Are you retro???

SO you’re a tad unsure if you’re retro or not. Here are 5 indications that will tell if retroness is rooted deep inside you.


You still have a bundle of Cassettes.

You refuse to buy those CD’s … you think CD’s are the work of the evil one and you steer clear. You prefer the good old C90’s or C60’s. You love to see the reel on the cassette turning as your favourite old school tunes pump out of the cassette player. Nothing beats the ‘Clunk, Cluck, Click’ sound  whist loading a freshly recorded tape and hitting the play button.





You are the proud owner of a Black & White television.

You don’t need colours! The good old Black and White TV does just what you need it to do. All the TV programmes look like they’ve been make in the 50’s and 60’s on the B&W screen. You have 4 buttons for 4 TV channels. You dare not switch over to a modern colour flat screen TV where you end up paying for a colour TV licence. The B&W TV is a non mover in your household.




You don’t own a microwave.

You use the cooker! Microwaves are a ‘No No’! Stick your food in a box, slam the door and within seconds the food is steaming hot … ermm … you’re not convinced. When it comes to microwaves, you smell a Rat … something is not quite right. You stick to your guns and keep cooking on your trusty 4 hob gas cooker. You tuck into your meal knowing that it’s not contaminated with radioactive particles.





You drive a good old fashioned Volvo.

You like to feel secure and you feel totally assured when you get behind the wheel of your trusty Volvo. It roars like a tank, feels like a tank and the other car will come off worse in a collision. Your Volvo is well made car that’s built to last. The Volvo is your retro ride.


You have  Twin Tub washing machine.

You refuse to splash the cash on a front loading washing machine. Instead you stick to your robust twin tub. You enjoy the rigour of filing the machine up with water, throwing your clothes in and watching the machine drag your clothes around like a roller coaster. There’s very little recovery time for your clothes after rinsing as they’re slung into the spinner next door. You know your clothes are well clean after the vigorous experience of the twin tub.






Product review: The Bearded Colonel

SHAVING … It’s something I’ve been doing for the last 28 years. Life can be unfair … we so often lose hair from our head, but when it comes to the our Neck, Jaw and Cheeks, the hair continues to grow like a well fertilized garden.

My 28 years of shaving goes like this:

  • Started off by hesitantly using a single blade razor.
  • Progressed to an electric shaver.
  • Ditched the electric shaver and moved onto a twin blade razor.
  • Progression to a Three blade razor.
  • Learnt how to shave properly!
  • Progression to a Four blade razor.
  • Subscribed to the Bearded Colonel.

Allow me to put things into context. My previous razor was good … I managed to get a decent shave out of it. The blades were expensive but that was not the main issue. The main issue was that I had to change the blade after every 2 shaves (there was a huge difference in shave quality between the 1st and 3rd shave). It was at this point that I decided to stick my neck out and try out the Bearded Colonel.




The Colonel arrives

The razor looks simple and uncomplicated. After years of using razors with buttons and switches on the handle, this razor looks uncomplicated and ready.

The blades came in a traditional looking Gold tin. I was hesitant when I was about to have my first shave using the Colonel, mainly because I had never shaved with a 5 blade razor before so I was bracing myself for shredded, sore cheeks.





The first thing I noticed when I started shaving was the lightness of the razor. My previous razor was more weighty. The Colonel was also easy to hold. The combination of a less weighty razor and ease of holding meant that it was easy to control during the shave. There is a nice amount of flex on the razor head so it gripped to my skin whilst moving from the jawbone to the neck area.

After making it through my 1st shave with The Colonel, the next stage was inspection time. The results of my inspection is as follows:

  • Amount of cuts/nicks/drops of blood = 0
  • Handling on the straights and bends = impressive.
  • Shave quality = very impressive.

After the shave there was a bit of tingling around my neck area which lasted for a few hours (seems like my skin was adjusting to a different razor and a closer shave). Subsequent shaves have left my skin tingle free.

