Chiquitos at Metrocentre


Visited on Friday 19th July 2013

Five years had passed since I last visited Chiquitos the Mexican Restaurant and Bar at Metrocentre.

Chiquitos has always been good and has an amazing atmosphere when you enter the doors and hear the Mexican tunes being played. I really did miss this restaurant and had totally forgot the tasty food, drinks and unique atmosphere it provides.

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I entered the restaurant and was greeted by a friendly waiter who took me to a nice table and recommended what I should try. The first thing I did was open the drinks menu and look for any mocktails they did.

Mocktails Menu

Mocktails Menu

The number of mocktails they do are amazing and my aim is to try all them before 2014. I looked through the list and the ‘Mock-Jito’ caught my eye but there were so many others that looked interesting and will have to be tried in the future.

Mock-Jito

Mock-Jito

The waiter came to the table and gave me some free popcorn and I ordered the drink. Forgot to mention that I had also chosen what I wanted to eat and it was a quick choice because I wanted to eat something healthy. Hot baked wrap was my choice and it was a ‘Goats’ Cheese & Roasted Veg’ with skin on fries, coleslaw and side salad. The assumption was that it would be a small dish with small portions but how wrong was I.

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Drink was amazing and refreshing in the hot weather and the food was tasty but healthy at the same time. I liked how the dish looked and tasted so healthy and the drink had fresh lime and mint leaves mixed into the big glass.

I really recommend this place to anyone who hasn’t tried Chiquitos in Metrocentre (Blue Mall) opposite Pizza Hut. Great Mexican food for all and if you assume it might be spicy place for you to visit then just order something like I did which had no spice at all. Anyways drinks can be tasty and fun to have without alcohol being added so try the mocktails on the drinks menu. I do wish I had some desert but I will next time.

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Facebook Users Want To Look Good


A recent study in Britain illustrates that Facebook users are more concerned about their physical appearance in photos and less about their intelligence. This is an issue that I am always talking about on my Facebook status updates and my Tweets on my Twitter account. I am always asking much of the British or Newcastle female gender why they can’t take a photo without showing much of their naked body. Many Facebook or Twitter users I have come across can’t take a photo without showing their legs, chest or stomach.

Many would agree that much of the Facebook and Twitter users in Britain are careless and do whatever they want without any limits, self-respect or personal moral. In the study 56 per cent of the 4,374 people admitted they’re more concerned about their physical appearance in photos on social network and not their intelligence. Those in other European countries and the Middle East indicate in the study that they care more for intelligence and how they are perceived.

It clearly indicates from the study that British people are not concerned about how they are perceived from intelligence but what perception they portray from photos. Many of the users photos do be perceived as being ‘careless’, ‘spoilt’, ‘no morals’ and much more. The issue is that many other countries in Europe and East are improving their intelligence and over-taking Britain as manufacturers, designers, constructers, research and etc.

This recent study is showing us that much of the British people are insecure about themselves and trying to create a mask to hide who we really are through lying to others. The study indicates that only 34 per cent of men in Britain admitted to lying online to cover up their insecurities but 45 per cent of women were doing the same.

The difference is of course very clear and tells us that we do not have much self-respect or morals that we stick to. Many of the women upload photos of them doing some sort of ‘sexy pose’ to seek attention from the men and receive numerous comments and likes. That is a major problem because women are relying on that to be satisfied with their appearance and are attracting the wrong attention at the wrong time from men who perceive them as ‘easy-to-get’.

Women have no one to blame but themselves if they are being treated as a piece of meat or ‘easy-to-get’ by men from the interactions they are receiving. Women create that perception online and then men perceive them as being who they are because of their online lying to cover up the insecurities. Many of the women are having difficulties finding a decent relationship because of how men are treating them at the present. This causes women to not trust any genuine decent men because of bad experience with those who only wanted them for their physical appearance.

The study also found that 89 per cent of users believe that parents should take a bigger hand in this and teach their children better online etiquette. This suggestion does make me laugh because this is not possible in this modern British society with very low standard morals but Britain was not always like this. Back in the day if you have watched any documenteries British men were gentlemen and women were polite and respected their own body.

If today someone who was a man or women who confronted another man or women about being more decent in their appearance then they would be offended and kick-off about it in a violent manner. Many of the places I have seen and been to in the Asian part of the world have some set of morals and self-respect, example in my family we don’t want to be perceived as people with no respect. In Muslim or Pakistani society we have great self-respect and ensure we do nothing to make our family members (e.g. parents) feel/be ashamed in the Asian/Muslim community. If some British people set some for themselves like some of the cultures around the world have then there wouldn’t’ be this problem.

