Daniel Radcliffe, Portal 2 and capsicums, together at last - Tactical Ninja
Aug. 18th, 2011
10:02 am - Daniel Radcliffe, Portal 2 and capsicums, together at last
Dear internet, why is it that whenever I click on an embedded YouTube video (or one on the site for that matter), the default starting volume is FULL BORE? It never used to be like that, and I'm pretty sure it started when I started having to use 'old embed code' to embed videos here. Did they change something? Can I fix this so I don't get my eardrums shattered every time I try to watch something? Help meeee...
Here's the trailer for The Woman in Black (yoinked from heartofawarrior):
It looks potentially cheesy and possibly reliant on ambience and sudden fright moments - however Daniel Radcliffe is highly pervable and sufficiently grownup and unshaven looking that I don't feel like a paedophile doing it. He also seems to have put a lot of effort into making sure he doesn't spend the rest of his life being Harry Potter. I find myself drawing parallels between him and Johnny Depp and the effort he put in to not being Ton Hanson from 21 Jump Street forever. I'm watching with interest to see where he goes. Doing Equus (which I would like to see) while the Potter movies were still being filmed was a brave move - he probably would have got roles after Harry Potter anyway but the play framed him as versatile and I hope he continues to take on challenging roles. Compare with Robert Pattinson (also of Harry Potter beginnings) - it'll be interesting to see where they both end up.
In other news, last night I downloaded Portal 2. I have joined the borg, and may have played the first few levels this morning while drinking my coffee. I was struck by the voice of your companion in the early stages. He's not Alistair but he seems to have borrowed a lot of personality quirks and speech mannerisms from him and I'm wondering if Valve did that deliberately to cash in on Alistair's popularity. Hmm ..
Also last night, these two photos appeared on Twitter:
New Zealand grown red capsicums, for sale in Germany.
Euro-NZD conversion = about $5/kg
New Zealand grown red capsicums, for sale in New Zealand.
Back in the olden days, my husband and I had a commercial garden. We grew capsicums out of season, and it wasn't easy. The overheads are high because in order to get them to fruit you have to provide an artificial environment and maintain it regardless of what the weather outside is doing. This was over 15 years ago and even back then, $5 a kilo for capsicums wouldn't give much of a margin to the grower. However at $20 a kilo someone's making quite a lot of money. Top tip - it isn't the grower. So, what's actually going on here?
Well, it's off-season in New Zealand, which means those capsicums have been grown the expensive way and there are less people doing this so there's less around. I would expect to pay around twice as much for an off-season capsicum as I would for an in-season one, to ensure the grower's covering their costs. And that's what we're doing - at the moment red capsicums are around $5 each and in summer I was paying about $2.50 each for them. In Germany, capsicums are in season and the supermarkets have to price them competitively or nobody will buy them. I'm guessing the reason our capsicums are there at all is because of some trade agreement whereby they have to buy them because we buy something of theirs yadda yadda. Or it could be simply that it's cheaper for them to buy NZ off-season capsicums than it is to grow them in Germany at any time of the year. I don't know. What I do know is that in Germany, you can buy capsicums for $1.25 each and in our equivalent season, we pay $2.50 each.
"But wait Tats, that means that even in season, we're paying twice as much for our homegrown capsicums as the Germans are!"
Yes, I know. And the only thing between the auction and us is the supermarket. Enter Sue Kedgley, who's done some research and discovered that supermarkets are putting markups of up to 800% on produce. I have wondered why the 2kg bags of granny smith apples that my offspring hoovers at the rate of one a week never got below $4.00 this season, even though last year they got to $2.00 a bag. Now I know.
The supermarkets say "supply and demand" sets the price. Well, if I'm paying twice what the Germans are for capsicums grown in my own country, my demand's gonna drop off. Broccoli's in season. In fact, all brassicas are. Spinach doesn't change price year round, and carrots are crunchy and colourful. The supermarkets are profiteering, pure and simple, and the only way to argue with their 'supply and demand' bullshit is to stop buying them if the price goes too high.
This 800% markup business, I reckon is related to the GST rises. As expected, lots of businesses put their prices up more than the 2.5% that GST was raised, and supermarkets can get away with it because they specialise in selling you lots of items that each have a low unit price, so you don't notice till you're at the checkout. My local supermarket put icecream up by $1.00 a tub across the board the other day. Bread is now ~$5.00 a loaf if you want it to have actual nutrition. My total grocery bill for the same (more or less) fortnightly shop has gone from $150 to $250 in the last 9 months - and I'm a thrifty shopper.
Not all of that can be blamed on GST - there are economic factors at work here that I don't really understand. But the price of everything is going up and wages are not keeping pace. Someone is making a lot of money from this. Maybe it's those folks who got the biggest tax cuts?
I am tired of paying for someone else's flash lifestyle just because I want to eat healthy. And I'm one of the lucky ones - I can still afford to buy capsicums.
But I'm not going to.