back to article Impoverished net user slams 'disgusting' quid-a-day hack

Since Monday, this hack has been subsisting on just £1 a day for food, in support of the charity Malaria No More UK. The "Live Below the Line" challenge is an imperfect exercise, to be sure, but is nobly intended as "an innovative awareness and fundraising campaign that's making a huge difference in the fight against extreme …


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  1. Knoydart

    Aloe Vera for that?


    Sounds like the Moderatrix lives in another guise at Vulture central - All hail Sarah Bee. Fire well, that commentard was sent packing

    1. Omgwtfbbqtime

      Re: Aloe Vera for that?

      Nah, if anyone was channelling Miss Bee then there whold have been a ODFO included.

      Sarah, if you are reading this, you are sorely missed.

      1. peyton?

        Re: Aloe Vera for that?

        Also, Ms. Bee quite frequently let comments of this sort through, just so that the poster could be flamed into oblivion by we commentards.

        Ahh, the good ol' days.

  2. g e


    In poverty but still with Internet access, eh?

    Probably the kind of person that thinks the £1 a day thing is stupid while it's a brilliant idea to, say, sit for 24 hours in a bathtub full of baked beans to help the starving of the world.


    1. MrXavia
      Thumb Up

      Re: Eh?

      I concur, lets help the starving world by wasting food! what bright spark thought up that idea?

      whereas the £1 a day, saves money, saves food and lets him donate what he would have spent!

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: Eh?

        Because schools and libraries don't provide free internet to poor people...

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. james 68

      Re: Eh?

      you realise they can get free internet access in libraries right?

      i was homeless myself for a number of months and was lucky to end up eating even as well as the person concerned and yet i had daily free internet access in various libraries. such free access was in fact pivotal to me getting back on my feet with a job and a place to live.

      just because you have never had to stoop so low as to use something does not mean that it does not exist.

      to berate someone without knowing their situation - and indeed to go so far as to try and force your own fantastical delusion as to what their life might be like upon them is farcical at best. you sir are a twat.

      as for the story that started it all, yes, for those of us who have been there it is more than in bad taste. it is in fact the most deluded piece of crap ive ever read on this site and that is saying something, the daily mirror probably has better taste and empathy.

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Re: Eh?

        Oh bullshit - your life is your life, so be it.

        Lester has done what he thought right. People would whinge if he had a shit and they would whinge if he didn't.

        "OH Lester had a shit - it's a put down for all down trodden impoverished people. blah, blah, blah...."

        "OH Lester didn't have a shit - it's a put down for all down trodden impoverished people. blah, blah, blah...."

        If the posters original posting, had been left up, people would have applauded the commentary.

        If the posters original posting, had been left up, people would have denounced the commentary.

        Personally I like the more imaginative postings..... whether they are crap or not.

        If it's great, read it, if it's crap, tune out, read something else.

        End of fucking story.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Eh?

          the whole point of these articles isn't to give Lester an idea of what poverty is like, the whole point of the exercise is to make all of us think for a minute about those in poverty. perhaps we donate to a charity, perhaps we help someone out directly. perhaps we do nothing. but at the very least, it's this week's articles that have brought the issue to everyone's attention.

          however, evidently from these posts, those in poverty don't want such efforts and would rather lash out vindictively at anyone trying to bring the issue to the attention of the wider population.

      2. Mike Moyle

        Re: Eh?

        "as for the story that started it all, yes, for SOME of us who have been there it is more than in bad taste."

        There. Fixed that for you.

        I WAS there... A couple of dollars' worth of various whole grains, a couple of packs of the day-old vegetables, a smoked turkey leg or two (the cheapest meat at the local grocery store) and some spices. Boil on Sunday until the grain is cooked through and the meat has fallen off the bones and the family eats for the rest of the week.

        So if you're trying to pull the "You don't know what it's like..." argument, you can piss off right now; it's not working.

        Now -- speaking for me, personally (the only one for whom I can legitimately speak) -- I applaud Lester for taking the plunge, for raising money for charity, and for documenting his experiences in a series of articles that were entertaining enough to keep a bunch of people -- who possibly haven't had to and <deity of choice> willing, never WILL have to live hat way -- reading, contributing to charity and possibly even thinking about the problem in real terms for the first time. Taking the step of thinking "What would I do if..." is the first step towards trying to solve the "if". I applaud Lester's sneaky, underhanded attempt to use entertaining anecdote and body-function humor (BTW, Lester -- How'd that all work out in the end? *Ba-BOOM!*) to lure people into taking that first step.

        Obviously, YMMV, but it's YOUR milage, not mine and not necessarily anyone else's. Claiming to speak for "those of us who have been there" is as insulting (to some of us) as you accuse Lester of having been.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Eh?

