Grey matters

We're rather excited at the prospect of 'The Memoriser', a new RTE quiz show that aims to find the young Irish person with the best memory.

Screened over 11 days this Christmas, contestants will have to remember strings of words, numbers, images, sometimes in puzzles, sometimes in order, sometimes against the clock. Any budding forget-me-nots, aged 1014, should log on to www. rte. ie (follow the link to //The Den//) for details.

Necessary accessory

This season, it's all about the chunky necklace, the more clumpy and homespun the better. Joanne Hynes's fantastic symmetrical bumper beads (about five to a string) set the tone to perfection. Soon to be available from the new Top Shop on St Stephen's Green, they can be bought in the meantime via info@joannehynes. com, with prices ranging from 25- 40. A seriously cutting edge seasonal staple.

Handbags at dawn Hurtling towards an 11th birthday, Martin Thomas's Strictly Handbag night in RIRa is little bit '80s, a little bit mod. The night that fans won't want to miss is Monday, 17 October when The Darkness's Frankie Poullain gives the decks a spin. Oh, how quickly these club nights grow up. Bring your best bag.

Wax works

The L'Occitaine Challenge, as we see it, involves going into one of its stores (Dublin, Cork or Limerick) and managing to leave empty handed. The job is made all the more difficult with an extension to L'Occitaine's already pretty fabulous scented candle range. Packaged in metal tins, there's a new Liquorice Wood version, plus heavenly Gingerbread, a really comforting Pumpkin and Chestnut, delicious Creme Caramel, and oh-so fashionable Violet Fig. All are made from vegetable wax and just need to be burnt for an hour or two to fill a room with a scent-sational fragrace. In stores now, priced 15.95.

You're made up Getting the whole make-up look sorted can be expensivef and daunting. Where to start, or more precisely, where to stop? Those in need of guidance should invest in Hard Candy's new make-up kits. Sold as 'Punk' or 'Princess' palettes, each is a box containing the very essential colours to get a good look. There's three eye shadows, a blush, a shimmer powder and two portable lip pots plus . . . and here's the clever bit . . . instructions on how to apply the kit to get the best effects for day and night. Each kit costs 20 and both are available from Roches Stores.

Spooky stuff

Halloween must be one of the best celebrations on the calendar . . . there's a bank holiday involved, an excuse to look like you've seen a ghost and an opportunity to finally embrace the pumpkin into one's culinary lexicon. Hollow out the flesh for soups and pies and get hold of Superquinn's Carving Kits to impress kids/neighbours with some spooky faces. The kits, priced 2.99, even include stencils to guide the creative process and are part of a seasonal selection that includes orange iced donuts, pumpkin seed bread and Barm Brack, some complete with lucky rings.

Available in stores from Monday.

Electronica eclectica

With a mission to bring the art of electronic media to the masses, the Dublin Electronic Arts Festival, now in its fourth year, returns this month, on 25-30 October. Taking place in venues throughout the capital (The Village, Whelans, TBMC and more) it's a feast of images, sounds, noise, knob-twiddling and chin-stroking with a series of low-profile, high-cred performances along with some more widely recognised names bringing greater appeal to the programme. DEAF expands beyond standard dance fare to embrace technology and stretch it to its entertaining best. Check out Goldie in Traffic on 30 October, or Detroit's legendary Underground Resistance performing live as Galaxy 2 Galaxy at The Village on the same day. Or the visual and music performances at Filmbasef then try tell us clubbing can't be cultured. See www. deafireland. ie.

Ard act to follow

Those in search of greater learning in Galway should get busy this month with Ard Bia's series of courses. If you get your skates on, you can head to the Ard Bia Cafe on Quay Street at 6pm this evening for a tea-tasting class, or for those who like a bit more kick in their fluids, the six-week wine-tasting class, where, every Thursday from 27 October, the wonderfully-named Enrico Fantastia will have you fully genned up for the festive season. Finally, there's a healthy option with Lara Cambells Healthy Cookery demonstrations . . . weekly from Tuesday 25 October for four sessions.

Check out www. ardbia for full details.