Monday, August 19, 2013

Andrew's True Reviews

When I was a kid, my family gave me amazing Christmas presents, like a Tomytronic video game or Star Wars toys. In 1986 I even got a 'Kafka Sac' - a child-sized silk cocoon. Kids would sleep in these and try to turn themselves into an insect of their choice. (I wanted to be an earwig and collected all my earwax to ease the moment of my metamorphosis.)

Now, though, it has been 8 years since anyone got me anything for Christmas, and about 18 years since I got anything fun. So I have to buy my own treats.

Here's what I bought last Christmas, with reviews so you know if you should buy one too. 

(Yes, I've been using these things for 8 months. Think of the delay not as a reflection on how lazy I am, but how seriously I take my reviews.)

Brand: Swissgear 
Product: Backpack (GA-7301-14F)

True Review: This is the best backpack I have ever owned. I bought it from Amazon for cheap but ended up paying twice the cost because of import duties. This gave me huge buyer's remorse and made me hate the Swiss postal system, but when I put it on I felt I was being hugged by a cloud. A happy cloud.

It's near-perfect in its design. I say near-perfect instead of perfect merely out of British understatement. I was happy with my old Samsonite, but Swissgear is the future.

Brand: Elsa
Product: Memory foam pillow

True Review: I ponied up about 120 Euros for this little pillow thing. Bit of a rip-off, you probably think, and you might be right. But me and my girl Jen constantly bicker about who gets to use it. I wasted 30 Euros buying one for her but it's as much use as a thong on a hippo.

My first impression of my super-pillow wasn't good. I didn't sleep better. But when Jen spent the night she obnoxiously informed me that I was using it the wrong way round. After I won that night's pillow-right pillowfight I had a good sleep.

It's a luxury item, but if you can afford it, you'll sleep a bit better.

Brand: Philips
Product: Sonicare Sonic Toothbrush and Airfloss

True Review: I already had a Sonic toothbrush from Philips but it died after five years of loyal service. Apparently you're supposed to dry the slobber off after use. Anyway, they're great, and will save you money and pain at the dentist. Buy buy buy!

The Airfloss is a lot like a trebuchet, but instead of hurling giant stones at castles it projects mouthwash into the gaps in your teeth.

I like it because it dislodges the bits of pizza that clog up my crevices and it's a fun way to get mouthwash into one's mouth. My girl hated it though. She tried it once and as soon as it started its "launch sequence" she had a panic attack. Then she got mad at me for laughing at her.

"What's it doing? I don't like it!"

Brand: HP
Product: Officejet 6700 Printer

True Review: 
Take your pick:
1) I haven't been this frustrated by some plastic since I lost my thumb trying to open a blister pack
2) I haven't been this frustrated by some plastic since vuvuzelas in World Cup 2010
3) I haven't been this frustrated by some plastic since I realised the plant I'd been watering wasn't a plant

* With this printer you can, eventually, print documents.
* Great if you enjoy flashing lights and loud noises.
* The perfect printer for those who enjoy downloading software updates.
* Software is updated daily.
* After eight months of use, there are more software updates on this printer than their are atoms in the universe.
* With its advanced 'InSensor system,' it knows exactly when to run out of ink for maximum inconvenience.
* You have to rip pages out of books if you want to scan them (because it won't let you place a book or magazine on the scanner). Helps prevent copyright theft!

* It's just awful.

Brand: HP
Product: Pavilion Desktop PC

True Review: I bought this to replace my old laptop, which I'm giving to a charity in Africa because I'm a better person than you. I like having a proper keyboard and a monitor I can move around. But I had to spend many hours removing all the pre-installed crap. Perhaps HP stands for 'Hates People'.

I don't really have anything funny to say about it. I got stuck in a stream of consciousness that went like this:

* The Germans say that 'hope dies last.'
* You can't spell 'hope' without HP
* HP dies last
* In a nuclear winter, only cockroaches will survive
* HP is a cockroach.

I'll probably buy a different brand next time.



  1. Cécile10:52 AM

    Laughed many time. More fun posts please!

  2. Cécile10:53 AM

    PS: the annoying chapka comment annoyance is back. though you got rid of it?

  3. I turn it off sometimes but the amount of spam I get is too damn high. It's really awful - and they're all the same, so you'd think google would work out which ones to block.

  4. Love the HP review! Remind me to never give you the english version of my book (in case there will be one).

  5. Dominic, you won't have to give it to me - I'll be the first in the shop to buy it


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