      I believe the post, whilst quite aggressive, does have an inkling of a point. It's easier to endure hardship if you know you'll be out of it at the end of the week. Having said that, I'm not criticising Mr Haines one bit -- it's much easier to not endure hardship if you don't have to, and Mr Haines has clearly made his own choice with tangible benefits of sponsorship.

      In terms of internet access. I spent a fortnight in a poor town in the south of Peru and I'd expected to be basically incommunicado for the whole time (the town was called communicado, ho ho). However the reality is that because practically no-one has a phone or computer in their own home/shack, nearly every other outlet on the hight street in the centre of town is either full of phone-booths (with cheap international calls -- £1 for half and hour) or internet computer booths (also cheap).

      Don't know where saintcroix was posting from but as others have pointed out, there's always the library, borrow a book too!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Eh?

        Yep. Doing this sort of thing for a week is easy. Doing it for a year, with no prospect of change...

        Somewhere online will be the wonderful Sunday Format sketch on this sort of thing.

    4. Goldmember

      Re: Eh?

      @g e

      Whilst I (and others, it seems) agree with your sentiment, please do refrain from random hashtagging.

      This isn't FaceTwat.

  3. AndrueC Silver badge

    As a new user, saintcroix's comments required moderation. The above outburst was moderated straight into the bin.

    On the plus side it also got their post into a headline article :)

    1. Tony Haines
      Paris Hilton

      the bin

      It does seem a funny name for the front page.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: the bin - a funny name for the front page

        I think you've just captured the essence of the register on a friday

  4. jake Silver badge

    To be fair, Lester ...

    ... most people in the Western World have absolutely zero clue when it comes to properly feeding themselves. Much less feeding themselves on a budget.

    Reading between the lines "saintcroix" is lashing out here for lack of any other outlet ... Maybe instead of poo-pooing the commentary, finding a positive vector for the energy would be a better idea?

    Perhaps an urban farming forum would be a good idea ... We all need to eat.

    I'll get right on that ...

    1. Stevey

      Re: To be fair, Lester ...

      Don't mention p*o-p*o-ing where Lester might see - That diet of rice and chickpeas has got to have some serious consequences...

    2. jake Silver badge

      Was:To be fair, Lester ...

      I wrote "I'll get right on that ..." I did.

      1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

        Re: Was:To be fair, Lester ...

        Good effort.

        1. Jedit Silver badge

          "Good effort."

          By a bizarre coincidence, that is likely to be our response when your next £1-a-day article describes your latest attempt to use the lavatory.

    3. Euripides Pants

      Re: To be fair, Lester ...

      "instead of poo-pooing the commentary, finding a positive vector for the energy would be a better idea"

      Agreed. But it is up to saintcroix, not Lester to find that positive vector.

  5. Alan Bourke

    Sorry saintcroix ...

    ... your criticisms are unfair. And before you ask, I did my time on the dole and I ate on not much more than this for a few years.

    1. Rampant Spaniel

      Pretty much anything is insulting to someone, theres lots of crackpots out there whose sole reason for existing is to be offended because their lives are empty, meaningless pits. This isn't an exercise in genuinely living off a quid a day, this is just about raising awareness, giving an idea on how difficult it would be. It's a little taste of a different lifestyle, not an all out change. Maybe if someone spent less time venting and being insulted they might be able to do something with their life and have enough income to buy more food (once\if the jobs return).

      1. sabroni Silver badge

        I can't believe you said that!

        How dare you! Just because my life is an empty meaningless pit does not make me a crackpot! That is so OFFENSIVE!!!

        1. ecofeco Silver badge

          Re: I can't believe you said that!

          I doubt you even realize you've made saintcroix's point, do you?

          I'll bet the irony is also lost on you.

          1. sabroni Silver badge

            Re: I can't believe you said that!

            Well you obviously have a degree in spotting sarcasm...

  6. Stuart Castle Silver badge

    "We're pleased to see that while saintcroix's diet is indeed a pretty lamentable state of affairs, he/she hasn't been deprived of that most basic human need: an internet connection. "

    If saintcroix is on benefits (and if they are that poor, they probably are), it's worth pointing out that the government requires that you have internet access for an increasing number of benefits. Anyway, who's to say they didn't just pop into their local library (assuming they still have one) and use the internet for free?

    1. Z-Eden

      Didn't realise the average tramps are avid El Reg readers using libraries to keep abreast (ahem) of LOHAN and PARIS news. You learn something new every day...

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Could we perhaps get rid of Eadon too? The above rant is actually quite interesting reading, whereas Eadon's are frothy mouthed masturbatory irrelevance from a spoilt brat who probably lives off packet noodles by choice sitting at his unix terminal attached to a 14" tv, whilst his parents eat fois gras in the dining hall.

    It's got so bad that imagine a 6 year old stamping their feet with a curled bottom lip every time that moron posts.

    1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Just ignore Eadon

      Is Eadon a pre-teen penguin, a Microsoft shill trying to give penguins a bad name or just a troll. When I see his name, I just skip past the comment and any replies. If Eadon gets banned we will just see equally annoying posts from Eadori . Perhaps one day he will grow up, but in the mean time, there is no need to feed him any attention.

      1. CABVolunteer

        Re: Just ignore Eadon

        Definitely a troll!

        I tried to read one of Eadon's posts earlier this week and it's weird phraseology reminded me of the posts of the original Amanfrommars. Now, I wonder who would bother posting such inflammatory material just to generate reaction from readers?

      2. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

        Re: Just ignore Eadon

        :-) If you find Eadon's posts so inflammatory and disturbing, you yourselves are as bigoted as how you think Eadon is. You twothree need to calm down and take it easy. Look outside the window(s), for a change... The spring has arrived, finally!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Just ignore Eadon

          No, it is not "bigotted" at all. He's a dick, plain and simple. He is a disruptive and irritating boil on this forum's backside that needs to take a trip to Switzerland to sort out a painless end to his meaningless existence.

          I would be happy with a democratic vote on it. I know 100% what the result would be. He'd be gone. Most forums rid themselves of tape-worm-ish pests such as Eadon. For some strange reason, this one lets him fester and destroy any sensible discussion that could actually occur when Microsoft topics pop up.

          1. sabroni Silver badge

            Re: are you seriously suggesting we euthanise irritating people?

            Fuck it, he's a dick, but he's OUR dick!!! At least he puts a name to his posts so it's easy to ignore him...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Maybe they could get rid of the 3 or 4 people (or same person with multiple accounts?) that brings up Eadon in the comments section of every article? I'm starting to think you guys have a crush on him as you can't stop bringing him up or slavishly following his posts.

      1. sabroni Silver badge

        Who's Eadon?

    3. Winkypop Silver badge

      Awww come on now

      Eadon aint that bad.

      Although he is a bit like a bull at a gates and always sees a windows of opportunity to bag MS.

  8. ACx

    Yes, its insulting like when posh kids go off on gap years to poor countries to see how lucky they are, and claim to be helping. Giles Wemmbly Hogg springs to mind.

    The whole point is that "rich" people playing at poverty know that it will end. They have no idea what it is really like to be in poverty with no hope and no end in sight. These moronic experiments are more like novelty holidays than anything else. Worse still, people who do this then start on the poor claiming that if they can do it, so can the poor, while forgetting how unrealistic that actually is because the person in question has a whole different set of resources to begin with. Its like a poor person breaking in to an office sitting in a chair and believing that means they they have experienced what its like to run a business.

    So, yes, its insulting, nauseating , not to mention unrealistic.

    1. Graham Dawson Silver badge

      Yet there is at least a valid reason for this experiment: he's raising money for charity. Most of those idiots taking a gap year don't do that, they just sort of hang around and make a nuisance of themselves while getting ripped off by the locals.

    2. Dr. Mouse

      "Yes, its insulting like when posh kids go off on gap years to poor countries to see how lucky they are, and claim to be helping."

      You sound like some people who had a go at a friend of mine.

      He worked in Botswana (and several other places in Africa) for many years. He was a qualified engineer who was paid a pittance in comparison to what he would be paid here, even taking the lower costs of living into account. Yes, he was a high earner by local standards, but a very low earner compared to what he would be paid anywhere else.

      He did this to help people. He was involved in designing, manufacturing and installing wind-powered water pumps to replace the increasingly unreliable diesel-powered ones most towns and villages were using at the time. He had a car, an old beat-up landrover, and a couple of motorcycles, which he raced. The locals liked him. They appreciated all the work he was doing to help them, and the sacrifices he was making to do so. They enjoyed watching him race, and cheered him on every time.

      One day, a couple of do-gooders from a charity turned up. They had a go at him for his "excessive" pay packet and "extravagant" entertainment choices. Apparently, what he was doing was not enough. He should have been working for the same money the locals were on, owned nothing and worked such long hours he didn't need entertainment.

      He asked them if they'd prefer he went home, didn't help the people and earned 10x what he was on there.

      Some people will never be satisfied. If you donate a fiver to a charity, they will ask why it wasn't a tenner. If you volunteer for an hour, they will ask why it wasn't the full day. Any if you sacrifice a well paid career to help people, they will ask why you aren't living in poverty while you do so.

      1. ecofeco Silver badge

        I think he was referring to the "do gooders" in the example and not your friend.

        *sigh* once again, the irony....

        1. sabroni Silver badge

          *sigh* once again, the irony....

