Apple’s dirty secret…

I love my iPod. Aside from my SEX1, it’s my favourite piece of kit and I use it every day.

Fortunately, it has never exploded, but if it did, I would never be able to tell you about it anyway. That’s because it has now emerged that Apple – wonderful, lovely, ethical, not-Microsoft Apple – are trying to hush people up when their iPods explode by forcing them to sign gagging orders if they want their money refunded. That’s nice. Friendly.

Apple attempted to silence a father and daughter with a gagging order after the child’s iPod music player exploded and the family sought a refund from the company.
The Times has learnt that the company would offer the family a full refund only if they were willing to sign a settlement form. The proposed agreement left them open to legal action if they ever disclosed the terms of the settlement.
The case echoes previous circumstances in which Apple attempted to hush up incidents when its devices overheated.

Which – to me, at least – doesn’t look like the most friendly or customer-orientated settlement offer for a defective product which could potentially have seriously injured its 11-year-old owner (yes, I know she looks older) because it exploded.


Much like the Trading Standards officials quoted in the article, I can completely understand why Apple want these incidents hushed up: Apple fans are generally hysterical, leftie drama-queens and wouldn’t want to risk damaging their freshly waxed legs by putting an iPod Touch in their Guess jeans’ pocket.

Fortunately for Steve Jobs, his brand remains safe. All he has to do is to add some feature onto an existing product – ideally a feature which should have been on the existing product in the first place (and maybe an extra letter onto the name) – and the blinkered Apple fanboys will go wild and bombard twitter with overly excited tweets that OMG! it’s going to be, like,  SO much better than their current Apple product and they CAN’T WAIT!!!!, helpfully forgetting that their current Apple product should really have done all that stuff already.
They’ll be so busy running off to the loo with pictures of the new over-priced phone/laptop/MP3 player that all the exploding iPod issues will be forgotten long before they go out and spend stupid amounts of money on the new device because it will impress their arty-farty friends; after all, it’s got that little logo on it and it may not explode.

Additionally, South African Apple fans will seek sympathy from similarly brain-washed individuals over the price of Apple products and how we only get the new stuff weeks after it is released in the US; crying about discrimination, while conveniently ignoring the fact that this happens here with every make, model and manufacturer of anything vaguely technological.

Yes folks, believe it or not (and some of you won’t) Apple is a big, ugly, capitalist company which is in business to make money. It doesn’t matter how trendy you think their products are or how cool it is to have the latest thing which looks exactly the same as the last thing does or did. There are very few people who find your chatter about memory size or connectivity exciting. They’re smiling and nodding just to be polite and because they’re waiting for the big bang when you play your next Jonas Brothers track.

On the rocks

On the rocks, originally uploaded by Ballacorkish.

On the rocks in more ways than one.
I have been suffering with horrendous stomach ache today and it’s because of this that you’re only getting a quota photo this evening.
I am putting it down mainly to last night’s prawn madras: at least the combination of that and the beer and brandy.
Add to that the [few] hours sleep I managed and it’s a recipe for disaster.
The rest of the Boulders photos can be found here. And jolly nice some of them are, too.

More tomorrow, should I last that long.

Roman Rock

One of a great many photos that I took at Boulders Beach this morning, more of which I will upload tomorrow morning as there is a rugby and curry evening starting 4 minutes ago and we’re hosting. Oops.

This is the Roman Rock Lighthouse, just outside Simonstown Harbour, thus satisfying my lighthouse fetish. And, in the foreground, some of the famous Boulders on the beach, which was actually surprisingly devoid of penguins  – apart from the odd one every now again stumbling onto the sand after being pushed down the path by TMNP employees desperate to keep the tourists happy.

As I said, more photos tomorrow. But now: some Tri-Nations and a quart of Castle Milk Stout. As you do.

Is this awesome (Y/N)?

I was just minding my own business when this old bloke with a long beard appeared and suddenly I found myself beached in Kommetjie.



I need more money

I think we’ve all thought that at one time or another, haven’t we?

Laura Ripley is thinking it right now:

A 25-year-old unemployed woman who was given an £8,000 operation to help her lose 16 stone is complaining because, as well as her weight loss, her benefits have been reduced.
Laura Ripley, who has never worked, was given the operation on the NHS to help her slim down from 38 to 22 stone.

But the 25-year-old, who receives £600 a month in benefits, is unhappy because as a result of losing weight she can no longer claim disability allowance amounting to an extra £340 a month.
This, she says, means she cannot afford to eat healthily – causing her to pile the weight back on.

It’s not the first time that we’ve heard how difficult it is to eat healthily. Who could forget Coventry lard-arse Leanne Salt and her admission that she fed her 8-month old triplets on McDonalds because she was “too busy” to feed them decent food?

But we dealt with Leanne’s case back in April. Let’s return to Laura’s plight:

Without my disability allowance I’m left with just £210 incapacity benefit which I get because of my depression, and £100 income support I receive every two weeks and out of that I have to give them back £70 towards the cost of the £500-a-month flat I’m living in.

Heartbreaking, isn’t it? Depressingly, I find myself having to pay the total cost of my house myself, and in a bewildering step, the Government seem to take money from me each month, rather than giving it to me. Surely some mistake. And yet I still manage to eat an apple a day. So why can’t Laura?

‘I eat Tesco’s chocolate bars and packets of Space Invaders crisps, sometimes four of each a day’, says Laura, who spends seven hours a day watching TV.
People ask why I don’t snack on an apple – they’re cheap, but emotionally I don’t always feel like an apple.

Ah. Emotionally, I think if you shoved a whole apple in your fat mouth, you might find that you couldn’t eat as many of those Tesco’s chocolate bars and packets of Space Invaders crisps. And, as an added benefit, you wouldn’t be able to make utterly stupid statements like “emotionally not always feeling like an apple” and that would probably piss a lot fewer people off.

You might actually get some sympathy. But then again…

Since the extra allowance stopped Laura has put on a stone in just three weeks and claims she is being treated unfairly.
‘It’s heartbreaking that after all my hard work losing this weight someone’s come along and ruined it..I only want an extra £100 a month, that’s all’

Just an extra £100 a month? Why didn’t you say so earlier?
Here’s a quick thought – why don’t you go and get a job instead of sitting on your arse all day and stuffing your face with junk food, you lazy, sponging, fat cow.

Sorry, emotionally I just had to say that.