[Podcast] Corona Special 2 - Conspiracies, Bats and Royals

SomeNews podcast
It's the Steve N Allen Podcast (with Steve N Allen). Starting up again to survive the corona situation. Episode 2. (If you missed the last episode you can get it here)

In this podcast:

The coronavirus continues and maybe a podcast can help. In this week’s episode we look at the conspiracy theories and fake news being spread on the internet, we ask, “What can we learn from bats about how to cope with it and does sleeping upside down help?” and coronavirus on the ISS?

We also catch up with broadcast legend Jonny Gould about how to home-school.

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Recent Podcast Update

Finding ways to pass the time in lockdown can be a challenge. There's only so much cleaning a person can do and I found that personally that amount is very little.

Some people sit and watch Netflix. The problem with that is after a few episodes it asks, "Are you still watching?" The judgemental tone can upset your day.

So I have been passing the time by being on a selection of podcasts. You can listen to them here.

🠞 Plank of the Week

I was a guest on Mike Graham's Plank of the Week podcast. Along with fellow guest Emily Carver we look at some of the biggest fools in the last 7 days from an annoying journalist to a sex-partying footballer via every idiot who went sunbathing.

Find it on Tune In or Player.fm

🠞 Pull Back Reveal

In this podcast there are interviews with comedians, normally about the comedy industry and how you got in it. Seeing as things are all tainted by the virus this episode talks about how coronavirus will impact those of us who used to make a living telling jokes to people.

Find it on Tune In or Player.fm

🠞 Desert Island Dicks

I was a guest on Desert Island Dicks. It was recorded just before the lockdown, so I actually went into a studio to record this. But back then we had just started to get used to a world without handshakes. In this podcast I think of the people and things I really wouldn't want to be trapped on a dessert island with. Not that we can fly anywhere these days.

Find it on Tune In or Player.fm

🠞 What Have We Learnt?

Back from before the plague, I was in this episode of What Have We Learnt? It's a podcast that interviews people about the lessons they have picked up from getting to where they are in their career. In it I talk about performing at the Edinburgh Festival, working on satire and performing on radio too.

Find it on Tune In

🠞 My SomeNews Podcast

And, of course, there's my SomeNews podcast that has been brought back to help us all deal with the extra time stuck at home. If you'd like some entertainment get your ears over here.

Find it on Tune In or Player.fm

You can find more podcasts in the podcast section of this site and on the Twitter hashtag #SNApods.



At Home With Steve - Corona Updates

As part of a new feature for radio, I have been recording audio diary updates around the house each day during the lockdown.

You can hear then below.

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 8

Day 9

Day 10

Day 11

There will be more in the future. To get them follow @mrstevenallen on Twitter.


12 Reasons You Can Leave Your House Under Lockdown

I'll never forget where I was when I heard the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson tell the nation we were under lockdown because of coronavirus. I was sat right here. I haven't moved since.

We had been previously told about social distancing, washing hands, not going out and self-isolating and it wasn't enough so Boris came into our homes. Thankfully via the TV because, as it turned out, he was infected with it.

He told us the four reasons you could leave you home but when greater detail was publish there are 12 reasons you can leave them home, so I thought we'd take a look.

1 - Shopping for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible.

We haven't been given clarity on what counts as a necessity. If we use the same criteria as Waitrose's Essentials Range it includes things like lardons and ratatouille provencale. How frequently do we need those? I've made it to this age without buying them once yet, so the data is still pending.

2 - One form of exercise per day, for example a run, walk or cycle – alone or with members of your household.

Surely no one is doing that. If you're spending 23 and a half hours a day in the same house as someone and they say, "You going on a run? I'll come with you," they're trying to push you over the edge.

3 - Any medical need, including to donate blood.

Again, it could be a good way to get some time to yourself. You may not have been a blood donor before but if it gets you some alone time and biscuits it's like best day out available at the moment.

4 - To avoid or escape risk of injury or harm.

