Monday, 12 December 2011

To drive or not to drive?

My name is Samantha Bullen. I am an Approved Driving Instructor. Many people feel it is my responsibility to get you to pass your test. In actual fact, it is my responsibility to teach you a skill. A skill that you can do many things with. It is not only my job to teach you the practical side of this exciting skill, I also make sure that my students have the theory behind them as well. Many people nowadays only want to learn enough to pass their test. They memorise the theory and push for their practical.
Can you honestly say that if you went into a skid you can get yourself out of it with little damage done to your vehicle, yourself and others? When skidding remember your tyres are not touching the road surface, so handbrakes, footbrakes and gas are of no help to you. Turn yourself into the skid (turning your wheel the way your nose is going), hold your wheel with both hands (full control) and leave both feet planted firmly on the floor not your pedals! This way when your tyres re-grip you know that your car will not jerk, speed or swerve.

One thing many people don't think about when they are driving in the colder weather is what to do when you break down or faced with road closures beyond your control. Spending 20 years in Canada has taught me to be prepared in the winter. In the boot of your car you should keep a winter box including; blankets, non-perishable food items that do not require a can opener (chocolate is always good, same as seeds and nuts), a torch, emergency flares, spare batteries (for torch and car), warm clothing, flask to melt snow in for water and a phone charger. When going on a journey in the colder weather make sure; your front and rear demisters work, all your lights work and your tyres are in a driveable state (click here for more info). Before you leave tell somebody where you are going and give them your route plan and approx how long it will take to get there. It may seem a bit excessive but until you have been in these situations you don't know.

We are all in festive moods this time of year and it never seems to end. Remember driving when tired, full of cold or had a few drinks all have the same reaction and concentration time. I am serious, even driving with a cold is the equivalent to somebody who has blown over double the allowed alcohol limit when it comes to reaction and concentration. Many cold and flu remedies have the same effects as some illegal drugs as well, always read the labels.

The best advice I can give you over the next few months is this, If the radio, TV or police say don't go out unless you have to, then don't. These warnings are there for a reason. Even when you’re learning, if you feel under the weather, think twice. Your responsibility as a driver doesn’t stop at you, you are also responsible for other road users. It's not you that you need to be careful of, it's everybody else.

Thursday, 1 December 2011


Deck the halls with STI's

Christmas party season is nearly here. The LBD’s are being pressed and the killer heels are being dusted off and we think we speak for everyone when we say we’re all looking forward to the festive season’s shenanigans.

At LYYB we can’t help but think it’s perfect timing for another less festive tradition. We have our cars MOT’d once a year, we celebrate Christmas once a year, hell we even celebrate Halloween once a year, so why don’t we celebrate our health?
We’re not talking colds and coughs, we’re talking sexual. Christmas party season is the perfect time for an STI screening. A few weeks before your party book yourself in at your local GUM clinic [click here for more info] and make sure you have a clean bill of health before all the festivities begin.

With the national statistics for STI’s on the increase [click here for more info] it is becoming an epidemic for local NHS services to keep control of and fight. As sensible mature adults it is our responsibility not just to ourselves but to others to make sure we’re not carrying anything.

To prove here at LYYB we are not just all mince pie and no filling we went and got ourselves tested for the Christmas season.

Gemma’s Quote: ‘Not going to lie, I was completely bricking it!!!!! The thought of a nurse going down there and investigating it with instruments completely made me cringe, but it’s something that needs to be done! There are loads of things in life we don't particularly want to do, but something like this is only TINY compared to the things you would have to put up with if you did contract an STI or worse. After some awkward giggles and closing of eyes the whole ‘procedure’ was quick, pain free and completely professional. The worst bit I found was waiting for the results. They said you should hear (via text) between 1-2 weeks and if you are like me loads of crazy ideas/worries came into my head. However once you get the all clear it’s a great peace of mind! My advice is don't put off having one done, just grow some and do it!’

Emma’s Quote: ‘This is not my first time having an STI test, the experience is never what you would call a joy, I find that you’re always asked lots of questions that you can never really be sure of the relevance, for example whether a partner was casual or regular, after all once is enough to contract something. The clinical procedure for a woman is very simple, quick and pain free (more irritating). I can never understand why people don’t go, sure it’s a little embarrassing but it’s important, I don’t like having my lady garden on show to world as much as the next person but the nurses and doctors who carry out the procedure are professionals, they’ve seen it all before and if you have something else wrong with you you’d want an expert looking at it so why not for STIs?’

