The column that ties its own shoelaces together, then tries to run away.
MYSELF: Remember when UK advertising was envied and admired around the world for its innovation, dash, and quirky British humour?
READER: Ah, the golden years. Gold Blend, Benson and Hedges, the Martini ads… where are they now?
MYSELF: All gone, sadly. Flattened by the relentless garden roller of limitless TV channels and the proliferation of cheap commercial radio. Together they’ve managed to reduce the art of the ad to puerile patronisation and the mysterious notion that selling things to blokes involves depicting them as perpetual juveniles, thick as two short planks, with the attention span of a goldfish.
READER: Look at the muck on that ceiling! Is that a spider?… sorry, what were you saying?
MYSELF: Never mind. And the patronisation doesn’t stop with men ‘actors’. LBC talk radio ads frequently feature one ‘actor’ in particular, who, no matter what useless item she is flogging, always manages to sound as though she is trying to explain how the internet works to a half-deaf 93-year-old woman who has just come out of the coma she fell into in 1956. It appears that radio voice-over artists are now judged by how quickly they can recite the long disclaimer which is now deemed necessary at the end of every commercial by talking at the speed of a shorthand typist.
READER: I lost you there, but did you mention LBC? Why on earth do you bother listening to that rubbish?
MYSELF: I love listening to commercial talk radio; my fascination with the opinions of politically ignorant halfwits is well known. But those piss-poor, badly written, badly acted commercials cause me deep psychological grief. Is there a committee somewhere which meets to decide what the mean average mental age of listeners is? I mean, do men secretly yearn to be treated like adolescent morons?
READER: Is the Pope a Jehovah’s Witness?
MYSELF: No further questions.
Following Lobbytroll’s piece about Boris Johnson in issue 96 entitled Blimping Nuisance, which was accompanied by a photograph, the Foreign Secretary has emailed this reply, to which, of course, the walking disaster-pudding is entirely entitled. For reasons of space, I have edited it down from its original 5,000 words.
I normally find your organ quite amusing (pauses for laugh), but as for your rather unflattering illustration in a recent issue, depicting me as a non-dirigible free-floating airship, incapable of being steered and tethered on the front lawns of the Houses of Parliament for the amusement of tourists, I have only this to say: Hoc equidem reor factus es mihi nimis sufflatae! (pauses for laugh). If I must be likened to a balloon (and it wouldn’t be the first time), I would prefer that the comparison were to a more revolutionary, game-changing form of aviation like the magnificent Graf Zeppelin, a huge luxurious airship which regularly navigated the Atlantic Ocean between Europe and the USA, before eventually bursting into a fatal, hydrogen-fuelled conflagration when it was struck by lightning as it tried to moor in New York.
My point is, of course, that we, all of us, will be able to return to our old, independent, triumphant and victorious ways once we are free from the tentacle-like shackles of the super shower that is the so-called European Onion.
MYSTIC MARGE’S TEA LEAF READING
Psychic predictions, dream interpretation, tap lessons
In reply to an enquiry from Mrs. Labya Thwang of Bibblehurst:
Mrs. Thwang, may I call you Labya? First of all, let me say how sorry I am to hear that your husband has (predictably) run off to Panama with a tango dancer. On your other point, I’m afraid my road congestion tarot card predictions come at a fixed premium price. Good news, however! All this month you can avoid traffic congestion by having your tea leaves interpreted for no cost or obligation. My here comes summer special introductory traffic tea leaf reading offer is valid from April until June. Just send a complete cup of tea (not just the leaves) to my PO box in Luxembourg and remain in the car until help arrives.
This one came from Felicity Panquake of Helplesshurst:
Dear Marge, I have always grown my own vegetables and the other night I had a very lucid dream. I looked out of my window and saw a horse eating my carrots. When I woke up and went to the window, there was a horse, but it was eating my broad beans. What does it all mean?
Dear Felicity, is it OK to call you Felicity? All you need to decide
is which one of these horsey experiences was the dream. Maybe it was both of them? Perhaps you are dreaming now? I’m getting a Malcolm or a Douglas. Have you ever been to Skegness? A couple of tarot sessions should sort this out. My normal rate is £159 + VAT for the hour. Or you could pay me in vegetables.
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