That one makes sense. It wasn't on the original list of four but if you were stood there as your house was falling down shouting, "No, I can't go out, I've already done one jog today," you'd be silly.

5 - To provide care or help to a vulnerable person.

I'd imagine that's not only for those who have to look after a relative. If you open your door, see someone has just been hit by a car, you don't point at the door frame and shrug your shoulders at them while mouthing the word, "Sorry!"

6 - Travelling for work purposes, but only where you cannot work from home.

Yes, there are some jobs that you can't do at home. People always list things like baristas, but I'm not sure about that one. Surely you could make a coffee at home. Come on, try harder.

7 - To move children under 18 between parents’ home if they do not live together.

The parents may have lived together at the start of this lockdown, but as time goes on there'll be an exponential graph somewhere that shows you how many break-ups there have been.

8 - Key workers and parents of vulnerable children can leave to take children to and from school or to their childcare provider.

Of course. That makes sense. When we heard the schools were shutting we knew they were still open for some children. How were they supposed to get there when the lockdown came in? Tunnel?

9 - To move house, but only if it’s unavoidable.

Oooh, loophole. If you want to go to see friends just buy their house off them. They can't touch you for it.

10 - To attend a funeral, but only when it’s a member of your household or a close family member. If the deceased doesn’t have any family attending, you can attend as a friend.

Also a possibly loophole but it would involve you killing someone off just to get to see then and maybe that would lead to an even bigger fine, I haven't looked into it.

11 - To attend critical public services – such as social services, support for victims, support provided by the Department for Work and Pensions.

That one feels very specific, almost like it was added by Thérèse Coffey in case she needs to pop out for some reason.

12 - To fulfil legal obligations when physical attendance is absolutely necessary.

So if you want more than one trip out a day, go and get yourself some community service.

And that's the full list that was published. After reading all that I think I'll stay in and have a nice sit down.

➡⮱Read the source story

[Audio]: Here's some audio on coronavirus

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[Podcast] Corona Special 1 - Experts, Fools and Trump

SomeNews podcast
It's the Steve N Allen Podcast (with Steve N Allen). Starting up again to survive the corona situation. Episode 1.

In this podcast:

Obviously it’s corona news because that’s pretty much all the news. We break it down with a look at our hopes for April Fool’s Day, experts give advice and answer your questions, Trump is doing something well and we’re joined by Mark Machado because I needed to talk to another human.

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[Columns] How To Work From Home During Coronavirus

Each week I write newspaper columns for a variety of titles across the UK. You can find then in London, Essex, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire and Wiltshire and Hertfordshire.

With the UK struggling to get to grips with the corona crisis, I have been using more of the columns to find the uplifting angles to the main news. In this one I look at some tips from for working at home, seeing as I have done it, and secretly loved it, for years. Click to have a read.



What Will A Corona Wedding Be Like

More coronavirus fallout coming down the news pipes, which I am trying to spin into good news to help us all cope.

We've been told that weddings will be limited to five people. This is good news in many ways. It will help to cut down on social interaction, which can lead to viral spread, but also it means it will cut down the chances of being invited to a wedding.

When the economy takes a downturn it is good to know we won't have to buy toasters for people we hardly know.

It also means good news for anyone who is getting married when they shouldn't. The vicar will say, "If anyone here knows of any reason these two should not be joined in holy matrimony speak now or forever hold their peace." There are fewer people to say anything. This is a great time for bigamy.

Is five still too many? We're trying to avoid spreading a disease here. They have cancelled my stand up gigs and some of those only had five people in them, so we can do better.

The church says you need five. You need to have a priest, a bride and groom (or brides and grooms totalling two), and two witnesses. Surely these days the witnesses could be replaced by a CCTV system. We could get that down to three.

The priest? Really needed? With talk of having patients seeing doctors on Skype I'm sure we could do something similar. Doctors have a greater need to interact with you. You may have to disrobe for a doctor. You really really shouldn't for a priest.

