Saturday, December 16, 2006

It Bites!

They're Back!

IT BITES are Back!!
Best gig in fifteen years took place on Thursday 7th December, Islington, London UK.
Read some reviews here:-

& see pictures of the band here:-
Rock Reviews

& so i didn't make it to the TV recording of "Ready Steady Cook" Xmas special, so that task remains "Work In Progress".

Friday, November 24, 2006

Ready, Steady COOK!

At long last it looks like the "Be In A Live TV Audience" task is fianlly going to happen.
I today received notification that I have a ticket for filming of the "Christmas Special" of Ready Steady Cook

The email went something like this:-
This exclusive eTICKET (sic) is valid for you & your guests to attend the recording of CELEBRITY CHEF READY STEADY COOK! on the --(Deleted to avoid stalker(s)-- December 2006. Doors will open from 13:00PM onwards.
We are really happy that you will be joining us for the recording of this hit cookery show! All we ask is that you (and your guests) are familiar with the date, time and location of the filming and we regret that on this occasion, no one under the age of 10 years will be admitted into the complex and there is no parking available at the studio.
Ever wondered what happens to all that fantastic food after the show? Ever wanted to go behind the scenes of Britain's most popular cookery show? Well now you can! We are really excited to be able to offer you this unique opportunity and become a member of the studio audience and vote for your favourite team... will it be the Red Tomatoes or Green Peppers...only YOU can decide! Hosted by AINSLEY HARRIOTT & special guest celebrities/chefs. ""

So there you have it - I'll be off to London town in December to complete another task.
(It ties in nicely with the It Bites Reunion gig (Can't Wait), and my flight from London to Brussels for work next day - "Killing three birds with one stone" so to speak.

Other things going on in before40 towers recently:-
Before40 is now on MySpace - see me & my 20+ 'Celeb' friends here at .
John from has asked me not to reveal his alternative site design. So i may/may not have.
I have been training heavily for the 'London To Brighton' bike ride in May. Upto 25 miles at a time now & have a posh new racing bike to take me there every time.
Turned down the chance to appear on celebrity scissorhands on Friday 17th Nov. & get my head shaved for Children In Need. Damn. Bottled it, had a cold, Had other plans.

The TV show X factor is fixed - Why? :-
The time it takes from Kate Thornton to announce that 'Voting has ended NOW for the bottom two' & receiving the card with the results on is literally seconds. Too quick in my opinion for someone to write the results down, or for the card with phone/text results on to be printed.
So is it that the card is a 'prop', & that maybe the results are fed to her via the ear-piece?
Or, as I predict that ITV (via Simon Cowell - Don't forget he OWNS the show via his SimCo Company) is fixing the result & maybe pre-determining who is in the bottom two, and then letting the judges decide in-between shows who stays & who goes??
I've just read a piece somewhere that suggests Leona is going to win. Why? - It seems Leona will take the top prize because the song chosen for the winner's debut -single - ('Kelly Clarkson's A Moment Like This') - is better suited to a female voice.
So, you know where you read it first. (C'mon The McDonald Brothers!)

"The only thing you get to keep is what you give away"

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Beware! - Mercury Is In Retrograde

On October 28, 2006, Mercury, the cosmic magician, turned retrograde in Scorpio, the sign of the Scorpion, sending communications, travel, appointments, mail and the www into a general snarlup!
This awkward period began a few days before the actual turning point (as Mercury slows) and will last for three weeks or so, until November 18, when the Winged Messenger reaches his direct station. At this time he halts and begins his return to direct motion through the zodiac.

Everything finally straightens out on December 5, 2006, as he passes the point where he first turned retrograde. Mercury turns retrograde three times a year, as a rule, but the effects of each period differ, according to the sign in which it happens.

November is going to be a bad month (Hence no further tasks for a few weeks).
So beware of misunderstandings with friends or lovers; communication problems, problems with phones, computers and transport. All of these usually arise because some crucial piece of information, or component, has gone astray, or awry.
It is therefore not wise to make important decisions in November, since it is very likely that your decisions will be clouded by misinformation, poor communication and careless thinking!!!!!!!!

You've been warned!!!!

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

China Crisis

I thought it might be a good time to mention a bit more about the 'Mid-Life Crisis' side of life. After-all, I'm in the middle of one, & the is dedicated to me getting out of it & safely to the other side!
Francis Dunnery is still on his House concert tour (Now re-named the 'Mid-life crisis tour' ironically) and a local newspaper recently had an interview with him in which he spoke about his theory of it all (A Mid-life Crisis):-

"It's something that happens to all of us," he says. "It starts at about 35 and ends at about 42. It's when who you think you are gets killed by who you really are. You get absolutely devastated. It kills your confidence. For some of us it means divorce. For some of us it means starting a whole new career. But in the great British tradition, nobody talks about it."

