Jan. 25, 2021

Beeper, Birds, and Burns


Episode 11 of Thank The Week included:

  • Bidding going bananas
  • The messaging app of your dreams?
  • A cultured movie recommendation
  • Counting birds
  • And Haggis

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Transcript
Craig Williamson:

This week we go gaga while bidders go bananas. We have some sporting sibling rivalry. We might just have the messaging app of your dreams. There's a cultured movie recommendation. We talk about counting birds, and we prepare to eat haggis. Let's Thank The Week.

Announcer:

Thank The Week. Learning to be thankful for last week and excited for this week. With your host, Craig Williamson.

Craig Williamson:

Welcome to Episode 11 of Thank The Week for the week of the 25th of January 2021. This is the positivity podcast, we give an upbeat look across news, sports, tech entertainment and my own daily life. And I need to start with some incredible news this week. Thank The Week was runner up in the let's talk 2021 competition for new positivity podcasts. The competition was run by The Podcast Host and Samson Technologies. And it just made me so happy to get this award. And it was a public vote. So really, it's you I owe a huge thanks to for all of your support. So sincerely, a huge thank you. Now on with the show.

Announcer:

News

Craig Williamson:

Last week was the US presidential inauguration promised no politics here. But as a world event, it was really cool to watch that live. Joe Biden was sworn in as the 46th US president and Kamala Harris was sworn in as vice president. She's the first woman and the first black and Asian American person to serve in that role. So really historic week in US politics and world history really. And I guess the other highlight for me was two other stars who made an appearance of course, last week, I was talking about the Super Bowl from last year and the big matchup between JLo and Shakira. The football was kind of incidental, and I kind of felt it was like that this this year with the inauguration, you know, president vice president. Let's have a look at JLo and Lady Gaga. So Lady Gaga was actually probably given the better material she had the national anthem, and there's not much topping the US National Anthem on an occasion like that. She wore some pretty outlandish clothing as you would expect, a brooch the size of a head, and a dress that was pretty easy to ensure social distancing, because no one could get close enough to her because of the size of that dress. But you know my opinion on this. Jennifer Lopez won the Super Bowl last year, and she won the inauguration this year. J Lo always wins. Moral of the story COVID statistics the world statistics of vaccinations as of last weekend, we have 60 million doses given Now think about one month ago, it was less than 3 million in the entire world. But as of now, we've got over 16 million doses of the Coronavirus vaccine given across the world, which I think is terrific progress, over 19 million in the US and almost 6 million here in the UK. Here in the UK, we have started to roll out the vaccine now to over 17. And most of the older age groups are also protected. So really good positive news on the COVID vaccine. Now just to update you. Last week, I told you about the Del Monte Norte. This was a $20 bill, which had a Del Monte banana sticker on it in between the print and the serial number that was printed over the top of it. And when we spoke last week, it was at $60,000 at auction, and we were all thinking how crazy that is that someone would pay $60,000 for a $20 bill. Well, the auction finished last Friday, and the amount that he ended up was $396,000. That's nearly $400,000 for this misprinted note, and I'm told that that price was a world record for any era banknote ever sold. So very, very significant money. So it just goes to show it's worth checking your pocket when you've got some coins and notes. See if there's anything rare in there. That was the Delmonte note incredible $400,000

Announcer:

Sport

Craig Williamson:

The sport is a little bit football in American football focus this week, and maybe does tend to be a little bit but I do try and slip in some other sports However, it's a bit quiet on other sports at the moment. Having said that, I am looking forward to the Australian Open tennis which is coming in February. So do expect to hear a little bit about that. And if you wanna let me know what sports you're interested in, then why not get in touch. I'm on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and you can find us @ThankTheWeek it'd be good to hear from you. So football, why not start with football all Premier League games are going to be shown on TV live in the UK until at least the end of February that was announced last week. And this is because of the lockdown fans kept going the stadium TV channels tried to do a bit of pay per view for a while that didn't go down well so we've been watching everything live across sky BT Sport, Amazon and the BBC here in the UK. So it's good news that we can now watch All the games still live until at least the end of February. I am a little bit disappointed just to see more games with empty stadiums, it is a little bit disappointing. And I did see a clip of a match actually with a full stadium. And it just looked incredible it was it was crazy how unusual it seemed to see a stadium full of fans. And I think we can all look forward to getting back to that. A little tip for you, wherever you watch your sport, whatever country you're in. There's a website called Live soccer tv.com. And there are also apps available for iPhone and Android as well. That's live soccer TV. And the issue with so many games being shown on TV is that sometimes it's difficult to know which channel they're on. And I found that a few times there's been a game I want you to watch. And I've really struggled to find it. And then it turns out, maybe it's on amazon prime, and that obviously doesn't come up in your normal TV Guide. So I really recommend live soccer TV shows you all the games on for a given day. And then for your country tells you what TV channel or what streaming medium you can use to watch that. Also in football, this coming week is the last week of the Premier League transfer window deadline day is Monday, the first of February really excited to see what happens there. I am going to keep my opinions to myself. So I did mention Paul Pogba not perhaps playing too well. And he's since gone on to play extremely well. And my brother who is a Manchester United fan, I'm sure is delighting in that so I'm not going to make any wild predictions for deadline day. On the topic of Manchester United and mighty Liverpool. We did have a match last week in the Premier League and it was a bit of a damp squib. Actually it was a goalless draw. So there were no gloating texts exchanged between me and my brother. And Liverpool and Man United are actually facing off again in the FA Cup. That game hasn't taken place at the time of recording. But by the time you hear this, it will have happened. Maybe some texts will have been exchanged by that point. And coming up this week. We have more Premier League action on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. I've got a couple of games picked out for you on Tuesday night at Southampton against the resurgent Arsenal, and on Thursday evening, it is Tottenham against Liverpool, American football now last week, you may remember we spoke with my good friend Wes to preview the American football match between his team the Kansas City Chiefs and the Cleveland Browns that was in let's say the quarterfinals as they work towards the Super Bowl, I'm pleased to say Where's his team Kansas City Chiefs 122 17. It was a really entertaining game, I managed to watch the whole thing live, which is quite unusual. But I think the kickoff was about eight o'clock here in the UK. So I stayed up late watch that was a really fun finish came down to the last few minutes. Unfortunately Kansas City did lose their quarterback to injury. So we really keeping our fingers crossed for Kansas City and for where's that he's fit enough to play because there is another big game. Now again, by the time you're listening to this, the game is over, but it's late on Sunday evening. And that is the AFC Championship game. We'll call that a semifinal for the Super Bowl. So basically the last game before the Super Bowl, and the Buffalo Bills are playing Kansas City Chiefs. If you have a good memory, you will recall that was his brother was a Buffalo Bills fan. And were supports Kansas City Chiefs. And actually, when I spoke with him last week, we did ponder the possibility that buffalo would face his Kansas City. And I'll let you listen to a little clip of that.

Wes:

That's a tough one because I want to cheer for the Bills during that game. But then I don't want to have to cheer against them when they play the Chiefs. though. That's not a good family dynamic. If the Chiefs do play against the Bills, I still think that Chiefs will win. They're not that dissimilar. They both have young quarterbacks score quite a few points. And the defence just kind of does a good enough job to that they can win. But I think the Chiefs are the more talented squad.