          Actually he was illustrating how one person's "do gooder" is another persons "good bloke making a positive difference". It's not that tricky to understand, but it's good that you keep trying....

    3. Rampant Spaniel

      ACx, I assume you haven't ever volunteered. By far the vast majority of people volunteering on gap years come from piss poor backgrounds. The rich kids were on a beach somewhere like grabamuff for their 'gap year'. Come bitch at me when you have spent a year of your life doing something worthwhile for nothing in return other than a decent tan and a case of shouty arse.

      1. sabroni Silver badge

        re: a case of shouty arse

        It's fucking endemic around these forums!

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Not ramon, moron.

    Unless you made it up.

    1. Andrew Moore
      Thumb Up

      Re: Ramen

      Everybody Loves Ramon

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Ramen

        <michael jackson voice>eeeeee-heeee! ra-mon..</michael jackson voice>

        1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov


          Ram on, give your heart to somebody

          Soo-o-o-o-n right away, right away...

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "Ramon noodles"

            He eats them so often that he hasn't actually looked the packet to find out what they are called.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Ramen

      Maybe the autocorrect on his iPhone screwed it up?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Ramen

        So he's in a gay relationship with a guy called Ramon who has an unusually shaped willy. Who are we to criticize what he eats?

  10. Graham Dawson Silver badge

    When I was a kid my dad owned a chip shop, until he lost his business to a combination of recession and a bypass killing half his trade. While he retrained and looked for new work we were broke and dirt poor. We lived on beans half the time.

    You can however get a very varied diet on a pound a day if you shop right. My parents learned the skill and taught it to me - buy bulk, shop at Aldi, look for all those sales where they're trying to clear out stock. Sell-by and use-by dates on a lot of things can be safely ignored for anything from a week up to a month depending.

    Oh, and shop at the cash and carry for staples like rice and salt. It's a cliché but if you make sure to stock up on lentils and oats you can survive (not thrive but certainly survive) on significantly less than a pound a day.

    1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

      I'm not having to live off anything like £1/day and don't have to worry about these things. But if I were:

      I don't have a car so I can't go to the "local" cash'n'carry. (Aldi, too, is in another town - £5 return bus fair.) Bulk buying from local supermarkets is limited for similar reasons. I'm fit and can carry quite a bit; but if I wasn't, it would be harder.

      Bulk buying also demands you have storage space (freezer capacity) and the capital for the initial outlay (on £1/day, how long would it have taken Lester to save up for his frying pan?)

      It certainly can be done, if you are smart and know how. But should we be asking people "to survive" "not thrive"? Should we look down on people who are chucked into this situation without the knowledge of how to do it? (I make an exception for Ian Duncan Smith.) Our whole system is set up for "smart" (well shrewd) people.

      And if I was in a tight spot, I would sacrifice diet to keep the internet - because the internet would be the way out.

    2. Mr Spock

      Bloody luxury.

      When I was a lad my dad lost his job at the abattoir and we had to live in empty baked bean tins.

      1. Platelet

        Re: Bloody luxury.

        You were lucky. We lived for three months in a paper bag in a septic tank. We used to have to get up at six in the morning, clean the paper bag, eat a crust of stale bread, go to work down t' mill, fourteen hours a day, week-in week-out, for sixpence a week, and when we got home our Dad would thrash us to sleep wi' his belt.

        1. Graham Dawson Silver badge

          Re: Bloody luxury.

          You had a belt! My dad 'ad to thrash us with a strip of our own flesh torn from our backs cause we'd eaten our belts months ago. And he'd make us cure it with our own teeth first!

          @Brewster I didn't mean feeding the freezer, that's too expensive. Bulk dry goods and tinned food, that's what I'm talking about. They last longer than frozen foods too.

          1. Brewster's Angle Grinder Silver badge

            Re: Bloody luxury. @graham

            Ahh, the joys childhood with a leaky roof, "You know we have to keep the beans in the bath because if we put them in the loft they start rusting, and then it gets so hot in summer that they burst."

            Bulk buying meat "wholesale" from the guy on the market was something we did when young. Then there's freezing "forage" while it's in season. (And if your traps catch a deer...) And, as people have said, making up several lots and freezing them is vital to economising when living on your own. It's been many years since I bought frozen meat (the joys of not having to run a car) but that used to be cheaper than fresh, too.

            I don't doubt you could make it work. But it's another of those subtle assumptions: you need storage, even for dry food, which can be a problem in a cramped terrace. And the middle class don't realise some people are stuck with a 1U freezer compartment on the top of a fridge which should be in a museum.

    3. DJO Silver badge

      Make room! Make room!

      Worth getting some Soya as well as Lentils, combine them perhaps with some spinach to get a green soy-lent foodstuff.

    4. Elmer Phud

      sell by/best before etc.etc.

