The 10 worst acronyms if you’re a pedant (grrr)

It’s called RAS syndrome (Redundant Acronym Syndrome syndrome), and if you’re a little obsessive and start thinking too hard it can be excruciatingly annoying. The actual syndrome wasn’t something I’d heard of until I tweeted the following… Why do we write "EHIC card" when it stands for European Health Insurance CARD, and "PIN number" (Personal Identification NUMBER)...

No, I WON’T play you at Scrabble online

On Saturday via Twitter and Facebook, many of you asked to play me at Scrabble (or a renamed version thereof) online (6 points). I don’t want to be rude but may I just say, NO, NO WAY, NEVER, IT’S A BASTARDISATION (17 POINTS) OF THE GAME. This rant all came about as I posted the following message...

Wish I’d never blogged about it now…

If you read my blog last week on a canny bit of gift recycling, you would’ve read the tale of the multi-gifted "Next stop 40" t-shirt. Originally given to me on my 30th birthday by my friend Justin, I gave it back to him the next year for his birthday. Then it was regifted to me last...

A canny bit of gift recycling…

On 9 May 2002, as I hit 30, the gift one of my best friends, Justin, gave me was a ‘next stop 40’ T-shirt. The following May as he followed suit (he’s just under a year younger), I, of course, gifted it back to him. Then last May as I hit 39, I found the same T-shirt...

Scary inmate Lewis…

I’m sure there are some out there (perhaps with today’s PPI summit – a few of the less reputable claims handlers) who’d say I should be put behind bars. Yet it was still a surprise to get back to to MSE Towers and find these two giant images sitting on my desk… They were sent by Card...

Revenge is sweet MSE Guy… mwah ha, mwah ha ha ha

I am about to do something cruel, but it is not without cause. In an email on Monday, our Arsenal-supporting news editor MSE Guy sent me this while we were both working on the content of the weekly email… If you’re looking for good deals, I reckon Mario Balotelli shirts will be cut-price at the Man City...

Eek, my competitiveness embarrassed me at the Ultimate News Quiz

The Ultimate News Quiz is an annual event, where teams/tables from across broadcast news organisations compete in aid of Action for Children. The room was jammed with many big names from TV and radio news – Andrew Marr, Adam Boulton, Emily Maitlis and others like Martha Lane Fox, Rory Bremner and more. My agent had put a...

Can you put up a flat-pack easel in 10 minutes?

I was filming for Watchdog on Friday morning. All was going well, until they said they had a blackboard which they wanted me to do sums on during a piece-to-camera – easy peasy lemon squeezy I thought – but then the producer dropped the bomb: "by the way, the blackboard easel’s a flat-pack and we want to...

“Surprised to be contacted by the rudest, most aggressive human being in the world”

Some emails just make you laugh out loud. MSE was copied in on Gary’s complaint letter to his mobile provider below. While I should caution that this type of rhetoric isn’t as good as a polite, but firm letter – I suspect at least the sheer, cathartic release made Gary feel better and it reflects the frustration...

How good are your taste buds? – The Tic Tac challenge

It’s a game of skill, dedication, wits and nerve – a tantalising taste challenge that’s capable of splitting the Tic from the Tac. Oh, OK, it’s a silly filler game I made up during a long car journey – but you may just enjoy it. Equipment needed: One packet of lime and tangerine Tic Tacs (the green...