Trousers

Trousers are very interesting. I’m wearing a pair even as I type this.

They are very useful for covering the lower parts of the body for those occasions when it is unsuitable to be seen walking around town in just a string vest.

You can have long trousers which come down to just above the shoe (more of which in a later blog) or you can wear a variety of lengths dependent on the weather or simply your preference. Trousers which have been cut to above the knee are known as ‘shorts’. Shorts vary in length from just below the knee right up to crotch level (essential for those who have incredible legs and the required amount of exhibitionism).

I have about twenty pairs of trousers, including those which accompany suit jackets (more of which in another later blog). Some are more casual than others with the ubiquitous denim jean variety seeing the light of day more often than the others. Some of my trousers have lots of pockets all the way down the side of each leg. These are called ‘Cargo Pants’ and are very difficult to walk in when you actually stow your ‘cargo’ away in them. In reality, you’d be best advised to carry little more than a mobile phone, set of keys and a wallet, otherwise you’ll find it hard to run for a bus without your cargo pants ending up round your ankles. And, of course, you can carry this bare minimum in an ordinary pair of trousers anyway which rather negates the reason for the existence of cargo pants. I suppose they appeal to those who want to appear adventurous and outdoorsy giving the impression that they’ve just descended from the heights of Mount Kilimanjaro and trekked for 14 days across the Sahara (which is quite a long walk, I can tell you – actually I can’t, but I’m wearing cargo pants at the moment and they are influencing me).

Why are trousers a plural word? Do monopeds wear a ‘trouser’? This deeply philosophical question reminds me of the time when Vivian Stanshall and Roger Ruskin Spear of The Bonzo Dog Band went to a Savile Row tailors and asked to see a pair of trousers. They tested one pair for strength by pulling it, one leg each, between them. Eventually, to the horror of the perplexed assistant, the trousers ripped into two separate legs. Right on cue, as organised in advance by these two ace pranksters, a one legged man hopped into the shop and shouted “They’re just the ticket! I’ll buy both!”

According to Wikipedia, Nomadic Eurasian horsemen/women such as the Iranian Scythians, along with Achaemenid Persians were among the first to wear trousers. and that they were introduced to Western Europe by a clown. A CLOWN! It really makes sense: Trousers were introduced into Western European culture at several points in history, but gained their current predominance only in the 16th century, from a Commedia dell’Arte character named Pantalone (Italian word for Trousers)

Trousers. Where would we be without them?

Advertisements

Rude Cartoons!

The following cartoons illustrate a FILTHY comic poem I used to perform (with the cartoons on a flipchart) around the Clubs in London.

Can you work out the story by looking at the cartoons?

Anyone who’s curious to see the original MIND-NUMBINGLY DEPRAVED and disgusting poem, just PM me and I’ll point you in the right direction!

Cartoons For Presentations

I have recently been working on a series of cartoons for Marketing Mentor, Nigel Temple, to illustrate his talk about how to make customers come to you.

These are fun to do as I am simply given the title of the section and allowed to to interpret it as I wish.

Here are the cartoons I came up with. Click on each image to enlarge.

You can decide what they mean!

Customers Guru Money

Out of the Box Segmentation Telescope

The World Copywriting

You can see how using cartoons during talks can bring the whole experience alive. Many concepts will be instantly memorable and the picture paints a thousand words.

What are you going to do when you grow up?

Half a century later and I am still undecided. I’ve managed to hack out a living from cartoons and caricatures, all the while being in love with writing, humour, TV and films. If I could equal the living I’m making simply by tapping a keyboard and eventually seeing the contents of my fevered imagination spilled all over a TV or cinema screen, I would do it like a shot. Maybe it’s not too late for me to burst upon the advertising scene, or maybe I could become a quirky TV presenter. I could launch my own line of pink fashion flares or a range of pasta sauces with my beaming face on the labels. With my imagination I could come up with ‘a new type of bank account’ – one which pays no interest whatsoever. Or perhaps I could simply come up with A Totally New Concept and sell it without saying what the concept is. I could become a Life Coach and teach people how to breathe in and then breathe out. “That’ll keep you alive.” The Wealth Creation Industry appeals to me. Their huge factories in the Welsh valleys spewing out smoke from wealth creating mills from which lorries drive out carrying piles of newly made wealth to sell to eager customers all over the world. And of course, it’ll all be because I want to help people. I want to help people to help me. I’ll publish self-help books in which I propound that in order to help yourself you just have to help yourself. And these, of course, will spawn websites and social networks devoted to my teachings. I will teach Gurus how to be Gurus and there will be many levels of networker whom I will teach to be totally altruistic in their desire to pay me their subscriptions.

Maybe I should go into satire. Though it’s not as funny as slapstick.

Do YOU know what you want to be when you grow up?