I only hope that this changes because I prefer to be in the company of someone who is concerned about their intelligence and not appearance. Someone who is only concerned about their appearance does not have much to talk about that is interesting except themselves and majority of it can be lies to cover up insecurities. Think about this study and what I have said, visit some of your social networking accounts (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and etc) and have a look at what you see.

You will notice that many of the women young or old take a lot of their photos with their legs exposed with very little shorts/skirts, chest and stomach exposed while doing a ‘sexy pose’ by bending one leg and pushing in the stomach.

This in human nature usually is done to attract men because men are attracted to women showing their sensitive parts and the hour glass figure via the exposed stomach and back. It’s a signal to men that she would be suitable to have children with, human instinct which men have and can’t avoid.

So all I will say is STOP it British women and show off your intelligence and not your insecurities through body exposure. It will only get you the wrong attention and then you will get used for just pleasure by random men until you are a pregnant and unwanted for not having the appearance anymore or the intelligence.

Check the study by clicking the link below:

http://www.t3.com/news/facebook-users-would-rather-be-pretty-than-intelligent-study-finds

It’s 2012 and I Still Get Called A Paki


The above screenshot is from today (16/07/2012). They thought it was appropriate to call me a Paki because I tweeted them “unfollowing you back” for unfollowing my twitter account. Any other tweet could have been sent but there was no need to bring someone’s race into this. How dare people like this are still allowed to get away with something like this. I don’t go out being racist to people who are not the same colour as me. Somehow in the past and present the ‘white‘ have always thought of themselves superior and made us feel degraded just because of their colour.

I was such a fool to believe things had changed with time but I realise this year that nothing has changed. People with a different colour to the ‘white’ who live in the UK are still made to feel negative for who they are and how they look. Newcastle Upon Tyne is such a diverse place with many different coloured people with different cultures & religions living together. But there some who just like to express their hatred towards someone who has a different skin colour to ‘whiteeven though they get a tan because they hate their own natural skin colour.

Why are we defined by our colour when we are still all human?

I think this is a major weakness we have if we define one another by colour if not anything else like religion and etc. We are still not seen as human beings with feelings even after what people who are not ‘white‘ have been through for 100s of years. For example slavery, direct and indirect racism, violence and much more we have suffered. Many now say they have clean hands now and have a open mind but you can’t erase the past or the present.

To those readers who feel offended with the ‘clean hands‘ remark..I have a question.

Can you forget or erase what happened to you while being targeted as a group in the past?

Alastair Campbell on drink: ‘I paid a heavy price’


Alastair Campbell, Tony Blair’s former spokesman, examines the British middle class’s troubled relationship with alcohol and his own long and complicated history with drink.

To read the headlines about Britain’s drink problem, you might think it is largely an issue of teenage binge-drinking in town centres up and down the country.

You would be very wrong. Young people drinking too much is a problem. But it is not the biggest drink problem Britain faces. The real problem comes in the form of our hidden alcoholics.

Back in my hard-drinking days I was one of them – professional, successful on the surface, with a good job, a steady relationship, a mortgage, nice holidays, lots of friends. But I was heading for a very big fall.

The Office for National Statistics tells us that the professional classes are now the most frequent drinkers in the country and that 41% of professional men drink more than the recommended daily limit of three to four units at least once a week. Women are also drinking much more than they used to, with alcoholic liver disease now split evenly between the sexes.

My own drinking reached its peak while I worked in Fleet Street in the 1980s – a time when the pub was an extension of the office.

Anne Robinson, one of my colleagues on the Daily Mirror back then, was one of the many casualties of the hard-drinking culture.

Reflecting back on the days before she too gave it up, Anne said: “It was just a sea of alcohol. If you were editing the paper, people just came in to your office to empty your drinks cabinet.”

Annie has been dry for years. I paid a heavy price for the same sort of lifestyle when my drinking, coupled with depression, triggered a mental breakdown that landed me in hospital.

It forced me to confront my drinking, and by 1986 I’d stopped and started a slow road to recovery.

Since then, even in newspapers, Britain’s boozy workplace culture has largely disappeared.

24-hour mistake?

Yet, paradoxically, more people are being treated for alcohol problems.

Recent figures show that nearly 9,000 people die each year in the UK from alcohol-related diseases. Perhaps more alarmingly, liver disease in general is the only major cause of death in Britain that is on the rise, year after year – claiming 100 lives every week – whereas mortality for all the smoking diseases is falling dramatically.