We're down to the main two. We can't get lower than that but we could ask them to stand two metres apart and when they go home to have their honeymoon in isolation we could ask that they don't go near each other at all.

That way, they won't just be like newlyweds, it'll be like they have been married for years.

⮱Read the source story

[Audio]: Here's some audio on panic buying

Check this out on Chirbit

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Will We Turn The Coronavirus Tide?

On what feels like Day 172 of the Corona Crisis (we're actually about a week in), we finally heard some good news from our Prime Minister.

Boris Johnson has said he is "absolutely confident" that the UK can "turn the tide" of the coronavirus outbreak in 12 weeks.

Don't get me wrong, 12 weeks is a long time, especially if you're having to spend most of that time trapped at home with your relatives. It's a well-worn phrase, "You can pick your friends, not your family," but you don't get locked down with the people you'd pick, do you?

No one has factored into the projected death rate the number of people done in because they said, "Right, where shall we go today?" everyday during a quarantine.

There is a caveat. The Prime Minister said we could turn the tide "if" we stuck to the rules set out by the Government. Oh dear. I'm not sure we'll do that. We don't seem to be good at sticking to rules even when they are for our own good. We can't keep BMW drivers out of the motorway lanes with a red X on them even with a wide reaching radio ad campaign.

We are a nation of people who need to be told, every time a Tube train pulls up, "Please allow passengers off the train before you board."

The platform announcers may as well be saying, "Please obey the laws of physics. Allow mass that is occupying the space that you would like to occupy to leave that space before you move your mass into it." That's how basic their request is and yet the people on the platform still try to rush onto the train.

Those people must hate it when they're trying on shoes and there's some paper stuffed down the toe end. "No, I won't take the paper out first before I put my foot in. Bring me the size 14s!"

If our future safety is dependent on our ability to follow rules, we're all in trouble.

Before the pubs were forced to close we had been advised not to go to them, but in London you could see people out drinking every evening. And if they drove there I bet they didn't even follow the arrows painted on the floor of the car park.

We've all eaten a microwaved meal that tells you it needs 4 minutes, a stirring, and another 4 minutes but we don't follow that rule. We put it on for 8 and eat a dish that's somehow too hot and too cold at the same time.

The rule is, "Do not use cotton buds in your ears." And yet we all do. Why are they making so many cotton buds if people aren't using them in their ears?

We know that speeding kills so a rule telling us to keep below a certain speed is good for us and yet a record 2.02 million speeding tickets were handed out in England and Wales last year, according to figures from collated by the Home Office.

The only rule I agree with breaking now is the one we're old on the London Underground. They have signs that say, "Always hold the handrail." No. I'd rather take my chances with gravity than pick up whatever germs these train rushing, arrow ignoring, bad microwaving, fast cotton budders have left on there.

⮱Read the source story

[Audio]: Good news for hand sanitiser users.

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[Columns] How Are We Coping With Coronavirus

Each week I write newspaper columns for a variety of titles across the UK. You can find then in London, Essex, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire and Wiltshire and Hertfordshire.

With the UK struggling to get to grips with the corona crisis, events may be cancelled, elections will be, toilet roll has never been so wanted, here is a collection of recent newspaper columns I have written on the topic. Click to have a read.

In the Hackney Gazette I tried to find the positives for introverts during this difficult time.

In the Barking and Dagenham Post I talk loo roll and other essential supplies.

And in the Swindon Advertiser I tackle the issue of panic buying. I tried to get people to stop. Judging by the look of the shelves in the shop, I need to work harder.



Are You Really Safe From Coronavirus On The London Underground

There is a lot of misinformation out there about coronavirus. There must be. That’s why a recent poll found that 38% of beer-drinking Americans say they won't order a Corona because of the virus.

When bird flu was in the news did they swap which brand of powdered custard they bought? Probably.

It’s like the ignorance we had in the 80s but this time you can catch this illness from heavy petting and toilet seats. You’re more likely to do some heavy petting or spend time near a toilet seat if you have had lots of Corona lager to drink, so maybe they have a point.

