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8 things...

8 things...

8 things...

iPod headphones 8 things… A long time ago in a galaxy far, ...err, sorry, back in September, we kicked off a little competition to win an iPod, linked in with our first big advertising campaign in t’Big Smoke. For those of you that haven’t yet become completely bored with the ‘London Calling’ blog entry that’s been lingering on here for weeks, you can refresh your memory here. The competition has now closed, and a winner has been picked. We had some great entries, as well as a handful of efforts that would make even Jedward blush, but the judges were able to reach a verdict without deferring to the public vote. Congratulations are therefore in order for Sarah Smith and her list of 8 fun things she’d recommend that you do before you die, reproduced here for you to draw inspiration from:

  • Join a flash mob- Flash mobs have become a worldwide phenomena in which a large group of unrelated, essentially random, people all converge in one place, perform an unusual action for a short time, and disburse again. Flash Mobs were invented in 2003 in Manhattan, but they can now be found in almost every city in the world. In 2006 the London Underground was overtaken by 4,000 people who all silently danced to their iPods. More recently T-mobile featured one in their ad campaign. Absolutely awesome, wholesome, fun! Join up here.
  • Be a nude model- This one may be a little risky, but it is worth it for the story you can tell your friends (and possibly your family!) afterwards... Look up your local art class (or possibly an art class in the next town or city if you are really scared!) and offer your services. Then simply turn, up, strip and bare! Very liberating, and you will even get paid for it J
  • Go to a film premiere- This one is an easy task for most people living in California, but not so easy for people in the UK, outside of London! But I would say it is even worth the airfare to get to a premiere if you can afford it. I recently met Tom Cruise (seriously! And even managed a brief chat with him. The spend was worth it for the subsequent kudos and Facebook status updates (with pics!))...... Who knows, maybe a superstar will see you and fall in love with you (that didn’t happen to me, alas).
  • Invent something- We live in a fast paced society where gadgets exist for virtually every task –occasionally you might have a Eureka! Moment where you think of that genius idea, which nobody has yet invented. Don’t just let the thought go, why not try your hand at inventing it? Just remember, as soon as you have completed your invention, patent it and give it a fab name. Who knows, if you don’t make a mint out if it, you might still make it onto Dragon’s Den!
  • Stay in the best suite- This is something you have to do at least once in your life. Save up your mullah and book a night at the poshest hotel in your city – or better still, go to a different/bigger city, and book the most expensive suite. While you are there make sure you saved enough cash to tip well (it gives you a sense of enormous well-being, as per Blur’s Parklife!) and to enjoy all of the benefits of the hotel – like fabulous food, massages, pool, and spa. There is nothing grander than waking up in a magnificent penthouse suite with a hangover. Just remember, if you steal the bath towels or dressing gown you may find an unexpected bill turning up on your credit card the following month J
  • Participate in a police lineup- Volunteer at your local cop shop to participate in a lineup. It’s a bit of fun, if you like that sort of thing, and you sometimes get a free lunch as well as your fee for taking part... of course, when offering your services - make sure you didn’t commit the crime! For added ‘lol’ value, wear something fun like a T-shirt that says ‘I did it’ and be sure to look shifty. A novel experience.
  • Invent a cocktail- Who doesn’t love a good cocktail? There are thousands of spirits, liqueurs and other alcoholic concoctions, out there for the tasting – so go to an off-license, stock up, and try as many variations as you can! Make a night of it with some friends, you are bound to stumble upon a masterpiece to showcase next time you have a party. Remember to keep a bucket handy – after a night of tasting cocktails you will need it.
  • Do a skydive- Jumping out of a plane sounds like something you might actually die whilst doing, doesn’t it?! Better make it last on the list then! Seriously though, with a proper instructor, preferably in a scenic place, this will be something you will want to repeat again and again....If you do decide to give it a go, I would recommend that you shave off any facial hair you may have for extra speed J

Thanks to all entrants for taking the time to put together your lists. Here’s a handful of the best ones: Susie Chambers likes to dial it up all the way to 11, even on a school night:

  • Sleeping under the stars because as you doze off it's like looking at the biggest screen in the world!
  • Not scheduling in more than one trip out on weekend days because otherwise you don't get any "you time".
  • Watching the film 'Spinal Tap' because it's a classic and to start with you don't know whether it's a spoof or not.
  • Visiting Disneyland before you die because all of us want to be kids forever deep down!
  • Learning to play a musical instrument because it's great therapy if you're feeling down.
  • Telling your children, if you have any, that you love them because so many people forget to just come out and say it and it matters so much for children to know they're loved.
  • Warn people you go out drinking with whether you're a person (like me!) to get carried away with the music and end up randomly dancing on your own on the dance floor because it's important to remember to head home before 3am, especially if you've got work the next day!
  • Always look for opportunities to learn because we're so blessed to have these opportunities in our society whereas in other areas of the world people just don't get the chance.

Phil Darling has some unorthodox efficiency savings to offer to help get through the credit crunch:

  • Go Bald - I can recommend this as all the ladies love a baldy, and if all else fails you can do an impression of a walnut every time you look up.
  • Don't eat anything brown - Most things brown are poisonous, and the things that aren't are probably not very good for you.
  • Never answer the phone after 7.00pm - it will be a nice gentleman that insists you need new windows or that your life insurance isn't up to date
  • Never polish your car - it is a proven fact that if you polish your car it will rain within the hour. Also a shiny car is more attractive to a thief
  • Put your socks on while sitting on the toilet - can save valuable time in the morning if you hit the snooze button once too often
  • Eat at least one curry a week (as long as its not brown, see (2))- helps the digestive tract deal with the rigors of life
  • Don't howl at the moon - it worries the neighbours and isn't clever.
  • Expectant fathers watch the Simpsons - provides valuable parental advice for fathers. Just follow Homers example, I have and my kids are great.

Daniel doesn’t like Mondays, but clearly loves his ergonomic management style keyboard, given that ‘suck-up’ final recommendation:

  • Peep Show. It's back, it's British and it's still the funniest thing on TV. Proof that everything is more entertaining in the first person.
  • Tuesdays. They give you the longest period of time until the next Monday.
  • The Nintendo Wii. Trust good old Nintendo to make computer games sociable, popular and even healthy in one swoop. Plus no more repetitive strain in my thumb (and only a little tennis elbow!)
  • Lolcats. Funny pictures of cats. Needz Iz say morre?
  • A great money saver, this lists a free alternative to almost any expensive 0870 number you can think of.
  • Google Earth. You'd never wondered what a bird's eye view of your house would look like but now it's been invented I bet you really want to see it!
  • The Nectar card keyring tag. Not just a regular Nectar card but if you lose your keys, the finder can send them back to the free Nectar address and the nice people there will return them to you. Peace of mind and points for my shopping.
  • Your nice cheap value broadband. Call me a suck up if you like but it's cheap, it's fast, it has a decent download limit and it works. I use it and who are you to say I'm wrong?!

Sonja is never knowingly undersold:

  • Mytholm mist beer - because it is gorgeously smooth and refreshing.
  • Dishwasher - a Bosch one because they are very energy efficient and quiet and who in this day and age actually wants to wash up?
  • Ebuyer - Great products at fantastic prices, most products are reviewed and they even include bad reviews if they are appropriate. Also they are based in Sheffield and you can talk to a real person if you want.
  • Goosedown duvet - so warm and snuggly and lightweight if you buy an expensive one.
  • Hotel Chocolat - once you've tried them you will not want to go back to cheap chocolate. A small piece goes a long way.
  • Sockies - saves hours matching up socks especially good in a household of 4 when you all have black socks - they mean that your socks stay together as a pair through the wash and tumble drier and each person has their own colour of sockie so they can be easily sorted. Unfortunately I haven't been able to track any down for a while, they used to have them in Asda and Lakeland.
  • Lakeland Ltd - Fantastic cookware and innovative products. Their staff are second to none and if you haven't managed to get what you visited the store for they will send it on to you. They also offer a money back guarantee if you are not happy with anything you have bought no matter how long ago you bought it - amazing!
  • John Lewis - they have seemingly happy, well trained and knowledgeable staff and it shows. A shopping trip to any John Lewis store is always a pleasure as the shops are well laid out, clean and have no clutter.

Paul Bennett is no doubt making the most of our Twitter feed:

  • a fun, easy to use, positive (so far!) and amazingly powerful social network site- get feedback / mass action on a query / complaint etc, often from the main man/woman in charge!  Loads of celebs use it too, and reply to their fans' messages too- way cool!
  • find cheaper landline numbers for a lot of UK firms that use (and retain a slice of the call costs) a higher rate phone number, just to call them- that’s before you even get to buy something you want!
  • Automated phone banking- None of this press 1 for some unhelpful oik, or queuing for ages, etc- just call up, verify ID etc, get balance, transfer money, etc..
  • Give a new lease of life to your unwanted items, instead of throwing them away, which means they eventually end up in nasty, overfull landfill sites.. everything is free- you offer, someone local collects! You can also find some great items, too- most towns/cities have their own collective, on yahoo groups.
  • Quickly find a destination (AND the easist way there from another point, by car / public transport, or even walking!)
  • Some great pics, of inspiring food ideas!
  • A free, fun (and probably useful too!) morse code translator. useful for sending secret messages that you dont want people to realise.. unless they know morse code of course).
  • Some great online games- try the devilish connect4!)

Naturally, I couldn’t close without a shameless plug for our own products. If you’re with Plusnet for Home Phone, you won’t really need ‘Say No To 0870’, as 0845 and 0870 calls are now bundled in the inclusive call time for both our talk plans. Boring legal bit - please note that whilst I've checked the links and everything looks above board, ultimately Plusnet are not responsible for the content of external sites.


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