Sunday, July 31, 2011

On wearing sunscreen

As I have my clear-out, I’m enjoying another voyage of discovery through my iTunes library.  I can’t believe that it is 12 years since Baz Luhrmann’s Sunscreen was all over the global radio waves, and I was on an exchange in a very sunny Waiblingen. Halcyon days…

Equally, I can’t believe that 12 years later I still haven’t grasped the fact that “worry is about as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing bubblegum.”

On throwing away the menu

I am having a bit of a clear-out and I have found a menu for Chili’s Indian Restaurant in Newbury. I’ve never eaten there, but I remember picking up a menu as I walked past, and keeping it because I’d found something blogworthy about it.

I’m not sure what that thing was though.  It could be just the name (let’s face it, Chili’s is a good name for a restaurant).  More likely, it was the fact that they serve a dish called “Mysore Chili Chicken.”  That sounds like one for the brave or stupid.

Whatever the reason, I have just put said menu in my recycling bin, where doubtless it will stay until those nice union types realise that working for more than a week a year is not actually that unfair.

They say a picture paints a thousand words…

…especially when said picture has a thousand words in it.


Saturday, July 30, 2011

On why you should never buy a bike from Halfords

Even though I really knew better than to buy a bike from Halfords, I’m ashamed to admit that I was taken in by their Cycle to Work Scheme offer with my previous company.  Sadly, although it turned out to be cheap(ish) it has not been a particularly cheerful experience.

I am now on my third bike, having rejected the previous two under warranty and I was cycling along the other day when the chain-guard fractured and caught itself in the rear wheel.  Thankfully I was on a quiet road, so I was able to dust myself down and carry on without too much damage.

To be fair, this failure is not Halfords’ fault per se but the way in which they have dealt with it is worth documenting here.  I took the bike, and the remains of the chain-guard in to the store and asked if they would order me a replacement under warranty, which they said was not a problem.  However, they called me up this week to tell me that apparently it was “not a chain-guard” but a “bit of packaging which I should have removed before I rode the bike.”  I’m sure that this guy must have seen himself in a mirror at some point, and I’m amazed that when I had popped in to the store that he thought that I looked as stupid as him.  I sadly neglected to point out that if it was a bit of packaging then they were still at fault for not removing it when they prepared the bike for me to pick up, but that’s by the by.  For the record, the chain-guard on my bike is clearly shown here – a point which I had to make when I went to the store this morning.  It took me a while because they weren’t exactly organised in the way they dealt with their customers, and they have already thrown away the part I gave them, but I am still hopeful that they will be able to source me a replacement.  Clearly I am one of these “the glass is half-full” people.

The excuse about it being “a bit of packaging” is one of the more interesting ones I have heard during my dealings with Halfords.  It’s right up there with “lots of people choose a small frame these days because it’s lighter and faster*” when I pointed out that a bike they were trying to sell me didn’t come in a frame size big enough for me, and “7-gears is a lot for a folding bike, and you shouldn’t really expect to use all of them” when my first bike kept dropping out of top gear.

Surprisingly, despite this ability to spin me all sorts of rubbish, there have been times when things have been really shoddy and they have not attempted to make an excuse at all.  The free six-week service is a good example here.  Although this is meant to cover gear and brake adjustment and a tyre check I have had bikes returned to me with frayed brake cables and soft tyres.  I’d have been better taking my bike to Marwell Zoo…

*If this was really the case we’d all be speeding around on small BMXs looking like clowns.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

On having a Sixth Sense


I would have thought that if you have a Sixth Sense then you probably don’t need to be told where the meeting is.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

On being annoyed with things

Ideally, I’d have time now to give you all the gory details about my latest encounter with Vodafone.  But because I wasted my afternoon in their shop yesterday I’ll have to spare you that for now.

In an ideal world I’d also have time to rant about my frustrations with programming in VBA for Excel.  But as that is also wasting my time and not helping me meet my deadline I’ll spare you that for now as well.

Right now I’d like to force the Vodafone boss to use Excel.  And force the man at Microsoft who is responsible for all the idiosyncrasies to try and take out a Vodafone contract.  Putting them in a room together and seeing who kills the other one first could be quite entertaining…

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Set fire to the rain

Capital FM's current choice of tune is an appropriate accompaniment to the current activities of the idiots next door. You get the impression that they would if they could. I don't know whether it's the CRT monitor or the plastic jug which is providing us with some nice acrid smoke, but either way I'm not enamoured with the idea of having to shut the windows on what was a nice summer evening.

