Chromebooks - anything really - and I'm having a whale of a time. No batteries to charge, plug 'em in and listen!

In-line control gets the Google Assistant, Notifications, track forward/back, volume up/down, mic for calls answer/end... and they sound great! (Especially with my PixelBook!)

XtremeSkins Skin for the PixelBook

Thanks to Lee from XtremeSkins for sending over a couple of samples to transform this 2017 PixelBook. Kudos to them for still stocking these. £18 for the full set, which, compared to a phone's set is good-looking value as there's loads of it for pretty much every panel and cutout, which work perfectly.

Sticky enough to stay in place but not too sticky to be a problem removing.

They even have covers for the trackpad if you want to use the whole set - and it works right through it!

This is White Marble, but there are loads of colours to choose from.

This is my opinion only and I really am impressed. Do head over and support XtremeSkins for skins for all sorts of devices for us here at the Tech Addicts and Phones Show Chat podcasts.

Highly recommended. Love this look!

Marshall Major IV and now V - A feature I forgot about...

Yes, I had completely forgotten (until I watched this video review last night) about the feature that allows for the Major headsets to connect by Bluetooth to a source device and then run a cable to another headset by 3.5mm to share the music with a chum!

Bluetooth is getting very clever with this stuff and can often do the same thing wirelessly now, depending on the gear involved, but here's the old-school way! I'm not aware of any other OEM doing this with headphones.

Dentistry - Look away if you're queasy!

I said I'd feed back after my dentistry, so I am now. It all happened yesterday. Wuss that I am, I found it all very traumatic really th...