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scumfrogs

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Reviews written

since 25/08/2002

47

Michael Owen 25/03/2004

The Boy Wonder

Michael Owen This is my first review in a little while, so I hope to get back to writing regularly again! I’m already a few beers into the night, so forgive any sloppy typos! I’ve decided to review another footballer. I’ve not written in a week or so, and I keep kicking myself to do so, so I’ve allocated tonight to get a review done. Having thought for days on what to do one about, I’ve decided to write about what I know again and review yet another footballer. You can see a pattern here can’t you?! Michael James Owen was born on 14th December 1979 in Chester. He made his Liverpool debut in the away draw at Wimbledon in the 1996/97 season, scoring a goal. In the next match against Sheffield Wednesday, Michael was put into the starting line-up. Unfortunately that was the last match of the season, and it wasn’t until the 1997/98 season that Owen was allowed to shine again. With Robbie Fowler still injured, Owen began the 1997/98 season playing up front with the experienced German Karl-Heinz Riedle, scoring yet another equaliser against Wimbledon. It was in the 1998 World Cup that Owen acquired international fame with a stunning run through the Argentinean defence, followed by a spectacular goal. In the same year, he won PFA Player Of The Year and BBC Sports Personality Of The Year. One of the most famous Michael Owen moments is also a painful one for me. He put two late goals past an Arsenal side that were 1-0 up throughout the match, and stole the FA Cup for Liverpool. Not long ...

Nivea for Men Face Cleansing 12/03/2004

Heeeeeere's Shiny Face!

Nivea for Men Face Cleansing This product, more specifically, is Nivea for Men Face Cleansing Oil Control Face Wash. Having naturally oily skin, it’s not long after I’m out of the house before my skin starts to “shine”. For most people, having naturally oily skin, they have massive problems with acne and spots, but I’ve never had that problem – I just go shiny! So, a couple of months ago, I decided to try this product. The back of the container states that the product is “Specially developed for men to combat oily skin without drying it out. The Oil Control Face Wash has a sensational deep clean action, removing dirt and excess oils, leaving your skin feeling refreshed and healthy”. One good thing about this product is that it’s 100% soap free. Unfortunately for me, regular household soaps leave me with dry skin, so that’s a plus point for this product – I just spend a fortune on face washes and shower gel instead!!! The product comes out of the 150ml squeezy tub (is there a proper name for it?) as a mild blue gel. If you rub it on the palm of your hand, or rub your palms together, it foams very quickly into a pasty, semi-sticky lather, which you then apply to your face. You then rinse it off with clean water, and dry. The results are instantly noticeable for me – I dry my face, and I’ve got what I want – a nice matt effect on my face! Unfortunately, within a couple of hours, the dreaded shine is back again. However, this product is meant to be used twice a day, morning and night. If you follow ...

Guinness Original Stout 11/03/2004

My Pint

Guinness Original Stout So I’m sitting here thinking “what shall I write my next review on?”. There’s a glass of Guinness in front of me, just waiting to be consumed. No, no, I’ll hold back and drink it whilst reviewing it! *Pours Guinness* OK, now whilst that’s settling, let’s quickly run through the history and background to the tonic. ‘E waits, that’s what ‘e does. The Guinness legend was started by Mr Arthur Guinness. Thank you sir. His godfather, the Archbishop of Cashel, left Arthur £100 in his will, which he invested wisely… very wisely… Arthur was a shrewd businessman, and he certainly had a lot of faith in his new ideas for an original stout, signing a 9,000 year lease on a run-down brewery! As with any success story, the journey was tough. In St James’ Street alone, there were 10 beer breweries. That’s Ireland for you! Keen for his Guinness legacy to live on, Arthur quickly got to work and fathered 21 children. Working at the Guinness factory was a luxury – they paid 20% more than anyone else, gave free pints, and paid holidays, which were unheard of back then. This didn’t dent the company’s profits, as the annual rent set them back just £45 a year, although I heard it’s a little bit more than that these days. It was in 1759 that the lease was signed, meaning that we’re guaranteed another 8755 years of Guinness! It was in 1815 that Guinness’s medicinal properties seemed to surface. A wounded officer at Waterloo claimed that Guinness aided his recovery. In 1854, the troops in the ...

