Sunday, July 25, 2004

Yeah Right.

One of the best bill board campaigns I have ever seen is the Tui Beer series. These feature a billboard like the one below. The statement on the board changes from time to time.

I'll call you.

For those not living in NZ, when we say "Yeah Right.", what we mean is "we don't believe you". This should not be confused with "Too right" which means that we agree with what you are saying.

Please note that I don't drink beer and this piece is not an endorsement of any kind, I just like the bill boards because they are clever / funny. If you have your own "Yeah Right.", you can enter the Yeah Right competition

Below are some statements that should appear on those bill boards

  • It was the dog.
  • Winning isn't everything.
  • It's not mine.
  • It wasn't me.
  • I don't snore.
  • The cheque is in the mail.
  • I did not have sexual relations with that woman.
  • You won't feel a thing.
  • This will only take a minute.
  • It wasn't even close.
  • Pain free dentistry.
  • No presents.
  • Life begins at 40.
  • You don't look a day older than 30.

Sunday, July 18, 2004

Frappuccino Fix

I love Frappuccinos. This is unfortunate as at the moment it is the middle of winter and consuming said Frappuccinos has been known to cause excessive shivering, brain freeze* or both.

*Brain Freeze is an excruciating headache caused by drinking too much ice cold liquid too fast.

Suffice it to say, as a devoted junkie / addict, I believe that the afore mentioned side effects are totally worth it.

Over the past two weeks have been searching for the perfect Frappe experience. In my quest have sampled the offerings from various vendors, even going as far afield as Lake Taupo in the search for perfection.

Yesterday I visited Muffin Break and ordered a double fudge frappe. Sound good? It wasn't! The ice was not properly blended and the resulting concoction looked (according to my friend) like muddy snow that had thawed, frozen and then thawed again. The thing was watery (not tasty enough) and gets a score of 3 out of 10.

Also, they put cream on the top. This is partly my fault cause I forgot to say "no cream" but their picture does not feature cream and they should have asked. Muffin Break do have a loyalty program of sorts where you buy so many beverages off them and then get one free. The catch? Only hot drinks count. What is with that? Suffice it to say there is no way I will be going back there for my Frappe fix. Very disappointing. Especially given that they are the most expensive Frappe place in Auckland, charging a whopping $4.90 for a relatively small Frappe.

Robert Harris was better. Actually, the Robert Harris down in Taupo was nothing short of fantastic. I ordered a Mocha Frappe and whilst I strongly suspect that they got the syrups mixed up and gave me hazelnut instead, it was wonderful. Tasted amazing. Ice was pretty well blended. The problem? No spoon. This is not a good thing as a well made Frappe is thick and needs a spoon to be properly enjoyed. Needless to say, loud slurping noises made whilst travelling to Hawkes Bay does not endure one to one's travelling companions. The "Taupo Frappe" was the most expensive of all costing over $5.00. I give it 7 out of 10.

My local Robert Harris (in Auckland) is OK'ish. Have had two of their Frappes, the first was pretty good. The second, was verging on potential greatness until I discovered an uncrushed icecube in it!! I complained to the owner who was kinda apologetic. I say "kinda" because he did apologise and "tell off" the person who made the Frappe but he did not go out of his way to demonstrate adequate remorse. I think a "two for the price of one voucher" or something similar would have been a much more effective way of making up for their mistake. OK, it was not the worst Frappe on the planet, but I won't be going back there in a hurry. This one gets a 6 out of 10. Must confess that it was pretty good value at $4.50 for a fairly large amount of Frappe.

Finally, I visited Starbucks. Now I know that there are many of you out there who hate / loathe / detest Starbucks coffee. All I can say is that whatever sins they have committed, their Frappaccinos more than make up for it. It does not seem to matter which store I go to, they always get it right. Their Tall Mocha Frappaccinos (no cream) are the best ever. My one complaint is that only once have they offered to put chocolate syrup on the top. Chocolate syrup on the top is very very good. They charge $4.60 for a Tall which is not exactly cheap but it is worth it. Warning, these things are sweet. With me that is kinda the point. If you don't like sweet things, then you will probably prefer the Frappes from Robert Harris although then you will miss out on the perfectly blended ice. Starbucks Frappes rate a 9 out of 10.

So there you have it. Starbucks comes out on top. I have tried their white chocolate Mocha Frappuccino and have to say that it did not do it for me. The straight Mocha Frappuccino is the way to go. On a somewhat sadder note, my dad ordered a Grande Cappucinno from them which was anything but grand. The thing was mostly foam and he was very disappointed. He complained bitterly *to me*. I had a look at it and am almost certain that it was more than half foam. Not worth it at all. To make things worse they did not put chocolate on top! How can you serve cappuccino without chocolate / cinnamon?? Not a good look. If you are visiting Starbucks, do yourself a favour and stick to their Mocha Frappaccinos.

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Very Annoyed

I wanted to read an article in the Jerusalem Post today and they made me register before they would let me do this. The registration was free but it is a hassle and you have to give them a working email address so that they can "complete the registration process".

This is downright annoying! So, I had a bit of fun and put in totally bogus information on their questionnaire. The only real thing on it was a working email address. I really got into the spirit of the thing and was quite creative (hehe).

Word to the wise, get a hotmail address. Use it whenever people ask you for your address and you don't want them bugging you. Set the spam filter on the hotmail address to "people in my contact list only" and tell it to delete junk that has been in the junk folder for more than one week. This is one very effective way to cut down on spam and of course you can check that address for any "confirmation" emails that you are expecting after registering with a given web page. As they say over here. No worries

And now, a few more what they say / what they really mean "translations"

What they say What they mean
Obtaining funds by deception. Getting people to fork over money by telling porkies.
Has a history of dishonesty. Is an outright liar.
Helping the police with their inquiry. Probably guilty but they can't prove it yet.