      "Sell-by and use-by dates on a lot of things can be safely ignored for anything from a week up to a month depending."

      Got some rather tasty Indian veg dishes in vacuum packs.

      They were being chucked out of a cash'n'carry as the date on them is Dec 2012.

      Squash drinks -- Jan 2013

      cans of stuff-- go back years.

      They never tell you which ingredient is likely to possibly, maybe, perhaps come towards the end of it's best condition even though the product is not going to kill you, it might just taste slightly different or oils might begin to separate.

      Also, many people look at BB or BBEO dates and chuck stuff out --

      Someone brought round a huge pack of bacon the other day "I was doing catering at the weekend - last minute job, bastards didn't tell me it was mainly veggie!"

      Today it gets split up and put in the freezer.

    5. AndrueC Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Sell-by and use-by dates on a lot of things can be safely ignored for anything from a week up to a month depending.

      That's true. The corned beef I had in my sarnies this week 'expired' over a month ago and It's been fine. It was vacuum packed though which probably helped. I've also got some nearly a year-old Tabasco sauce in the fridge although to be fair it's hard to tell what difference it would make if that had gone off :)

    6. Spoddyhalfwit


      "When I was a kid my dad owned a chip shop, until he lost his business to a combination of recession and a bypass killing half his trade"

      That sounds like it must have been the most dangerous stretch of road in the world.

      1. AndrueC Silver badge

        Re: @grahamdawson

        That sounds like it must have been the most dangerous stretch of road in the world.

        Yeah, the planning process really failed on that one. If they'd done their due diligence the road would never gone straight through the customer waiting area :)

    7. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Use by" and "Best before" are different

      "Use by" is a hard limit. If you eat stuff after the date it may well make you ill.

      "Best before" is advisory (except for eggs, apparently). The product won't be as good after this date but if it looks and smells OK it won't hurt you.

  11. JDX Gold badge

    I live on Ramon noodles and chicken with peas and various spices

    Sounds tasty, I'd eat that.

    1. wowfood

      Re: I live on Ramon noodles and chicken with peas and various spices

      sounds like my diet while living in halls. Except I didn't have teh spices, pretty much lived on asda smart price noodles (6p per pack at the time, bout in massive bulk)

      Two packs of smart price beef noodles, 1 spoon of beef gravy and you have a pretty good meal. On days asda had sales on whole chickens (fairly often) I'd get 3 for £10, that was 3 weeks worth of food.

      Somebody getting butthurt over somebody else raising money for charity are probably even bigger scum than the people they accuse of being scum.

      And what's with the whole "claiming if they can do it, so can the poor" I'd call BS on that right now, if anything it has the opposite affect, after living below the line for a week you know how hard it is, by the end of week 1 you crave something with a bit more flavour and if anything you'll understand how hard it is.

      I don't think I could ever go back to the student eating habbits now that I'm earning enough not to, a diet of nothing but noodles, rice and pasta is not a good diet.

      And I still envy Lester being able to find 12 eggs for a quid. Honestly shocks me, still can't find half that for the same price, each egg costs 20p or more. I need to look harder.

      1. Andrew Moore

        Re: I live on Ramon noodles and chicken with peas and various spices

        Kids today. When I was a starving student I lived on Smash and Oxo cubes.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Bloody students.

          Get a job.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: I live on Ramon noodles and chicken with peas and various spices

        "sales on whole chickens (fairly often) I'd get 3 for £10, that was 3 weeks worth of food."

        Is a chicken safe to eat after 3 weeks?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Is a chicken safe to eat after 3 weeks?

          Yes, as long as it can still breathe.

          1. wowfood

            Re: Is a chicken safe to eat after 3 weeks?

            Cook one, stick the other two in the freezer. Eat roast chicken on day one, cold chicken on day 2, chicken stew on day 3-7.


  12. GBL Initialiser

    "We're pleased to see that while saintcroix's diet is indeed a pretty lamentable state of affairs, he/she hasn't been deprived of that most basic human need: an internet connection."

    Not to defend this person's naysaying of an effort designed to do good but did you check to see if said connection was via a library or other academic institution? Even if it wasn't it could be via a kindly friends house.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Pulp fiction?

    You'll never live like common people

    1. A Nother Handle
      Thumb Up

      Re: Pulp fiction?

      Upvoted because you brought a touch of class to the conversation.

  14. Joe Harrison

    My problem with Lester

    I approve in general of what he is doing but I wish he wouldn't make it sound like he is going through such hell. His colonic eruption piece yesterday was funny but it's not helpful to encourage people to think that healthy/frugal/whatever eating is something you do for a limited time as a sort of penance which brings nasty toilet consequences. I am sure his guts really do feel a bit funny but this is actually the result of suddenly loading his body with high-fibre food when it has previously been used to an easier ride. If you eat this sort of food all the time you are no more gassy than anyone else. Just sayin.