Short Poem

Short Poem
Napoleon Bonaparte, Queen Victoria,
Ronnie Corbett, Frankie Dettori,
Mohamed Al Fayed, Carla from Cheers,
Angus Deayton, Ben Elton,
Michael J Fox, Red Skelton
Red Buttons, Dustin Hoffman,
And in built-up shoes,
Tom Cruise.
Lester Piggott, Mickey Rooney,
Ian Hislop, Rosemary Clooney
Lulu, Robin Cook, Dudley Moore,
Jimmy Clitheroe, Danny DeVito,
Lou Costello, Robert DeNiro
Al Pacino, Quentin Tarantino,
And in built-up shoes,
Tom Cruise.

Tom Cruise

Burger King Innuendo – Cartoon Poem

Burger King Innuendo – The Aubergine Version

I was tired,
I was starving
I came upon a Burger King

Burger King

I was served
quite ungaily
by the undelightful Hayley.

Burger King Hayley

Her pale face
strangely had all
the charm of a whitewashed wall.
She was up
to her armpits
in french fries and greasy bits.
Her trousers
were far from clean,
being the colour of an aubergine.

Burger King 3

‘A Veggie
Whopper meal, please.
And could you leave out the cheese?’
‘Would you like
to go large on that?’
she said in a voice dull and flat.

Burger King 4

I thought of
my burger in her buns,
remembering what they say about the quiet ones.
I’m married,
happy with my station.

I had to ignore this blatant flirtation.

Burger King 5

I ate my meal,
not another word spoken
and left Hayley – probably heartbroken.

Toilets

Toilets. Love them or loathe them, you’d be a fool not to know where they are in a city as big as London.

With the sad decline of the wonderfully euphemistic ‘Public Convenience‘ the world weary and fluid-full traveller can often find himself in tricky and, let’s face it, sometimes trickly situations.

Councils have been thoughtful in planting those pre-fab fibre glass monstrosities with coin-operated doors in far flung corners of our boroughs. They rarely work, the so-called cleaning process between uses never does and they seem to be a contender for the Most Ill-Thought-Out Design Award of the Century. Perhaps Dr Who will adopt one if he can sort out the problem he has with his Tardis being locked into its antiquated appearance as a police call box.

The few remaining Victorian lavvies are now so much centres of drug abuse that the old tradition of gay bumfoolery in the cubicles now seems as quaint and nostalgic as an Ealing comedy.

When I am in London and in desperate need, I always prefer sophistication whether standing or sitting down. Virtually anywhere in the centre you will find a five star hotel which will cater for your aspirations to finer living. The Mayfair Hotel in Stratton Street, near Green Park, boasts cavernous cubicles where you could comfortably bed down for the night. The Grosvenor House Hotel in Park Lane is ludicrously convenient as its toilets are first on the left after you go through the main entrance, nodding confidently at the suspicious doorman. The Waldorf, in Aldwych is similarly accessible, with no huge Reception desk to walk past trying to ignore the quizzical stares of the concierges. There is probably a guide book in this. And here I am, giving the idea away. It will be published tomorrow by a rival to the sound of my grinding teeth and tearing clothes.

Sometimes, though, desperation and distance from any refined porcelain forces one to look for alternatives.

Pubs are an obvious choice, although the quality is traumatically variable, with the unlockable doors and loose seat being a regular feature. And of course, you have to walk through the bar acting as though you are looking for someone. Strangely enough, only the other week, I discovered that the Assembly Rooms in Kentish Town is part of a ‘Community Toilet Scheme’ which allows any non-customer to go in and use their toilets. This is a brilliant idea which I think all towns should encourage their hostelries to adopt.

Cafés are a little more difficult as they are smaller and seem to demand that you buy something before or after using their facilities. What is amazing, though, is the number of cafés which purport to not having toilets. They shove all that tea, coffee and lasagne down unsuspecting customers and then eject them into a toilet-less void. That’s simply pure sadism. And besides, I don’t believe them. OF COURSE they have a toilet, unless of course the owners are all physically connected to the sewers by a system of tubes which I highly doubt, although my research in this area is not complete.

The best route to take if you HAVE to use a café is to target the big chains like Starbucks. They’re busy, the staff won’t notice and they usually have big cubicles which double as a baby changing area. I could spend all day in one of those, playing with the equipment. And if the worse comes to the worse, you can always force yourself to use a McDonalds. In fact I’ve often been grateful to McDonalds for installing their toilets all over the country.

Weary late night tube travellers like myself are often perplexed by the lack of lavatories on platforms. Of course, there is plenty of evidence that this does not put some people off simply using the platform, but for those of us with refined sensibilities, a little privacy, decorum and consideration for others is of paramount importance. There are some woods across the road from Totteridge Station which provides all these. If you go far enough down one end of the car park in East Finchley you are normally out of range of both eyesight and opprobrium.

So, if you are travelling around London, print out this handy guide to ensure your trip is successful and anxiety-free. The paper might come in handy, too.

%d bloggers like this: