Friday, November 07, 2008
Poor leadership is a good enough reason for me to leave, a lifelong customer. But what about others? Tellers hadn't heard any such talk from anyone else. Wonder why? Struck me that RBS could be doign a far better job of trying to reassure their customers and explaining why they're such fuck ups.
Thursday, October 16, 2008
I was preparing for a quarterly client review when he fired up the chat, so my instincts were to pour water on it as quickly as possible. Until I remembered a good piece of advice: Praise a child.
It hoovered up some time, but it was worth it. He pasted some lyrics into the IM window - pretty typical teenage stuff - highly emotive, raw-sensitive, and longing for acceptance. Over and over he said they were 'rubbish', but I stuck with my praise, saying I was really proud that he was being so creative and using his imagination. Then he pushed me on specific feedback. Eek.
So I stuck with it. I went back through them and applauded him on making them emotional and sensitive, for using very visual metaphor ('closing of a door' on his advances to a girl) and for being honest about his feelings. He loved the feedback.
Taking it on a step, I gave him some ideas of how to build momentum for his new interest, based on some of the techniques I'm rolling out at the office. I suggested that he get his favourite songs and try and write some of his own stories on top of the lyrics, replacing them but fitting in with the structure and meter. Again, he soaked it up. I suspect that he'll adopt far quicker than office-bound adults.
He's at an age when he's already been exposed to 9 years of beating the imagination out of him at school - of thinking vertically and logically. This is exactly the problem we all suffer from in a world that demands more and more ideas, but which is built on structures desigend to stamp out creative thinking. So encouraging my newphew to engage his imagination isn't just spiritually rewarding for me, it's critical for him. As such contests like rubberband are great, but show how corporations are beginning to value children's imaginations highly.
I've been thinking a lot about kindness right now, and this praising a kid thing not only ties into that, but also helps you feel more positive according to Lynda Field, which is useful at times of stress, like this month.
Also, however, my Spidey-sense is tingling with 'kindness' and 'optimism' a lot right now, and both seem like happy bedfellows. From the William James quote in the sidebar in this article (I know it's the Mail, was the in-laws copy, not mine, honest) to this World Changing article about 'active optimism' to even lovely ad agency, W + K's blog 'Welcome to Optimism'. Last night I had a dream that I was in a nightclub during the day with W+K's creative team making things with millions of Lego bricks - it seems I can't even hide from the glass half full approach even in sleep.
Feels ironic, given that the news is reaching a strange kind of zenith of pessimism, to sense that optimism is about to become a driving force in the world. Maybe it's change in the air. And change can be good, but only if we make it that way.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
The office was a frenzy of activity today, buzzing with journalists and teams excitedly calling the nation's media for the launch of the T-Mobile G1 phone.
It's the first phone to use Google's Android platform, and is built into an HTC Dream type handset.
The world's worst kept secret - although naturally us at Brands2Life towers kept our mouths shut - it launched today in New York at 3.30 GMT on the dot.
Can't wait to get my hands on one. Well, i have fondled one already, but, you know, I want more than a one night stand with this awesome internet mobile.
Thursday, July 10, 2008
I'm straighening out the content by abandoning the parody news posts, and instead posting a mixture of straight-forward diary entries as well as the more stylised variety - all relating to pop culture, or my interpretation of it.
This is to enable me to use the blog in a more personal way and to chart various projects such as a comedy project, an art project and even a gardening project. Different parts of my life but I'll fuck it, lets see how they hang together.
Take it away Thin White Duke...
Monday, June 30, 2008
Extra terrestrials buzzing Britain's summer night skies with UFOs are the latest victims of rocketing fuel prices. In the early hours of this morning, an alien life form was spotted syphoning red diesel from the tanks of a Hereford farmer.
An eye witness account tells of a small, humanoid creature stealing the fuel, normally used to power tractors, to put into his space ship.
Nat Sass, owner of Stag-I-Hedge farms, witnessed the account. She said: "I heard some blippy sounds so I grabbed my shotgun and stepped out into the yard. Imagine my surprise when I saw this little green man in a space suit nicking my fuel to get his ship going!"
Sucking on a space hose
"The Martian was sucking on some kind of a silver space hose to get his syphon going, then filling up his craft - a saucer-shaped thing with flashing lights, like a disco. "
After the extra-terrestrial robber had his fill, Mrs. Sass snapped out of the trance and blasted both barrels of her shotgun at the rapidly-ascending craft. However it had spun off at about 600mph, rapidly outpacing the cartridges. Sass immediately dialled 999, but, shockingly, the police refused to help.
The PCP caught up with PC Plod today to quiz him on exactly why he gave up on the rustler from another planet. Sergeant Colin Ballcock of Hereford Constabulary offered a limp excuse: "Our law doesn't cover alien invaders."
With the global fuel crisis deepening and filling station pumps drying up, more and more motorists are turning to desperate methods to keep their vehicles on the move. E.T. isn't the only one to turn to stealing farm-grade diesel to keep his vehicle moving. However now that we're competing with alien raiders for increasingly scarce supplies, it seems like looking to the skies and praying might not be enough.
Thursday, June 26, 2008
Bushy tree bastards - or 'squirrels', as the BBC calls them - have carried out a series of daring daylight raids on vegetable plots and allotments, robbing gardeners of the very veggies grown to fight off the worsening credit crisis.
The news comes as the Daily Telegraph reports that humans are also stealing from allotments, in a bid to help give newspapers straws to clutch at to fill blank pages.
Plots and allotments have enjoyed a depressing boom in recent years, with tight-arses turning their back on expensive imports found at upmarket boutique strores like Lidl and Aldi, instead using their green fingers as a way of saving on fruit and vegetable bills.
However, it would now seem that the tree rats - or 'squirrels', if you're twat-faced animal pornographer, Bill Oddie - are taking advantage of this green revolution.
The bushy bandits made off with broccoli and broad beans in Grimely Grumed, near Lancaster, allotment, while other sites in the region have also reported root-themed thefts.And the ratty-toothed big tails aren't stopping at vegetables, with strawberry burglaries also reported.
Harry Phwoar, chairman of the Department in Charge of Kitchen-Gardeners (DiCKs) is concerned the problem could get worse as the economic outlook worsens.
"With squirrels taking up to two strawberries per plot, families are in sever danger of starving."
Someone called Lynda said: "It's heart-breaking."
Kevin, a man, spoke to us. He leaned in, raised an eyebrow, tapped his nose and whispered: "Prraakkkkkkchlotu!"
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
In a bid to half the deaths from the popular teenage pursuit of aerosol sniffing, prime minister Gordon Brown has ordered school leaders to educate pupils on how best to consume the intoxicants.
Prime sex pest
The prime minister wants drug education to mirror sex education, and likens unwanted teen pregnancies to unwanted teenage deaths.
Announcing the new legislation, the Prime Minister said: "Some people call me a pest when it comes to sex - not everyone wants to talk to under-16s about shagging, but I certainly do. I believe that, if you get them young enough, you can convince them of anything - including how to have a decent romp, without getting bang up the duff."
Beautiful Hell hole
PM Brown went on (and on): "Teens don't want their young lives ruined by something as petty as death - just as they don't want to fall pregant before they've had a chance to sniff the beautiful flower of teenage life, by joining a gang and stabbing a rival to death, having public sex in holiday resorts like Ayia Napa, and getting banged up abroad in Hell holes like the Bangkok Hilton."