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Friday, 24 February 2012

You Gotta Get A Gimmick

Calm down, don't panic - I know I don't usually reach down from the comfort of my hilltop retreat on Friday mornings but today I had the urge to touch someone in that special way.

Let me begin by stating my admiration for the professionalism and sacrifice of Marie Colvin, the greatest war correspondent of her generation and a great loss to the world of truth, especially uncomfortable truth.

The death of a genuine world class journalist comes in the same week that Rupert Mudrock (I know what I wrote) launches The Sun on Sunday. Well, I didn't read the weekly editions so I guess I won't be rushing out to buy this down market rag full of gossip and breasts.

I have heard it said that we need as many newspapers as possible because 'information is the oxygen of democracy' (Cristina Odone -  BBC Question Time 23/2/12). To be honest, I think I would rather be short of breath than read The Sun.

I suppose that Mudrock is trying to re-brand after all the bad press his papers have been getting but perhaps he needs to think outside the box or perhaps he needs to think inside a we have a box?

People say that you need an edge these days, you need that USP if you are going to get ahead but maybe you don't have to be different, you just have to be better than the rest?

Perhaps that is why Marie Colvin was so respected, because she strove to be the best and provide the best independent news of what was really happening in the world.

What else has been in the news this week? Tesco employing slave labour, Adele getting cut off in her prime, Frank Carson dies, the Health Bill still causing major headaches for the government, Obama sings the blues, Whitney's funeral, Lord Carey rallying the righteous to oppose gay marriage...just some of the stories that caught my eye.

I cannot let a story about Tesco pass by without comment...if I understand the story correctly, young people on jobseekers allowance are being offered work experience at Tesco (and other places) where they also get paid expenses and learn valuable social skills like talking to people, getting up in the morning and having a work ethic. Sadly at Tesco they are not taught to brush their teeth or wash.

I also understand that 50% of those who have taken this opportunity have gone on to get full time work.

Sounds like a terrible idea and I think we should boycott Tesco!!!

Some of the companies involved are already pulling out because of negative news coverage so I would ask those who are against a scheme that seems to work, what's their big idea? What do they suggest will engender a work ethic in young people who see no benefit in working when you can get benefit for not working?

To compare it to slavery also seems a little preposterous, I don't think slaves actually went home at night I think their employers kept them chained up in the back yard somewhere. Are Tesco keeping teenagers in the cold storage overnight?

Poor old Frank Carson, a man renowned for his timing decides to die on the day when someone more interesting and famous also lost their life. He may have been dead funny but like so many other great comedians, he won't be as funny, dead.

Didn't watch the Brit Awards, don't care if Adele couldn't finish her speech, especially if it was in that awful accented common manner that she uses.  Did go and see The King's Speech at the theatre and that was magnificent.

Didn't watch Whitney's funeral but I did get a call saying that one of my funerals was so well received that the Royal British Legion want to use it as a talking point when dealing with ex-military personnel.

When I started out as funeral celebrant I followed the rule book quite closely but as I grew more confident in my ability I threw the rule book away and just started to be me...and isn't that the greatest gimmick of all?

OK, well Friday awaits and there is plenty to final message to a very avid reader in Mountain View, California - who are you?

There are no secrets in this cyber world, I can stalk all of you with my tracking device.

Mountain View sounds like a place I would love, so dear Mountain View reader, please get in touch with me here on the Hill.

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