Craig Williamson:

So I think that's very noble of ways he actually routes for his brother's team in ordinary times. And I think you can tell from from what I've talked about with football, my self and my brother in Liverpool and Man United fans, I don't think either of us would ever consider cheering on the other ones team, unless there was some pretty strange circumstances. So yeah, we're looking forward to that game. And then it will be the Super Bowl. So fingers crossed for Kansas City, hopefully they can get through. And then we've got the Super Bowl on the seventh of February

Announcer:

Tech

Craig Williamson:

You know, I like a good mobile phone processor. But I'm aware it's perhaps not the most popular topic on this show. So I'm not going to tell you about Qualcomm's new Snapdragon 870 processor. I'm not going to tell you about its mid level specs and its 5g modem. So we'll move quickly on to other tech news. Fortnite. You know that's a big thing in especially my house my son loves to play fortnight. It was announced last week that there are going to be some new skins based on football teams. So there's going to be various teams including Man City, Wolves and West Ham in England. And from the US we've got Seattle, Atlanta and Los Angeles too. So an opportunity to get your fortnight character dressed up in a soccer skin and there's also a new Pele emote. I've said emote as if I knew what that meant. I'm not quite sure I think it's some kind of little dance or something. Anyway, the the new skins and the Pelo emote are available right now in fortnight. I teased this at the start. And Could this be the messaging app of your dreams, there was a launch this week of a new service called Beeper. And it is a universal chat app. If you're like me on your mobile phone, you've probably got many different messaging services. And that's because some friends like to use WhatsApp, some friends like to use Facebook, some friends like to use SMS, and so on and so on. And it can get very unwieldly. And very difficult to keep track of things. Well, what if there was a single app that integrated all these services? Well, there is, but there is a catch, because it is a paid service. I think it's about $10 per month. I haven't tried it. And it's just launched this week. But there's an app you can have for your iPhone or for an Android phone. And there's also an interface for Windows, Mac and Linux computers as well. And it integrates 15 messaging services, and I'm going to list them. We've got WhatsApp Facebook Messenger, SMS, Telegram, Twitter, Slack, Hangouts, Instagram, Skype, IRC, Matrix, Discord, Signal, Beeper network, and iMessage. And a few caveats actually, on that last one. So iMessage is Apple's lockdown messaging service, you can never message anyone using iMessage, unless they have an Apple device. Before I've actually come up with a way that you can access that through an Android phone, for example, or through a Windows computer. However, it does need to be tied to either a Mac computer, or an iPhone that's been specially configured to do that. So don't get too excited. You won't be sending messages between iPhone and Android anytime soon. But there are still some real, exciting aspects to having all those services integrated into one, I think it would be great to have an open source messaging service. This is just got a bit crazy with all these different services. And I think those apps could then focus on a user interface experience giving us a really good experience as the best messaging app in the world. But if the underlying technology was open source, and everyone use the same technology, then it wouldn't matter which app you use, you could pick what works best for you. The competition would all be around making a really useful app. And it would have universal features. Just my thoughts on where I would like to see it go. But I think this is a really good step forward. And I'm interested to hear if you've used before yet and what your thoughts are on that.

Announcer:

Entertainment

Craig Williamson:

Let's talk about lockdown binge watching. And I think I told you many episodes ago about the march lockdown in 2020. It was The Office US was my lockdown, binge watch. And I got through 200 episodes and finished the whole thing from start to finish a bit more modest. This time, I've just finished watching the 53 episodes of Silicon Valley, which is a US comedy series about a tech startup company in Silicon Valley. Here in the UK, it's streaming on Sky, and I think it's on HBO Max in the US. It's been a really fun TV programme to watch lots of humour in there and kind of my level of humour in some in some respects, but really good insights into what it is to be in a tech startup kind of magnified, and emphasised a little bit as well. And I think the good thing I found about it was that the finish, they knew that they were going to be finishing on the final series. And it actually ended in late 2019. So just over a year ago, but the benefit of knowing that they were going to wrap it up in that series meant that they could build up to a good finale. And everything was nicely wrapped up. But there was just a little hint of something that could follow forward into possibly a following series in the future. Or maybe a movie who knows. The other thing that I was really impressed with actually just researching before I'm speaking to you now, I took around on their website and HBO have a website for Silicon Valley. And it's really well done. I've not seen this done before. They've actually got websites for all the companies that are talked about in the series and then proper domain names. So Pied Piper is the main company. So they've got a website that you can go to and it's set up as a corporate website. There's one for their rival Hooli. And there's one for an energy drink that you see featured. There's all sorts of things linked so you can build this nice little world around the series. really recommend it if you want to start a new US comedy series that Silicon Valley on Skye in the UK and HBO max in the US. Let's move on to Netflix and Netflix last week announced that they've hit 200 million subscribers worldwide, which is pretty incredible. And they've announced a new feature coming up called shuffle play. Now, if you're a Netflix subscriber, you'll know it can be quite addictive because once an episode finishes, it barely gives you a chance to breathe before the next episode starts up. And I guess that's the whole concept. It just flows from one episode to the next. Before you know it, you've watched five or six and the days gone by, well they've got a new service that they're hoping to roll out later this year called shuffle play. And that will allow you to even not have to bother browsing to see what's on he literally press a button and based on your viewing habits We'll pick something for you to watch. And then you can press it again and it will skip to something else. So if you can't even be bothered to browse and see what's on, you just press one button, and then something plays. So that's the shuffle play feature coming out first half of 2021. And I want to recommend a film we watched last week on Netflix, it is called Rose Island, and it's a Netflix original. Now, this was a bit cultured for my tastes, because normally, I watch comedies I watch action films, rarely watch something with subtitles. Now there were subtitles in this and I suddenly felt extremely sophisticated, let me tell you, the downside was there was also some dubbing on this. So it was filmed in Italy, so it's best around an Italian story. Before I tell you the story, let me tell you about the sophistication aspect. There were bits of French, which was subtitled that's fair enough. The Italian unfortunately was dubbed and I don't recall ever watching a dub film before. And now I've got real sympathy, if English is not your first language, and you're watching all the blockbuster movies in your native country, but they're dubbed it's a really horrible experience, just to see words coming out of people's mouths, but their lips are not synced with it whatsoever. And it really loses some of the the gems in the film, I think it was actually quite a funny film. And there were some really funny lines. But because it was dubbed it was so difficult to buy into that and to really feel that connection with the characters, which is a real shame. But anyway, I watched the foreign film, and I feel sophisticated. Let's get back to the film. So this was set in the late 60s. And there was an Italian engineer by the name of Giorgio rasa. And what he did was he decided to build an island just off the coast of Italy, and declare it a sovereign state. So this is a true story. He built this island and declared a sovereign state built restaurant bar, it looked like it was a bit of a party Island, but there was a serious aspect to it as well. And what this film did was recreated the whole thing. So you see the island, and you see the story of how he came to build it. And then he's battle with the authorities in Italy to try and keep it alive. And just a really interesting story, and really recommend having a look at that. So that's rose island on Netflix. And if you're interested, have a little Google just to find out the background to that fascinating True story.

Announcer:

Life

Craig Williamson:

A really big thing for me last week was the let's talk 21 competition. I was talking about it quite a bit in my last few podcasts asking you to vote. And I'm so pleased that you did. And I'm really humbled and really thankful for all of your support. So thank the week was the runner up at the let's talk 2021 competition. This was a competition run by the podcast, horse and Samsung technologies. And just want to give a huge thank you for everyone for coming out and supporting the podcast and voting for us in that I have no update on hula hooping, skipping anything of that sort this week. But I do want to just update you on my hue smart lights, because I know you're all desperate to hear more about my Smart Lighting life. And I did actually have a little count up and I figured out I've got 12 Hue lights in the house, which is making me feel a little bit guilty that it does seem a little bit excessive, but they've all got their purpose. Anyway, I am excited this week, because there is a new button coming out from Philips. Yes, there's a new button coming out and it's got me all excited. They have a dimmer switch, which allows you to control the scene by using this dimmer switch, you can set up a multitude of lights to come on in a different way. And you can cycle through them with the switch. Or you can just use it as a simple on off switch and a dimmer for your light. You remember last week, I was telling you about my majestic lighting system in my home office and how pleased I was with it. And I remain tickled pink with it really happy. But what I'm looking forward to is getting a demo so that at the touch of a button, I can flick between some of these different scenes. So brighten it for during the day, lower it at night change the colour tone, that kind of thing. And Philips you have a new dimmer switch coming out on the 26th of January. So I've been holding off buying that dimmer switch. Can you imagine the excitement that's building inside me? So this dimmer switch is coming out Tuesday. Really excited to get that ordered? I'm not sure if it'll be here by the time we speak next week. But you know, I will tell you all about it. The other thing I'm toying with is getting a motion sensor, because I was kind of thinking it'd be quite neat to walk into my office. And then without even pressing a button. Without even speaking to my Google Assistant. I could just be sensed and the lights would come on and tune themselves to the time of day. And wouldn't that be awesome? Doesn't that sound fantastic? So I may buy a motion sensor too. But yeah, watch this space. I will fill you in next week. Big Big thing coming up this week. It is Harper's birthday, she is turning 11 now this is a difficult time to have a birthday and especially if you're a child because you're used to having parties. You're used to having all your friends there. Obviously that can't happen during lockdown. But we are going to try and make it as special as we possibly can. I don't want to talk too much about that here because hoppin might be listening, but I will fill you in next week on how we got on with Harper's birthday party. Now I have talked a bit about lockdown learning and my wife, Dawn took lockdown learning to the next level. This week, she had a trip to the butcher's, and I'll let Harper take up the story

Announcer:

Harper.

Harper Williamson:

Today I'm doing some dissecting of brain, a pig foot, which is its Trotter and a heart. I've already done a heart. So I'm doing the heart first, just to recap of what it's like. And just opening the bag for the heart. I've got all my chores laid out next to me, there are some hard bits of the heart. I don't know if it's just frozen, because they have been in the garage and the garage is cold. And it was frosty last night. I think I'm going to try and cut the hearts in half to see what it's like. Right now I'm using a scalpel just to cut it open. And there are lots of veins that I'm cutting open right now quite hard. And in the middle, I can see a lot of veins going into a little blob on the inside of the heart. And right now I'm cutting into the ventricles that lead to the main artery. And I'm just sticking my finger down, and it comes through from where I cut. I'm going to start doing the brain now. Apparently, it's supposed to be squishy. It came in a packaging as if it was in like a meat tray. So I'm just taking it out that got some clean gloves on. Oh, this looks smelly. It looks like a very small brain, it must have been a very dumb pig. At the top of the brain is in the in dense, it's quite bloody. But at the bottom, it looks very, it looks a bit fat. On the inside it there's lots of fat but not like the heart. It's very slippery, and very easy to break apart. The white bit inside is the fact it's actually part of the spinal cord that leads up to the brain. And the half that I'm looking at it just easily ripped apart. It's a very good job that we do have a skull because if we ever hit our heads, if we didn't have a skull, we would technically be dead because this is really squishy. I'm barely even pressing into it. And so just coming off of each other. Next, we have a pig's foot, which is its Trotter, and it looks really weird. And I every time I look at it, I just shiver. And I'm really excited because it still has the skin on and I'll get to see all the muscles and everything he has. That's weird. I don't like it. I wonder if this will still have blood in silence. I found that the bone it's covered in muscle. And then where the kneecap is where it comes up. There's a little bit of bone here. And I don't know if it runs back down to join with proper leg bone. But surrounding that knee kind of bit is just really soft tissue. I don't think I'm gonna be able to do a lot of dissecting with this because it is a bit hard and it has boo. So with the decide dissection, I have completed a pig's Trotter a pig brain, very mushy, and a lamb heart. I still don't know if it's allowed more sheep. I really hope it's actually a sheep not a lamb. But I found that pig's foot is very disgusting and smelly. The toes are really weird. The brain just falls apart really, really easily. And that the heart I don't really have much to say about that because I've done it before and everything but I really enjoyed this dissection. And I think it's a really good activity Try it yourself.

