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Friday, March 06, 2015

Detox Complete

It’s all over bar the fat man singing.

31 days ago I drank my last pint of beer at Krakow airport, whilst on some pretty strong painkillers to get me through the flight.  The beer was at 3pm so as far as I am concerned, my detox is over in just a few hours time, meaning that I can have a beer with my Friday night pie.  Maybe even two.

I’m not going to go over the details of why I do a detox – you can read my detox blog post if you are bothered.  Basically to feel better, crush any dependencies (particularly caffeine), save money and lose weight.

Do I feel any better for it?  This was a question asked many times.  Until recently, the answer was no.  But I do feel better.  For example, I am waking up 30 minutes earlier than usual, so enough time to do a little exercise and a little studying.  It all adds up.

I am a little less tired on a Friday.  I have been more productive this month and have done plenty more studying.

I have saved money.  Hard to say how much but around £300, which I have been able to partly invest in my DJ set-up through a sound card, and also a CD printer.

Interestingly I have been less happy.  My average happiness rating during January was 5.9.  My average during my detox month was 5.4.  There are some caveats thought – January included my birthday and a holiday, my detox month started with a few days were I was pretty pissed off due to being ill.  Apart from those 3 days of being ill, I never went below a rating of 5.0 during my detox month – but never above 6.4.  During January my happiness rating varied quite substantially from 4.0 to 8.5.

Yes I do keep statistics on a lot of aspects of my life.  You should know this by now.

Most importantly to me, I lost weight.  I started the detox with a morning weight of 92kg.  I finished at 88kg.  Most days I came well under my calorie limit for losing weight.  It isn’t just the alcohol that stops me from losing weight, but the drunken chicken and the hangover fry-ups, not to mention the Monday survival sausage rolls, and that kind of thing.

It was much easier this year.  I managed to totally resist temptation and even DJ’d without a quibble, I was hardly bothered at all about the degenerate chaos around me.

Without doubt it has been a success and I will keep doing them every year.  I am even considering doing quarterly fortnight-long detoxes.

Roll on pie and beer time.  And then the slightly less fat man singing.


Thursday, March 05, 2015

My First Piece Of Internet Fraud

I had my first ever piece of internet fraud this weekend.  No it wasn't me committing it.


On Saturday I was checking my e-mail and this e-mail came in from Amazon Payments thanking me for my payment and subscription to ‘Private Internet Security Ltd’ (or similar) for $39.99.

At first I thought it was a spam e-mail but it looked too professional and valid websites came up when hovering over the links.  So I clicked through to Amazon Payments, that I have never used, to find that I had an account, and it had my card details in it.

I complained to Amazon, and the individual retailer.  Amazon Payments confirmed that the account had been set up fraudulently.

I cancelled my card with NatWest, who I have to say were exceptionally helpful – the charge was refunded the day after, and I received my new card the day after that.  Exceptional customer service.

Now I receive an e-mail from LastPass, whom I use to save usernames (not passwords), addresses, etc so all my forms fill in with a click of a button, to advise me that they have disabled my account as they have found my details for sale publicly – with my master password.

I do take my internet security fairly seriously and have different and fairly difficult passwords for the likes of Facebook, Hotmail, banking and Paypal, but for all other minor websites such as shopping sites and internet forums I have the same master password.

I am assuming that my details were stolen from the Ebay hack a while back – my Ebay and Amazon accounts had the same master password, and my Amazon account I stored my card details in which I don’t do on other websites.

Anyway I thought I was pretty good with internet security but clearly I am not good enough.

Time to up my game and make it harder.  I am lucky that it was just one small transaction and the bank refunded it without quibble.  This shit is serious.

By the way, did you know that internet fraud is not included in official crime statistics?

The photo is of Charles Ponzi.