On what your dictionary says about you

There’s been a lot of phone chat in this Corner of the Blogosphere recently, which has probably been quite boring for most of you.  But one of the upshots of the recent phone-drama is that I have a shiny new HTC, which I am delighted with.

For once, let’s not dwell too much on the phone itself though – I don’t want to risk getting any closer to claiming the title of Dullest Blog In The World.

I have just been quite amused to look at the ‘Personal Dictionary,’ which is the list of non-standard words my phone has accumulated as I text.  Words I have found the need to save to the dictionary in the last week include “faff,” “muppet” and “blogged.” 

It would seem that you can probably get quite an accurate picture of someone from such a list…

Friday, July 22, 2011

Heartache? Why not sell it on eBay?

I am not in the market for an expensive white watch.  Neither am I convinced that the sales pitch for it is anything other than a clever ploy to attract attention.  But, as evidenced by the fact that I was drawn to it via Twitter, this eBay Auction has certainly grabbed the limelight.

Genuine or otherwise, it’s brilliant…

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Killing the romance

When it comes to music, I am a fan of The Killers. “Hot Fuss” is one of the very few albums I’ve bought on a whim and loved.

This evening, I pointed iTunes to “Sam’s Town” (another of their albums) for the first time in ages and caught myself paying attention to the lyrics of “Bones.”

It all starts off so well, with references to going to look at the stars and holding hands in the ocean.  If you like a bit of romance from time to time, it’s potentially quite evocative…until Brandon Flowers bursts out with “But I don’t really like you.”

For some reason, I love it.  It’s quite a tune as well.  However, if you’re one of these people who agonises over what music to have for your first dance at your wedding then I’d probably suggest agonising over something else.

On why BA should shoot their advertising agency

Those of you who have been compiling a list of “JP Facts” will know that I generally like flying with British Airways.  Amongst other things, I enjoy the fact that the “all inclusive” nature of the service reduces the hassle of booking a ticket and flying somewhere.  I like the fact that rather than having to take out a small mortgage to be able to afford a “cool refreshing J2O” I can order a G&T ‘on the house.’  I like the fact that I can enjoy said G&T in peace and quiet, without constant adverts for smokeless cigarettes, and the fact that I can expect the plane to land safely without the need for a fanfare to be played.

I also like the fact that despite this, flying with BA doesn’t have to cost more than flying with easyJet or RyanAir.  For example, I went to a wedding in Germany last September and because it was Oktoberfest, some of my friends actually paid a lot more to fly with RyanAir without hold baggage, than they would have done to fly with BA. 

The problem is that BA seems very good at keeping this a secret.  Let’s look at an easyJet advert I found the other day:


£35.99 sounds good enough for you to head to the easyJet website, which is clearly shown in the corner of the advert.  However, the reality is that if you did find a flight for £35.99, you’d probably be charged a lot more to come back again.  Then you’d decide that you wanted to take some luggage and be fleeced accordingly.  Then you’d get to the last page of the booking process and find that it would actually cost you even more money to pay for your flight.  But even if you did realise that this was now going to be a comparatively expensive flight, you will have spent a while on the easyJet website and probably can’t be bothered to search for an alternative.

BA could compete by running a series of adverts which clearly advertise and show some attractive lead-in fares.  They could also remind potential passengers at this point, before they’ve been sucked in to easyJet’s website, that you won’t get charged for luggage or for food and drink onboard.  They could also point out that even though you get a more spacious reclining seat, which you can choose before you board, the overall cost is probably no more than flying with a “low cost” competitor.  Oh, and they could highlight the fact that you are allowed two pieces of hand-baggage which means that you don’t have to risk looking like an idiot.

Instead, however, if you are on the moving walkway at Gatwick Airport you will see a series of adverts featuring Olympic Athletes.  And the slogan “they will fly.”  And that’s it.  All that tells me as a potential customer is that BA are making enough money to fly the Olympic Athletes around.  So I shall assume that it would be expensive to fly with them and focus on easyJet’s apparently low fares instead.