    1. Diogenes

      here comes Godwin

      The certain ex painter who shall not be named was famed for the frequency & noxiousness of his nether eruptions - he was a veggo.

      Icon : And because he was a a non smoker nobody could light a match

      1. Graham Dawson Silver badge

        Re: here comes Godwin

        Actually he wasn't a veggie at all, that's a popular but untrue legend. He liked a good knackwurst now and then.

        The one with the rolled up painting disguised as a german sausage in the pocket please.

  15. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Re: not nice

      Yes, it is.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

        Re: Re: not nice

        He does have a right to reply, right here, assuming he's not going to spout insults.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Thumb Down

          Re: not nice

          >He does have a right to reply, right here,

          Unless he writes something that makes you look silly again and put his comments "in the bin" only to drag them out later to create a little revenge article to assert your authority?

          1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

            Re: Re: not nice

            It's not about asserting authority - it's about defending ourselves against abuse. If you're going to give it out, there's always the chance you'll get it back, in spades.

            It's too easy to gob off on the internet. YouTube is the proof of that. If you mess with Vulture Central, you might get slapped. It has always been thus.

            1. Rampant Spaniel

              Re: not nice

              El reg is very very difficult to get a comment deleted or withheld. I have had 4 comments on one article moderated, noteably by one member of the yankee writers crew, because I dared question the legitimacy of a study he posted (it was absolute ballcocks, completely biased and I fairly politely pointed out how it could be improved), he then deleted all the comments, and then the article itself. Thats it in quite a few years, and to be fair I spout a fair amount of shyte at times and I am rarely without an opinion :-)

              Lester has always come across as a fair person, nothing here has changed my mind on that, note he is actually taking part in the comments, many writers here don't.

    3. 404

      Re: not nice

      Somebody doesn't know Lester... he *is* BOFH and very good at hiding bodies, a real bastard. I don't like him (goes back to 1999, a contest, a Reg pin, and Lester's dicketry).

      However, I do support slapping a newbie who strolls into your 'home' with muddy boots and kicks the cat. This is not a democracy, there are rules and basic politeness for the most part (Apple/Android/Microsoft pillow fights excepted).

      1. This post has been deleted by its author

        1. 404

          Re: thicker skins

          Why? It's their game, nobody has to play.

          You also miss the human aspect, most titles are just that, titles. Don't mean anything except to HR for whatever metric they come up with. Titles get hung on you, doesn't change the you.

          'They' say I'm a business network security consultant, yet still an asshole at times. Sometimes I spill my beer. Happens.

    4. nuked

      Re: not nice

      What has fairness got to do with it?

    5. A Man From Bras
      Thumb Down

      Re: not nice

      "...Is it really fair to moderate someone's comment "straight into the bin" and then use it to mock him in an article?..."

      Of course it's not fair, but sadly par for the course. I find it's generally the sites which are the most self-consciously "maverick" which tend to be the most ready to abuse their editorial powers, when anyone calls into question their studied "cool".

  16. Cyberelic

    Free internet

    I've had a free internet connection ever since TalkTalk brought it out back in the days of the original TalkTalk bloke.

    I did get a warning about D/L limits when I rebuilt my machine recentish from XP to 64bit Win 7 and there were all those interminable 'updates' plus all the other D/Ls required.

    TalkTalk don't seem to have taken account of the bloat caused by recent O/S rebuilds.


  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    He has a very good point and the Reg's response is testament to the arrogance he is referring to. Libraries offer free internet. But you wouldn't know that because you've never been poor enough to need to use them. Or maybe because free market obsessed politicians closed them down before you ever got a chance to use a library. You should be ashamed of your ignorance.

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Yeah, the developing world's full of libraries with free internet access. You don't know if I've ever been poor or not, but hey, feel free to assume...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        ... you have made an assumption about the original poster Lester so its rank hypocrisy to then criticise someone else for making assumptions about your circumstances.

        For what its worth I applaud what you are doing and you're damned if you do and damned if you don't try to highlight these issues.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @OP AC

      Oh, bugger me. I'm not poor yet I've been using public libraries for years, hell of a lot of them, both years and libraries. Where should I go to confess? Have I been unwittlingly depriving a poor peasant sorry person of a resource I shouldn't be using? Here's an ignorant thought for you, maybe if the poor went to the libraries to read books and improve their level of education instead of browsing these hallowed pages they'd have a chance of getting a better job or maybe even any job and pulling themselves out of their current situation.

  18. Rob Crawford


    If saintcroix didn't spend the rest of his/her income on crack a better diet would be possible

    1. Elmer Phud

      Re: Perhaps

      Sound more like a Red Bull junkie.

