WARNING: Potential Phishing Site Selling Books to Access Your Credit Cards


Be warned!

Originally posted on KD DID IT Takes on Books:

by Kathy Davie

Image courtesy of Game Pill

Learn about online safety from your friends at the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communication Commission.

Nasty bit from Kate Douglas’ newsletter this evening about a Chinese website that is selling a slew of her books for really cheap prices. And I thought it may not be only Douglas’ books that may be offered up.

My concern is that Douglas mentioned that this is “a suspected phishing site based in China. We’re trying to get them shut down, but if you give them your credit card information, you could be setting yourself up for a lot of trouble. Some of these sites not only steal your personal data, they also plant malware on your computer capable of copying keystrokes and taking password information.”

Be wary.

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Office Conversion Update.

The transformation of my large upstairs cupboard into the work premises of Alison’s Editing Service is slowly taking shape. Well, I’ve bought the paint…

I’ve actually had the decorating materials for a few weeks now, but as you can see the pristine paint roller is still in its packaging, and the walls still need painting. Perhaps I’ll crack on when the weather gets a bit warmer and I can have the windows open. Oh, hang on a minute – the weather’s already getting warm, and the cupboard (not cupboard, I mean office) has no window to open anyway.

LaptopThis week Alison’s Editing Service moved into its as yet unpainted premises, having first acquired the rather handsome laptop pictured above. It’s great fun editing in a cupboard – ahem, I mean office!

DorysAvengers Cover Art

Click image to add Dory’s Avengers on Goodreads.


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The Monday Moan – Argument Thief.

ArgumentArgument what? Do please read on, and hopefully all will become clear.

A couple of months ago I was strolling home along a nearby footpath. This particular stretch of path borders a narrow road which, despite the local council’s best efforts to discourage traffic from using it as an arterial route into Cambridge, is also a very busy road. Therefore, in the interest of cyclist safety, the footpath doubles up as a cycleway. Fine. Dandy. No problem with that. None whatsoever.

Back to my stroll home. Being the responsible citizen I am, I regularly glanced over my shoulder to check for cyclists behind me, and whenever I saw a cyclist approaching I moved to the side of the path to give them ample room to pass. Fine, dandy, etcetera.

This plan worked to perfection until one cyclist decided to take me to task for listening to my iPod while walking along the footpath.

‘You didn’t know I was coming up behind you,’ he said, wagging a finger in my face. I told him I was aware he was approaching because I had seen him.

‘You couldn’t hear me with those earphones in your ears.’ This was one belligerent cyclist, but I kept my cool, and repeated that I’d seen him because I was regularly checking for cyclists.

‘You shouldn’t be wearing those earphones. You can’t hear with them in. You’re putting yourself and other people in danger, blah, blah, blah…’

Regular readers of my blog will know by now that I’m not particularly receptive to being lectured. It didn’t take long for my cool to abandon me and leave me spoiling for an argument. Want to pick a fight with me, mate? ‘Ave it then!

‘Listen,’ I roared, being as it appeared to be he not I who was having trouble hearing, ‘I knew you were there BECAUSE I’D SEEN YOU. That is why I’m walking in the bushes so you HAVE PLENTY OF ROOM TO GET PAST. Blimey O’Reilly, you could drive a number nine bus through that gap; and furthermore, I’m NOT putting you, myself or anyone else in danger by wearing my headphones. If I were walking in the middle of the road fair point, but THIS IS A FOOTPATH…’

The cyclist formerly known as belligerent stopped me in full flow, grinning like a goon.???????????????????????????????????????

‘Clam down love,’ he said, ‘I was only joking with you.’ With that he cycled off, while I turned my iPod up to drown out his merry laughter and stomped home in a filthy mood, spoiling for an argument which had so cruelly been denied.

Joking my arse! However, it’s said that (s)he who laughs last, laughs longest. All these months later my argument thief has not only provided me with a Monday Moan, he has also furnished me with a perfect excuse to share a classic Monty Python sketch. Is this the right room for an argument?

DorysAvengers Cover Art

Click image to add Dory’s Avengers on Goodreads.


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The Monday Moan – Supermarket Loonies

From time to time I use a certain local supermarket which seems to be frequented by more than its fair share of crazy people. It’s the only nearby shop in which I can buy a number of my favourite items, so every so often I have to take a deep breath, psyche myself up and brave the madhouse.

Woman with pramToday was one such occasion, and, true to form, I’d no sooner steered my car into the supermarket car park when a young woman, without hesitation or observation, pushed a pram right across my path. This left me with two options: carry on driving, and live the rest of my life with the guilt of having run over a baby, or stop and leave the baby to live its life with a gormless idiot for a mother. I chose option two.

I hate supermarket shopping with a passion. I’d have been very successful on a televised game show which featured people dashing round a supermarket, stacking as many goods as they could into their trolley in a limited time. The fact that the contestants received the goods they’d grabbed free of charge would merely have been a bonus; it was the notion of charging round a supermarket at lightning speed that really held the appeal for me.

Sadly, supermarkets don’t work like that in real life. I might want to get round and escape as quickly as humanly possible, but I rarely succeed. Why? Because of the supermarket loonies, of course.

