Archive for August, 2011

Robinson Crusoe – Daniel Defoe

Posted in Books on August 21, 2011 by thecognitivekey

It’s a while since I read this. It does differ from the adaptations which appear on TV, film and radio… the life described is far removed from today’s, much rougher and far shorter. The lives of others are far less respected too. It seems to be a natural thing to expect to kill or be killed.

There is a religious trend that I don’t recall from previous readings. A huge swing of Crusoe from being fairly normal to being totally God-focused. Maybe it is a reflection of the times, it was written in 1719 when I guess there was more religion about. It may be slightly preachy, accept your lot however tough. Odd that I missed it earlier. It did rather spoil the read, as did the conversion of Friday to Christianity, the arguments Crusoe used to debunk the religion of Friday certainly could be applied to Christianity.  An odd thing about the book is the treatment of Friday…he is assumed to naturally be a servant rather than a companion, especially when they are rescued, at that point Friday becomes merely a side issue in the story. Crusoe leaves the island but also leaves some of the mutineers there, and there are Spaniards due to sail there to. In the wrapping up of the tale, Crusoe arranges for women to be sent to the island for the men… how outrageous is that? Women as mere chattels… that never reaches the modern adaptations.The end of the book is odd too, again an author unsure of how to end the tale.  A large part of the end is taken with a cross Alps journey where they are attacked by wolves and bears, dreadful mistreatment of a bear by Friday. I didn’t realise that wolves were so much a problem in those times…maybe they were…but the whole story just peters out. A disappointment.



Posted in General on August 10, 2011 by thecognitivekey

Blast – that’s another one broken off. I shall have to give the dentist a call tomorrow…though it’s more difficult to get to see him these days as I am working at the other end of the county. Just when you think things are settling down…

Web Domain sold

Posted in General on August 9, 2011 by thecognitivekey

My goodness, I never thought someone would come and ask to buy a domain, but they have. It’s and I got it when Sarah was making fimo jewellery and selling it on-line. She did all the web design herself, but I did all the boring stuff like loading up the photos of the stock and writing the descriptive blurb. Well, money got tighter and it was a question of carry on and pay the hosting costs or just stop, as the hosting was around £100 for the year and more than was coming in, the decision was fairly easy.

So the domain has been dormant, just pointing at my website until the weekend. Now it will be resurrected under new ownership, but selling fimo jewellery. It’s a popular pastime. Karen is now running the site and I look forward to seeing it develop into a successful site.

Spin – Martin Sixsmith

Posted in Books on August 7, 2011 by thecognitivekey

Another political novel. This one far more recent, published in 2004 and set in the ‘fictional’ Labour government of the early 21st century. The central theme through the book is the manipulation of the news by politicians for their own ends regardless of the consequences to innocent people and others around them. It’s a very light read…they set up a Department of Society with unlimited powers to obtain ‘information’ about people so they can be pressured into making the right decisions. Very alarmist. The central character is a child molester…but I don’t really care for anyone in this book. The storyline is a bit far-fetched…the nemesis of the child molester is not believable. The end just happens and I still don’t understand the last few pages. Fortunately it’s quiet fast paced so I haven’t wasted too much time reading it. It all started so promisingly…

Washing Machine Blues II

Posted in General on August 7, 2011 by thecognitivekey

Up early to try to get the water out of this blasted machine. The book says to use the outlet pipe, but if it’s a integral appliance then the filter at the front can be used, though this can be messy. The filter option it is. Loads of water, about half an inch short of a bowlful. The filter is blocked…plenty of lint from the new towels I bought last weekend. I wonder if that will fix it… worth a try.

Hurrah! Cleaning out the filter has saved a trip to Currys today. I have completed the washing, it was one of those lintful towels! A check on the filter afterwards to remove yet more lint.

That was a relief. I know I have to change the machine but I was looking to do it a bit later in the year. Too many other expenses at the minute. I need a couple of months free of extra expenses before I go for a new machine. I need a new shed, washing machine, car insurance is just around the corner, RAC renewal next month…

Washing Machine Blues

Posted in General on August 6, 2011 by thecognitivekey

Oh my…get in Saturday evening to find the washing machine hasn’t finished its cycle. Odd, should have done. No, it has finished I just can’t open the door. Why? Because the blasted thing is half-full of water still!

The washing machine was here when I bought the house, it’s part of the built-in white good in the kitchen. It’s never been a brilliant machine, the condenser drier part gave up many months ago, in fact I had to disable that function as it was causing the machine to trip internally. So I was always going to need a new machine, it’s just a question of when.

By carefully choosing a program I managed to get the water level down below the door and was able to open it. The sopping washing removed it just left a of of water to deal with. I have now checked out the internet and I like the look of a Panasonic… looks like Currys in the morning.


Posted in Customer Service, General on August 2, 2011 by thecognitivekey

My RAC membership is due this month. The renewal is £185. This is a huge sum.

I have checked the AA and they will give me the same cover for £99, but as I would be a new customer I can join via the TopCashBack site and get a £30 refund…making the total cost just £69, a saving of £116.

So I have just called the RAC to cancel my membership. Haha, they point out that the AA is actually £134 for like-for-like cover, but I would get £50 cashback then. Making it £84, saving £101.

The RAC chap says he will see what he can do…he can get it down to £108 which is a pretty good reduction. He is trying hard to sell this…still £28 more that the overall cost of the AA. He’s not able to cut the cash cost any more, but he is able to offer me £20 of M&S vouchers, that makes the total cost £88, just £4 more than the AA.

I have been with the RAC since 1992 and they have been a great service, prompt and always very polite. I was once with the AA and they sent out a chap from a local garage, the man didn’t stop effing and blinding the whole time he fixed my car. I am not averse to the odd curse, but this chap even astounded me. I thought then that the AA were not quite all they claim. So all things together I think it’s a good deal to stay with the RAC, a far better service that the AA at a cost of just £4 more, it has to be a bargain.