The ethernet connection to my computer has mysteriously stopped again. Fortunately, there are advantages to having too many computers. This room has three - one recording from DAB, one sampling from cassette, and this one, with scanner attatched. Actually there's also a laptop found in a skip, and the guts of two old PCs canibalised to fix other PCs.

So I'm still connected to the outside world, but at a greater distance.
I know what I'm going to get myself for Christmas. An electric blanket! I am sick of sitting in a cold room in front of a cold ketboard before getting into a cold bed. Though bedtime this last week has been 7am.
Nick asked to read my novel (well, novella, or maybe just very long short story). So I've been going through it, tidying up the clumsier dialogue and descriptions. It stands up fairly well, considering it was written by a rather pretentious 19 year old with aspirations to write science fiction about first love and social problems.

Another quick read through, a few minor changes, and I'll send it off. Before I can find an excuse not to.
Remember Kevin Trudeau? He's the great American infomercial huckster salesman who repackaged the old 'visual mnemonic' memory trick, which you can learn in ten minutes from a UKP5 book, in a UKP150 cassette course and sold it by the truckload on both sides of the atlantic. Mega Memory, he called it.

And then...he charged another UKP150 for a few extra tips disguised as a second course.

And then, he got speedreader Howard Berg and 'human calculator' Scott Flansberg to make their own home-study cassette courses for him to sell. Berg in particular completely failed to explain his technique speed skimming cohearantly.

But then, after an ill advised branching out into golfing tips, and a highly suspect business selling 'brian enhancement foods', the shine started to come off. He tried to repackage the Atkins diet, just as serious concerns about it's health risks entered the public domain. Then it became known that he's been convicted for credit card fraud, and prosecuted for airing fraudulent infomercials and being involved in a multilevel marketing scam.

I know this because I'm one of the people he conned, back in 1996. I bought the memory, maths and speedreading courses, in a moment of insane blind optimism. I learned far more about all these techniques from Tony Buzan's books, and they do work. They're just very difficult to use, require constant practice, and don't turn you into a superman.

Well, I've found the cassette courses in a dusty cardboard box, oddly enough, next to some soft porn VHSs - a gift from a surprisingly nice man I met in a park. The courses weren't useless, just grossly overpriced. So they're going on ebay for UKP5 each. The vids are going in the dustbin, with Kevin Trudeau's reputation.

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