30/10/2018

Podcast ep57: PC Fairy Tales, The end of the DVD and Benny the Beluga

Oooh, a podcast.

The Friday night show on BBC Radio Kent that reviews the week's news is now a podcast too. Edited highlights are packaged up into pod-form for you listening pleasure and it's free.

In this week's episode, S01E57, Benny the beluga whale has ruined fireworks night, politically correct fairy tales are here and it's bye bye DVD.

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24/03/2018

Royal Wedding Invite [Podcast]

In this show Steve gets an invite to the royal wedding. Or does he?

No, he doesn't.

Here's the podcast of it for you to download/listen. (Originally broadcast on Friday 23rd of March 2018.)




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Get the info on how to listen to the show live here.

To find more radio show minipodcasts see here.
All past episodes can be found in the radio podcast archive.
And if you enjoyed that check out the SomeNews Topical Podcast.



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[Newspaper Column] Happy

Each week the Romford Recorder and Ilford Recorder have the Steve N Allen column. If you're around East London and West Essex you can buy the newspaper every Thursday/Friday, or follow @mrstevenallen to see the columns on Twitter. You can also read the archive of past ones, which can be found here.


You can click the image to zoom in on the paper, or read the column below.

Do you want to know the secret of happiness?

Don't ask me. I am well on my way to growing into the grumpy old man I always knew I'd be. To be fair, it's what I said I wanted to be when I grew up.

If you're still trying to head towards happiness there's a new trend in how to achieve it. Of course there is, there's a new trend in everything these days. See, I'm getting there.

Last year there was the Danish trend of hygge, which was all about wearing chunky socks. Then we had JOMO, the joy of missing out. The idea was staying at home and doing nothing was the key to being happy. A good plan unless you live with a grumpy old man like me.

Now it's the Finnish trend of Sisu, and Finland was recently named the happiest nation on the planet so there could be something in this.

What is Sisu? It involves things like going for a swim in freezing cold lakes.

When I heard that I thought, "I'm OK being grumpy, thanks."

Victor Meldrew wasn't chipper but didn't look like any of his bits were dropping off.

The theory is that such activities builds everyday courage and resilience, making it easier to cope with life.

No matter what problem befalls your day you can say, "Oh well, at least it wasn't as bad as that swim I had this morning."

But the same could be said of any bad thing. Why not start the day by trapping your hand in the car door, eat raw chillies or watch Piers Morgan? Everything seems better in comparison.

There's a chance it's nonsense. If being cold made you happier the weather so far this year would have made us all over the moon.

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21/02/2018

Podcast ep21: The Illuminati, Winter Olympics and Tree Poison

Oooh, a podcast.

The Friday night show on BBC Radio Kent that reviews the week's news is now a podcast too. Edited highlights are packaged up into pod-form for you listening pleasure and it's free.

In this week's episode, S01E21, a high up politician says the Illuminati is real, so he doesn't have long left, the war on plastic continues and the mysterious case of poison in a tree.

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[Newspaper Column] Plastics

Each week the Romford Recorder and Ilford Recorder have the Steve N Allen column. If you're around East London and West Essex you can buy the newspaper every Thursday/Friday, or follow @mrstevenallen to see the columns on Twitter. You can also read the archive of past ones, which can be found here.


You can click the image to zoom in on the paper, or read the column below.

First it was the war on drugs and some would say it wasn't won. Then the war on terror and it feels like that isn't a win yet.

Now we have the war on plastic. It seems like we're lowering our aim somewhat.

The BBC has said it plans to go plastic-free by 2020. That's less than two years away, which I can tell from my laminated desk calendar. Oh dear, there's a lot to do.

After their Blue Planet II programme made us realise the seas and oceans are getting filled with our rubbish people have thought we should do more.

They're not the first to act, a few years ago Starbucks started asking for your name and writing it on your cup. If that ends up in the sea everyone watching Blue Planet XI will see your name floating by and you'll be publicly shamed.

The Queen recently banned plastic straws from all royal estates. That's a commendable move but how many plastic straws do the elite get through? It's a little like me giving up smoking for Lent. Morally a good thing but seeing as I don't smoke I don't deserve a lot of praise.

Switching from plastic to tax-funded, gilt-edged silver straws isn't something the rest of us can do.

The BBC will start by phasing out single-use cups, those thing plastic vessels you have by the water cooler. So expect a lot more dry-mouth happening to their news readers, which should make it more fun to watch.

It's hard to eradicate all plastic because these polymerised items are so useful. Thanks to our new £5 and £10 notes even our money is made of plastic.

And they pay women 9% less of that. So that'll help. You're welcome planet.

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11/02/2018

Podcast ep20: SpaceX in Space, Trump's NHS and Zombie Laws

Get your pod on.

The Friday night show on BBC Radio Kent that reviews the week's news is now a podcast too. Edited highlights are packaged up into pod-form for you listening pleasure and it's free.

In this week's episode, S01E20, it was the week that Donald Trump had a go at our NHS, Elon Musk got rid of a car in a very original way, we got the repair bill for the Houses of Parliament and are the Spice Girls getting back together? @LarryEnts answers that one for us.

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Mash Report: Lucky People

You can catch Steve on BBC 2's The Mash Report on Thursday nights from 10pm. Old episodes are on the iPlayer now but meanwhile here's a clip from this week's.

In this clip, we investigate the downside to being rich and successful.

See the full show BBC 2 10pm Thursdays (repeated Sundays 10pm)



Watch the full Mash Report episodes here





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The Bitcoin Losers Hotline

Have you lost money on bitcoin? There's a phone number you can call, if you can afford it.
I have an announcement to make. I nearly got into bitcoin before it went up in value. You know, like everyone you meet did.

