Monday, September 29, 2008

Is Jamie Oliver the most influential man in the UK?
Saw Jamie Oliver on the Jonathan Ross on Friday launching his latest campaign to get the nation cooking again.
We're all aware of the country's obesity problems - we're the 3rd most obese country in the world and we're always being told what to do about it.
However, despite all the government's efforts I'm convinced Jamie will have a much bigger impact. People like him. People listen to him.
Is he the most influential person in the UK? Probably.
Its 0-0 and QPR start the second half convinced that they can retain their 100% home record against a Derby team that has not won away from home for 2 years.

Emmanual Villa has just put Derby 2-0 ahead. It's the 90th minute and Derby have just completed a thoroughly deserved victory. The fans go wild! We are Derby, We Are Derby, Super Rams, We Are Derby....

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Cycling in London
On Sunday we all took part in the London Freewheel Event, where along with 45 000 other cyclists we cycled along a traffic-free 12km route in central London.
The weather was perfect and it was a fantastic day out. Fresh air, sunshine, exercise - what more could you want?
London is a brilliant for communal events and there seems to be so much on at the moment. We've recently had the Thames Festival and the Open House Weekend. Watch out for the Big Draw events which will take place throughout October. They should be fantastic.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

My Latest Self Development Book

I'm always on the lookout for books that help you re-think your life. This particular book was recommended to me by a friend so I decided to give it a go. As with most of these books, particularly written by Americans, you have to cut through the author's massive ego trip - 'I'm such a cool dude - makes you jealous, huh', and the 'kick ass, haul ass, way to go!' language.

Having said all that, I did enjoy it and found it very helpful. The basic messages of eliminating excess baggage in your life, automating and outsourcing the mundane and liberating yourself to focus on experiences are very sound and insightful. He's also very generous with his suggestions of additional websites/ authors to look up.

You won't want to read all of it as there is a lot of padding. However, I'd still recommend it as I'm sure most people would find some useful, practical advice within it. You might want to visit his website too.
From Amsterdam to Dublin

I've not had time to blog anything this week. From Monday to Wednesday I was in Amsterdam, or more specifically the Holiday Inn outside Amsterdam. I've still not been around the city centre, despite visiting Amsterdam several times this year. Is it because I'm really too busy? Have I become bored with travel? Think the real reason is because I'm not a great solo tourist. What's the point of seeing something amazing without saying 'wow, isn't that amazing' to whoever you're with. Must get over this. Think I'm missing out.

Thursday to Friday - after a quick pit stop in London - I was Dublin. I spent most of my time going grocery shopping with Irish women. This was bone fide market research, nothing weird, honest. They were very chatty and I learnt loads. Really enjoyed it. Must do more.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Oh Happy Day!
Derby have finally, finally, finally won a League game by beating Sheffield United 2-1 on Saturday after 36 games and almost a year without a win.
Played well too, apparently. So of course, now we've got a win under our belts we're going to start moving up the table rapidly and are dead certs for a play-off place at least. Crisis? What crisis?

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Ian Fleming's Thunderball

Having read and enjoyed the Sebastian Faulkes version of a James Bond novel - Devil May Care, I decided to read an 'original' novel by Ian Fleming. Am in the middle of Thunderball and am really enjoying it. Written in 1961, it's a great period piece. What strikes me in particular is:

- the amount of smoking that takes place, how glamorous it all seems

- how women are portrayed. They're objects of desire. They talk too much, are terrible drivers and only interested in money

- how everyone drinks hard spirits especially whisky and cocktails. No-one's had a pint of beer yet

I want to see the film now. Must have a video of it somewhere.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Growth of the Cornish Pasty

In recent times I've noticed that there are more and more Cornish Pasty shops in central London. Virtually every train station seems to have a West Cornwall Pasty kiosk - the one with the black and yellow awning. I also saw a place called the Pasty Shop at Victoria station last week.

Why are they becoming so popular? I thought we were all becoming more health conscious nowadays.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Latest 10K Run

On Sunday, I ran the Clapham 10K. Finished near the back, didn't break the 1 hour barrier, but still enjoyed it. Luckily the rain held off and it was good to run with the neighbours from our street - the Pretoria Panthers.

Looking out for a race in October - the Dulwich Park 10k on 5th Oct looks promising. Might do this.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Natural Confectionery Company Campaign

I really like this new ad campaign from the Natural Confectionery Company. Charming, quirky, with a strong product message. They could easily have gone down a worthy, good citizen direction but chose not to - which is great. Nice sweets too.

Well done Cadbury's. With the recent Dairy Milk (yes - the Gorilla again) and Trident (Mess with your Head) Campaign they've made some brave decisions on the choice of their creative work.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

What's The Best Marketing Job in the World?

Brand Manager of Puma. You've got Usain Bolt as your brand ambassador - undoubtedly the coolest guy on the planet. You also get to go to parties like this.

Dancing Man Videos

I read recently that the videos of Matt the Dancing Man are the most popular on the Web with over 10 million hits on You Tube. He's made 3 videos. For the latest one, click here.

Monday, September 01, 2008

Derby Are Bottom of the Championship

We've gone 36 consecutive League games without a win. This must be some kind of record. I remember when Arsenal went 36 games undefeated to win the Premiership title. I think not winning for 36 games in a row is even harder to achieve.