1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours (Live Recording) - Green Day 11/03/2004

Here's How It All Started...

1,039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours (Live Recording) - Green Day OK, one last Green Day album! Due to a strange twist of fate, it’ll be Green Day’s first album that I’m reviewing last! 1,039 / Smoothed Out Slappy Hours, as strange a name as it may seem, was made up from the songs that appeared on the EPs 39/Smooth, Slappy, Flipside “The Big One” and 1,000 Hours. See, now the name makes sense! The album was released in 1990, making it 14 years old at the time of writing. One thing worth nothing, is something that most people wouldn’t notice – at the bottom of the back cover, “*knowledge by Op. IV.” is scribbled. Most people would probably ignore it, but it seems to me that “Op. IV.” is probably referring to the band Operation Ivy, which I think is one of Mike or Billie Joe’s side bands or former bands. 1 – At The Library A nice punky song to get the album kicking off. Some good guitar work – seems like two were used on this recording, so was probably dubbed over later. It’s about a girl Billie Joe met… at the library! 2 – Don’t Leave Me This song is pretty cool and catchy – sounds like a classic punk song from the 70s. Another well written Green Day song. 3 – I Was There This song was written by “John” – presumably John Kiffmeyer, alias Al Sobrante, Green Day’s first drummer. It’s a pretty good song, if it was written by a drummer!! Nice catchy chorus and well-worked vocals. 4 – Disappearing Boy Great intro – must have taken some practise! Unfortunately, this track on my CD seems to be scratched, as it jams after 8 ...

Fujifilm FinePix F410 10/03/2004

Say Cheese!

Fujifilm FinePix F410 Like many people, within the past year, we purchased our first digital camera. Also, like many people, we bought the Fujifilm FinePix F410. This camera comes recommended by many people, including the experts, and is definitely a very good camera. Firstly, let’s see the specifications:- Dimensions: 8.5cm x 2.8cm x 6.9cm Weight: 165g Resolution: 3.1 megapixels Interpolated resolution: 6 megapixels Other modes: Video camera Flash memory: 1x 16Mb Lens aperture: F/2.8-4.8 Focus: Automatic Minimum focus range: 60cm Focal length: 5.7mm – 17.1mm Optical zoom: 3x Digital zoom: 4.4x Flash: Built-in Red eye reduction: Built-in Microphone: Built-in, mono, electret condenser Viewfinder: Opitical – real-image zoom Display: LCD display – TFT active matrix – 1.5” colour Battery: 1x rechargeable Lithium Ion camera battery, 1035 mAh Warranty: 1 year manufacturer warranty On first looks, this is one fine camera. It’s entirely made of metal with a matted silver finish, making it look very funky, and almost scratch resistant. The camera is pretty easy to operate too. Firstly though, it’s not entirely obvious how to turn it on! The side of the front panel has to be slid across to the side, turning the camera on. There are three immediate modes, accessible by a switch on the back of the camera – video camera, preview, and snapshot. VIDEO MODE As expected, with this, you can film videos. The videos are recorded in AVI format, and can be recorded in either 320x240 ...

Moral Dilemmas 10/03/2004

My Morals

Moral Dilemmas Well, everyone else has done one of these, and I haven't put anything in the Ciao Cafe for a couple of days, so here goes! *************** *************** *************** *************** *************** *************** *********** Q: You've just cooked dinner for your four friends, when disaster strikes and you drop the chicken on the kitchen floor. Before you can stop him, the dog dashes in and licks it, but you get it away before he can do anything else. You have nothing else to cook. Do you own up, or do you serve the chicken up for tea? You're vegetarian anyway. A: Well, I wouldn’t be vegetarian!! And I certainly wouldn’t give my friends the horrible doggy licky chicken. I’d go in there and tell them what happened and we’d all have a good laugh about it and go to McDonalds! *** Q: You're in the supermarket car park, when in a momentary lapse of concentration, your shopping trolley scrapes somebody's new Mercedes down the side. Nobody appears to be looking. Do you own up? A: If nobody saw, I’d quickly move away and drive off as fast as possible in my little Fiesta. About 15mph, that is. Hang on, I don’t do the shopping… *** Q: You're out with your mate, who starts chatting up a rather fit bloke/bird. It's obvious that said bloke/bird actually fancies you. The feeling's mutual. Who do you go home with? A: If it was a bloke who fancied me, I think it’s safe to say I’d go home with my mate… but if it was a lovely lady who fancied me, what do you ...