So how many shaves am I getting out of each razor blade? So far I’ve worked my way up to 4 and looking to push for 5. Allow me to put things into some kind of context again … the hairs on my face are tough (like Barbed Wire tough) and curly. Even though I mostly shave after having a shower, I’m sure it’s still a challenge for any blade to work their way through my stubbly facial garden.



So what’s the verdict on the Colonel? One word comes to mind … Simplicity. This razor is easy to use … it’s simple but extremely effective. I’m liking it. The shave quality is of a higher standard compared to my previous razor (in terms of smoothness and closeness of shave). The Colonel not only has a regular place in my bathroom cabinet but he also slips into my toiletry bag during business travel and weekends away. In general, The Colonel does an excellent job without buttons, batteries, excessive weight and shouting. The Colonel is pretty cool … I’m sticking with the Colonel.


retro lagers …

THE adverts may have stuck in your mind. The memory of gulping down one of these retro lagers may fill you with delight or displeasure. Let’s look at 5 retro lagers and let us know what memories they provoke.

Long Life. This is the ‘Steady Eddie’ of lagers that’s ‘Specially brewed for the Can’. So what can we say about the Long Life drinker? Being the ‘Steady Eddie’ lager, the chances are that the drinker is pretty level headed. The consumer of this lager will have a manageable mortgage, a lawn that’s kept in tip-top condition and prudent with the Pound notes. Conclusion: marriage material, sound judgement and a chunky pension!

Cerveza Long Life (UK) Lager (330 ml) 1992 - A - DSC09842



Skol. ‘Horribly good lager’. Lighthearted, fun and down the earth. This middle of the road lager is one you’ll enjoy with a bunch of mates … Curry, banter and Skol are the perfect hat-trick for an enjoyable night out. Consumer type: chilled out, funny, ‘works to live’, stand up comedian. Marriage material, fun, fun fun but be willing to lend em a Deep Sea Diver (fiver … or £5 for the non-Londoners) once they’ve spent all their cash.





Harp. ‘Stay sharp to the bottom of the glass’. This is the ‘need to get away and relax’ lager. Getting hassle from your partner? Make a quick dash to the local and down a pint of Harp. Boss giving you a hard time at work? Take a sneaky detour on the way home and sink a couple pints of Harp. Consumer type: hates long term commitment, takes each day as it comes, introvert tendencies, keeps a sharp eye on the purse strings.




Tuborg. The no fuss, low profile, laid back, happy, ‘whatever’ lager. Things going wrong in all areas of your life? No worries … grab yourself a Tuborg and soon you’ll be shrugging your shoulders and grinning like a Cheshire Cat. Consumer type: ‘It is what is is’, ‘That’s life’, ‘You win some … you lose some’.



Special Brew. Whilst growing up in London, I knew a man who loved Special Brew. Special Brew was actually a regular part of his daily diet … a bowl of porridge followed by a can of Special Brew … a BLT sandwich followed by 2 cans of Special Brew … an evening meal followed by numerous cans of Special Brew. The result of this was that this poor chap had a constant grin on his face, had humorous discussions with lamp-posts, walked in a Zig Zag fashion and had no knowledge of the day of the week. Special Brew is the original strong lager … don’t mess! Consumer type … someone wanting total, everlasting memory erasure!


Click Click

IT’S holiday time. Get packing for your holiday. Swimming gear … check … Passport … check … Toothbrush … check … Camera … check … Film for camera … errrm …

Don’t panic as the Chemist is still open. Go pick up a few rolls of 35mm film to get you through the holidays. Sling them in the suitcase and you’re all set for some Sun, Sea and Snapping!



Once you’ve arrived at your holiday destination, get the camera out, load up the film and get snapping!

Spot a nice building? Don’t hesitate … get your camera out and snap away … Click Click! Get your crew to strike a pose in front of the building and keep Click Clicking away. Ask a passer by to take a photo of you and your crew, strike a pose as the passer by Click Clicks away.



