Pricing Regime

The following pricing strategy seems ridiculous to me. Normally it’s “better value” to buy the larger pack of waffles. The waffles are cheaper individually at 14 4/9 pence per waffle compared to 14 4/5 pence per waffle although I would argue that this difference isn’t worth worrying about.

With this price reduction regime the smaller pack of waffles is much better “value”. The small waffles come in at 10p each and the larger pack of waffles requires 11 1/9 of your hard earned pennies per waffle. This, to me, just doesn’t make any sense as a pricing regime.


You possibly thought this website couldn’t get more mundane but I would like to think that I have stooped lower than before!

Special K

Only a minor rant today about how effective advertising is and how our views of the world are shaped by what we are told rather than what we try to find out for ourselves using sceptical thinking tools.

Special K is a breakfast cereal made by Kellogg’s. The adverts on television promote Special K as a healthy alternative to other breakfasts and good for losing weight. Most of the adverts have a good looking woman in a red swimming suit enjoying life to the full. The message is clear:

Eat Special K and lose weight, be healthy and live a wonderful life.

As far as I can tell, Kellogg’s are perfectly able to make these claims because they all mean ABSOLUTELY NOTHING. The adverts make no particular claims that would require evidence, so I [grumpily] admit that the adverts themselves are perfectly ok to broadcast.

If you want to find out more about the sexual views and (non) medical ideas of the man who invented Corn Flakes then please look here. I am going to look solely at the information I can find about Kellogg’s cereals.

If you want to lose weight then you need to follow this principle:

Calories in should be lower than calories out.

I’ve explained this before in this communication. Therefore you would expect that Special K has significantly lower energy content that other cereals made by Kellogg’s. Let’s see.

Special K Nutrition Panel
Special K Nutrition Panel

As you can see here, 100 grams of Special K contains 375 kcal. To burn that much energy off you would have to walk/run around 4 kilometres. Now, let’s see what Kellogg’s Original Corn Flakes contains:

Corn Flakes Nutrition
Corn Flakes Nutrition

I’m sorry this isn’t the actual panel from Kellogg’s but their website wasn’t working properly and I couldn’t get the information. Let’s read what this information tells us.


Holy Cow! How does that happen? The adverts tell us one thing but in reality the truth is completely the reverse. I’m pretty sure that Special K tastes like cardboard too, so perhaps everyone should just swap to standard Corn Flakes. In fact when we look at the energy content of other Kellogg’s products we can see that there isn’t a great deal of difference in energy terms.

Crunchy Nut Nutrition
Crunchy Nut Nutrition
Special K with extra crap
Special K with extra crap

So, 100 grams of these cereals are all around 380 kcal. It doesn’t make a great deal of difference which one you eat. However, I am not sure of 100g of Corn Flakes LOOKS the same amount in a bowl compared to 100g of flakes with extra sugar coating. It could be that you will fill the bowl to the same level but end up eating many more calories because the coated flakes are more massive. This is a test I might do one day.

Also, I am not commenting on the extra sugars you will eat if you have sugar coated cereal. This is not a communication about how healthy a particular cereal is, it’s about the energy content and the impression given by advertising.

So, what should we learn from this? I think this shows clearly that advertising works extremely well at forming opinions about certain products and their effects on us in terms of health. ALL advertising claims should be taken sceptically until you have investigated them for yourself. Don’t dismiss or accept things straight away. It is perfectly OK for you to think or say:

That sounds interesting but I’ll form my own opinion once I’ve investigated it a little more.

In fact, that is generally a good approach to life itself.


One more thing. Anti-aging creams can legally ONLY advertise themselves as anti-aging if and only if they contain a form of UV sun protection. There is little evidence that any of the other stuff they put in creams will protect your skin from the 3/5/7 signs of aging.

DC Day Six

My last day in Washington DC! I knew I’d be leaving for the airport at around 19:30 so I had all day and plenty more to see. Another sunny day in DC and slightly warmer than the last week or so.
Got up, had coffee and then prepared for another run. I hadn’t seen the World War II memorial so far and that was my destination for today.

Create Maps or search from 80 million at MapMyRun

On the run I saw a coast guard helo. My helicopter total for the trip was as follows:

  • Black Hawk
  • Marine One
  • Coastguard
  • Park Service UH-1

Back to Georgetown and time to get ready for a busy day. I had lunch organised at midday and so I wandered in to town at about 11. I was planning to get the metro from Foggy Bottom and go two stops to McPherson Square but I had plenty of time and so kept going on foot. I got to 14th and Eye just on time and walked a little further to The Hamilton bar for lunch.

View of the Capitol

After a Hamilton burger for lunch I walked towards the Newseum. I hadn’t quite decided whether to go there or the National Museum of American History. I happened to wander past the FBI Headquarters building and didn’t blag my way in to that place. I figured if I wanted to see inside I could try and get arrested somewhere, although that would probably not be worth the effort. I like my body cavities as they are!
I saw a sign indicating Ford’s Theatre and so I walked to see that. There were many many school children waiting outside. I understand, it’s the place of assassination.
I decided that the Newseum would wait and so I walked to the Museum of American History. Half of the museum was shut for the year to be refurbished which was a shame. I saw the original flag that inspired the lyrics to the Star Spangled Banner and some pieces of American History. Again, much like the Natural History Museum, I have a feeling that we do museums far better than the Americans and it all seemed a little “not quite the nation’s museum” even though it was.
I headed for the National Aquarium close to the White House and waited in line to be searched and pay my entry fee of USD10. I’m glad it was only a small amount of money as the Aquarium was pretty rubbish. The London Aquarium is far superior. Apparently there is a branch of this aquarium in Baltimore and I would hope that one is much better. Maybe another trip.
It was time to start wandering back to GT. I was feeling a touch peckish and thirsty and I wanted more coffee so I found a bar on M street in GT. Mr Smith’s saloon fed me coffee, buffalo chicken sandwich and a Goose Island beer.