I am all for averting a panic but I’m not sure about what the London mayor has been saying. Sadiq Khan has said there is ‘no risk’ of people catching coronavirus while travelling on buses or trains in the capital.

No risk? Has he been on the Tube? It feels like there’s a risk of catching things they haven’t been discovered yet.

There are loudspeaker safety announcements that tell us, “Always hold the handrail.” No way. I would rather take my chances with gravity than risk catching whatever lies on that dirty rubber band.

Mr Khan said it is “important we don’t spread panic or alarm”. I agree, but don’t promise too much. OK, the air is so thick and toxic down on the Underground that there’s a chance the virus is killed off as soon as it is sneezed out, but can we be 100% sure?

The thing about the Tube is that there are lots of people on it, around 5million use it everyday. And a lot of those people are dirty gits. You can be sat there, reading your copy of the Hackney Gazette*, minding your own business when you hear someone start coughing and you see they’re not covering their mouths.

They might as well be going round licking the metal poles. People would still get ill but at least the poles would get a bit of a clean.

Some have tried to reduce their chance of catching corona on the Tube. There have been pictures of people wearing one cup from an old bra over their face. Don’t do that in public. That’s the kind of thing to enjoy in the privacy of your own home.

There was one man who wore a Tesco bag-for-life over his head. It might stop you breathing in germs but only because it’ll stop you breathing. Even children know not to put plastic bags on their heads. That bag-for-life won’t have to last long to fulfil the promise in its name.

There are still relatively few cases of people with COVID-19 in the UK so the odds of contracting it are very small. There’s no need to make your own hazmat suit but don’t promise there’s no chance of catching it on the Tube because that would imply it’s safer down there than everywhere else. And if that's true, the rest of the world needs a deep clean.

⮱Read the source story

*Where you can read my newspaper column

[Audio]: A look at the hygiene advice we’re getting with COVID-19

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[Video] Fake News - Priti and Yorkshire Tea

You can now see Steve N Allen in the webshow Fake News. This week we covered the missing Radio 1 DJ issue, Yorkshire tea's right wing credentials and Priti Patel's evil side.

It’s a topical comedy show that mixes fake news with the real stuff but is there any difference.

Follow it on YouTube to see all the episode.

πŸ“ΊSee the rest here


[Podcast] Steve N Allen's Week ep 129 - Priti Patel, AI Police and Terror

It’s episode 129, already!

In this week’s episode of the Steve N Allen’s Week podcast we talk about...

How you could smell like terror
Why computers are replacing the police
The town with more hairdressers than heads
Pun crimes and Priti Patel’s bullying and whatnot

Have a listen…

And now you can subscribe to the podcast so you never miss it.



A Few More Columns

Each week I write newspaper columns for a variety of titles across the UK. You can find then in London, Essex, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire and Wiltshire.

Here are a few from this week. Click on the picture if you’d like to read it.

In the Romford Recorder I look at one of the reasons there could be fewer people paying the licence fee.

In this week’s Swindon Advertiser I defend the NHS from another attacker. It's Gwyneth Paltrow and her candle in her wind.

Keep an eye out in your local paper as you never know when I might be writing something near you.


Fake News

You can now see Steve N Allen in the webshow Fake News.

It’s a topical comedy show that mixes fake news with the real stuff but is there any difference.

Follow it on YouTube to see all the episode.

Here’s a recent one to get you started.

πŸ“ΊSee the rest here


[Podcast] Steve N Allen’s Week ep 128 - Fashion, Breakfast and Cheats

In this week’s episode of the Steve N Allen’s Week podcast we talk about...

Steve at London Fashion Week
The London Eye turns 20
What should happen to people who eat in cinemas
The Learner Driver who cheated
Why breakfast may make you slimmer

Have a listen…

And now you can subscribe to the podcast so you never miss it.