The clicking never stops … make sure you capture the golden sand and the deep blue sea … Click Click. The friendly Bar person who knocks up a special cocktail just for you … make them feel like the best Bar person in the world by asking them to look into the lens so you can click away.

Whilst enjoying the delightful nightlife, keep clicking. Some members of your crew looking a bit battered after knocking back too many cocktails, click em! Strange dance routines being displayed on the dance floor, Click Click!

Click Clicking is a full time 24/7 operation. You may be on holiday but that’s no reason to slack. Keep clicking and show that camera no mercy … punish that shutter button! Be ready load up another roll of film and keep clicking. Keep reloading those rolls of film and don’t allow that shutter button to cool down!



Your camera will get a breather once back in the suitcase on the journey home. You can’t wait to bring the 10 rolls of used film to the chemist to be developed.

Ten days after dropping your 20 rolls of used film off at the chemist, you pay an absolute fortune and collect the stack of photos. You dash home filled with excitement looking forward to seeing the fruits of your relentless clicking. You start looking at the photos … ‘that’s a fab photo’ as your mind races back to the scene on the photo. Next photo … ‘Ohh what’s that suppose to be? It’s a bit dark’. As you flick through your photo’s, the sequence is like this … great photo followed by rubbish photo … bright ‘unable to make out what it is’ photo, followed by dark ‘unable to make out what it is’ photo … brilliant photo followed by an alright photo … no photo followed by another no photo. It’s an emotional rollercoaster. A quick calculation at the end reveals the following: Photos taken = 240 … cost to develop = I can’t wait until payday … decent photos = 152 … success percentage = 63.3%.




If only. If only they could have cameras when you can view the photos instantly. If only they had cameras where you could delete the not so good photos instantly. If only there was no need for rolls of film and instead the photos were stored in some kind of memory. If only there was a way of sharing the photos with friends and family without having to invite them round. If only …


Steed … John Steed

STEP aside James Bond. Move over Mr Milk Tray. Superman, Batman and Spiderman … You are superheroes but you’ll need to take a back seat. There’s a gentleman on the scene who oozes so much coolness you’d think Winter lasted all year. He’s a gentleman who knows how to treat a lady … none of this making a lady open the car door … he would swing open the door and allow the lady to get comfy before slamming the door shut. He’s charming. He’s articulate. He’s dashing. He’s sharply dressed. This distinguished gentleman is Steed … John Steed. The lady he is most likely to be opening the car door for is Mrs Peel … Emma Peel. The show they appeared in was The Avengers.

Smooth talking distinguished English gentleman. Bowler hat wearing, Umbrella swinging, sharply dressed in Pierre Cardin clothing … Steed.

Charming, approachable, smiling, good looking gentleman … Steed.

Clever, cool, crime fighting gentleman … Steed.

Steed’s got style. He’s always smartly dressed. He’s never been seen wearing Trainers, a Shell Suit or ripped Jeans. Steed always looks immaculate. Want to dress to impress? Steed’s your shining example.

Steed’s an intelligent gent. He’ll crack cryptic clues and track down the criminals. Once the criminals are in sight, Steed will outwit and overpower them. Criminals know that their days are numbered when Steed’s on the case.

Need a few pointers on how to treat your Wife or Girlfriend? Steed is all you need. Opening cars doors, considerate, kind, delightful and happy. I guarantee that you won’t hear any naughty words flowing from Steed’s mouth. Want a successful relationship? Steed.

What more can we say about Steed? We could go on and on but hopefully you’ve got the gist about Steed. He’s a shining example of what a lot of us guys should be like. On a personal level, I dress like Steed but sadly when I look in the mirror I see a poor imitation. I read, recite and study to obtain an intelligence level on par with Steed’s, but it’s just not happening. I try to be charming to women but my efforts are usually greeted with looks of ‘What you up to?’ or ‘Weirdo!’ I’ve now decided to hold up the White Flag and call it a day. You’re unique Mr John Steed.