Much refreshed it was now cupcake time. There are two shops in Georgetown that feature in their own TV shows on some small time channels. I though it might be worth buying a cake from there however, the queue was around the block and I don’t like cupcakes enough to wait that long. Instead I had a muffin and coffee from Saxbys.
Packing my suitcase in Winfield Lane was methodical and calming and then I played some guitar hero Metallica while I waited for Rich to come home from work. The journey to the airport was uneventful and the flight home was boring. I tried to sleep but don’t think I managed it.


It was great to see my boys and spend the next few days with them in the UK.


No, not the town in Kent. What I mean by sandwich is what most of you would think about straight away. Food! Now, I like bread and I like fillings in bread and hence I like to eat sandwiches. However, I am rather fed up at being made to feel as though I am greedy when sandwiches are on offer. Here’s an explanation.

At Home
If I make a sandwich at home I will use four slices of bread and make two sandwiches, or in proper terms, two rounds of sandwich. A round of sandwiches is what I would call a sandwich and has two pieces of bread.


In A Shop
If I buy a sandwich in a shop it normally comes in a triangular prism package and contains one round of sandwich cut diagonally with all the filling showing. This makes it look like there is a lot of filling, but there isn’t, it’s all pushed towards the middle of the bread and hence on display. It is socially acceptable to buy one of these packets but not two, that would be greedy but equal to what I would make at home.

Tesco Sandwich

At An Hotel
If you eat sandwiches from a buffet then they are normally single rounds of sandwich cut into quarters.
Posh Sandwich
Now, I will grant you that the filling tends to be a little thicker and substantial that the supermarket offering but there is a social awareness problem when deciding how many quarters to put on a plate (or how many “returns” to the buffet are acceptable). If I eat two rounds of sandwich at home and I expect to be able to eat the same amount when out then I will put 8 quarters of sandwich on my plate. This looks greedy and also restricts what other items can also be placed on the buffet plate. It would seem socially acceptable to place four quarters on a plate (although this looks a little greedy being a male ape I tend to get away with this). This means I need to make two trips to the buffet table to ensure I have eaten what I would consider a polite amount. Socially this a mine-field and deserves more academic in-depth study. The social pressures of buffet eating should be considered when designing the food and perhaps, one day, mankind will break through this glass ceiling of the sandwich/buffet trip dilemma.

Image credits: Tesco and some blog.

Not Really Necessary

Snuck into a Costa Coffee this morning to while away the time before attending a course. This was at the Costa inside Tesco’s in Faversham.
Now, I’m quite impressed with Faversham really. It has a crazy road system and a lovely provincial feel and look. Very nice and a little weird! Perhaps this phenomenon is just a Kent thing but they were selling super size biscuits in Costa! They are your classics; a bourbon, a Jamie dodger and a custard cream.
This picture tells you all you need to know! For scale, the bourbon is about 13cm long. Crazy times. I’m pretty sure it’s a ploy to make the world (or at least Faversham) a fatter place.



WW and I went for a meal last night (14 August). It was the first time we had used a proper babysitter and left the kids at home, sleeping soundly.
We headed to Pizza Express in Maidstone as WW wanted a goats cheese something. She has been needing goats cheese for a while and supermarket bought stuff doesn’t make her taste buds flower!
I ordered whatever I wanted but was shocked when I came to enter this information into my food tracking app.

Il Padrino Pizza – 922 kCal
Chocolate Glory – 691 kCal
Glass of red wine – 191 kCal
Shared tomato and mozzarella salad – 243 kCal

My dinner came to 2047 kCal. This was quite a shock. Even with a 10km run in the morning I was way over what I consider my daily calorie allowance! Much more running going to happen over the next few weeks to normalise my intake!

4 Meals In A Day

I accidentally ate four meals on Monday 13 August. WW and I took the boys to Mote Park in Maidstone and let them play in the playground. After we fed the ducks at the lake we went and ordered some food. My order was as follows:

Two sausages and chips and a sausage roll and chips please.

My intention was to buy chips with two sausages for #1 and the the sausage roll and chips was for #2. What I received was two plates of sausages and chips and an adult plate of sausage roll and chips. All in all far too much food for my children to eat! Obviously I just helped out and ate the adult plate of food. As it happens WW and I had already planned what to eat later in the day and so I had:

  • breakfast
  • lunch
  • accidental tea
  • dinner

This is a little extreme and when I looked at my calorie count for that day it was 3041 kCal.  Even with a run I was over my daily target.

Peanut Butter

The picture should be quite evident. It started as a quarter of a slice of bread with peanut butter on it. Then #2 got hold of it!



Well, this was a surprise! WW went down the shop to get some toppings for rice crispy cakes. This is what she brought back!


I am just hoping these aren’t the jewels used for vajazzling. It all seems rather wrong to me! Now if I say they are Australian I’m sure that’ll make perfect sense.