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Back Buzz - June 4, 2015

pumping heartThe Harland Cafe, 72 John Street, Highfield, Sheffield, South Yorkshire

Recently a friend started a new job over on the other side of town. Aside from discovering all of the interesting aspects of her new company she was very excited to find a decent cafe in the neighbourhood that happens to bear her maiden name. As another coffee-loving friend had recently mentioned the same cafe, I decided to give it a try when I had the chance.

It was on an unseasonably cold Tuesday that I met Olly for lunch at the Harland Cafe. As soon as I turned down John Street I realised I'd been to this same spot a couple of years ago when it was Cafe Euro. The atmosphere of the cafe has changed a bit from the days of its former occupant, as it seemed brighter and breezier. It's quite roomy as well, which is a good thing because it was surprisingly crowded on this Tuesday lunchtime.

Olly went for the Worker's Special for £3.00 which included a sandwich, crisps, and an Americano. Not being a big eater, and wanting something stronger than an Americano, I decided to forego the Workers and have one of the speciality sandwiches. My grilled halloumi and pesto was served on gorgeous fresh-baked granary bread and was very good.

My double macchiato was nice enough as well, served in a roomy macchiato cup where the barista could give me plenty of extra foam as I always like. My only objection was that it was extremely smooth, and I do always appreciate a bit of robustness and sassiness in my coffee. It was a bit awkward as well, as it wasn't served with a demitasse spoon. But since my sandwich came with a salad I managed to scoop up the rest of the foam with my salad fork. I mean, why not drink coffee with a fork? As a person who enjoys eating her salad with chopsticks I've always liked a challenge.

Along with sandwiches the Harland offers daily specials which look interesting. Olly told me they make a good quiche and a really yummy egg mayo sandwich, and I had nearly gone for the fish finger sandwich when I got hijacked by the haloumi, so there obviously has to be a next time. And I'm curious to come back and try their breakfast as well.

Speaking of returning reminds me of a recent e-mail exchange with my Bay Area friend about returning emails:

I've tried to e-mail your regular Mistah Rick address twice since the weekend (mostly to let you know a new beer column is up), and it's been bounced back. We've had a similar problem sending mail from work to certain customers. There are several "blacklisting" databases that record IP addresses suspected of sending SPAM. When receiving mail, any email system has the option of checking the sender's IP address against any of the blacklists; if there's a match, it may block the message as SPAM. It appears that Earthlink keeps its own blacklist and somehow the IP address of your email found its way onto their blacklist.

In our case at work, the IP address in question was our own. We had to appeal to the blacklisting service to convince them we are not spammers. In your case, I think the IP address is your service provider, and the problem would affect all of their customers sending mail to Earthlink. At some point one of them would complain, and the owner of the IP would clear things up with Earthlink.

Hopefully, it's cleared up by now. You can send me some twaddle as a test. Little kids have huge thymuses. The Russians are a godless state. When I was in my twenties and thirties I didn't care for dessert. I wouldn't eat lots of uranium. Your message was flagged as "Possible Twaddle", but at least it got past Earthlink's blocking. A message from another friend was blocked the same way, so there does seem to be a problem with Earthlink's blacklist. Do you know much about Earthlink? Perhaps they're part of a provider located far away in another planetary system, and "Earthlink" is just the subnetwork set up on Earth (like "Venuslink" or "Marslink"). Perhaps your friend's and my e-mails were routed thirteen light years away to the server on Kapteyn b, and then because of too much interference from the "cloud" on Kapteyn c, by the time the e-mails returned to Earthlink's terrestrial servers they were garbled into messages that threatened the total annihilation of the Kapteyn's Star planetary system.

It's just a thought.