I know that everyone claims it, but for a while back in 2010 I set up some computers mining for bitcoin, got bored, stopped it and thought, “Well, if I spend all this money running my Linux machines crunching numbers I'll have spent more than the couple of quid I'll probably get out of it.”

If I would have found a bitcoin it could have been worth £25,000, which would have paid my electricity bill. Maybe. If I wasn't on a Big Six standard tariff.

But I stopped it, besides, I am from the East Midlands so I find that definition of “mining” to be offensive to my people.

While I have have missed out on money I may have dodged a problem. People are getting so into bitcoin that a bitcoin addiction hotline has been set up in Moscow.

In recent weeks the value of bitcoin has halved and there's a worry that this could push some investors over the edge. The helpline is there for them to talk about their feelings, like the one that was set up to help us through the break up of Take That.

I imagine the calls go like this.

CALLER: Oh no, the value of bitcoin has crashed and I've lost lots of money.
HELPER: OK, but didn't the value of bitcoin shoot up at the end of last year earning you that money?
CALLER: (pauses) Shut up, I want sympathy!


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[Newspaper Column] Royal Wedding

Each week the Romford Recorder and Ilford Recorder have the Steve N Allen column. If you're around East London and West Essex you can buy the newspaper every Thursday/Friday, or follow @mrstevenallen to see the columns on Twitter. You can also read the archive of past ones, which can be found here.


You can click the image to zoom in on the paper, or read the column below.

When we heard that Prince Harry's wedding didn't earn us a bank holiday I was upset. When they told us it was going to be on a Saturday and the FA Cup final day I was shocked. Now I have to wait for Prince George to tie the knot before I get to finish the spare room.

Now there are plans to extend pub opening hours on the day of the wedding.

Why are they doing this? Not, as I first thought, so they could simply hold the reception in a pub and save us taxpayers some money.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd said: "We want everyone to be able to make the most of such an historic occasion." If you want to make it a day to remember letting people drink so much they can't might not be the best way to go about it.

Last week there was Windsor council leader Simon Dudley asked Thames Valley Police to clear away the homeless people from the town as that's where the wedding will be. There was a backlash to this attitude on social media.

Now we hear the pubs will be open later. I wouldn't be surprised if Simon doesn't hand out a few tenners saying, "Why don't you get yourself a drink?" on the day of the event.

People always start drinking earlier on a cup final day and now you're letting them drink later?

You could try a system where only royal fans get the later hours but football fans would find a way to sneak in, pretending to be a royalist. You'll see men in scarves saying, "Nah, I think it's great Prince Harry is marrying Angela Merkel."

May 19th 2018 will certainly be remembered. Possibly not for the royal wedding but more as the day of the riots.

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03/02/2018

Podcast ep19: Walk-On Girls, Supermoons and The Memo

Get your pod on.

The Friday night show on BBC Radio Kent that reviews the week's news is now a podcast too. Edited highlights are packaged up into pod-form for you listening pleasure and it's free.

In this week's episode, S01E19, we hear about Donald Trump's memo, the end of the glamorous walk-on girls, one of the rarest moons we could see and lots of other stuff.

Subscribe to the podcast now to get it free every week.




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[Newspaper Column] Threxit - Thurrock Indeendence

Each week the Romford Recorder and Ilford Recorder have the Steve N Allen column. If you're around East London and West Essex you can buy the newspaper every Thursday/Friday, or follow @mrstevenallen to see the columns on Twitter. You can also read the archive of past ones, which can be found here.


You can click the image to zoom in on the paper, or read the column below.

Last week I spoke of the fact that when you think of UKIP now you think of Henry Bolton's love life, which made Dry January even harder.

As soon as that column came out we heard that all 17 councillors in Thurrock left the party. Who would have thought the printed word could have such impact?

They have formed what has been called the Thurrock Independents. Years after the United Kingdom Independence Party was formed a Brexit vote was passed so we can only assume that at some point in the future Thurrock will go independent.

It was in a column on the 20th of October last year that I analysed if Canvey Island would make it as its own country, now I have to do it again. Soon Romford will be surrounded by different nation states, like in the Anglo-Saxon days of England when there was a king of Mercia. If all these areas become independent and get a monarch that's job creation.

Thurrock isn't an island but that's fine, countries on the continent do well having land borders and if anything it's set up better for life as its own land than Canvey.

Like the UK itself, Thurrock has a tunnel and also a bridge that charges people to enter. It has a port on the Thames so could have its own navy.

It has Lakeside, which gives it a stable economy. We'll have to sort out a trade deal with Thurrock before we worry about one with the EU or we don't be able to get tea lights from that Ikea.

Yes, there may have to be a hard border and checkpoint in North Ockendon, causing more tension with South Ockendon, but it will mean my afternoon radio show is international, so I am all for it.

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Mash Report: BBC Gender Pay Gap

You can catch Steve on BBC 2's The Mash Report on Thursday nights from 10pm. Old episodes are on the iPlayer now but meanwhile here's a clip from this week's.

In this clip, it looks like the BBC has found a way to solve the gender pay gap.

See the full show BBC 2 10pm Thursdays



Watch the full Mash Report episodes here
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27/01/2018

Podcast ep18: Fake News, The Presidents Club and nice Camels

Get your pod on.

The Friday night show on BBC Radio Kent that reviews the week's news is now a podcast too. Edited highlights are packaged up into pod-form for you listening pleasure and it's free.

In this week's episode, S01E18, we hear about Donald Trump's fake news and how Theresa May is going to combat it, we hear about the pointless Pie Day and an even more pointless royal wedding.

Subscribe to the podcast now to get it free every week.




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