Hey Alexa! Is This Proof You're Spying On Us

Google Home, Amazon’s Echo and the like are often referred to as internet-enabled speakers, but that’s only half the story. If we called them internet-enabled microphones we’d feel a little creeped out. They are in our homes listening to us all the time.

When I first got one I like it. It was rare to be listened to at home. But now we’re hearing stories about how these things spy on us.

A former Amazon executive, Robert Fredrick, has said he turns the company’s Alexa smart speakers off when he wants to have a ‘private’ moment.

We all assume he means sex. What other private moment would you not want recording? You’re far less likely to shout out the wrong name during a poo.

It must act as an early warning sign for his missus. When she notices him going round unplugging the smart speakers she knows what’s about to happen.

Recently we heard that Amazon admitted it did turn over recordings made by Alexa to contractors to analyse. Those contractors aren’t meant to let humans have a listen and laugh at the rude stuff but you can’t be sure. It’s the same logic that means you didn’t take your saucy photos to be developed in Snappy Snaps.

In an interview with the BBC, Robert said he turns the devices off if he wants to talk about something that he wouldn’t want people listening to. He said, “I don’t want certain conversations to be heard by humans.”

The obvious question is, if he doesn’t want humans to hear it, who is he having that conversation with?

It’s either our alien overlords or is Henry the Hoover needs help.

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[Podcast] Steve N Allen’s Week ep 127

In this week’s episode of the Steve N Allen’s Week podcast we talk about the man who sat in a barrel at the top of a pole for very little reason, jackets for cyclists, how to date a millennial, the Bond film theme, Boris’s new bridge, the woman who dated a bank robber by mistake, why we should ban the hospital gown and probably much much more.

Have a listen…

And now you can subscribe to the podcast so you never miss it.



Coronavirus Masks Are The Fashion For London

You know me, I follow London Fashion Week as much as the next man, as long as the next man is a Northerner who has worn the same outfit for the last twenty years.

Normally there are weird outfits that you know you will never see anyone wearing. Some model will parade along the catwalk in a shredded bin liner with rabbit foot keyrings attached and electrical tape on their nipples and that’s meant to be what everyone will be wearing next year.

OK, if Brexit hits hard maybe people will be wearing bin bags but who is going to bother with the tape? It’ll pull the hairs out when you remove it.

This year that won’t be a problem as some models have been wearing something that you can already see on the High Street. They’re wearing face masks.

Maybe I’m out of touch but I don’t look for the latest trends when I am buying a face mask, I just look for the one that will stop me catching the latest pox. Am I “soooo last season” if mine still says SARS on it and not COVID-19?

It’s like what my parents would say when I had to wear a cagoule, “It doesn’t matter what you look like, as long as you’re dry.” They were right. I wasn’t fully dry because of all the tears caused by the bullying I received for wearing that cagoule but at least I didn’t get the rain on me.

A fashion face mask might not be as good as a standard one. Have you seen what fashion has been doing to jeans lately? They used to have a few rips in them when distressed jeans became a thing but now it’s more rip than jean. You see some people looking like they have just narrowly survived a werewolf attack.

You do that to a face mask and you’re catch whatever is going.

Of course, there is every chance that the people at the London Fashion Show aren’t wearing them to look good and maybe it’s because a fashion show brings together people from all over the world so could easily spread viruses but I wouldn’t know. As I said, if it’s not jeans and a shirt I have no idea what fashion is.

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A Week In Columns

Each week I write newspaper columns for a variety of titles across the UK. You can find then in London, Essex, Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire, Lincolnshire and Wiltshire.

Here are a few from this week. Click on the picture if you’d like to read it.

In this week’s Hackney Gazette I look at the trust we have in the police to help us if we are the victim of a crime. Experts say that trust is reducing. I also mention my pant theft.

In the Barking and Dagenham Post I look at the new Government policy to get rid of the polluting petrol and diesel cars. We’ll love the cleaner air but we’ll miss the “broom broom” sounds.

