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EDITOR'S COMMENT: We're becoming intolerant of crumbling sand piles of piffle

PUBLISHED: 17:59 24 June 2009 | UPDATED: 10:40 12 August 2010

AMONG the latest batch of marketing guff to clog up my e-mail inbox were a couple of shabby press releases one of which informed me footballer and hair styles expert David Beckham wears a pinny while he s cleaning the house. The other announced the exc

AMONG the latest batch of marketing guff to clog up my e-mail inbox were a couple of shabby 'press releases' one of which informed me footballer and hair styles expert David Beckham wears a pinny while he's cleaning the house.

The other announced the exciting news actress Anna Karen (the hefty short-sighted one who played Olive in that 70s' sitcom, On the Buses) was promoting safety... 'on the buses'.

These of course were the e-mails I could actually read as I get other rubbish pinged to me in Japanese, one-liners in German, and I am sure some Swedish company making plastic shoes is convinced I might be interested in their new last-a-lifetime grey slip-ons.

I've got all the spam guards on I can technically master but still various cyber miscreants manage to swim and chew through the net to my inbox like swarms of rapacious pike.

Of late it seems the humble survey has become the marketeers favourite tool to justify puff as an important news item.

So the other day I am told the credit crunch has turned two thirds of men into domestic gods and 36 per cent of these are even scrubbing out the loo. Unbelievable? Don't ask.

I wonder though if David Beckham knows the people at Vileda who come up with this looney survey are using the pinny and housework line about him to sell their Super Mucio bucket and wringer? Somehow I don't believe such a rich and famous member of the glitterati would ever feel the need to clean his own house when he's undoubtedly got a raft of staff at the ready to dust his trophies and polish his knick-knacks.

But the e-mailed missive about this new mop and pail gets even worse and throws nudity into the selling package too. "Oooh," gushes a mystery spokeswoman, "but David's pinny is a tad more than Desperate Housewives' star Eva Longoria wears when she spruces up her living room with a feather duster - she regularly admits doing the housework naked."

Oh pull the other one. Do I want to buy the Super Mucio bucket and wringer now I know that? No unless I get invited to an at home with super-Madam Cynthia Payne and even then I wouldn't go as I'd be busy watching television that night and any other night if the prospect of seeing flabby buttocks working the vacuum around the Axminster was on the horizon.

The other notably pointless 'press release' sent to me on the same day was the On the Buses themed blurb I mentioned earlier. This came straight from the super-super-nanny of the super-nanny state as it had a seriously bossy edge to it. I was advised what to do when elderly and wanting to use the diesel-belching passenger carrying vehicle we know as a bus.

There was a whole list of state the bleedin' obvious instructions endorsed by the actress Miss 'remember me I was Olive' Karen. Yes, that's right. Clever to get such a relevant celeb to sign up to this one? Or crass? You choose.

It goes like this:

Number one - when old and frail and likely to fall over when the bus stops tell the driver to wait and give you a chance to leave the seat and dismount while the bus is at a standstill. Don't try and get up while it is still moving and trip over your bags.

Number two - be sure to hold on tight at all costs. Traffic can be unpredictable.

Number three - ring the bell as soon as possible to let the driver know there is someone wanting to get off.

S'alright I won't go on but I get the picture and you get the picture and celebrities get a whack of cash for backing a campaign telling us what we know already about bus riding etiquette. Everybody, including the elderly, know more than ever how buses chug, jerk, stop, start and create a Wagnerian experience on the road and it's not just the passengers who play do or die when they need to get off and/or find a seat. As a car driver there's nothing worse being stuck behind them. It's the equivalent of having a great bum sitting on the bonnet.

But not content with waving a TV sitcom actress at us to get the message across, the publicity people behind this particular wheeze even shamelessly threw Margaret Thatcher's name up as a single ticket to Marble Arch. "Well we're sending this press release out the week she fell and broke her arm...." they explained. But she didn't get injured while she was trying to get off a bus, did she? These people just got to try and ram home their message haven't they with whoever and however. It's ruthless out there in cyber-marketing land.

It's irksome too to be treated like fools and marketeers ought to remember we're pretty, pretty sick of being expected to believe in great crumbling sand piles of piffle. Our MPs have seen to that in recent weeks and our tolerance of fantasy land is weakening by the minute.

Mind you, the cleaning products company doing their best to flog their new super-charged appliances might have a taker in Beckenham MP Jacqui Lait who this week is exposed to have blown our cash on a host of domestic things including monthly bed linen laundering services. Strange how Ms Lait is unable to stick her own sheets into her own washing machine like the rest of us. She should try it. It's a strange gimmick but it might just catch on.

melody.foreman@archant.co.uk

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