Compaq Presario S5100UK 10/03/2004

My New Baby

Compaq Presario S5100UK Having used my old PC for a good few years, I was getting continually annoyed with it. It had 128Mb RAM, a 650Mhz processor, and was TERRIBLE. It took about three minutes to open Microsoft Word! So, imagine how happy I was when my parents agreed to buy me a brand spanking new computer as an early present for my 18th birthday! After much hunting around, we came across the Compaq Presario S5100UK at PC World. 256Mb RAM, 2.4Ghz processor, it was a beauty. The nice man at PC World even let us put more RAM in the PC – it’s got 512Mb, and runs like a dream. The machine comes with Windows XP Home ready-installed, and has plenty more software already on there, including image manipulation software, and the infamous Microsoft Works. I uninstalled most of this straight away, as I prefer to start with a clean PC and install what I want. Anyway, back to the technical aspects… 256Mb RAM (more can be added) 2.4Ghz AMD Athlon processor NVIDIA gForce4 64Mb graphics card Windows XP Home 40Gb hard drive Integrated LAN modem A free keyboard and mouse! This machine is certainly fast. It can handle all new graphics-intensive games and run countless numbers of applications at once. I can run a graphics-intensive game in windowed mode, whilst chatting on MSN Messenger and listening to music on Winamp! The tower has a handy slide-down panel on the front, exposing a headphones socket, a microphone socket, and two extra USB ports, plus four on the back!!! The Presario 5100UK also ...

Shenanigans - Green Day 10/03/2004

More Monkey Business

Shenanigans - Green Day OH MY GOD, three Green Day albums I haven’t reviewed yet! Well, here’s to getting another one done. Don’t worry me lil’ monkeys, there’s a brand spanking new album due out in a month or two, so don’t cry just yet. Track 1 – Suffocate A nice catchy song, good riffs and bassline. A good one to sing along to, but aren’t they all?!? I love the way it sounds like your CD player has jammed at the end of the chorus! Track 2 – Desensitized This song is about the Internet! I love the intro – it’s Green Day smashing up a load of guitars and drumkits and stuff. A very catchy song, and yet again, one to sing along to! It’s all very true of the Internet – read the lyrics! Track 3 – You Lied One to really tap your feet to – not a fast song, but just the right speed and time signature to get that foot tapping. A really good song – one of my favourites from the album – really has to be heard. Track 4 – Outsider This is a cover of a Ramones song, and a damn good one at that. Possibly the easiest song in the world to play on guitar – two chords! Woo! Very effective though, and a good catchy song. Track 5 – Don’t Wanna Fall In Love WOOO! Hella fast punk! A fantastic song, and it’s REALLY fun to play on guitar – just listen to it! It’s a fantastic song, even if it is simple! Brilliant track. Track 6 – Espionage This is an instrumental track, and was used on the Austin Powers soundtrack, so you may well have heard it before! Not the best song on the album of course, ...

Kerplunk! - Green Day 09/03/2004

Not 2,000 Light Years Ahead Of The Others

Kerplunk! - Green Day Oh yes, another Green Day album review! Still a couple more to go, and hopefully this one will push me onto a nice red splodge! Due to the response on the Nimrod review, I won’t be reproducing the lyrics with this review, but I’d still recommend that you look them up on Google or a similar site, as they do make good reading. 1 – 2000 Light Years Away Written by Billie Joe after his first kiss with now wife Adrienne, it’s a classic punk love song, and a good one to sing along to. Great lyrics and music, and an all-round classic. More fantastic guitar playing from Billie Joe and the trademark bass sound that only Mike Dirnt can achieve – has to be heard. 2 – One For The Razorbacks Another great song. Some good vocal contrasts with Billie Joe’s lead vocals in the chorus and Mike’s backing vocals. A really great song, and another good one to sing along to. Musically not the most complex song, but still a classic. 3 – Welcome To Paradise Any self-respecting Green Day fan will be only too familiar with this song. A later version of the track is on the Dookie album, and this is the first incarnation of the song. It does sound noticeably different to the trained Green Day ear, probably because this album was released in 1990, four years before Dookie. Definitely a Green Day classic. 4 – Christie Road This one’s a little different to the other songs so far – not very punky, more laid-back and chilled out. A good song, but certainly not the strongest on the ...