Still.  It could be worse.  Rumour has it that the last advertising agency put up a massive advert at Gatwick saying “low cost flying is cheap.”  They may as well have just put up an advert which said “we’d rather you went to”

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

What if God was one of us?

There is a definite correlation between the amount of grey hair I have and the number of tracks in my iTunes library which could now be classed as ‘retro.’  Like grey hair, however, retro is not necessarily bad, and some classics have definitely found their way out of the woodwork as I sit working this morning.

Now 34 seems to be a particularly good source of gems, including “What if God was one of us” by Joan Osborne. 

As a Christian, I find the following verse quite ironic, because I believe that it is through Jesus that God has revealed his face, as it were:

If God had a face what would it look like?
And would you want to see
If seeing meant that
you would have to believe
in things like heaven and in Jesus and the saints

Nonetheless, I still think that the song is more than just a good tune, and actually think that some of the questions are no less valid from a Christian perspective.  Do I really want to see God’s face?  What would I ask if I had just one question?

Strangely enough, I also appreciate the sarcastic tone of the chorus.  It’s refreshingly honest in some ways, because there are definitely times when it isn't easy to sing “God is great” without it sounding hollow.  That’s not to say that we shouldn’t strive to give thanks to God in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18) or rejoice in the Lord despite everything (Habakukk 3: 17-18), but I definitely feel that there is value in being honest.

Monday, July 18, 2011

More on Customer Service

I feel that I ought to say thank you to Chris from O2 for taking the time to read and comment on my last post.  It was a more thorough response than I got from Vodafone via Twitter and makes for interesting reading.

Of course, some of the extra touches are nice, but the price differential was just too great for me not to move.  After all, if Vodafone’s deal is just for new customers only I’ve still got two years before I need to worry again, and moving networks these days is a cinch. 

The thing is, however, I had made the reasonable assumption that some things should still be expected, no matter how much (or little) I chose to pay for my phone.  After all, even on RyanAir I’m not sure that passengers pay for a flight to Venice and expect to fly to Oslo a day later instead.  Do they? 

So why did Vodafone not send me the phone when they said that they would? Why did they have the wrong deal on their system when my SIM arrived? 

Also, it’s one thing to get irate with a non-UK call centre when you call them.  In some small way you have chosen to partake in the experience.  But I’ve never had them call me before, at least not in the way that someone from Vodafone called last week.

The day before my phone and SIM arrived, I spoke to an advisor who wanted to check a temporary number whilst my existing number was transferred to O2.  He read out a mobile number, which I wrote down, to check that it was one my dad or I had been sent.  I explained that I hadn’t been sent a SIM yet, and he then expressed concern that the number had not yet been activated.  I suggested that this was because I didn’t have a phone or handset and I was put on hold for a bit.  Then I had to read the number he’d given me back to him, and I was put on hold whilst he tried to find out why the number I had was unlike the one he had on his system. Really.

Eventually I told him that I would wait until I had a phone and SIM and go from there.  To Vodafone’s credit, the phone arrived first thing the next morning and the number transfer from O2 had happened without a glitch.

There have still been some questions about the price-plan, which I am not fully able to sort myself given the nature of the family/friends deal.  But I am a) delighted with my phone and b) on track to be paying less than half of what O2 wanted.  So maybe all is going to end well after all.



Tuesday, July 12, 2011

What price customer service?

Those of you who follow me on Twitter or haven’t blocked me on your Facebook Newsfeed because I talk too much will know that I recently decided to transfer my phone back from O2 to Vodafone.

The main reason is that my O2 Sim-Only contract conveniently came to an end two days after my phone died, and when I got in touch with them to discuss an upgrade they were completely uncompetitive.  I pointed out that Vodafone and Three could both offer me much better deals, but I was told that O2 “don’t try and compete on price” because they “have the best network.”  I would question this, not least because their network apparently lacks the technology for me to receive SMS delivery reports on my Nokia.

However, to be fair to O2, they do apparently offer a better warranty on handsets and on the few occasions that I have needed to call their customer service team I have not had much hassle.  This last point is important because my reason for leaving Vodafone after many years with them is because their customer service team was so terrible.  Although it had once been very good, my last year with them was punctuated by billing errors, including a few months when I didn’t even have sight of a bill at all.  Their call centre staff were inconsistent and their email helpline was staffed by people abroad who seemed to be trained in nothing but copying and pasting paragraphs from a script.  If I was lucky their replies to me were coherent or relevant, but I don’t think they were ever both at the same time.