And in the Romford Recorder I talk about the new bridge that could link Scotland and Northern Ireland and challenges it will face. It’ll probably be a toll bridge so I won’t use it anyway.

Keep an eye out in your local paper as you never know when I might be writing something near you.



Non-Smokers Do Less Work

I am a non-smoker.

That looks like I'm using this column as a dating profile but I mention my smoke-free status to declare a bias about this news story. A company boss in Swindon has given his non-smoking employees an extra four days of annual leave.

As a non-smoker, I like this. I realise that might make some smokers get angry with me but I think I can outrun them.

Don Bryden runs a training company and he said he noticed some smokers take five breaks a day at around ten minutes each. That's nearly an hour off a day. Just under five hours a week. 240 hours across a 48-week year. It's 30 days, so they're still 24 days up on the deal.

I have had this conversation with smoking colleagues (they were colleagues who smoked, I'm not saying they were sexy) and a lot have said it's an addiction and therefore not their fault.

Someone who can't give up the booze doesn't get to stand outside the front door getting their hip flask out for ten minutes. Gamblers don't have paid FOBT breaks. That argument is a little weak.

One smokers once said if I wanted to go and stand outside the office entrance for no reason I could and therefore it's my fault for not taking the option. No I couldn't. I'd look like a right oddball and besides, it smells of smoke out there.

One colleague said smoking made him more productive. If he had to sit there craving a cigarette he'd get less work done. Well, having an afternoon nap would make me more productive but I'm sure regular kips under my desk would be mentioned in my annual review.

It will be interesting to see how this story pans out. Will it be seen as a form of discrimination? Is it OK to give more days off to some members of staff because of their habits? Does that mean we can dock the pay of slow-walkers? (I would be in favour of that too.) Can we take holiday time away from people who spend ages in the toilets? (I'm against that. Don't ask.)

If your company brings in a rule that benefits the non-smokers you could always quit. The job or the habit, but we live in an age of flexible working where employers get in trouble for preferring staff members who have no distractions from work.

My biggest worry is that it will end with industrial action. If smokers form picket lines, standing outside their place of work instead of being inside doing their jobs, how will we tell the difference?

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Flybe Or Not Flybe? That Is The Question

On a cold January day you look at the internet to see what news is happening and read that the airline Flybe has been given an extension on paying a bill so that it can keep operating.

As someone who is currently replacing all joy in life with working on my self-assessment form instead, I am utterly jealous.

I understand the difference. I am not important in keeping the UK connected. Flybe is, but it shouldn’t be. In a country this size it seems strange that we should need to fly left-to-right. We’re tiny. We’re only 300miles across at our widest.

The problem isn’t the airlines, it’s the trains and the roads. It shouldn’t be the case that someone prefers a form of travel that requires turning up two hours early and getting strip searched.

Not only are we a narrow country, we invented the train so we really should have it sorted. The Bullet Trains in Japan go at 199mph. If our trains could manage that we’d be across the UK in an hour and half and you’d get to keep you belt and shoes on all the way.

It’s not just the travel time issue, it is bizarre that you can often fly somewhere for less money than it costs to go by train. Think on that. You’re paying less to be in a machine that burns enough fuel to defy gravity than you’d pay to roll on wheels somewhere.

I saw one newspaper mention a woman who said she splits her time between Cornwall and London and if Flybe goes she won’t be able to. Well, maybe you shouldn’t be able to.

You know that nasty joke you get on text, the one about someone in a poverty stricken country who has to walk 20 miles to the nearest well? And the uncaring punchline is something about telling her to move nearer the well. Surely the same applies here. If you live in Cornwall and work in London you might think about moving one of them because that’s a long way.

Why do you fly that often? Sitting on that plane, reading your free newspaper about how we have had the hottest year on record and Australia is being used by Peter Jackson to film a blockbuster version of Dante's Inferno because it’ll save money on the special effects, do you wonder about getting a job nearer home?

So, is it a good thing that Flybe is still flying? I don’t know. It’s still up in the air.