Nimrod - Green Day 08/03/2004

What's a Nimrod?

Nimrod - Green Day OK, so here’s to my first product review in a little while! As many of you will know, I’m a mad/obsessed Green Day fan. I’ve reviewed three (I think) Green Day albums so far, so here’s another! I’ve also included a full track listing and the lyrics from all the songs on the album, to give you all a small insight into the tracks, even if you’re not going to listen to them! Enjoy. 1 – Nice Guys Finish Last A fantastic, powerful intro, and a song that is classic Green Day. Some brilliant palm muting from Billie Joe in the verses, and an extremely catchy song. The song has a pretty obvious meaning – it’s always the nice guy who gets the shitty end of the stick. Nice guys finish last You’re running out of gas Your sympathy will get you left behind Sometimes you’re at your best When you look the worst Do you feel washed up Like piss going down the drain? Pressure cooker pick my brain and tell me I’m insane I’m so fucking happy I could cry Every joke can have it’s truth and now the joke’s on you I never knew you were such a funny guy Oh nice guys finish last When you are the outcast Don’t pat yourself on the back You might break your spine Living on command You’re shaking lots of hands Kissing up and bleeding all your trust Taking what you need Bite the hand that feeds You kill your memory 2 – Hitchin’ A Ride The intro is very different – violins! However, the real feeling of the song soon kicks in, with more fantastic palm muting from ...

Andy Cole 08/03/2004

Club legend, international failure

Andy Cole In one way or another, Andy Cole has made a big impression on most football fans. Many fans see him as one of the most prolific strikers to have graced the Premier League, whilst many view him as a useless player. Born on 15th October 1971 in Nottingham, Andy Cole’s football career began at Arsenal, where he joined on schoolboy terms after graduating from the Lilleshall National School of Excellence. However, at Arsenal he failed to break into the first team, and was soon off to Bristol City. At Bristol City, Cole scored 8 times in 12 games in his first season, and 12 games in 29 games in the first year of the FA Premier League in the 1992/93 season. During the Premier League’s inaugural season, Cole moved to Newcastle United, where he netted 12 goals in his first 12 games. In his second season, he scored an amazing 34 goals in 40 games and became known as one of the Premiership’s most prolific scorers. Cole was a hot new talent. His form began to dwindle during the 1994/95 season – injuries plagued Cole, and he managed only 9 goals in 18 games – not quite up to his form from previous seasons. During that season, he moved to Manchester United for £6.25m, where he formed a deadly strike partnership with Dwight Yorke, and scored 12 goals in 17 games in 1994/95. Unfortunately, Manchester United lost the title that year to Blackburn Rovers, and the FA Cup to Everton. Ironically, Cole would go on to play for Blackburn in future years. Cole played a massive part in Manchester ...

Nigel Martyn 07/03/2004

Forever Number 2

Nigel Martyn Nigel Martyn was born on 11th August 1966 in St. Austell, just weeks after England’s famous World Cup victory over West Germany. It was in August 1987 that Martyn got his first taste of professional football, at Bristol Rovers. In the two years he was at Bristol Rovers, he notched up an impressive 124 appearances. However, his big break came when South London outfit Crystal Palace signed him for £1million. In almost 7 years at Palace, Martyn played for the Eagles 349 times, making a big name for himself in British football. He was sold for £2.25million to Leeds United in July 1996, playing 273 times for them, before being edged out of the first team by Paul Robinson. In September 2003, Martyn moved to Everton for a mere £500,000. So is this the beginning of the end for Nigel Martyn? Although not completely over the hill, he’s certainly seen better days. In the 1996/97 season, Martyn’s fantastic goalkeeping made a tremendous contribution to keeping Leeds in the Premier League. Although not the most complete goalkeeper the game has ever seen, he was always regarded as the England reserve to David Seaman. His performances in the 1997/98 season left a lot to be desired, but 1998/99 saw another fantastic season for Martyn, and as David Seaman fell injured, his chances of becoming England’s number 1 looked good. In 2000, Martyn was named as part of the Premier League Team Of The Year, but was still second choice to David Seaman for England’s number 1 shirt. Nigel got his big ...

