Monthly Archives: December 2009

North Parade, Oxford surprises once again

GOOD OLD North Parade.  It’s so good they named it once.

I was alerted to the fact something was going on by the fact that loud alarums and tuba players were filtering through my not very thick windows – it’s -4 Celsius here tonight.

Naturally, I investigated. What was going on? Here’s the video.

Charming, no? After the lasses had finished their last song, one of them turned round, put her candle down and burst into bitter tears. Her friends all rallied round. “What’s the matter? What’s the matter?”  The matter, it transpired, is she was very very cold indeed.

And it is. We couldn’t take a proper snap of Santa Claus on our SnackBerry, but here’s one we snapped earlier in the same street.  Tashi Ji, from the R&C, was serving food in the street in his shirtsleeves. He’s a Sherpa. Must seem like summer to him… Σ

To ye olde Cheshire Cheese, to ruminate

THE GUYS AT Sourcewire have kept up a really fab tradition first started by Bill Moores, so long ago that no-one can recall the earliest ones cos most of them are dead.

This is the scene.  The Cheshire Cheese, in Fleet Street, formerly home to UK newspaperdom, was refurbished in 1667. It offers Sam Smith drinks and simple but stodgy fare. It starts at 12 midday and proceeds in a disorderly direction until the money runs out. It’s an event for journos.

Bill is now in Brazil, and runs a hotel with his wife Sue, but Sourcewire maintains the tradition faithfully.

I like to sit on the landing rather go down into the bullpit because I can see who comes in and who goes out. Plus I can nip upstairs pretty damn quick for a fag. Usually the rest of the Cheshire Cheese, at this time of year, is buzzing but yesterday the whole place apart from the hackfest, was eerily empty for the week before Christmas.

The Sourcewire guys went round snapping all and sundry, and you can view a lot of the faces here.

* And the guys made a video of some of the usual suspects, below.

Jock McFrock – the bekilted engineer – returns

WEE JOCK McFrock, the bekilted engineer, hasnae been seen for many a day since VNU bought theinquirer.net.

But he’s nae dead, nor is he forgotten. We had an emissive from him just today and he is looking forward to skilleting many a fish in the year of our Lord 2010.

As he said to me when I chatted to him on McSkype: “Och, ye cannae put a guid mon doon.”

He asked to be remembered to all of his “auld friends fit he met in bonny Lost Wages a muckle back.”

He asked me specifically – “Mike, can ye nae find that picture of the rainbow and the crock of gold at CES fit ye published a thae years back?”

It took me a while to go through the archives, but here it is, in all of its snowy glory.

Nigel Dessau’s AMD value proposition is something else

Someone who doesn’t wish to be benchmarked as a person has tuned us in and turned us on to Nigel Dessau’s ——-Three Minute Mentor.

Nigel is a marchitecture guy at AMD. Get ready for this. The latest – episode 24 – is “How do you write a value proposition”. I listened. I learned.

I learned that people need to be benchmarked. I learnt that in three minutes Nigel said the phrase “value proposition” 20 times in three minutes. Once every nine seconds. Now that’s value!

Sleigh bells ringing in North Parade

WHAT A lovely scene. A Christmas tree, bang outside the Rose & Crown, one of the lovely pubs in North Parade, Oxford.

The Rose & Crown, North Parade

The Intel Quiz: Now where was I?

I WAS IN JERUSALEM. It’s all coming back to me now. Not Jerusalem as in William Blake Jerusalem. Not Jerusalem as in Israel/Palestine. No.

Jerusalem in Rathbone Place, Fitzrovia. I arrived in a timely fashion only to find that because I was the only person from TG Daily there, I had to be formed into a team.

Luckily, Hill & Knowlton saw that I seemed to know the managing director of Intel UK – one Graham Palmer – and they shuffled me off to a table with five – or was it six – people that worked for the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).

Last time this happened at an Intel Yule Quiz, there was me, Paul Hales and Martin Veitch and we came a very close second to the people from the Daily Mail – seemed to be dozens of them – a very competitive lot.

The good thing is all the BBC journalists are members of the National Union of Journalists (NUJ). We didn’t win. I don’t think. They were a fun lot though. Where’s Jill Franklin when you need her.