Announcer:

Ideas

Craig Williamson:

I've got a fun project for you all this week, it is a simple thing to do. There is something called the big garden bird watch happening. Now it is run in the UK. But there's nothing stopping you doing this wherever you are in the world. And I think it's just a really good way to connect with nature, see what's going on in your local area. So this is the big garden bird watch. It's run by the RSPB in the UK. That's the Royal Society for the Protection of birds. And it runs from Friday to Sunday. And what they're asking us to do is to spend an hour counting the birds in your garden and telling them what we see. And that's basically it. The RSPB website has lots more information on this, including some downloadable sheets, which you can print out and that will help you to identify the birds. So what they want to understand is what birds are coming to your particular area. And they use this data and they've built it up untold over the last 40 years. And it helps them to understand the challenges that birds are facing and other wildlife are facing in the areas and they can find any issues that they might be and then hopefully start to put things right. So something I'd really encourage you to get involved in. We're going to certainly do that as a family to find the website The address is a bit long but what I've done is I've put a short link so if you've got a thank the week dot com slash birdwatch that will automatically redirect you to the RSPB website where you can find out all about the big garden bird watch. So that's thank the week.com slash birdwatch, get out and watch some birds on Friday to Sunday.

Announcer:

Random

Craig Williamson:

We have some big days coming up this week and not just frivolous ones as you might normally get. So Monday, the 25th is Burns night. And this is an annual celebration in Scotland. It's on January 25, because that is the birthday of the poet Robert Burns. And he was born in 1759. And traditionally Scots will eat, drink and be merry on that day. So they might eat something like haggis, they might drink some Irn Bru. And if you don't know what Irn Bru is, you need to look that up pretty rapidly. And they might drink a bit of whiskey as well. I've never eaten haggis, I'm not sure I'm going to. It is however for your awareness the national dish of Scotland. They call it a pudding. I think I would severely question that. But it's the liver, heart and lungs of a sheep and it's minced and then packed into a sheep's stomach and boiled sounds extremely pleasant, but I think I might give that a miss but Monday night is burns night. And you can celebrate that however you wish. Monday is also Australia Day, which is clearly a huge day in Australia. And It commemorates the first landing in Australia by Captain Arthur Phillip in 1788. So if you're in Australia have a great Australia Day. On Monday, the 25th. Tuesday the 26th of January is spouse's day. Now this just seems like trouble to me because spouses there are two people involved. So who's got seniority? Who's the one who's celebrating who's the one who's supposed to give who's the one that's supposed to receive? That just sounds like trouble to me and listen to a man who knows I share my birthday with my wife. And it is a constant source of trouble in terms of whose birthday is who should be treating who who should be celebrating the most. So spouse's day on Tuesday, the 26th you might want to swerve that one. Wednesday, the 27th. Chocolate Cake day something I think we can all get behind. And then Thursday the 28th I'm not sure we can all get behind this. This is kazoo day. So this day celebrates the novel history of the buzzing, distinctive music that comes from the fantastic kazoo. And the kazoo is that American instrument that was designed in 1840. I did ask my kids if they had one laying around because I thought you might like to hear that distinctive, soothing tone, but sadly, they didn't have one so you'll have to make your own entertainment with a local kazoo. But that's kazoo day, Thursday the 28th. Thank you very much for listening. I'm wishing you a very fun and exciting week. Links to all the stories as ever are in the show notes. You can find them for this episode at thank the week.com slash 11 and you can get in touch with me through Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I am there at ThankTheWeek. I will see you next week. Goodbye!

Announcer:

Thank The Week. Discovering positivity and excitement in every week of the year.