Thierry Henry 07/03/2004

Viva la Henry

Thierry Henry Although Thierry Henry has been placed in Ciao’s Fifa World Cup 2002 section, I won’t just concentrate on his performance at the World Cup, but on his career as a whole, to give you all an insight into this amazing player. So, for those of you who aren’t football fans, who is Thierry Henry? Thierry Daniel Henry was born on August 17th 1977 in Les Ulis, France. At the tender age of 13, he was signed by French side AS Monaco as a trainee, where he remained for a further nine years, notching up 119 appearances and 32 goals. Henry made his debut for Monaco in 1995, and helped them to win the French championship in 1996/97, and also propelled them to the UEFA Champions League semi-final in 1998. In October 1997, Henry made his national debut for France, against South Africa. In 1999 he joined Italian side Juventus as a winger. Henry found it hard to adapt to the Italian lifestyle, and it wasn’t long before he was heading to Arsenal in a £10.5million deal to replace Nicolas Anelka, who’d left the club due to personal reasons. However, the world was soon to find the real reason Henry couldn’t quite fit in at Juventus… The answer was simple – Henry wasn’t a winger – he was a striker, and a damn good one at that. Arsenal’s manager Arsene Wenger has a natural eye for this type of thing, and spotted Henry’s striking talent immediately. Henry’s fantastic pace and ability to create goals was not overshadowing his immense flair and ability to score goals. It was in the season ...

What I would do if I won the lottery 07/03/2004

Money money money

What I would do if I won the lottery Well, I've done one op tonight (Wimbledon FC), and that took me bloody ages to research and compile, so here's a niec fun one for me to write off the top of my head as I go along :-) With the National Lottery having been around for nigh on ten years now, the jackpot does seem to have shrunk slightly, but let’s assume it’s £10 million… Now, what could I possibly spend £10 million on, being barely a spring chicken at three months off 18? My main passions, as many of you know, are football and music; guitars in particular. I’d imagine a new guitar would be the first thing I’d buy. GUITARS Wouldn’t really put a huge dent in the budget – I currently own an EKS Starfire Performer Series Stratocaster, which has fared me well, but won’t last forever with the heavy schedule of writing, practising, and gigging. I’m not incredibly fussy when it comes to guitars, but I do like the Stratocaster and SG styles. If I was to buy a brand new Fender Strat or Gibson SG guitar, a decent one would be expected to set me back around £1,000. Although, it wouldn’t stop there… I’d probably buy about 20 different guitars, plus amps and accessories, totalling up around £50,000, just on guitars and equipment. Call me mad, if you will ;-) FOOTBALL Would I go to more matches? Nope. Would I invest in a season ticket? Nope. I’d buy an entire club. Obviously £10 million wouldn’t buy me Arsenal, but I’d settle for a small club with plenty of potential to make my money grow. I’d be very interested ...

Wimbledon 07/03/2004

The flight and plight of The Crazy Gang

Wimbledon Christ… where do I start? The history of Wimbledon FC is certainly a very colourful one, and makes fascinating reading. The club was formed in 1889 as Wimbledon Old Centrals, and played on Wimbledon Common, the famous home of the fictional Wombles. It was only seven years before Wimbledon won their first trophy – the Clapham League title in 1896. In May 1905, Wimbledon Old Centrals became Wimbledon Football Club. The Common was not going to be a suitable home to a growing club in a growing sport, and in 1912, Wimbledon moved to Plough Lane, joining the Athenian League seven years later, in 1919. In 1921, Wimbledon joined the Isthmian League (now the Ryman league), and first won the Championship in 1931, breaking a record with their final points total. They would go on to win the league eight times. In 1935 and 1947, Wimbledon were defeated in the Amateur Cup Final. However, in 1963, the finally got their hands on the Amateur Cup at Wembley, with Eddie Reynolds scoring all four goals with headers against Sutton. One year later, the club turned professional, and joined the Southern League Division One, winning promotion immediately. In the mid-1970s, Wimbledon became FA Cup giant killers, defeating Burnley, Leeds, and Middlesbrough., and became Isthmian Premier League Champions three years running. In 1977, Wimbledon FC were elected to the Football League, and gained promotion to the Third Division in 1979. They were twice relegated to Division Four, but they kept ...
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