Tag Archives: the internet


A journalist called Malachy Clerkin wrote a really good, funny article in last week’s Irish Times about Twitter, the Rory McIlroy incident (he had a row via Twitter with a TV commentator who had suggested his caddie was useless) and the Social Network in general.

He wrote about the unfortunate naming of Twitter, Twits and Tweets and he said:

It’s a decent bet that we’d all be closer to feeling comfortable with it by now if it had been called something staid and dull like MyDiary or Bubble or Fridgenote. (Naming internet phenomena is the easiest thing in the world. It’s basically living space bingo. Look up from your paper right now and pick the first object that catches your eye that has 10 letters or fewer in it. Bam! You’re a heartbeat away from being Mark Zuckerberg.)

(It is encouraging, by the way, that proper journalists use sentences in brackets too.)

Anyway, I did as he suggested, though it was unfortunate that I was reading the paper whilst in the pub.

When I get going I hope you will all friend me on Beermat.

Being Too Forward

During the Great Tinternet Crash of crash of 2011 (comparable to the Wall Street Crash of 1929 in that its effects were felt across the world, though there were fewer stockbrokers leaping out of windows) I managed to sneak in a post one Sunday in which I promised that there would be a post the following day, thanks to the wonders of post-scheduling. I even said the smart-alecky ” This means I already know what’s in it, it’s like being able to see the future, though not the useful parts like football scores and lottery numbers.”

Turns out it wasn’t.

There was nothing I could do about Tuesday the 2nd, but I persuaded myself that was ok, that missing one day was alright. But when cyberspace re-appeared I was horrified to see that both the 1st and 2nd were missing for August, making the month’s calendar on the right of this screen look like a boxer who has parried a haymaker with his face and lost two teeth as a reward.

I went investigating and discovered that my internet ineptness had let me down again. The Sunday on which this time travel exercise took place was July 31st, and I duly changed the post date to August and went off well pleased with myself.

The post will, of course, now appear on August 31st.

Don’t hold your breath. It’s not even as if it’s any good.

Back in the Fold

It’s Saturday, and there are only six words that I can use:

Back In Contact With The World

Last Saturday I wrote that I had missed Friday’s post due to our modem/router/whatever-the-hell-it’s-called staging occasional unscheduled work-breaks. It seems to have taken offence at this (of course it read it, the post was chanelled through it as if I was a ghost, it was a medium and the internet was a séance) so ten minutes after I published the post it stopped working altogether and has remained resolutely on strike ever since.

The couple of posts that I have published since have been sneaked out at work to let you know that I’m still here, since I’ve discovered before that when a man who writes about his heart problems and his bouts of depression suddenly vanishes off the internet for a few days (especially when he has pledged himself to Post-a-Day) then it tends to scare the crap out of his internet friends.

Anyway, we now have a new thingummybob and the world is again my oyster, if the world will forgive me for called it salty, slimy and disgusting.

I am back, sitting in front of my machine and looking forward to reading more of your own posts than I got to do last week.

In short, I am expecting a very pleasant Saturday.

(For more Six Word Saturday posts, go here:)


Weekly Photo Challenge: Broken

It’s nearly a week late now, but this is this week’s picture.

There was only one possible photo. This is the broken object, with it’s red light where the green internet light should be, that has caused me to be a week late in the first place:

I’ve just been informed by Tinson2 (via email!!) that our new modem has arrived, so all is well in the Tinworld again.

Unfortunately they took away the old one. I had planned a follow-up photo of it after it alliteratively had been beaten to bits by a baseball bat.

Hello World!

That’s what they call your first post when you set up with WordPress.

I’m just using it to let you all know I still exist, and that my internet doesn’t.

I jokingly said at the weekend that from yesterday on I could write stuff at work but that’s not really an option, especially this week when I’ve to work late every night anyway.

Anyday now a courier will arrive with our replacement modem. He will be greeted with open arms, especially by my children.

Until then I will communicate in short bursts, like this one.

Hope you’re all keeping well.


Coming and Going

A few minutes after I finished yesterday’s post a man arrived from Eircom to see if he could sort out what was wrong once and for all. He moved wires around, put in something called a splitter, climbed bravely into our attic (where be dragons – well, there might be, none of us ever go up there) and got our internet speed up to over twice what it was before. He had a look at our modem and said “I don’t like the way that light is flickering, I think this might not be working properly, I’ll get a new one posted out to you”.

Then he left. Five minutes later the flickering green light he was so worried about turned red, and we lost the internet again.

It works intermittently, which is how I’m here, but I find that I’m typing gently so as not to break my fragile connection to the world.

There will be a post tomorrow, but only because I’ve set up the one I did on Friday to publish tomorrow morning. This means I already know what’s in it, it’s like being able to see the future, though not the useful parts like football scores and lottery numbers.

By Tuesday I will be definitely back, because I’ll be back at work, and if necessary I’ll write stuff there (note to boss who sometimes reads this – that is a joke).



I wrote the above about an hour ago, tried to save it and the internet had gone again. !’m trying again now, but now I feel like I’m trying to smuggle messages out of a prisoner-of-war camp, uncertain that anyone will ever get to read them.