Find out more
Panorama logo
Panorama: Britain’s Hidden Alcoholics
BBC One, Monday 20 February at 20:30 GMT
Then available in the UK on the BBC iPlayer

That Britain has a problem with drink is highlighted not just by the figures, but by the fact that the government is busy devising a new strategy to address alcohol-related ill-health.

David Cameron has signalled his appetite for reform, including the possibility of minimum pricing as already being taken forward in Scotland, and tougher rules on promotion and marketing. So how did we get here?

Well, as with so much of our recent history, the answer lies in Europe. With closer ties came cheaper travel and a newly developed taste for all things European, wine included.

Then came the booze cruises to France and the birth of a seemingly unquenchable British thirst. Since 1970, our consumption of wine has gone up five-fold, according to the Beer and Pub Association. We now consume 1.6 billion bottles a year (not counting the ones we drink when we go abroad). It has gone from a middle-class luxury to an everyday part of middle-class life.

Anne Robinson and Alastair Campbell

Anne Robinson remembers a “sea of alcohol” in the newsroom

Though ultimately individuals have to take responsibility for their own relationships with alcohol, governments have to set the framework, which is why the planned new strategy is so important.

I defend virtually everything done by the government I worked for under Tony Blair. I confess however, as he and Tessa Jowell will confirm, that I was never a big fan of the laws to introduce 24-hour licensing, surely one of the factors in the troubled relationship between Brits and booze.

I had left Downing Street by the time the law came in, but it had been mooted for some time before and I never really bought the argument that Britain would suddenly become a continental-style drinking nation.

Cheap booze

I think we have always had this tendency, where there is drink, to drink it to excess. Did it make things worse? Was it a mistake?

On the one hand it is quite nice to have a sense of London and other cities being more European in their approach to drink.

But I think it is entirely possible to see a link between increased availability of alcohol and our increased consumption.

Britain is, after all, the nation of the gin epidemic – back in the 18th Century. While in 1914, the government had to bring in the Defence of the Realm Act because our own drinking was deemed a threat to our ability to defend ourselves in war. Health campaigners cite those as the first major British drinking crises. They believe we are now facing the third.

The big shift in recent times has been the rise of drinking at home, which is why the binge-drinking stereotype is neither accurate nor helpful. The issue is largely about price. Pubs charge a lot for a pint. Supermarkets don’t. It is a sad paradox that the decline in pubs has come alongside what seems to be a rise in drinking and alcohol-related problems.

In 1970, 90% of all pints were poured in a pub. Today, it is only 50% – the other half are bought much more cheaply in supermarkets and off-licences.

The government has to do its bit. But in making a film about Britain’s relationship with drink, and in meeting some of the hidden alcoholics, I met people who had each come to their own arrangement with alcohol.

For most, the answer is complete abstinence, or complete loss of control. I too said no for 13 years, but then I started having the odd drink again.

This time, I feel as though I am more in control. To be frank, it would be hard not to be.

Alcohol facts
Generic woman passed out with drink
10m people in England drink more than recommended
Daily units men: 3-4
Daily units women: 2-3
New advice is to abstain from alcohol for two days a week
Source: Drinkaware

But, having met others as they underwent rehabilitation treatment, I do wonder if I am doing the right thing. Partly I am testing myself, having one or two so I can then enjoy the satisfaction of being able to say “No”.

I also like being able to be “normal” like other social drinkers, just have the odd one and then call it a night.

I cannot say I have not drunk since first falling gently off the wagon in 1999. But I can say I have never been drunk, never had a hangover, never touched spirits and never felt the loss of control that had me hospitalised prior to my 13-year unbroken dry spell.

The psychiatrist who I see for my depression thinks that even occasional drinking on my part is a bad idea, and interestingly, in making a documentary on the subject, I did once again stop drinking altogether, not least perhaps as a result of the tour of Queen Mary’s Hospital anatomy department, where I was shown a few damaged livers.

I do feel that my own relationship with alcohol is more secure.

And while government has a role to play in setting rules and regulations on responsible drinking, on a certain level I think that our connection to alcohol is a deal that each of us has to make with ourselves. I hope this film helps some of Britain’s drinkers to do that.

Panorama: Britain’s Hidden Alcoholics, authored by Alastair Campbell, is on BBC One, Monday, 20 February at 20:30 GMT and then available in the UK on the BBC iPlayer.

Source: http://news.bbc.co.uk/panorama/hi/front_page/newsid_9696000/9696398.stm