Google Reader, RIP

Google Reader, RIP

google-readerGoogle, that arrogant, all-powerful, tax-evading internet colossus that has come to dominate our lives like the Catholic Church of old has decided to bin Google Reader, their handy application that allows surfers to aggregate and sort their favourite content across different sites. As of 1st of July, users will be left high and dry. Are you one of them? Fret no longer. Feedly is a worthy successor. Check it out here. Also, if you currently receive Pansy updates via a reader, why not subscribe via email instead? Simply click on the ‘subscribe by email’ on the right and away you go. Easy.

We’re back from Palma now so stay tuned for some delicious (and not so tasty) Catalan titbits coming next.

Smart-Arse Smart Phone

I’ve invested in smart phone from Virgin. Well I say invested, it came free with a 24 month contract. My trusty old Nokia just doesn’t cut the Colman’s mustard anymore. Nor is it the right image for an infamous author and fading community radio star. Besides, my pay-as-you-go tariff was crippling me and this one comes with free this, free that. You see, it’s a smart-arse Samsung smarty pants touch screen Star Trek contraption and it’s so much smarter than me. My stumpy little fingers can’t quite manage the micro-keyboard and the bloody thing insists on wolf-whistling at me. I have no idea why. It’s been twenty years since that last happened. I tell you, it’s enough to turn an ex-pretty boy’s head. And if I don’t feed it daily, it just conks out. My old low IQ phone may be dim-witted but at least it  goes on for weeks without draining the national grid. Beam me up Scotty and show me how it works. Where’s my 10 year old nephew when I need him?

Expat Quotes

Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to the latest glossy offering from the Easyexpat stable of top of the range emigrey websites. It’s called Expat Quotes and aims to take some of the stress out of settling in a foreign field. The site…

…connects expatriates and future expats to services in the categories of:

Visa & Permits, Moving Jobs, Housing, Finance, Education, Health, Shop &
Telecom, & Tourism. The listings provide an ever-growing directory with
the ability to get free quotes. Whether you are looking for an
international removal company, medical insurance, or expat banking service
– you will find it there. In addition, a series of country guides provide
information directly from expats and experts in immigrating to a new

I’ve been asked to write a word or two so expect to read my irreverent ramblings very soon. Don’t let that put you off.

Mommie Dearest

The day after we moved into our ancient gaff, a nice man called Richard  from Virgin Media (not the Richard, obviously) installed our all singing, all dancing multimedia techno-wizardry – 30 megabyte fibre-optic broadband, telephone line and high definition TV. The whole compendium was half price for six months and came with free installation, free equipment and free weekend calls. We now have more channels of crap than you can shake a stick at. Currently, I’m being forced to watch wall-to-wall Olympics (Liam’s current obsession). We’ve never had HD TV before. I can see every wrinkle, every blemish, every spot and every blackhead on the faces of the famous – except for Gary Lineker (who surely must have had a nick and lift). No wonder an old bundle of ageing TV presenters decided to hang up their auto-cues and throw in the flannel: there are some things even the thickest slap can’t hide. Now we have free weekend calls, they’ll be no more Sunday Skype calls to mother. Just as well. I could never get the bloody thing to work properly from Turkey anyway and the compulsory weekly check-in was always a painful exercise, invariably ending in complete frustration.

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Do You Have a Tale to Tell?

QuestTurkey is a top notch property and lifestyle website about Turkey. I’ve been lucky enough to feature on the site a few times in the past. Quest is always looking for contributors with a tale to tell with an interesting angle about living in a foreign land. If you’d like to share your expat story, why not drop Lauren a line on

Sweet Charity

The world famous Foyles Bookshop along London’s Charing Cross Road is offering 15% off Perking the Pansies if you reserve online and pick up in-store. So, while you’re in the West End looking for summer bargains and something skimpy for your holiday, why not pick up a copy for only £8.49? If you can’t make it into town, you can order online for the full price of £9.99 with free delivery to any address in the UK.

Alternatively, you can buy the book and anything else that takes your fancy on Amazon through Jack’s Shop and I make a few extra pennies. Think of it as charity.

Locked Up and Knocked Up

Are you an expat who started a company to do the business in Turkey? Do you have a website? If not, you’d better get one sharpish and register it with the authorities. If you don’t, you might find yourself dumped in the clink for 6 months. Even if you do have a website, you’d better make sure it’s stuffed to the brim with company information. Don’t forget to include the name of the office cat, your granny’s maiden name and the parlous state of your bank balance. If your site content isn’t up to scratch, expect to be banged up alongside a hairy daddy with a twinkle in his eye and a little lovin’ on his mind. Why is this? Well, the Turkish Government has just adopted a new Trade Law which is due to come into effect on the 1st July this year.

Sounds like some daft idea from a witless job’s-worth paid to dream up the unworkable. I expect it will go the way of the much heralded internet regulations introduced with a fanfare then unceremoniously dropped when it became blindingly obvious they were just a little bit crap.