Let’s have a look at the main players:

1/ The browsers. OK, even I have been known to take a little time if I think there may be a bargain to be found, but some people browse at everything. They’ll stand in front of the milk,Shopping preventing anyone else from getting near, scratching their heads and pondering. ‘Ooh, milk. Do I need milk? Do I not need milk? Shall I get one pint or a two pints? Skimmed or semi…?’ Oh FFS, it’s milk! How many million times do you need to buy milk before you remember which bloomin’ milk you usually buy?

2/ The socialisers. This isn’t a supermarket, oh no. This is a social club, and the moment I’m trying to get my trolley past is party time.

‘Hello Gladys, haven’t seen you in a while. How’s the hip? How’s the knitting? How’s George? … natter, natter, natter…’ The socialisers’ favourite spots seem to be either the aisle containing the very items I simply have to buy or the doorway, where they remain, trolleys perfectly angled to completely block any escape route, talking nineteen to the dozen, oblivious to repeated bellowed pleas to ‘Excuse me!’

3/ The ram-raiders. These annoying creatures usually arrive as I’m waiting to bypass the socialisers, and think that the aisle will miraculously clear if they wheel their trolley into the back of my legs. They also think the queue in front of them (and me) at the checkouts will magically vanish if they wheel their trolley into the back of my legs. They also think I will pack away my shopping and pay at lightning when my turn comes if they wheel their trolley into the back of my legs.

They are oh so wrong on that last point!

4/ The waiters. This breed of supermarket loony will stand looking into the middle distance as their shopping is scanned by the checkout operator. Once it’s all through and they’ve paid with their exclusive inconsiderate cretin card, only then will they start packing their goods into bags, oblivious to the increasingly impatient queue gathering behind them. The waiters are very adept at finding the one checkout operator who forgets to offer to help with packing.

5/ The meddling kids. No, not Scooby Doo and friends – I think I’d quite enjoy a trip to the supermarket if the mystery machine were to turn up, but the meddling kids I mean are the Scooby-Doo-tv-02[1]ones who won’t leave my shopping alone. I stand in the queue, inwardly seething as doting parent gazes fondly at their child systematically wiping his or her snot over every item – every one of my items, that is. Finally I can stand it no more, and tell the child to take their hands off my shopping, at which point doting parent turns into fire breathing dragon.

‘What? What did you say to my kid? Leave him alone! He’s only a kid!’

Thinking how my own parents would have taken me to task had I ever behaved so badly as a child, I content myself with exacting revenge on the meddling kid and its parent. Yes, revenge is so easy, so satisfying, and so within my rights.

I pick out every snot encrusted item, and ask a member of shop staff to replace them for me. Slowly. One at a time. Ah, supermarket Loonies. If you can’t beat them, join them!


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The Monday Moan – Sunday Drivers

782237-tn_Car0044[1]Oh the joys of driving on a Sunday. Yesterday morning, being the lovely person I am, I got up super early to drive my partner Andy to the station – not our local station, where he would have had to endure a bus journey part of the way to London, but to Royston station, fifteen or so miles away, so he could hop straight on to the train. Of course, being as British Summer Time had started during the dark hours of Sunday morning I earned bonus Brownie points as an hour of sleep time had vanished into the ether, so super early felt like super duper early.

Anyway, I’m waffling. Super early it may have been, but not so early that the Sunday drivers weren’t already out and about for their weekly pootle. Any British driver will almost certainly have encountered Sunday drivers (I’m not sure if they’re a purely British phenomenon) at some time or other. They drift aimlessly along in their cars, admiring the scenery, contemplating a Sunday roast or a cream tea, and resolutely ignoring mundane stuff such as their fellow road users. I had the pleasure of joining a procession of cars following a common or garden Sunday driver on the way to the station, but it was the one I encountered on the way home that really summed the species up to perfection. This particular Sunday driver was of the ‘One speed limit does all’ school of thought, and the speed he’d selected was 40 miles per hour. Open road single carriageway, 60 mph limit? Let’s do 40. Oh, is that sign telling us we’re entering a 50 mph zone? Shall we do 40 then? Yeah, why not. Oh what a pretty little village we’re entering now! How nice the speed limit is 30 mph so we can admire the quaint cottages and blossom laden trees. Oh, bye then Mr Sunday Driver. Still doing 40, eh?

I’d have roared with laughter had he been done for speeding!


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DorysAvengers Cover Art

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Animal Outcry.


I can’t stand cruelty to animals, and will do all I can to raise awareness of the issues raised by David in this blog post.

Originally posted on barsetshirediaries:

As most of you know I rarely do mid-week posts unless something comes along that has me boiling. Well something has, and I am !

In February, Copenhagen Zoo caused an international outcry when they killed a healthy young giraffe called Marius. Citing the fact that it couldn’t go to another zoo because of inbreeding the staff then dissected Marius in front of a crowd and fed him to the lions. I don’t know whether there’s a perverted sense of justice about this but this week they killed 4 healthy lions. Two adults and their cubs.

With Marius I know that there were offers from other zoos to take him and surely they must have been aware of the gene pool so Marius would not have been a problem. In my eyes though Marius was a prime candidate for a return to the wild if the zoo were worried about interbreeding…

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