Top tips for surviving an STI check up:

1) Take a friend with you!
2) Have all your sexual history in your head before you go in so you can give them accurate answers e.g; whether your partners were casual or regular and be honest about protection. 
3) If it makes you feel better do ‘tidy’ down there.
4) Wear something that can help cover your dignity! if your a girl we definitely suggest a dress or a long top
5) Use the cloth or towel provided to cover your bits.
6) The pill counts as medication so when asked if you take any medication tell them which variety you take.
7) Take the free condoms offered or if they’re not offered ask if you can have some.
8) Organise something fun for after your experience. Even if it’s just a drink.

Here are our top useful STI related websites: you may be eligible for a free Chlamydia test. Although your LYYBers aren’t teens the info from this program is incredible. 

Google ‘C Card’ and your town or city and see if you are eligible for a free card which allows you to pick up free condoms from various locations within your homestead.

So have a very merry Christmas but don’t be a ho, ho, ho … unless you’re clear and protected.

A real Billy Elliot

My name is Freddie Huddleston. I’m a straight twenty one year old guy and I'm a singer/actor/dancer. I’ve been training for a total of five years, two years at Peterborough Regional College and three at Tiffany Theatre College. I graduated in July 2011. I'm writing this to give an insight into to a performers life from my point of view.

When I first started dancing I had no respect or professionalism. I would sit at the back with my mate and chat rather than doing the class properly, the fact that I was a male dancer I used to think I was unique. Another thing thinking back was how alpha male I used to try to be. Being one of the only guys in the class made me feel that I had to somehow compensate for all the girls in the room.

Ballet changed everything for me, it’s the single reason that I have such a respect for the industry. I used to feel like “ballet was for girls” or “only gay’s do ballet” when really once your surrounded by a room full of “only ballet people” there isn’t anyone making those remarks and no one notices you’re wearing tights. There’s just a room full of like minded people who want to improve. For me it wasn’t just a new dance style, it was a discipline. I could go into a class shut myself off from the outside world and focus single mindedly on controlling my body which is ridiculously hard to master. After every class you would take a Reverance (a bow) and clap the teacher thanking her for her class. This appreciation and respect transferred into every other dance style and actually made me a better all round dancer as well as a more respectful and mindful person.

From this point onward everything in my life changed, I no longer cared what anyone thought about me or what I did anymore because I realised I didn’t need to care what they thought. I was completely comfortable with who I was and proud of what I was doing. I would do what I wanted do to. I laugh now when I see those alpha male guys who are so closed minded to everything and so insecure in themselves that they have to wall off anything outside of their comfort zone.

One thing Ive realised about auditioning is that being talented isn't enough. From people that graduated last year to people that have been out for 10 years and then to me, and we are all in competition for the same jobs. I was recently at a closed audition for a West End musical and out of a room full of 100 boys they needed 2. It didn’t matter to the casting panel if you were any good, they needed two people who looked right and fitted the costumes of the people that had just left. This is what it all boils down to. I can’t stress enough that a lot of the jobs especially in the commercial industry are based solely on “look” not talent at all. You can walk into a room, dance rings around other people and get knocked back purely on the height or the colour of your hair. The phrase “Its not what you know its who you know” couldn’t be truer. All the work Ive done since I left college has been through people that know me, they know how hard I work, how reliable and easy I am to work with. Being reliable and friendly to work with is just as important as being talented.

The plus side is I have fun every day, I’ve had the chance to see the world for free even though I’ve been knocked back. Would I recommend a new person starting out to go down this route? Absolutely. It may seem on paper that its unfair and hard, but when you really love what your doing, the positives are so great that the other stuff just seems to fade away and not be a problem. So one bit of advice if you’re thinking of doing it is make sure you really, really love it. Whoever you are you have to go to “work” to earn and I don’t think that anyone has it easy … but how many people can truthfully say that they love their job? I can, and for now that’s all that matters.

Written by Freddie Huddleston.
Edited by Emma Davies

For any comments, compliments or contact please e-mail

Anything you can do, we can do better 'The COD Challenge'

This is our first 'anything you can do, we can do better' challenge, the idea is that a man, bloke, gentleman or male (whatever you wish to call them) challenges your LYYB co-creators to a 'manly' task, something which ordinarily a guy reckons us ladies are un-capable of completing.

This is a simple idea yes? Said man throws a mission our way with set rules and an invigilator to make sure we pass the test in the correct way and we then write you an amusing account.

In the end we tell you what our consensus is ... did we do it better than a man.

Our first 'anything you can do, we can do better' challenge was set by none other than a Mr Stuart King ... if the surname doesn’t twig that's our very own Gemma's brother.  He tasked us with the some strict instructions to play the game Call Of Duty aka COD

Our invigilator for this task was a good friend and COD expert Iain Bradley.