  19. ukgnome


    Whilst saintcroix has a minor point that wealthy people do not know the true meaning of poverty I do think he has rather missed the point. The challenge isn't about experiencing poverty but surely highlighting poverty whilst earning money through sponsorship.

    Also, as Lester is possibly the only journo that I would be happy to defend in a knife fight (SPB is the foremost reason I stick with the Reg) I can safely say that he probably isn't a millionaire tycoon. Not many journo's are. Usually they are greasy sweaty men that look like poor people or overweight puff balls that spend any surplus expenses on irn bru and cake. Of course I may be incorrect, and if I am the Lester can you lend me a few quid guv?

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Re: saintcrockoshit

      "The challenge isn't about experiencing poverty but surely highlighting poverty whilst earning money through sponsorship."

      Exactly. And you're right - I'm afraid I can't lend you a few quid, sorry.

      1. Stuart Castle Silver badge

        Re: saintcrockoshit

        "The challenge isn't about experiencing poverty but surely highlighting poverty whilst earning money through sponsorship."

        I agree. If Lester had merely wanted to experience poverty, surely he needn't have gone to the bother of writing about it. Writing about it, however, does highlight it.

        Also, can you ever truly experience poverty if you know that at the end of the week, you are going to have enough money to cover your bills, other expenses, and, I dare say, a few "luxuries"?

  20. wowfood

    Just had a thought

    So Lester, did you weigh yourself before this charity starvation? And if so, after your final day (and hopefully evacuation) would you be willing to share with us any weightloss you have suffered as a result of living off £1 a day?

    Doubt it'd be much, considering the timescale, but could be interesting.

    Also how are energy levels etc doing.

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Re: Just had a thought

      I did consider weighing myself, but didn't get round to it. Energy levels holding up - there'll be an update later, so watch this space.

      1. Omgwtfbbqtime

        Re: Just had a thought

        Given where the bulk of your calories came from (bread and rice) the weight loss might not be particularly high.

        Hopefully the colonal mass ejection is not this bad - but is as funny

  21. apjanes

    Cutting off your nose?

    True, most of us rich people will (thankfully) never understand what it is like to be poor, but is that a reason to berate those who are at least trying to get *some* understanding of the difficulties while, at the same time trying to elleviate poverty a little, for a few people in a small way? It is hard for your average every day rich joe to know HOW to help those in poverty and any attempt by people who do this sort of fundraising surely should be applauded, not denigrated?

    The fact is that, even if it seems rather inadequate to saintcroix, people are trying to do something. Turning around and judging motives that you have no idea of (how do YOU know this is done for self-publicity and not a genuine desire to help people) is more likely to turn people away from raising what they do, regardless of how little it appears to be!

    Bloody face, you're going to have no nose for that! Oh damn, now I really DO have a bloody face!

  22. Winkypop Silver badge

    Good show I say

    Person 1 thinks about the less fortunate, makes a sacrifice, saves/donates some cash, tells others.

    Person 2 gets a benefit/some cash, thinks about the assistance, eats a bit better.

    What's wrong with this?

  23. Steve Graham

    Lester, I had no opinion of you or your writing before this article, but I think it makes you look nasty and mean-spirited. And to me, every additional comment you've made only reinforces that impression.

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Sigh. If I were truly nasty and mean-spirited, I'd delete your post and every other similar musing. As is it, I'm normally only moderately nasty and mean-spirited, but five days reduced rations has made me a tad less inclined to brush off abuse.

      1. Bunbury

        Of course if saintcroix has been doing reduced rations for a long time perhaps he's got to the stage where he sees abuse where none is intended. Or maybe he's been at the jenkem again.

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        I've seen people banned for less in other locations. But seriously the guy was effectively cutting off his nose to spite his face.

        Probably one of the benefit scroungers with 7 kids and an 8th on the way who moans because the government won't give them that 10 bedroom £1,000,000 propperty that they so desperately need.

  24. The Vociferous Time Waster
    Thumb Up

    Poverty? In the west?

    In the west it is pretty much impossible to live in true poverty unless done as part of a conscious choice. All but the absolute poorest in the UK are still in the global top 5% for wealth if you take into consideration our free education, free healthcare, free internet in libraries and various other benefits of living in the west. This project does not aim to truly represent what it is like to poor in the global sense of the word as it is impossible when you are cosy in your house in the UK with carpets, windows and free immunisations for the diseases that cause massive child mortality in the developing world; it does aim to raise money and make us all think.

    So keep up the good work doing this event, it's great to see people taking on a challenge of any sort to help others think a little harder about how lucky we are and from the looks of your total this week will go quite a long way towards saving lives in areas where there isn't the same basic health services that we clearly all take for granted.

