Monday, 19 August 2019

Join this Northern Quarter Bar Crawl!

I finished reading Michael Wolff's hit political expose Fire and Fury last week. The bestselling book on Donald Trump's chaotic first few months of his presidency details the run-up to his election, his inauguration (which Bush Jr described as 'some weird shit'), and the chaotic settling-in period, in which we're reminded of all these now long-gone relics of his White House Starter-Pack: Hicks, Bannon, Flynn, Ailes (not only a former Employee of Trump, but also now dead)- it's bizarre how many high-ranking staff members Trump disposed of, but more so that this happened so frequently that I'd forgotten these names until I started reading.

Wolff, too, brings fury to the book- his understandable disgust in Trump's presidency cracks on every page, but this does come with a writing style so obtuse and highbrow that you need Google at your side. won't always offer suggestions, and Google, in these instances, tend to reference the book's use of these words, highlighting their obscurity.

There is a follow-up book, Siege: Trump Under Fire. I've not heard much about this. If I find it in a charity shop massively reduced, as I did with Fire and Fury, I might make a purchase.

What are you doing on Saturday night? Last year I ran a meetup to a few bars around the Stevenson Square area, and it went down a treat, with around 15 people showing up. A lot of the bars were full, so the plans chopped and changed, but the Northern Quarter area has no shortage of bars, and we had no other problems getting in anywhere.

I've been meaning to run this night again, but one thing or another has got in the way. This Saturday I've managed to get it boxed off. Come down to Flok and meet me and the group at 9pm!

Sunday, 18 August 2019

Club Eden Launch

On Friday Manchester Cool Bars Meetup group dropped into Eden, the new botanical-themed club in The Printworks.

Starting in Hard Rock Cafe next door, we dropped into Eden a little before 11pm and before any queues built up. Eden, the club that occupies the space that once was Tiger Tiger, has populated the 3 floors with garden-fuls of ivy and blossom, weaving it into the walls and stair rails, punctuating it with bursts of glowing neon. Each room has a different DJ, some playing more dance, some more hip hop, but still keeping a traditional early-naughties big-club feel. Among the DJs, I spotted Lewis Barlow, formerly of Venus club, playing house and Sarah Giggle playing hip-hop.

Drinks are served up in quaint tin cans.

Part of the club- you may remember it as the Boogie Wonderland room playing disco music, in its former guise- is kitted out with VIP booths, in which I gather some Coronation Street stars were drinking.

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In one of the bigger rooms, TOWIE's Mark Wright took to the decks.

Eden is a gorgeous venue but it is still in need of a few licks of paint. With it being such a massive building, and with bar culture way more popular than clubs at the moment, filling it will be a challenge. It deserves to be busy, though, having good range and aesthetics. A fun night. I want to go back on a Saturday soon.

Saturday, 17 August 2019

Back to Social Dieting / Running Month

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Earlier this month I described how I'd beaten a long-standing PB at the gym after a few weeks of 'Social Dieting'-  eating clean unless it's a social occasion; buying clean in the supermarket- no sweet treats or takeaways- and only drinking alcohol or getting a takeaway if with friends. It worked. I've since lapsed on this, and have bought some junk food in Tesco, and I've not managed to lift that particular weight- 2x40kg dumbbell fly- since. Well, duh.

The oldest record I have is 10-minute run, which I managed 14.1km/ph at, back in May 2013. I've tried this in more recent weeks, running at that speed, and managed about 4 minutes if I really pushed myself. I am a LOT heavier than I was 6 years ago. I have the feeling that if I genuinely focussed on this movement until I beat it, I'd lose most of my strength. No thanks. So, I'm going to give this a bash for a month only. I'll still do hand weights at home, probably while watching Breaking Bad S5 and Designated Survivor S2, and I'll throw in an outdoor run that will take about 45 mins. I might even do a Parkrun.

This starts now!

Thursday, 15 August 2019

Blogger Dinner at The Mitre Hotel

Last night the picturesque Mitre Hotel opened its doors for a group of Manchester bloggers. The 300-year-old building, nestled between Harvey Nicks and Manchester Cathedral, is undergoing a complete refit.

General Manager Finn gave us a tour of the 24-hour hotel. The clinical white has been replaced with an oak and gold theme, with vintage photographs of key city landmarks reframed and displayed on the different floors. New carpets, new bathrooms and a new 8-room studio apartment on the top floor are all in the pipeline.

If you're interested in staying, you might want to check what's happening in the city first. Due to its proximity to the Manchester Arena, the prices can fluctuate, like many other hotels. If a popular act is on, you could be looking at £250 for the night. Get yourself a late on a quiet night, and you might only pay £50. Next week in Manchester Pride festival, so expect a price hike.

After the tour, we were seated for some good pub grub. We got to choose from the menu, so I started with the spiced halloumi fries and mayonnaise. I followed it with more spice- shashlyk kebabs, to be specific- and rounded off (and I felt very round by the end of it) with a chocolate fudge brownie. All delicious. Hat-tip goes to chef Steve.

A great evening organised by Go PR and Events.

Monday, 12 August 2019

Eden Launches This Friday

On the blog: another blogger dinner where I'll be reviewing restaurant food.

In the city: Manchester club Eden launches on Friday night. In the unit that once housed Tiger Tiger, the printworks venue will now offer a 'botanical paradise, with three iconic club rooms, exclusive late night entertainment, delectable all day dining options, handcrafted, innovative drinks selections and bespoke private hire.'

Manchester Cool Bars will be some of the first to check it out, and you can be part of it too. Also in attendance: TOWIE's Mark Wright.

On Saturday night, Oldham's Andy's Man Club are holding a charity fundraiser in Waterhead Rugby Club.Suicide is the leading cause of death in men under 50. The aim of the charity is to reduce the suicide rate in men in the UK. To do this- to reach out to as many men as possible- we need to raise both funds and awareness of the subject. We'll still have a laugh and a joke, though, so don't expect it to be anything less than a fun evening.

Sunday, 11 August 2019

RoboCop vs Starship Troopers

Other than a mental 80's night in an Oldham pub, playing outrageous party games, and bodypopping to The Human League whilst dressed as RoboCop, there isn't a lot to say. Other than that.

I did however, read Starship Troopers, the graphic novel based on the1998 movie (not the original Heinlein novel. May check that out one day). It's faithful to the movie, albeit faster-paced. A vibrantly-coloured military sci-fi treat featuring a totalitarian future where young men and women are sent to die in a war against asteroid-firing, brain-sucking giant bugs. Great fun.

Saturday, 10 August 2019

New Phone

I have a new phone! The agonising issue of a piss-weak battery and no storage space is done away with, and I am now the proud owner of a Sony Xperia XA2 Ultra.

I can now get back to making notes, taking pictures, updating my calendar, and badgering people over social media. I'll try and keep the latter to a minimum. It has a 23MP main camera, a 1080p display, a dual selfie camera and 32GB internal memory. Pictures, notes, Google Maps, a calendar and a strong 3580 mAh battery are all positives when you're relying on a device to remember things for you. I'm looking forward to using it for blogging.