Review: Pocket app


Hands in pockets, looking sheepish – I’ve only just downloaded the Pocket app.

I’ll tell you upfront what this post is about so that you can skim and be on your merry way. It’s about Pocket.  A fairly new app – to me ­– not to the market ­– which has revolutionised my train journey. I apologise in advance for the jerkiness of this post, but I simply have to start with the Alanis Morissette lyrics:

“’cause I’ve got one hand in my pocket
And the other one is giving a high five

And later on:

“’cause I’ve got one hand in my pocket
And the other one is playing the piano

Followed by:

“’cause I’ve got one hand in my pocket
And the other one is hailing a taxi cab

Now, look at all the stuff you can do with one hand in your pocket. Well – as Alanis says –  ‘high five’ to that. With the app you can put stuff – articles, videos and posts ­– in your virtual pocket and save it for later. You can even view your stuff offline.

I like stuff.  I like to read stuff.  I hate waiting for stuff to load or download.  So this is the perfect save-it-for-later app, and 12 million other registered users agree.

So, why have I only just learnt about Pocket?!

Firstly, I’ve been living in a parallel universe where people bookmark stuff (and always forget to search for that same bookmark five minutes later).

Secondly, the parallel universe that I live in also encourages you to colourfully flag your emails, to ‘check later’ – which I almost never do.

And finally (the sensible answer) – I was put in someone’s pocket and saved for later! I checked out my blog referral stats and along with all of the usual suspects, Pocket was high up there.

So far users have saved more than 1 billion items and it’s integrated with more than 500 apps.

Let’s do a final homage to the virtual Pocket with another quote – it’s an oldie but it’s a goodie.  The late Steve Jobs announced the iPod as a Mac-compatible product with a 5 GB hard drive that put:

“1,000 songs in your pocket.”

Discounting the snotty tissue, don’t the best things come from out of your Pocket?  I think so.

Picture citation: Andreas Nilsson Tie and Pocket-Handkerchief CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Review: A Bad Brownie and a happy surprise


Take a look at the Dojo app and read my review there. Or carry on reading!

Yesterday, (Saturday) I started my day the Dojo way.  I gathered my friends in my flat and pitched in a couple of options.  It’s not a hard task when you’re using photographic shots from the app that would make the creators of Instagram quiver and nifty search categories.

“Ladies” I said, “do you want to visit: the Alpine Lodge, at the top of Selfridges,”– from the ‘Pop Up’ app category, “or, the Underground Film Club in the Vaults at Kennington” – handily categorised: ‘Performance’, “or, do you fancy heading to the Real Food Market at Southbank?”  The lure of fresh bites and steaming mugs of soup (and maybe a beer) were too much to take; we said nothing, all in silent agreement, we layered up and headed out to the market.

The Real Food Market at the Southbank Centre is open three days a week.  And despite this, I have never been before! Totting up the number of stalls, there’s about 40+ traders, and it buzzes with calorific energy.  I want to come back with my (generally miserable) husband when Christmas is here, we’ll eat roasted chestnuts – well, he’s tricky, so I’ll give him honey covered peanuts – and it  will fill him with Christmas cheer.


I love independent traders and the idea of supporting small producers, but most of all: ‘I’m Anna, and I’m great food fan’.  Segway Bad Brownie, my new obsession. Making it all good, Bad Brownies make irresistibly indulgent brownies. The brownies looked so gooey lined up in their rows and – true to their name and brand – oh so very bad. I picked a salted caramel brownie, and it took me two self-composed steps before rustling my brown bag open and eating half (ok, all) of the brownie, yum.

For the negative Nigel’s

  1. It’s an upmarket market – so be prepared to pay.  You wouldn’t question it if it was retail, would you?
  2. It’s fairly small (I call it atmospheric) and busy (bustling!).
  3. If it’s raining, you get wet – but you’ll soon dry off when you head to a bar.
  4. There’s too much choice! (Right, this negative guy is really getting on my nerves now).

Happy points 

  1. What do you fancy: Moroccan, Italian, Korean, Indian, Polish, Turkish, good old British grub or, maybe just some cheese?
  2. It’s so easy to get to, (if you’re travelling from London, not north of Watford – obviously). Directions?  If you get yourself to Waterloo, you simply can’t miss it.  Of course, there are far more detailed directions for you on the Dojo app.
  3. London backdrop: the view of the London Eye is second to none.
  4. Lots of happy surprises.  Once you’re there, I defy you not to organically find another fun thing to do.

    My happy surprise

The market is too near Las Iguanas bar to ‘las ignore it’ (get it?).  Imagine our elation when we: firstly, got a table after 0 seconds waiting, and secondly, discovered it was ‘extremely happy’ happy hour, yes that’s right, for every cocktail we were tasked with having another, on them!

A cultured surprise

Honestly, we’d had enough to drink so that we were warm, but not too much to underappreciate the next happy coincidence. From our seats at Las Iguanas we could see other happy people shuffling in a queue for the Royal Festival Hall (RFH). They were heading to an exhibition of 143 award-winning photographs from World Press Photo.  The (free) exhibition opened just a day before, and is open until 26 November 2014.  It was well worth going to, but, if I may, I’d suggest: the Real Food Market first, a bit of culture second and end on a cocktail (or three).