My Mystery Dining Experience

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Sherlock Holmes eat your heart out for I think you’ll find that I’m the true detective when it comes too all things ‘mysterious’.

Well, atleast when it comes to secret dining that is. Having recently signed up to a mystery dining program in the last couple of months, I’ve had the pleasure of casting my judgmental beady eye across all sorts, from bitching waiting staff to rather greasy grub and everything inbetween.

‘Mystery dining’, if you’re unfamiliar with the term, is the task of eating free food and whinging about the customer service of the waiters. Just kidding, it’s much much more than that. It involves adopting an analytical eye, if you’re a natural people watcher then this job will be right up your street. You basically go out for a meal, acting as you would normally do and then write up a short report at the end of it noting the obvious stuff like the quality of the food and friendliness of the staff. Although the scheme I’ve signed up to doesn’t pay you,it does reimburse you, it isn’t about the money! It’s about improving the standards for the hospitality industry, right?

It’s a good means of enjoying meals out while doing something good for the industry on the whole. Who hasn’t had a bad dining experience? Wouldn’t it be good if you were a part of making this a more rare occurrence than it may currently be?

With dining under the spotlight, let’s have a look at some of the internet’s most shocking alleged dining experiences:

Unsanitary napkin

Liam: That would be the time I pointed out my dirty fork to the waiter. He picked it up along with my own napkin, rubbed the fork, then plonked both items back down and asked if we wanted starters.

Read more: METRO

This diner was disgusted to find maggots in a meal he had ordered at a restaurant - and he was still forced to pay the bill

Read more: Dailymail

One former restaurant worker recalled that cockroaches and flies were commonplace - unbeknownst to the diners

Read more: Dailymail

HOT TO THE TOUCH

“A few years ago, I was at a Mexican restaurant with some friends.

The waiter brings our food, and warns everyone that the plates are very, very hot.

So, of course, the first thing I do is touch my plate.

I burn my thumb on the hot plate, and my automatic reaction is to stick it in my mouth so it will stop hurting.

Just then, the woman at the next table starts yelling at her five-year-old son.

‘Stop sucking your thumb, Bobby! You’re a big boy, and big boys don’t suck their thumbs.’

The five-year-old points at me and screams, ‘They do, too!

He sucks his thumb! Look! He sucks his thumb!’

Everyone in the restaurant turns to look at me, and I try to vanish behind my menu.

Read More: Oola

 

 

Have you ever had a bad dining experience like these? 

 

 

Keeping Fit (Minus The Gym)

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Not one for the gym, I like to think of alternative methods of keeping myself ‘fit’ (using the term loosely). Below are some ideas if you are like myself and find yourself in the deep dark hinterland of monotony when forcing yourself to run on the local gym’s treadmill, or if you’re just after something different then have a look at the below:

 

  1. Squash

 

If you ever want to get back at that ‘friend’ who never paid you back for the drink you bought them then take them to a tiny squash court. Here you can smack the ball for all your worth, hitting them where the sun don’t shine, all while playing it off as an accident.

red woman girl white

Photo by Public Domain Pictures on Pexels.com

 

2.  Dance

You knew I had to put this one in, in my opinion there’s no better way to work up a sweat than by throwing some serious shapes. Whether you book a dance class or a night at the silent disco, either way you’re guaranteed a workout that you don’t even notice that you’re doing!

 

woman standing near group of people

Photo by Matan Segev on Pexels.com

 

  1. Martial Arts

Having experienced the combative world of Taekwondo, I can honestly say that during this time I was the fittest I’ve ever been. Even if you’re not into fighting, the pure technique and skill of the movements in martial arts overall is a bonus you earn ontop of simply keeping fit. From Judo to karate, Muay Thai to Jiu Jitsu .there are so many choices.

 

action adult athletes battle

Photo by Coco Championship on Pexels.com

 

  1. Lacrosse

If you don’t fancy a hunchback from hockey then try this other fun stick wielding game, fast paced and agile makes it enjoyable, plus it’s a team sport so you’ve got socialising as a major plus as well.

 

lacross player battling on the field

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

  1. Zorbing

Yes, it is infact a sport believe it or not, who wouldn’t want to be trapped inside a giant inflatable ball being hurled down a grassy knoll at 100 miles an hour?

ball ball shaped blur bubble

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

We aren’t all made for gyms, and that’s ok, there’s a form of fitness out there for everyone!

