Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Tuesday Trifles

Grazing in someone else's comment box I was reminded of an aspect of today's Bullshit Industry that I'd mercifully forgotten. It's the practice of installing those framed 'inspirational' posters in workplaces, with titles like 'Teamwork', 'Focus', 'Challenge', etc.

A large organisation I worked for bought hundreds of the bloody things, at God knows what cost, and a man was sent to install several of them in my own workplace.
Now it's not often that I 'go off on one', as they say, but I said that he would put them on the wall over my dead body. He said they were to inspire the staff. I replied that unless he removed them from the premises immediately I would be inspired to locate his prostate with his Phillips screwdriver.

The poor man was worried about his incomplete worksheet so I rang Human Resources (who are neither human nor resourceful), the originators of this nonsense, and told them that we were neither a junior school nor workers in the old Soviet Union and that as a taxpayer I resented this waste of money, for this was a public sector organisation. I added that Human Resources could have our share of these infantile and aesthetically offensive posters and that if they were thus doubly inspired they might get off their fat arses and do something useful for once.
Leading business experts would agree that this was probably a bad career move.


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The trial is taking place of the upper class wasters who invaded the Commons chamber to protest against the ban on hunting.
Old Etonian, Luke Tomlinson, who lives on his parents' Gloucestershire estate and hunts with the Beaufort, has been excused from court tomorrow because he is playing in a polo match.
I wonder what kind of prior engagement would get a yob in a hoodie excused from a court appearance?
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Mention of the Beaufort Hunt above reminds me of the time my parents and I went to look round Badminton House, home of the Duke of Beaufort.
In one of the rooms my father started a conversation with one of the elderly ladies who were standing sentinel to make sure that the hoi polloi didn't walk off with the silverware. He congratulated her on finding herself an undemanding retirement job.
"Nice, cushy little number to have when you're on the countdown", he said.
She smiled icily and fiddled with her pearls. She was the Duchess of Beaufort.

My father is famous for these kind of faux pas, partly because he is very deaf.
He was once introduced to the Editor of the local newspaper but only heard the words 'local newspaper'. He told the startled journalist that it was the worst rag he had ever had the misfortune to read and proceeded to list every mistake and misprint that had appeared over the last thirty years.
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'Circus Legend' Billy Smart Jr has died. It's astonishing now to recall that the BBC used to frequently broadcast Billy Smart's circus live to audiences of 22 million.
As a child I was scarred by an encounter with Billy Smart Senior. On television and in the press he was always portrayed as a jolly, cigar-smoking, avuncular figure who loved children and animals.
When his circus came to town I went to walk round the menagerie with my dog. Suddenly I came face to face with the huge figure of Billy Smart. He took the cigar from his mouth and shouted "Oi! Get that bloody dog out of here!" I turned and ran. I was only ten and in those days 'bloody' was almost as strong as 'fuck'.
It was an early lesson that image and reality are two different things.
I decided not to run away and join the circus. If I'd known my seven times table I might even have become an accountant instead.

2 Comments:

At 10:13 PM, Anonymous Graham said...

It can be a shattering of illusions when you meet someone famous and the are complete twats in real life.
met a couple who will remain nameless)(don't want a lawsuit).One a very famous football manager who got totally pissed at a wedding we were at and told the most blue joke I have ever heard in polite company.He was asked to leave later on for trying to cop off with the bridsmaid he was a serious twat.

 
At 2:13 PM, Blogger Willie Lupin said...

Pissed football managers - so many possible names spring to mind.
And because my knowledge of weddings is mainly confined to soaps I thought bridesmaids always ended up shagging one of the guests or even the groom.

 

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