Well it’s been ages since I did my last posting on my friend James’ new e-book. What’s happened since, well we’ve twice been over to Italy working hard getting the house ship-shape and catching up with friends and neighbours J&C and F&B. We’ve also started the sometimes difficult process to enable our lovely daughter R to live a more independent life. She’s learned to travel on the buses extending her universe significantly, plus has secured her very first paid job which she loves and is trialling living with a care family to give her experience away from us. She’s doing brilliantly but it’s taken a lot of effort on everyone’s part. On top of that I’ve been working at my son-in-law’s film company developing their marketing presentation and helping secure new clients. We’ve had a lovely visit from James and Mary Lou from America and inspired by them I’ve started work on my first e-book. Ooh… more on that to follow. But I’m pleased to be back blogging. I’ve missed it.
Anyway I’ve so much to rant on about. For example which news story is becoming an interminable farago; the politicians/Met Police/ News International phone hacking scandal? The Euro crisis now enveloping Ireland, Greece, Portugal, Spain and sadly now Italy? Nah, it can only be the seemingly never-ending will-they-won’t-they transfer saga revolving around messrs Fabregas, Tevez, Modric, Sneijder et al. Why does every transfer window turn into such an intractable affair? Blimey I could have this sorted in minutes without any money changing hands. Modric moves to Chelsea in exchange for Lampard and Drogba. Fabregas goes to Barcelona in exchange for Villa (David not Aston); Sneijder moves to Man U in exchange for Nani and Berbatov; whilst Tevez stays at Man City because let’s face it who would want to spend £40m in wages alone on the whingeing ingrate, thereby causing endless malcontent amongst City’s extravagantly-assembled squad. Simples.
But the point of this posting isn’t really to have another moan about pampered prima donnas, it’s about unnecessariness (which is more nessies in a single word than in the whole of Scotland). So what momentous incident sparked this return to the blogosphere? Putting my pants on as it happened. Take a look at the picture above. I bought these Dockers chinos when we were last over in America. They’re not my favourite kecks but they are comfortable and strong-wearing and I like them. But take a look at that strap line in red ONE LEG AT A TIME. This has been intriguing me since I bought the bloody pants. What is it there for? I know we sometimes smile at the intellectual bandwidth of certain Americans (stand up and take a bow Dan Quayle and George Dubya) but surely even Dan and George would know how to put on their pants without specific instructions? Surely it’s just a bit of tongue-in-cheek fun……
Well of course it is and although Dan might need a little help, it’s not American PC gone mad which is a real shame. I’ve subsequently checked it out and found that it’s an advertising slogan; part of the Dockers MANifesto campaign which challenged the American male to re-take the role of main trouser-wearer in the US household; a position which Dockers suggested had been usurped by those pesky wimmin! And because this was going to be a stern challenge, men had to fight the good fight ‘one leg at a time’. Ah ha. I wonder how the war’s going?
The sad thing is that it could so easily have been a warning instruction. Is it just me or have you also noticed that there are hundreds of everyday objects that come with vast amounts of cautionary advice most of which is totally unnecessary unless the user was a complete and utter moron I suppose. A simple bottle of washing-up liquid by our sink comes with a load of health and safety instructions. The key bit of advice is not to ingest it. Really? Who but a pea-brained loon (or young child I guess) would choose to have a slurp of the lavender-scented nectar? Well maybe Dan Q or the odd Premiership footballer but that’s about it. So why is it there – because we live in litigious times and this is to protect the company from claims from people who might have ingested the liquid because they hadn’t been warned that it contains anionic and amphoteric surfactants as well as dimenhylol glycol. I’m not quite sure what they are but I’m pretty damn certain they aren’t part of your 5 a-day. Is it feasible to believe that it would be so easy to confuse washing up liquid with a bottle of Vimto? Nonsense.
Take a look at the backside of all the things in your shopping trolley next time you go to the supermarket. It’s frighteningly sobering and laughable at the same time. Did you know that a Cadbury’s hazelnut chocolate bar contains nuts and that these shouldn’t be eaten by people who suffer from a nut allergy. Really? I’ve seen advice on frozen food packets suggesting that the food be de-frosted first before consuming, that once heated some foods will be hot, that an iron shouldn’t be used on clothes which are being worn, that a railway platform ends at this point, that a jar of Nytol may cause drowsiness, car windows should be closed before entering a car wash (although regular readers will know I’ve a tale to tell there – see Embarrassing Moments 13 March) and that I shouldn’t over-inflate my car tyres with the compressed air machine. You don’t say.
I’m going to start a new movement to make warning instructions really telling. For example I’d be more impressed if Dockers advised against snagging your John Thomas in the zipper mechanism because this could result in blood, pain and tears. One excruciating agony at a time eh – that should make the women-folk smile.