If none of you ever get to read this, let me assure you that it’s the best post ever written.

Out of Contact

Here is this week’s Six Word Saturday:

Internet Was Broken – That’s My Excuse

I had no post here yesterday for only the second time this year. The first time was simply because I forgot to hit “publish” when I had finished writing, the kind of mistake that could be made by anyone, so long as they’re a total idiot.

Last night was different – I arrived home with my post already written in Word, all I had to do was cut-and-paste it onto my blog, but I found that I couldn’t get in. A big sign should then have appeared on the screen saying “the internet is down – sorry for any inconvenience”, but that would mean Microsoft, or Eircom, or Al Gore, or somebody admitting that they had screwed up, and this is not what happens in the computer world. If your computer suddenly crashes Microsoft will tell you, not that some of its programs are crap, but that you have performed an illegal operation and have been shut down, which makes you sound like a badly-behaved robot.

Anyway, instead of the big sign I kept getting helpful messages suggesting that perhaps I was typing in the wrong address, or that the site that I was looking for no longer existed. Since it was my own site I was looking for this was like being told that I was too drunk to find my way home, or else that some Government agency had erased all record of my existence (it happens, I’ve seen it in films), possibly because of the illegal operation that I performed in the last paragraph.

Just when it got to the stage that my language had moved beyond “fruity” to “consisting purely of symbols” (e.g., *!@#!!&*#@?!!) Tinson1 arrived home and told me that the internet wasn’t working, that he had rung Eircom and they were looking into it.

I kept trying at intervals during the evening until eventually midnight came and I accepted that I had lost.

It was still off this morning and since this is a Bank Holiday Weekend here in Ireland I reckoned that was it until Tuesday, but Tinson1, suffering World Of Warfare withdrawal symptoms, rang them again and got someone to do something technical that probably involved turning something off and then turning it back on again, and we are back.

Which is just as well. Six Word Tuesday just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

(For more Six Word Saturday posts, go here:)


Getting Your Own Back

I was talking to the Tinkids this morning about political correctness, and about how it can sometimes be somewhat misguided, so I told them about the “sport” of Dwarf Throwing in the US, and of how, when PC determined that Dwarves should be referred to as Porgs (Persons Of Restricted Growth) one town changed the name of its contest to the Porg Throwing Contest, thus missing the point that the throwing of someone might actually be more offensive than what you call them while you’re doing it.

I then decided to look it up on Google to see if I could find out more about it. I typed in “Porg Throwing” and, to my surprise, about half way down the page I got a link to a post from last April by our own Twenty Major, with this excerpt:

There’s a place in the US where they have Annual Dwarf Throwing Contests. … growth) got the contest’s name changed to the Annual Porg Throwing Contest. …

Here we go, I thought, let’s see what Twenty said about it, I bet it’s really funny.

So I read the post, which is about the dumbing down of Newstalk, and is indeed really funny. But it doesn’t mention Dwarf or Porg Throwing. So the reference must have been in one of the 202 comments.

With the beginning of a sinking feeling in my stomach I read through the comments, and eventually found this:

There’s a place in the US where they have Annual Dwarf Throwing Contests. When PC came in, however, dwarves – who now insisted on being known as Porgs (persons of restricted growth) got the contest’s name changed to the Annual Porg Throwing Contest. Seemingly it was the name that was humiliating, not the fact they were being thrown.

(I always start to giggle when I think of this story, which is really, really mean, coz I’m only five foot five).

And yes, as I had feared, it was written by me.

In the interests of honesty I’ve printed the comment in full here, including the bit about the giggling. I know it’s wrong, but try to picture the contest in your head for a second.


Anyway, I had no recollection of writing it till I read the next comment, which was from Jo (who I hadn’t met then) and said “Tinman, are you Bono?”

So there. Whenever you use the Internet to back up a point you’re making, make sure it’s not yourself that you’re quoting.

Tinman and Oz

Back in January I wrote this piece after Cheltenham Borough Council tried to sue its former Managing Director because, although she suffered from depression, she answered “No” to a question in a pre-employment questionnaire asking did she consider herself disabled.

Thanks to the wonders of Pingbacks (whatever they are) I’ve discovered that my post was quoted in another post on another blog called skepticlawyer, which is based in Australia, of all places. The writer discusses the issue, then she links to my post by saying “as this piece rather shrewdly points out” (shucks) and then re-prints the whole thing. As the post includes references to the “Tinfamily” and the “Tincar” I’m not sure what the lawyerly people reading it will have made of it all.

Anyway, I have to admit that I was childishly thrilled at being favourably quoted in a serious legal piece. And I’m still new enough at this to be gob-smacked whenever I get remarks from remote parts of the world (no, I’m not calling Oz remote, guys, I’m just saying it’s a long way from here. Or anywhere).

I know, Laughykate (from an even more remote place), that you get hits from places like Mexico, but most of yours seem to be from people looking up weird stuff, so in your case I’d be more scared than thrilled.