Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Frosty wind made moan

Monday, 29 November 2010


Snow makes me randy.

Other things:

  • adornment
  • funerals
  • hotels pretending to be posh when they really aren't
  • red
  • tight lipped critical individuals
  • hangovers
  • diesel
  • hats, especially with veils
  • false nails
  • beaches
  • military parades

Friday, 26 November 2010


You get what you measure?

Now that is responsible for a lot of nonsense.

If it were true then my adolescent adventures with a tape measure would have yielded rather more impressive results!

And in management circles, it diverts a lot of attention away from managing.

I know of managers who do nothing much else than measure. And it is a very sterile thing - the last resort of those who can't think of what to do.

Management is about doing stuff and encouraging others to do stuff.

Sure, measure results at the end. But if all you do is measure, then you are playing tennis looking at the scoreboard.

Whoops. There's another backhand slicing past you.

Not so much "you get what you measure".

More measure what you got.

Thursday, 25 November 2010


Tuesday, 23 November 2010


  • Neckerchief against the cold
  • Noticing trees
  • Is being busy a way of avoiding intimacy?
  • £150 for a cream? What's it got in it? Gold?
  • FTSE down nearly 200 points in 2 days
  • A new Korean war?
  • a new creative project with my favourite creative partner
  • I say what I want, and the Universe sends it to me instantly. Wow!
  • I'm of the age of anger now. Watch out. No more Mr. Nice Guy.
  • You can't always have what you want. Not if it's predicated on someone else wanting it too.
  • I am in tears over a sad email
  • The Universe hears my heart felt cries and gives me an answer
  • I find myself reading the King James Bible
  • ....and talking about the wages of sin
  • and building your House on sand
  • and wondering about my sanity

Monday, 22 November 2010



What's the point?

Some cooks rave about fish. Not me.

To cook fish well, the ideal scenario is: take fish out of habitat, bang on head, cook on fire. Then it's the excitement of being Man the Hunter that adds to the taste experience. That, and a bit of wood smoke.

Everything else you do with fish, bar a squeeze of lemon, fucks it up, or fucks you up. All that filleting, gutting, skinning. You stand an above evens chance of slitting your own wrist unintentionally with a razor sharp knife, or impaling yourself on the creature's evil bones. Then the cooking has got to be ever so exactly just so. Overdo it, you get cardboard. Underdo it and you kill yourself, and all your guests. Leave a bone in; prepare yourself for a fun evening tracheotomy.

And for what? A slimy, white, unimpressive, largely tasteless, second-rate protein.

For years chefs have tried to disguise fish with sauces made of cream, cheese, white wine, Pernod, you name it. Suggestion: drink the sauce. Throw the fish away. Fish in sauce makes me gip anyhow. Slime in slime. Yuck. It just makes something bad worse.

There are, I know, people who eat fish out of a kind of guilt, persuading themselves somehow that the central nervous system of fish means they don't die in agony. Never have these people to dinner or deign to dine with them. Firstly, they are clearly stupid. Secondly, with hangups like that, you'll have a terrible evening. Thirdly, they'll play the liberal, though in fact these food fascists will bully you into eating - guess what - fish, probably with some awful guilt free salad.

Against the assuaging of guilt, a very short story. I once caught a tuna of 110 lbs. Yes, big. As big as quite a big small human. I am fourteen stone and relatively strong, but it took me 55 minutes of sweating and heaving to get this bastard alongside the boat. It took two fully grown men a good ten minutes with evil life threatening gaffs to get it inside the boat. The creature then thrashed about trying to bite anything in sight. One man then attacked the fish with an iron bar with shocking violence. It must have been another three or four minutes of savagery before the creature died. That day I witnessed a murder. And believe me, the victim did not go quietly. I saw absolutely no evidence to persuade me that that fish did not die in absolute agony. Have that with your fucking salad, fish eater! If fish is brain food, how come you haven't got any? If you did, you'd be eating meat.

I'd happily kill a fish if I wanted to eat one. But generally I don't. The honourable exceptions being Fish n Chips from a proper Fish n Chips establishment, and smoked salmon. When I die, skip the velvet on the coffin. Line it with smoked salmon. In case I get peckish. But there again, you could use a good pate, and I'd be equally happy.

Here, then, dear reader, is my simple but heartfelt culinary advice. Don't serve fish. Ever. Unless you run a chippy. Serve meat. Live life. Enjoy it. With blood from a decent steak running down your chin.


Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Hence, it is good when a higher profile celeb than yours truly picks up on, plagiarizes, copies or otherwise makes use of ideas which originated here. That PJ O Rourke's latest book is entitled Don't Vote It Only Encourages The Bastards was clearly influenced by my blog on the same subject of 24th April.

Good stuff, PJ.

And you heard it here first.



(Pic by Charles)


(Pic by Charles)

Sunday, 21 November 2010


Her Indoors is engaged with a Company whose mission is to assist women raise their corporate game and, specifically, aim to and realise ambitions of entering the Boardroom.

Nothing wrong with that, you may say, and on the whole I might readily have agreed with you.

Recent Government proposals, though, have kindled huge debate at Berry Towers over the above, in ways which have surprised me, and shaken my prejudices. The government has suggested (and it is a suggestion only at this point) that there should be quotas placed upon appointing women directors. Whereas, therefore, my prejudice would have been that women in the Boardroom are "a good thing", this positive discrimination has placed a magnifying glass against my former prejudices, and enlarged views I didn't think I held, but find I do.

My first response was "should there be a quota on male midwives?"

The response I got was "I'm not sure I want a man doing that job."

Fair enough, you might say.

But do markets want more women as Directors doing that job?

A while ago, our next door neighbour was one of the few female PLC Directors in the country. And very effective she is. As well as being a very charming person. I feel not the slightest anxiety about her stewardship of a public Company. But she has got there without positive discrimination. She has been determined. She has set her ambitions and realised them. She has made, I know, considerable sacrifices to do so. I don't doubt she has had to compete with the most testosterone- fuelled competition. And she has got there. Against all of that competition.

And at the end of the day that is what markets want. You can make all the arguments you like about female values being of use in creating more supportive, more creative and more people-valuing organizations (and therefore justifying the greater presence of female directors). But markets don't care. When, as I very frequently do, I buy and sell shares, I honestly don't give a toss about the politically correct makeup of the Board. I look at one thing and one thing only - metrics. Markets exist on naked and unstoppable greed. They don't give a damn about anything wetter.

There are a myriad of reasons why more women don't make it to the very top of corporate life. Only someone extremely sexist, or with a deeply ingrained victim mentality would believe that women are less capable. I for one don't. But do most women want that power as much as men? Are they willing to give up the other rewarding aspects of life to get it? Are they as manically driven by the need to gain power over their fellows and rise to the very top of the pile? Are they as fuelled by the extreme levels of ambition, drive and - lets face it - greed, that are needed to get you there in most organizations?

Some are. Good luck to them. Many aren't. Good luck to them.

As an economy, we need in Boardrooms those who are in the positions they can take for themselves. We need to be very wary indeed about offering an artificial leg up to those who naturally couldn't or wouldn't claim their place in the Boardroom anyway. Quotas on this will breed tokenism, and will ultimately undermine individual female confidence in the validity of the posts. And it will thrust into those posts individuals who, regardless of their gender, are ill suited to the markets' raw ambition.

Markets themselves aren't sexist. Markets simply want winners. Male, female, in between. They just don't care.

Friday, 19 November 2010


What do they make in Yeovil?


A lot of language is unhelpful to the architecture of mental health.

For example "what's on your mind?" / "What's on my mind is........."

It isn't on your mind.

Your mind is on it.