We all know that I am a fan of customer service, and do place a value on it.  After all, I fly BA not RyanAir and shop in Waitrose not Tesco.  But when I got a call from my dad on Saturday saying that Vodafone could offer us both a joint deal, the price undercut O2 by so much that I just couldn’t refuse it.  And surely, I thought, in the last year, someone at Vodafone must have found a dictionary and looked up “Customer Service.”

Sadly, one sometimes pays a price for misguided optimism.  As I write this, Vodafone have delivered my dad’s phone, but not mine.  They won’t speak to me to arrange redelivery and he is having to negotiate with them on my behalf.  Although they took my PAC code yesterday, the last I heard is that my dad may need to re-register a whole new deal for me.  Which means that my number may be lost in cyberspace.  At this rate I’ll go from having a number and no phone to having a phone and no number.

So it’s a big black mark for Vodafone.  I currently don’t know what the outcome will be, but the thought of having a few days longer without a phone to shop around is potentially more appealing than being locked in to two years with this bunch of monkeys.

I’m not sure that O2 can rest on their laurels though.  Being proud of customer service is one thing, especially when it is justified.  But to lose an existing customer by refusing to be at all competitive on price is just arrogant.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The lack-of-telephone experiment

Technically, I should have entitled this post “the lack-of-mobile-telephone experiment” because the good old landline has been quite a feature of the last few days.  To say that I have been completely incommunicado would be a bit melodramatic, even for me.

Anyway, how am I getting on?

In no particular order:

  • I have had to learn the landline number for the house I live in…
  • …but I still don’t know how to access the answerphone
  • I have had an excuse to hand out the business cards in my wallet, because they show my landline number at work…
  • …but then had nothing to refer to when someone asked me for the number they should call me back on. I had to find the key for my drawer and locate the business cards inside without creating too much of an awkward silence.
  • I have been the proud recipient of a friend’s first tweet…
  • …and called a random person in Cambridge twice after said friend’s husband failed to tweet their landline number to me correctly.
  • I have, on occasion, been more punctual than usual…
  • …but was late the other day when I took a call at home and couldn’t then walk and talk
  • The lack of camera means that I have stopped pausing to photograph things to post on my blog…
  • …but you haven’t noticed because I never post half of them anyway.
  • I have avoided worrying that I might be missing out on something…
  • …but this may be because I have begun to check Facebook more than I should.

Despite my increased addiction to Facebook (not helped by the fact that messages have stopped being emailed to me as reliably as they used to be) I like to think that I have generally been less distracted though.  Which is of course why I have just ordered a new smartphone to replace my Nokia.  Maybe my next social experiment should involve improving my self-discipline.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Colour doesn’t matter–it’s what you do with it that counts

Seasoned visitors to this Corner of the Blogosphere will know that I generally think that you can tell a lot about someone by the car they drive.  It is also common knowledge that if you ask a girl what car she drives, a typical response would be “a blue one” or “a green one.” 

In some situations, therefore, this poses something of a dilemma.  Assuming that her response isn’t “a pink one,” or in most cases “a yellow one,” guys like me are faced with a potential choice.  Do we want to pursue the relationship only to find out later that she pootles around in a Daewoo Matiz?  It’s a risk…

When I was in Shetland, I discovered that Toyota have made an attempt at avoiding such social awkwardness in the shape of the Toyota Aygo Blue:


This provides a potentially convenient solution.  “Blue” describes both the colour and the model and everyone knows where they stand.  No further questions need to be asked and there is no need for the guy to live in fear of discovering that he’s ended up dating someone who drives a Rover 100.

The problem is, however, the girl may end up living in fear that she won’t end up dating anyone at all.  Maybe it’s just me, but I just don’t think there are many occasions when a Toyota Blue can cut it.  Sorry, darling.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Thoughts from the Archbishop

This morning, I found myself reading an interview in The Guardian with Rowan Williams.  It was an interesting read, I have to admit.

Although I’d recommend the whole article, I particularly like his views on the Atheist vs Theist debate.

