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Illustrated by Lucia Soto

A few weeks ago I started drinking hot water (just plain hot water) at the office instead of the customary tea or coffee. Since I began with it (at first just trying to make a joke) I got totally hooked. Later I found out a couple of colleagues were doing the same since forever and I couldn’t believe why no more people were paying attention to the incredibly functional features this hot drink has to offer.

Really, if hot water was a new designed product I think people would go nuts for it, you’ll see…


Getting hot water from a kettle is way way faster than preparing a coffee or waiting for a tea to brew. No extra steps, just pour the liquid into your favourite mug and walk away with a hot drink in your hands. …

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Look, even though I’m a very patient person I think 63 millennia to reinstall an old laptop is my limit, I can’t accept those extra 48 minutes! Oh, sorry, you say it’ll restart by itself? Then we’re good, I’ll pop the kettle on.

Really, I love those little moments when silly computers let us take a look behind the curtain of what’s both their greatest strength and weakness: They’re deliciously logical.

I love going to the cinema, so much that I pretty much go every week. Yeah, the seats are worse than the IKEA coach I have at home, the screen is blurrier than my budget TV and I can’t pause the playback if I need to use the restroom or adjust the volume to my taste. But maybe those “not perfect” features are why I love it so much.

I like the idea of dozens of people experiencing the same thing at the same time. I like the smell of popcorn. I like it when people laugh at jokes that I don’t find funny. I like it when I laugh two seconds before everybody else in the room just because I was anticipating the punchline. …

Do you know that feeling when you fully charge your phone and then, even after using it for a while it stills says 100%? It’s great, isn’t it? Where is that endless power coming from? It makes you wonder why don’t they build the full battery with the same quality materials they used for that last 1% that goes from 100% to 99%.

A similar thing happens after filling up your car at the petrol station. Yeah, you might think that paying £562 for the smallest can of Pringles the world has ever seen and a pint of expired milk was a bit too much. However, the joke is on them because you just got yourself some magic petrol. Now you can drive half an hour completely for free; the fuel gauge won’t move from the very top. What’s powering the car? …

I switched to Mac back in 2005, right when Apple announced they were migrating the platform to Intel. Well, what I really did was to switch to Hackintosh (a PC tricked into believe it’s a Mac, so you can run nice software on it).

Hacking things around (I was 20, just about to graduate in Computer Science) I got a good understanding on how these things work under the hood. I even wrote a guide on how to install a Hackintosh (it was the first guide ever published in Spanish about the topic).

Helping people to get access to software that was so much better than the omnipresent Windows XP and much easier to use than any Linux distribution made me really happy. Probably thanks to that I quickly became an Apple fanboy and never looked back. …

Even though I’m a music lover I’ve never managed to crack how music really works. I don’t play any instruments or know how to read music sheets.

However, for a brief period of time, when I was a teenager, I think I almost did. I would spend countless hours fiddling with Sound Club and FruityLoops (we’re talking Windows 95). I had a few floppies packed with MIDI songs and I wouldn’t stop listening to them, again and again, modifying instruments, changing things here and there. Always trying to unravel the underlaying mistery.

As I said I never got to decipher the whole thing but the experience let me an unforgettable affection for the classic synthesiser sound. From a basic Nokia ringtone to a bunch of doggies running free to the rythm of Fångad av en stormvind.


I love how the film industry uses “Academy Award-winning” as a tag line to precede someone’s name. For example…

“The University of Warwick has announced it will award Academy Award-winning director Oliver Stone an honorary Doctor of Letters degree”

One of my secret life goals is to win an Oscar at some point just so I can go by “Academy Award-winning Hugo Cornejo”. I also like how “Hugo Cornejo MP” sounds.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to be an actor or a politician, I just want to power-up my name in such an awesome way!

After watching a film on the internet I do this thing of rewinding the video by dragging the seek bar completely to the beginning.

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Think about it next time you go to Netflix to find your film nice, rewinded and ready to watch. You’re welcome.

Just a few days ago I wrote about comedy clichés, well this is one of my favourite manoeuvres of all time. One so great that even when you obviously see it coming you can’t help but listen and wait for the punch line.

I’ve searched a bit and it seems it’s called The Triple. It consists on stating something that is true or reasonable (defining a rule), then something else that is also true or sensible for the same reason (confirming the rule) only to, right in sequence, mention a third element that breaks the rule and delivers the joke.

Here’s an example I’m sure you remember…

Beast: “I wanna do something for her… but what?”

Beauty and the Beast (1991)

Another great example, right in the middle of the fantastic “Not Just for Gays Anymore” by Neil Patrick Harris…

“The Triple” starts on 2:55

So, yeah, embrace The Triple in your jokes and you’ll make me extremely happy.

I have a soft spot for comedy clichés, small things that always work to deliver a perfect punch line.

One of my favourites is that one in which a character says that won’t do a certain something or that something can’t happen. The scene suddenly shifts. All we see now is that same character doing exactly what promised to not do or that impossible event happening right in front of our eyes!

In other words…

Flynn Rider: “I don’t sing”

Tangled (2010)

Another example, a bit older…

Timon: “What do you want me to do? Dress in drag and do the hula?”

The Lion King (1994)

Also seen in live action films…

Mrs McCallister: “Kevin doesn’t know how to use a credit card”

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Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992)

I just can’t help it, I find it hilarious. The more obvious the better. If I ever write a script I’ll pack one of these bad boys every five minutes.


Hugo Cornejo

VP of Design @monzo You should follow me @hugocornejo

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