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Home life

The gamble of fixed interest rates

In October 2007 I switched to a fixed interest rate of 7.85% for five years. It turned out to be a terrible punt. The Global Financial Crisis hit the following year, with interest rates dipping to record lows. I shudder to think how much money I might have saved if at that point I’d locked […]

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Home life

They’re not Smart Meters anymore, they’re Advanced Meters

They finally installed a new electricity meter at my house. This was after receiving three sets of letters saying “we’re about to install it”. It wasn’t one of those much-criticised allegedly-defective Smart Meters though — oh no, it was an Advanced Meter. So much better. Will be interested to see what effect it has on […]

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Home life

My garden thinks it’s spring

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Home life

Cleaning out the roof

I spent about 4 hours in the roof on Sunday, with an industrial vacuum cleaner from Kennards, trying to clear out some of the residual insulation and other crap from up there. I had thought the half-day hire would be enough, but man, it’s hard work manoeuvring around up there, let alone with a big […]

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Home life

Plumbing mishap

I thought I’d be clever and change all the washers in the bath, and show the kids how it’s done at the same time. The shower ones were okay, but when we tried to take off the bath hot, it broke away. Result: nothing to grip onto. I assume the whole bit will have to […]

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Going green Politics and activism

A few thoughts on the carbon scheme

New for June… a Lego house with solar panels on the roof. Here’s a few thoughts on the carbon scheme announced yesterday: 1. I simply don’t understand how the deniers can continue to be taken seriously by anybody when the vast majority of climate scientists agree there’s a problem that needs to be fixed. It […]

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Home life

Proof that roof insulation works

The lack of insulation in my roof at the moment does make a noticeable, tangible difference. Normally I have my central heating set to 20 degrees until 9:30pm, and I used to have it set to 12 degrees… I came up with that on the basis that when the insulation was in the roof, overnight […]

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Home life

Renovating the roof

Got an attic ladder put in a while back. The bloke did a lot of chopping and cutting, and an electrician moved one of the lights to make way for it. The result is very pleasing, and it makes a real difference to getting up into the roof space. Stage 2 was getting some of […]

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books Home life Sport

A coupla things

The Slap I finished reading The Slap. Great book, provided you don’t mind a little fruity language and adult themes in your novels. Looking forward now to the TV adaption. Possums I was just thinking the other day that despite seeing a lot of possums around the neighbourhood, I never heard them in the roof. […]

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Home life

Inadvertently demolishing spider webs

I often think spiders would have better luck with their webs in urban settings if they had a little sense of spots to avoid, such as where us lumbering humans come barrelling through without looking (or without being able to spot them). It seems like time and time again I’ll inadvertently demolish a web — […]