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Fintan Palmer "fintanp" (Dublin, Ireland)

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Karrimor Men's Mount Mid Weathertite Hiking Shoe
Karrimor Men's Mount Mid Weathertite Hiking Shoe

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Probably value for the money..., 22 Sep 2010
I bought these about 8 months ago just for regular wear. The first big problem I encountered was the slipping insole problem that people have talked about with other Karrimor products. Only difference is mine was on the right foot (most people seem to have this on the left one for some reason). In fact, that right boot seems to be a bit of lemon what with the slipping insole and a tear that developed at a seam on the front right.

The other problem is that for spring and summer months these were way too hot. Previously I'd been wearing gore-tex Meindls which were lovely and comfortable even in warm weather but I'd decided to go for something about 5x cheaper and 5x hotter.

Finally the sole wore out way too quickly. I haven't been wearing them every day but still the soles have worn through and I'm now looking for replacement boots.

But.. they are very cheap and probably worth the money. Any more than 20 and I'd say pass on them.

So, 4 stars for boots on a budget, 2 stars for the right boot and 3 stars for the left boot. I'll average that out at 3 overall.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 13, 2011 10:47 AM GMT

The Elfish Gene: Dungeons, Dragons And Growing Up Strange
The Elfish Gene: Dungeons, Dragons And Growing Up Strange
by Mark Barrowcliffe
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 11.87

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Close to the (funny) bone, 7 Sep 2007
I picked this up on spec a while ago and when I finally started to read it I just couldn't put it down (cliche but true).

Like the author I discovered D&D when I was about 11 and played it and other RPGs until my late teens. I think everyone who ever played at that age must have had a Porter or a Billy in their group and so much of what Mark Barrowcliffe describes could have been experiences I had. My granny also had to endure a lengthy description of finer aspects of D&D...

Both laugh-out-loud funny and poignantly sad I can definitely recommend this for anyone who grew up with dwarves, haflings, elves and orcs.

Charles Stewart Parnell
Charles Stewart Parnell
by F.S.L. Lyons
Edition: Paperback
Price: 13.60

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Complex, 3 Mar 2006
I have a couple of problems with this book but they're mostly to do with the old-school style of F.S.L.Lyons. Admittedly this book was published in the 1970s, and Lyons died in early 1980s, but he repeatedly and unecessarily drops in latin phrases which went completely over my head. I've probably also been spoiled by more modern "popular" history books but with few exceptions this book doesn't really have a coherant narrative structure. Far too often he describes some event 200 pages before, in narrative terms, he gets to when it happens. You frequently find yourself flipping backwards and forwards through the book.
Apart from these two problems the book is an excellent biography of Parnell. He comes across as a complex, flawed, slightly nutty, yet brilliant politician. Lyons also shows quite effectively that he had lost his grip on things well before the O'Shea divorce scandal broke. He shows that the fallout from the scandal was more to do with the political impact it was having on the Irish Party-Liberal alliance than any moral issue. It's really this latter part of the book that works the best and it manages to create an air of tension as the key players try to create a compromise deal that would prevent a split occurring.

The Irish Act of Union: A Study in High Politics, 1798-1801
The Irish Act of Union: A Study in High Politics, 1798-1801
by Patrick M. Geoghegan
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Read, 3 Mar 2006
My knowledge of the 1800 Act of Union between Britain and Ireland was limited to what I'd learned in school which, as it turns out, is far from being a complete picture.
This book, while more academic in tone than most history books I'd usually read, gave me an excellent insight into the reasons behind the Union, the political and intelligence maneuvering that went into bringing it about and the failures associated with it. In particular, the failure of Pitt and his supporters to carry Catholic emancipation with the Union, something they saw as being one of the key pieces of the solution to the problem of securing the empire, is given a good going over and is something that I don't think a lot of people are aware of.

The Evolution of Irish Nationalist Politics
The Evolution of Irish Nationalist Politics
by Tom Garvin
Edition: Paperback
Price: 12.01

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not up-to-date but not out of date..., 3 Mar 2006
I didn't realise until I was half-way through that this book was actually written 25 years ago so it doesn't cover the changes that have taken place in the Irish political scene in the '80s and '90s. A comment about "a rich folkore concerning petty patronage and ... irregular allocations of public housing and planning permission" in post-independence local politics made me laugh given the public revelations of the last 10 years.
Despite all of this the book is still current and it's insight into the genealogy of nationalist political movements in Ireland since the late 18th century was very interesting. While it's not exactly an in-depth history of Irish nationalism, it does give you a clear idea of how the organisation and aims of earlier movements fed into later ones.
One word of warning though, Garvin relies heavily on statistical analysis to back up his points and you can be left a little lost trying to understand his arguments if you don't know what "lagged correlations" and "zero-order correlations" are.

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