Here are Stuart's strict instructions:

1. Turn on PS3
2. Set up a new user profile from main menu
3. Load up MW3
4. Set up another controller as controller 2
5. Ensure PS3 is connected to the Internet
6. Start up Multiplayer mode and set up an online profile
7. During the Multiplayer (online) game complete the following tasks:
a. Blow up a vehicle
b. Kill an enemy
c. Get at least one assist
d. Change weapons
e. Crouch and jump
8. Turn off game and PS3

So how did we do???

We can report that both of the LYYB ladies completed the instructions in full (even if it did take a couple of hours)

Emma's Quote: 'After playing COD for over two hours I finally managed to kill someone during an online match, it was thrilling I felt like I was ready to take on the world (of COD). I honestly do see the appeal of this game, the game is 100% geared towards men, which doesn’t annoy me in the slightest. I think that if you have the time to spend on the game, practising online or playing the special Ops I can see how people get really good at it, I think anyone male or female could be awesome at this game, you just need to have a lot of spare time!! I also think that old fable about men not being able to multi task is disproven during this game ... you have to be looking at the map, pressing the correct keys and the whole time making sure some random doesn’t stab you out of no where, I struggled with the hand eye co-ordination involved.'

Gemma's Quote: ‘ I went into the challenge with a negative mind set due to being made to watch it for hours during my uni years. However I ‘maned’ up for this challenge and wanted to prove we can do it to! At first, I was a bit apprehensive when playing and shouted ‘this is barbaric’ a lot when people killed me, but as the hours went on I became more relaxed and got into it. It did take a while to get the hang of shooting, I was frantically pressing the x button to shoot but this is the command to jump ... oops! It was scary how proud I was when I did eventually kill someone! One of the major things I didn't like was just when you thought you were safe, an 80 pointer comes up behind you and stabs/shoots you ... NOT COOL!  In all honesty I can see how people waste a whole day on this game, 2 hours went by so quickly! I shan't be taking up COD as a regular thing, but I am very glad we proved that girls can play this ‘male’ focused game.’

After careful deliberation the general consensus is us LYYB girlie birds can play COD just as good as any bloke, if we had the time to practise and played more often anyone could get those 80 points.

We would urge other girls to give it a go ... it might not seem like your cup of tea and you might be sick to the back teeth of your boyfriend playing it but you might just have found a new hobby.

Iain Bradley was asked to make a comment on our performance: 'Average at best' ... thanks Iain.

CODette's over and out. LYYB.

To send us an 'anything you can do, we can do better' challenge please drop us an e-mail at or via our Facebook/Twitter.

10 ‘things’ women need in their lives

Every month Gemma and I have our monthlies, it’s an opportunity for your LYYB creators to take it in turns to share some valuable, reliable and thought provoking ideas with you, as a coin toss in the LYYB underbelly has determined I Emma Davies am writing our first time of the month *stands for applause.

So here it is …

Ten ‘things’ women need in their lives

As women we need to be prepared for everything, I genuinely believe as modern creatures you need to have certain ‘things’ in your life that make it easier, glamorous and practical.
Ladies here are my top ten:
1.   ‘The Back Up Dress’ – the back-up dress is a reliable garment that you can count in times of ‘I have nothing to wear’ moments, this can be worn dressed up and down. You know you’ve found it when you put it on and no matter what you feel at least a few million quid.
2.   Diary – We ladies are busier and more productive than ever so we need to stay up-to-date with everything from dentist appointments to nights in the pub, electronic or hand written a diary is a diary, plus side is if it’s on your phone you’ll receive handy little reminders, but let’s all keep one so we know where we’re at.
3.   Skinny Jeans – I don’t care whether you’re an 8 or 18 skinny jeans should be every ladies best friend, they are perfect for making any outfit look splendid not to mention how sexy we look in them (excellent bum lifting skills).
4.   Music to our ears – We all need some ‘out’ time during a day my quick solution to this is having music at your finger tips, fill a music storage device to brim with your favourite tunes and shut yourself out.
5.   Statement shoes – Don’t be turned off by heels, you would be surprised what a sensational pair of shoes will do to your confidence (excellent bum lifting skills).
6.   Good Products – don’t scrimp on products, if you can get away with 99p hairspray great but if you’re anything like me you need to pull out the big guns to get your hair, face and the rest under control.
7.   Twitter – to tweet or not to tweet, the answer is use twitter ladies, twitter can bring you closer to integral news, the weather and excellent events, you don’t have to follow the cast of Eastenders or Peter Andre, used correctly twitter is an excellent networking tool.
8.   Bling – I maintain that jewellery on us girls is just simply exquisite and it’s time we cracked out the good stuff and showed it off. Bling makes and breaks outfits ... we don’t want you going out looking like Goldie Lookin’ Chain.
9.   Good Book – Ugh read I hear you say, YES you hear me cry, reading is good for many reasons, escapism, education and would you believe a good book has got me out of many an awkward scenario (trust me!!)
10.  Excellent Undies – no excuses you should know what bra size you are Gok, Trinnie and Susanna have been telling you for years, so sort your undies out girls.