That summed it up quite nicely for me.
Some Psychologists do not recognise the 'condition' & merely put it down to depression / stress / tiredness etc.
What do you think...............?

Another task done this week, thats three in 3 months, so i'm on track for the full 40 to be completed in 4 years!
I have also uploaded my task list onto two similar type sites (= More exposure for me!) -
Go on, have a look.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Free Download

So another task has been completed & to celebrate i am offering all my viewers/readers/fans etc. a FREE DOWNLOAD!!
Yep, that's right a free download, no catch, no signing up to any selling scheme or mailing list.
The downside? - You need to visit my site & read about the task.
Click here to view the site & get the free download -
"What is it" I hear you ask? "Sounds to good to be true".

Yep, to celebrate the making of the Before40 Vegetarian Lasagne, & thus completion of another task you can now download my special recipe for free! - Here.!!!!!!!!


Saturday, September 30, 2006

What a Ranker!!

It's good news today.
My Before 40 site got a page rank from Google!!

Google rates my site 4 out of 10 :-

This is brilliant for a site so new. Read all about Page Ranking here
To put the 4/10 rank into prespective, i have listed some famous sites & their Ranking:

Stat Counter = 10/10
Google = 9/10
Ebay = 8/10
Nat West = 7/10
Money Supermarket = 6/10
Francis Dunnery = 5/10
B&Q = 4/10
Daily Mail = 3/10
Frankie Goes to Hollywood = 2/10
Before Thirty = 1/10

Hope that gives you an idea of how google rates 'importance'. This also means that the Before 40 site will now be ranked higher in the search engines when typing in such things as "things to do" or "Mid-life Crisis" etc. etc.!!!!

Oh, & just incase you were wondering, my next task is coming very soon!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Wake Me Up Before you 'Logo'

I was thinking that the site needed some kind of logo to help give it 'modern' twist, & so set myself the mission of finding a logo company able to meet my strict criteria & demanding nature.
After a day of browsing round 'the net' I came accross the site of a Web designer called Samantha from - I liked their philosophy of "A design service is based on the KISS (Keep It Stupidly Simple) principle"
Anyhow a few email exchanges later and the first design was through & had an immediate impact on me. A few 'tweaks' later & we had the final design, as seen now on the site & on the top of this blog.

Sam's idea behind the logo can be explained thus:

"The Sideways '40' is basically to represent 'unconventional', & also acts as a 'stop' (i.e. stops the word before). This is to tie in with doing things before forty. The arrow has a few wiggles (or 'humps' or 'hills') to graphically represent over the hill which you may be considered at forty, especially if you are trying to do some impossible things before that. Also being an arrow,
represent moving forward and not being hindered by age, hence why it points away from the number 40".


& so the Before40 logo was born......

Friday, September 01, 2006

All Change

I like Change. Change Is Good,
Change Is Fun.
So I have Changed A Task

Somewhere on the good old 'www', 'internet', 'The Web', 'The Net' etc is this new task.
It is a task in progress, but deemed 'unacceptable' or 'inappropriate' to host on the main site.
So I have called this task - 'The Secret Task'
It's a VERY BIG challenge & needs your help, your friends help, in fact it's gonna need a lot of help. But it is achievable.
- & It should be fun watching it's progress.
The Task itself when complete will be very 'Pleasureable' (Now there's a clue!).
So go on 'The Net' & have a search - (Think 'Keywords' of this site).
Can't find it? - Then search again.
(If you are desperate to know, email me & as long as you agree to participate, I will email you the link!)
Found it Yet?