“Argument has the role of damage limitation. The number of people who acquire faith by argument is actually rather small. But if people are saying stupid things about the Christian faith, then it helps just to say, 'Come on, that won't work.' There is a miasma of assumptions: first, that you can't have a scientific worldview and a religious faith; second, that there is an insoluble problem about God and suffering in the world; and third, that all Christians are neurotic about sex. But the arguments have been recycled and refought more times than we've had hot dinners, and I do groan in spirit when I pick up another book about why you shouldn't believe in God. Oh dear! Bertrand Russell in 1923! And while I think it's necessary to go on rather wearily putting down markers saying, 'No, that's not what Christian theology says' and, 'No, that argument doesn't make sense', that's the background noise. What changes people is the extraordinary sense that things come together. Is it Eliot or Yeats who talks about a poem coming together with an audible click? You think, yes, the world makes sense looked at like that."

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

On life without a telephone

If you read my last couple of posts, you will know that I am currently without a working mobile telephone.  It could be two weeks before mine is repaired and unless the battery on the old phone I keep for emergencies suddenly comes to life, or someone is kind enough to lend me an O2 compatible handset then I am going to have to get used to it.

In some ways I am actually looking forward to it and view it as a sort of social experiment.*  Ironically enough, I have just had a week without my phone because I decided it would do me good to leave it in ‘Offline Mode’ whilst I was on holiday.  This was surprisingly easy when I was out of the country without much of a care in the world, but back in the real world things could be a bit more difficult. Especially since I now know that some texts sent to me whilst I was away never got delivered.  I know that if someone really wants to get hold of me they will find another way, but it has created a bit of a nagging feeling that I might miss something.**

Of course, some say that we always used to manage without mobiles so it should be quite easy.  But now we have a culture where it’s not unusual to say “I’ll give you a buzz when I’m in town at about 10ish” rather than “I’ll meet you for coffee in Starbucks at 10.”  Or “I’ll text you later when I know where I’m going to be.”  Making plans in advance seems to be quite retro these days, and even in the last 24h I’ve felt like a burden pushing for definite arrangements ahead of time.  Mind you, the fact that I can no longer rely on my phone to inform someone I am running a few minutes late has got to be good for my punctuality…

Anyway I’ll let you know how I get on now that this inadvertent experiment is underway.  Watch this space.


*if I was a journalist I’d get paid for this. Donations gratefully received.

**I should probably just get over myself.


Phone Update

They say that you learn something new every day, and yesterday I learned at least two things.

Firstly, I learnt that more people are likely to offer help with coding in VBA than with problems with a Nokia E5 (I had a better response to my last cry for help than I did this time).

Secondly, I learnt that although Nokia’s software leaves a bit to be desired, their customer service can be pretty good. We all know that I really value good customer service at the best of times and once I found their CareLine they were really helpful.  Sadly their attempts at diagnosing and fixing the problem over the phone were unsuccessful but they are going to collect and repair the phone for me under warranty.  Good times.

Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Nokia E5 Help

When I promised some non-political rants, I envisaged writing something more interesting than asking for help with my telephone.  But it is my blog, and needs must.

As you may have gathered from the title, I have a Nokia E5.  Don’t ask why – since their PC Software (Ovi Suite) has become so temperamental, I have no good reason to have stayed loyal to Nokia.  But we are where we are.

So what’s the problem now?  Said phone had become very slow, especially when opening messages, so I decided to perform a hard reset (*#7370# in case you are wondering).  So far so good.  Then I opted to restore my contacts and settings from the backup I had made first (I didn’t bother with the messages because I thought that an over-full inbox may have been the problem).  Ovi Suite completed the operation (so far so good…) and the phone restarted.

But now it doesn’t do anything.  The main screen is blank apart from the network status, profile choice (“Silent”) and battery status along the top.  If I press the ‘Home’ key the menu does after a long while appear, but is too slow to be functional.  Ditto with the ‘Message’ key.  If I press the keypad, nothing happens, so I cannot dial in *#7370# – or in fact anything at all – to reset the phone.

Has anyone had this problem before? Does anyone know how to do a reset without use of the keypad? Ovi Suite still recognises the phone, so if there is a hack I can do via the USB cable I may be able to?

Alternatively, will the recycling places such as be able to get my phone working to the extent they will still give me money for it?  At least that way I could do what I should have done originally and bought an HTC.