  25. heyrick Silver badge


    "he/she hasn't been deprived of that most basic human need: an internet connection. Cake? Let them eat Gmail. "

    You do realise, I hope, that this comment makes you sound a bit of a twat? You can usually get online in a public library; it is becoming more and more necessary for interacting with the government, DWP, finding jobs etc. Just because somebody posts using a computer, doesn't necessarily mean they are blowing their minimal cash on telly and internet instead of, you know, food.

  26. Davidj2
    Thumb Down

    Poor people and the internet

    Yes, get off the internet, you poor person. Nobody wants you to vote or speak. The gall of those people. The middle class are hardly better. Besides, I gave money at the church for you last Christmas. Off with you, you ingrate. \s

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Plenty of sanctimonious commenters here today, it seems.

    This is El Reg's Special Projects Bureau.

    You want to some touchy-feely feelgood stories? The Gruaniad website is a click away!

    More power to you, Lester. You've done a damn sight more than I have, and I dare say a lot of other commenters here. You don't have to take no shit from no-one !

    1. hplasm
      Thumb Up

      Re: Sanctimony


      if you don't like the rules- don't play!

  28. exumabear

    Who has the high ground?

    I believe there is something to the 'disgusted' among us. I don't see anyone in my family actually changing their behavior after the challenge is over. Thanks.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ever heard of... internet at the local library? It ain't easy being dirt poor. Those who have never experienced it can't begin to imagine what it is like to live this way, through no fault of many. "Walk a mile..." is the perfect means to get a grip on reality.

    1. Rampant Spaniel

      Re: Ever heard of...

      I would try and walk a mile but I'd probably just get accused of being a snob demeaning and insulting the poor who can't afford a car ;-)

      That and I live in the states and I'm pretty sure walking is illegal here (most likely lobbying from the car and segway industry) and I'd probably get sued for traumatising the customers of whichever 14 fast food joints I'd pass in that mile.

  30. Denarius Silver badge

    lacks quality

    FOTW quality is dropping again. What happened , an attack of lethargy ? Inquiring minds want to know.

    Where are the the flaming rants these days, I tell you these young people no idea how we did it on USENET. HTML, bah humbug, XML bloat. Bring back 7 bit ASCII and 1200 baud modems. Oh hang on, thats happening if broadband speeds drop much more in this part of a dustbowl. Back to the fencing to keep out the neighbours starving stock...

  31. Denarius Silver badge

    Good Show ol' chap

    seriously for once, well done Lester. Your experience of critics mirrors acquaintances and my own in remote Oz areas working with tribal people. Lots of visiting do-gooders full of carping criticism of those on the ground doing something practical. They did not ask the locals they claimed to be "supporting" what they thought. Exactly like an earlier commentards reference to a friend in Africa. Hmm, flame inspiration here, will try later.

    1. Malmesbury

      Re: Good Show ol' chap


      I remember a visit to Nepal. A camp site that was literally in a shit state. Hip touristas managed to whine about it, but did nothing.

      A British army group arrived - officer cadets in the charge of an RSM straight out of Zulu. Apparently they were touring round the country to actually learn about it. Said RSM looked around and said "Right". or something to that effect. And went to talk to the locals about what they reckoned was the solution.

      24 hours later, when they left, a functional outhouse had been constructed from dry stone walling. Built by the cadets. And the er.... problem tidied up a bit.

      The right out types were still hating on the evil military. While using the outhouse.

  32. The Alpha Klutz

    ive been commentating for years

    and my comments still get moderated.

    which is perverse because i never post anything controversial. the government does however want to censor my posts.

    anyway, i like to eat about £20 worth of food a day. ,,,,,mmmmmmmmmmmmm

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    been there, done that

    Back in the day, I was homeless and destitute and during one part of that period, lived in the UK for over a year without any reserves or handouts - not even a coat. I commend the current vogue of £1/day eating, because it is walking a mile in the other guy's shoes.

    Anon because this isn't on my CV

  34. The Alpha Klutz

    When you get your first job in IT

    you'll be eating dog food 3 days a week.

  35. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge

    Yes it's not the same...

    Yes, doing this for a week is not the same for doing it year after year. But, it did open people's eyes to your plight. I think some people just would assume living on quid a day just means not eating out, without realizing just how hard it is to get by.

  36. bucho

    You're not the only one

    I've been following these quid-a-day posts and think they are great. I too once lived in poverty and it was horrible, with no clear sign of it ending. I was at the point where ramen was too expensive. I found this user's intended post ridiculous. Hunger is something that most people who don't deal with forget about. Projects (or "stunts") such as this are attempts to remedy the situation and make life better for all. Also, for those who aren't impoverished, but still concerned about the high cost of food, an demonstration like this can hopefully open eyes to more fugal ways of living to help make people's lives better. Don't hate.

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