So ten things that you probably already knew about and have knocking around, time to dust them off and use them to their full potential.

Happy time of the month ...


Emma’s time of the month …

LYYB's video of the month

Here is our monthly video that makes everyone at LYYB do a bit of happy wee ... 

Ask a Chap!

At LYYB the ladies of the business are always pontificating the behavioural traits of the gentlemen they encounter. We decided we’d had enough of their constant and frustrated pondering so LYYB is putting these ever so complex questions to six men a month in a bid to put our lady issues to rest.

'At LYYB we are perplexed by the integrity of men in relationships. Our LYYB ladies tell us that the majority of men who appear interested in them are already in relationships. These 'gentlemen' claim they are 'in love' with their respective partners however they behave untoward via varied technical communications. As a guy what's your experiences\ theories on this?'

Chris, 23,

Men want the comfort and security of a relationship, and whilst they say they love their girlfriend it's more a case of them loving the situation they're in. They love the sex on tap and comfort of a girl who cares for them. And because they're not really in love with their other half, they still want the thrill and excitement that flirting with girls they don't know brings. Don't get me wrong, they probably care for their girlfriend but young guys get bored easily and they look for fun in other places.

Alex C,  20
If they are really in love with their gf then perhaps they like the fact that they are getting attention off other women as well as their gf and they like that. But then I think that’s crossing the line because if you are with someone you are making a commitment to stay loyal and not look for attention from elsewhere. And perhaps when they are sending these texts saying that they still love their gf they are covering their own backs trying not to come across as such a bad person and convince the other person that there’s not really anything bad going on when actually it is.

Jimmy, 25
Personally, i believe that if you are texting, or using social media to flirt with other girls whilst in a living relationship then obviously there's an element of emotional insecurity from the male perspective. Not saying that this is just a male trait as I know many girls that flirt that do similar. I went to school with a girl that has recently got married and she really gets a kick out of flirting with other men. Regularly emailing them. One of my best mates got with a married woman after she emailed his work account constantly. She emailed inviting him to cycles and triathlons, trying to meet whilst having the genuine excuse of undergoing their hobby.In some cases, they say that if you're in a relationship and your partner suddenly starts a health kick despite being in the comfort stage of the relationship then they've already decided that they're ending relationship, only when they're comfortable with their look...When I have been in a relationship I've always found myself texting others. Yet that was when I was younger and I've never been in love so doesn't count. Yet it's all down to the thrill of being caught. I reckon on some level you want to be caught so that you can make the hard decision, easily. Letting her break it off.

Andrew, 31

I would say it's probably something to do with us guys wanting to know that we still "have it" (the ability to pull women) and a lot of guys not really being happy with what we have.Even if you're in a relationship with a great girl you might see someone else and it might look like she's better so you might try a little harmless flirting and if you receive any kind of encouragement back it’s a real ego boost, and everyone knows we (guys) live off our egos.I also think there's a macho-ness involved with it too. Amongst friends, men are praised for their sexual exploits and therefore it could be seen as more macho to have more than one woman interested at a time. I, in my youth, had a wonderful girlfriend but decided to try and flirt with one of her friends over text. It always seems so much easier to say things in a text/chat than you would in real life. I got caught of course, and even though we stayed friends she has never forgiven me for it (and it's been 10 years!).

Phil, 26

Observation #1: They're clearly not mature enough to be in a committed relationship -- if they are doing this to their existing partner, chances are they will do it to the next one. The only way to stop it is to end the existing relationship in a decent, mature way.

Observation #2: Men are, fairly uniformly, driven by sex. If they're not getting it with their partner and don't have a stable relationship with them, then any show of affection or interest from another woman can result in the above mentioned games...

Observation #3: Likelihood is that the men from Observation #1 will never change - they are what is most commonly known as 'arseholes'.

Kurt, 23
I admit to having done this, but if push came to shove; I wouldn't cheat. It's nice to know if somebody finds you attractive. It's not a road I go down often. The first time it happened,the doubts it cast ended my first long-term relationship, but then again if that was meant to last, such a thing wouldn't have happened. I also seem to remember one young lady who "almost" kissed me when she was in a relationship too..