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Gwyneth Paltrow's Bits Smell Like a Candle

I always love a story about the kind of wares on sale via Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop website. Before Christmas we saw you could buy some restraints and tree house which is idea for any kidnappers with too much money.

The latest item to hit the headlines is a candle. That doesn't seem too "out there" until you hear that the USP of this scented candle is that it is designed to small like vagina.

Why would you want that? In fact, I'd be more likely to get a scented candle out stop a room smelling like vagina.

If you're that desperate to make your room have the odour of ladyparts just leave some processed ham out of the fridge, it would do the same and cost you less than the £57 this Wankee Candle will set you back.

To be fair, it's not the smell of just any old growler. Your money gets you a candle entitled "This Smells Like My Vagina". It's parfum de Gwyneth. I don't think she should make things that smell like her actual bits. Some criminal could get it and use it to pretend to be her and sneak past her guard dogs when it's dark.

The Goop website describes the smell as, "funny, gorgeous, sexy, and beautifully unexpected". I'm not sure I'd want anyone to know if the smell of my bits could be described as "unexpected". You never want to hear a sniff followed by a surprised, Oh!"

If you'd like to get your hands on to buy Gwyneth fandle, you can't. They are currently sold out. But if ever there was something you could make at home for much, much cheaper…

And if you're interested in a candle that smells of arse I have some Edam cheese going spare.

⮱Read the source story

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Uri Geller Is A Weirdo For Cummings

Are you a weirdo? I think I can ask that now because it’s probably not an insult any more.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s top senior adviser, Dominic Cummings, posted a job advert online asking for “assorted weirdos” to apply to work at Number 10. One quick look at the kind of people they have in there and you feel like shouting, “Mission already accomplished!”

He wasn’t using the term as a pejorative, it was almost used as a compliment. It has the feel of an attempt to reclaim the word like so many groups have done with their insults. It might become known as the W-word. If that is the case it should be a word that only a weirdo could actually use.

*Looks at Dominic Cummings* *Realises that checks out so far*

So what could go wrong when you ask for assorted odd-bods to apply for a job? Well, one has. Uri Geller has said he has put himself forward for the position. You may remember Uri from several spoon attacks back in the 80s. He believes that mystical powers have gifted him with the ability to **** up your cutlery without even touching them.

He says he wants the job because no other candidate would possess his powers. True. Most civil servants would have to use their hands to ruin items in your kitchen.

He can’t need the money. He is in his 70s so would normally be retired. And the job is that of civil servant, so it’s a pen pusher. Unless he wants to try to push those pens simply using the power of his mind.

We have seen the covering letter that Uri sent. He wrote, “Dear Dom,” at the top, which is a nice touch on a job application if you are trying to make people think you’re weird. Clever.

“While many have doubted my abilities, my achievements cannot be dismissed as trickery or illusions,” said the famous TV illusionist.

He added: “In my intelligence work I assisted with Operation Desert Storm, helped to locate secret tunnels in North Korea, and used my skills to erase crucial diplomatic discs on their way to Moscow.”

He can erase computer files with his mind?! Now that is a power I’d like.

“What’s that, darling. You need to log onto my laptop? Sure, just let me stare at it till the vein comes up on my forehead... Done!”

Uri Geller recently said he had used his powers to help Boris Johnson win last year’s election by giving his aides a spoon enthused with positive energy. It clearly worked but we don’t know by how much. Who helped Boris win more? Uri? Dominic Cummings? Jeremy Corbyn?

He said he could help by using his powers during the Brexit negotiations. You can bend spoons, you should be using your powers to stop heroin users.

Before they sign him up they should remember that previously Uri said he would use his special abilities to stop Brexit happening. Remind us Uri, how did that work out for you?

⮱Read the source story

Further listening: Here’s a radio interview I did with Uri Geller about his plan to use his mind powers in politics.


After recording, I arrived home to find all of my spoons were melted into the shape of a hand giving a middle-finger. I am sure it is a coincidence.



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