Any help would be gratefully received.  In the meantime, my phone is rendered useless so if you need to get hold of me try email, Facebook, Twitter or commenting on this post.

Thank you…

Credit where credit is due

I know that you’re probably fed up with me chattering about the bin strikes in Southampton, but hang on in there.  If rubbish strikes and political rants aren’t your thing I will have something for you soon.

In the meantime, however, I am pleased to announce that the bin men were on duty today and have taken not just the overflowing recycling bin, but also the boxes and bags of recycling which stood beside it.  Maybe it’s the sunshine but the uncomplaining nature of the team was a far cry from the jobsworths who came round a few weeks ago.  Proof, then, that some people do know what it means to be ‘hard working.’

Talking of which, I also ought to demonstrate that I know the meaning of that phrase.  Bye for now.

Monday, July 04, 2011

Let’s start a war…

There are some things in life of which I am slightly proud, even though I really shouldn’t be.  Being asked if my tan is fake is one (though it most certainly isn’t).* 

Another thing I can now add to that list is receiving my first abuse on Twitter.  If you already follow me, or have been reading the torrent of tweets in the sidebar you will know that @shawgreen kindly tweeted that I am apparently “still putting the prat into Pritchard.”  Sadly it wasn’t particularly good abuse, but beggars can’t be choosers.  Maybe it will come in handy if I decide I ever need a strapline for this blog.

Although one could argue that I should have had better things to do with my time than respond, I was sat on a bus at the time.  So I really didn’t.  The first thing I did was to note that “nonsensical 'insults' with nothing useful to say are the sad hallmarks of a self-righteous 'socialist'” but then I decided that I should try and be constructive and enter in to a discussion about the issue at stake.

Which was, in this case, my comment about Mervyn King.  I’d had half an ear to the Andrew Marr Show a few moments earlier and had tweeted my ponderings, wondering why old Mervyn wasn’t allowed to enjoy himself like everyone else.  Apparently he’d been seen indulging himself with VIP Hospitality at Wimbledon, and this had generated fierce criticism.

I have to admit that I wasn’t fully au fait with the story, but I personally don’t begrudge him enjoying that perk.  My question to @shawgreen was whether he’d also begrudge Wayne Rooney indulging himself, because it strikes me that there is a bit of a culture these days of criticising some folk and turning a blind eye to others.

I’ve often wondered why bankers, chief executives and city slickers get slated for their “obscene” salaries by the same people who will then cheer on Mr Rooney (and support his £250,000 a week salary for kicking a ball around).  According to @shawgreen, it’s because the likes of Mr Rooney “provide joy,” but I remain unconvinced.  Feel free to use the comment form to persuade me otherwise.

Anyway, the discussion got particularly interesting when I was accused of invoking “a class snobbery issue” and valuing “pinstripes over team colours. Mental toil over physical.” 

I don’t know what it is about some folk who champion the socialist banner, but this is not the first time that I have seen accusations of introducing class snobbery when it didn’t actually exist before. 

Let’s be clear about this – I was the one questioning the lack of consistency in the criticism of the likes of Mervyn King, whilst turning a blind eye to others.  Ironically, @shawgreen was the one who was making a distinction by being selective in his criticism. 

So now we have reached the crux about what annoyed me in yesterday’s Twitter discussion – although it is perhaps unfair to single out @shawgreen when I’ve seen plenty of his type before.

I don’t doubt that there are genuine socialists out there, with genuine principles, and a genuine desire to practise what they preach.  And I’m not getting at you with my little rant.  But all too often those voices are drowned out by the hypocrites.  By the self-righteous who absolve themselves of all responsibility by blaming someone richer than them.  By the inconsistent who make sweeping generalisations about “Tories” and “bankers,” but not about footballers, or who find it acceptable to criticise Christianity but unacceptable to criticise Islam.  By those who belong to the Henry Ford School of Tolerance (“you can have any view you like, so long as it’s mine”).

As an advocate of freedom of speech, I’m perfectly happy if you want to be critical of bankers (let’s face it, there are good reasons) or to criticise the Christian faith (or any other belief, for that matter).  But if you’re going to champion a cause then please give yourself some credibility by having some solid principles.  No-one is perfect, but charity begins at home…


*I’m not orange, in case you were worried. I think I’m just very tanned for someone who’s only been away for a few days.