Thursday, August 17, 2006

First One Done

So there we have it - the one task i thought was going to be virtually impossible infact becomes the first task completed! -
Meet My Hero Francis Dunnery.
So imagine this - you've followed your favourite band/
artist for 20 years. You've bought every CD, DVD, 'T' shirt etc. & travelled all over the country to watch the gigs. If someone said to you "one day, that band/singer/artist will come & play in your living room" you'd say they've lost the plot & tell them to get a life.
Well, this has happened to me (sort of):-
(For those of you who haven't heard of Francis Dunnery before let me explain)
Once upon a time (1986-1991) there was a band who had a top 5 hit with 'Calling all the heroes'. The bands name? - It Bites. The Lead Singer/Guitarist was a young Cumbrian called Francis Dunnery He hit the booze in a big way & quit the band in 1991. I was gutted. Absolutely gutted. It Bites continued with a new singer, new name, but it wasn't the same. A few years later, Francis got his life in order & has since created many a masterpeace of a 'solo' album. He also now has his own record label & has written for & produced many artists (Ian Brown, Santana, Lauren Hill, Marti Pellow, Chris Difford to name a few!).
Back to the gig - Francis is currently touring the world via a series of 'House Concerts' - yep, he comes to your house & plays to your family & friends. Amazing. You can apply to host one via the website. I did just that & was offered the opportunity to host a house concert on 17th August, but had to decline due to my little house being unable to hold 35 + 'middle-age' people in one room. Damn.
As luck would have it, a couple (Ian & Venessa) from a nearby town in Bursledon, Southampton also applied & were successful. The date - August 16th 2006. So i contacted them & got 2 tickets. The scene was set!
Their house is beautiful & they were the perfect hosts for this kind of event.
Francis, full of cold turned up (eventually) Played for well over two hours & was full of great psychological banter inbetween songs. Francis explained to everyone about his mid-life crisis - (how bizarre that his started at 35 years old too!)
It was a truly amazing gig. A dream come true.
Afterwards, he joined everyone for a natter, a bite to eat etc & this is when the pic above was taken - we talked about astrology, starsigns etc. but not for too long because:-
  1. - It was Bl**dy late & our babysitter was getting a bit miffed
  2. - I was too shy & nervous to think of something more interesting to natter about
  3. - There were 30 other people all wanting a bit of Francis & his time, so felt it was best to 'Share him' around a bit!

In fact i think V spoke to him more than me! Anyhow, i have given Francis my 'business card' (how tacky is that!) & he has promised to pay the site a visit. So if your reading this Francis, thank-you very much for a truly amazing night.

There will be a short video to follow from the night, and a more detailed write up on the site.

+ More details of the night to follow soon on

So now it's onto the next task.........................................

Friday, July 28, 2006

'Pimp' My Task

I was thinking last night on how I can generate more visitors (& more publicity) for my site & then came up with a brainwave in the early hours of the following morning.
In summary, I am auctioning a task on ebay. The deal is that the successful winning bidder will be able to choose the next task; the amount bid will contribute towards (& hopefully fund) the task with any excess being donated to charity.
You can view the ebay auction HERE.
Not sure how it's going to go, and i'm a bit nervous as to what task will be selected.
Still, the next 10 days could be very exciting. Be sure to tell your friends & everyone you know!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

The Apprentice

One of my 40 tasks was going to be "apply to be in a Reality TV Show". Truth is, I had allready done this back in June when applying to be on the Hit BBC2 Programme The Apprentice, & as such did not think it right to include this in the list (Think i substituted it for the Appear in the audience of a live TV Show one instead).
Well, much to my horror I actually got an interview for the show, and ended up in Hammersmith on Saturday (22nd July) in the middle of a hotel meeting room being interviewed by a very 'feminine' chap by the name of Chris.
I was a bit frustrated anyway as they had kept me waiting for an hour (there was a fair few people there!). They asked the usual interview type questions - "Why do you want to work for Sir Alan", "What do you do to relax" etc. & it lasted for around 20 minutes.

Looking back, i think you need to go into these TV audition events with a kind of game plan, almost playing a kind of character; me? i just went in as 'myself' with no preparation at all!
Anyhow, i never made it through to the screen test, where as some others did. Chris advised me that if you don't hear back withion 10 days, you are not 'hired', so I think that is as far as it goes for this 'non-task'.
Maybe i could try & audition for Big Brother 8...............................?

Monday, July 17, 2006

Going Live

Finally got to release the website to the 'World' on Thursday, & emailed everyone i knew with a link on Friday14th.
There are still a few pages with blanks to be filled, but this should be done within a day or two.
I will also need to do a bit of SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) to enable a good page rank on Google, and to get as many 'Hits' as Possible.
Then it's time to focus on the first task. My calculations show that to complete all Forty Tasks in Four Years = one task a month (allowing for Christmas, Holidays, Illness etc.). It would be easy just to pick off one of the easy ones such as Task 17, 26 , 32 but to make this project a success I think I should start with a 'Biggie'.
Watch this space for details of the First Task coming soon........

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Welcome to the Blog of

Well done, you've found my Blog!
This is the first of many postings, day before i officially 'go live' on Thursday 13th July.
Enjoy & feel free to add comments as you so desire!