Earn That Wonga

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5 ways you can make a little extra cash online

Times are tough when the 9 to 5 just isn’t paying enough, but fear not, that extra bit of wonga will fingers crossed come flowing in with a little help from the list below:

  1. Online Tutoring

Some people will pay any price to see that their little darlings can recite the alphabet as fast backwards as they can forwards. And this is where you come in, finally that GCSE in chemistry will come in handy as you set up Skype to teach a 12 year old what a Bunsen burner look like (or not – safety first). You can start tutoring by putting your adverts up in around your local area or online. Examples include Skooli and Tutor Hunt

  1. Sell your old sh*t

Those textbooks from uni didn’t come cheap, so atleast make some of the money back by flogging them on Ebay or Amazon. Why not sell other belongings, perhaps furniture you had at uni but have now trailed back to the parents e.g. lamps, side tables, desks. Everything but the kitchen sink basically!

  1. E-book Narrator

If you fancy serenading the world to sleep with your dulcet tones, why not read them their bedtime story through  E-books. Check out Audible for example for more detail into this money-making opportunity.

  1. Online Surveys

They may be boring to fill out at times but less so when it comes with a price. Sometimes rewarded in money and other times vouchers, there’s a chance that you won’t go empty handed when companies need your vital opinion. Sites include I-say and Populuslive.

  1. Ad-Marketing

If your social media is gaining quite the following, companies may sponsor you to advertise a specific product or service of theirs. Unlike the other options above, this money making method may take time but it’s not impossible to get a really high -paying sponsorship which may even mean you could leave that 9 to 5 (fingers crossed)!

We all know money doesn’t grow on trees, yet I do hope that these 5 tips of mine helps your bank account grow nonetheless. Happy money making!

 

**Please note this article is intended solely for ERIC Mag, and I will link to the article on their site if/when it becomes live.

4 Ways To Be More Proactive

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Let’s face it, we all like our lie ins on weekends (and weekdays if we can get away with it). We like it when someone else cooks us dinner and when someone else cleans up those dirty dinner plates. We like it when another human being empties those rotten bins with leaking bin juice before running us a nice hot bath with just enough lavender oil that allows us to flirt between the lines of drowsiness and full on sedation. Oh yes, being inactive is something so many of us proactively seek out. But this my fellow opportunists, is where the road must end on this joyride of convenience. We shouldn’t  expect the whole world and his dog to do every laborious task in our lives. But most of all, we shouldn’t think so little of ourselves. Ofcourse we are capable of taking out those damn bins (and having a sneakily slug of that vintage bin juice in the process). So while that thought marinades in your mind let’s move on swiftly to 4 ways to pull your finger out, I mean pull one’s socks up hehe:

  1. Timetable: as creatures of habit I encourage each and every one of us to put pen to paper and plan out a weekly or daily schedule. Although some (including me) may not be the biggest fan of routine it is at the end of the day essential to actually getting sh*t done. It allows you to break down bigger, more challenging tasks into measurable and manageable portions.
  2. Make Lists: leading on from getting a routine in place, if you find that in your day you must juggle so many tasks I suggest ranking them in order of difficulty and the time taken to accomplish them. Ranking tasks is a great way to prioritise and will make you more productive in my opinion. I use this method all the time.
  3. Don’t Overthink: oh maybe I should go to the gym, ah but I’m halfway home now. I’ll just take tofu round the block a few times. But the gym would be better. I know, let me just order a pizza. My point here is that sometimes it’s best just to act on impulse. If you give yourself too time to think then you give yourself too much room to procrastinate.
  4. More Sleep: some amongst us may scoff at this one, others will be definitely onboard. Whatever your stance is on sleep know that only 3% of the population can survive on 6 hours or less sleep per night, the rest of us are modern day sloths so just except it. Don’t fight your body, get the rest so then you won’t feel the need to go through the daily coffee dialysis routine as soon as you get to the office.

So there’s 4 and not 5 tips that I hope offer some help on how to become more proactive. It’s easier said than done, I know, that’s why I write. Good luck!

cat sleeping

Photo by Fabricio Trujillo on Pexels.com

**Please note this article is intended solely for ERIC Mag, and I will link to the article on their site if/when it becomes live.