Well it’s an acronym that’s become rather well known over the last few weeks as today sees the start of the Tour de France in that beautiful French Département of Leeds et Harrogate. Regular readers might have expected me to do one of those Welcome to Yerkshire phrasebooks for t’Tour competitors but I see t’internet’s full of them already. And I recently did a piece entitled Horse’s Doovers on Yerkshire lass Caroline who mashed up her French phrases on Come Dine with Me. How often can you Mock the Weak?
Oh dear readers I saw something on tv today that will will live with me forever. No not the end of Spanish tika taka football but an edition of Come Dine With Me set in God’s own comedy land of Halifax, West Riding. It starred a young woman, Caroline, who was truly lovely but with an accent so reet belting Yerkshire she could strip t’skin off a stick uh rhubarb from 10 paces. Continue reading
Do you remember that song from Alanis Morissette where she sang about lots of things which touched her soul and after each example invited us to agree with her that ‘Isn’t it ironic?’. The thing was that none of the things she wrote about were actually ironic. Unfortunate perhaps and slightly annoying but sadly Alanis, not particularly paradoxical. So last night my wife C’s watching the final episode of a drama series that’s been gripping her and 7m other viewers, set in the bleak Yorkshire landscape around Halifax. Bleak’s a good word because that describes the plotline which features a police officer, played excellently by Sarah Lancashire, faced with issues of drug addiction, suicide (her own daughter), murder, kidnapping and extortion, rape, brutal violence, dysfunctional family relationships, desperation, decay, divorce, police incompetence and lots of rain. It’s relentlessly grim; in other words it’s just an other day in t’West Yerkshire. And the name of this series? Happy Valley. Ha! And C loved it and didn’t see the title as the least bit enigmatic. 40 years plus together and she’s still a delightful mystery to me. Women eh. Alanis give us a burst of that song again love…
It’s been, ooh, ages since I did a posting on a tv commercial but I’ve been completely non-plussed by the company Taylor’s first ever ad for its coffee products. Who you ask? Good question; they are a Yorkshire-based coffee company. It’s not where you’d expected the home of a product grown in the Tropics to hail from is it but the Taylor guys started a coffee shop in the town of Harrogate back when Queen Victoria was a young girl tha’ knows and it’s been going reet belting ever since. Fair enough. But to announce their brand to the wider world they’ve commissioned an ad which is just bloody mesmerising/frigging weird. Delete as appropriate. Take a look:
What do you think; inspired, inexplicable or just plain insane? Well I’ve done some research dear readers and on the company’s website I found some words from the company’s marketing manager, ‘our Jess’, (no sniggering at the back) and she’s explained the thinking behind the commercial. She says ‘The vast majority of ads go unnoticed or forgotten, particularly in the world of coffee, where the romantic liaisons and brimming mugs are the ‘beige’ creative norm. We want to disrupt that and deliver the unexpected, to be confident and distinctive. Ultimately, we wanted to create an ad just like our product; a complex, magical and mind-blowing experience…If you could zoom into your neural synapses when coffee hits your taste buds and caffeine finds your brain, we think it’d pretty much look like this’.
Blimey love, it’s only a cup of coffee; not a line of Florida snow. But I love her post-rationalisation – I bet the brief was a lot less imaginative in its words. Nevertheless I like a company whose main PR platform is the ‘Yorkshire Rainforest Project’. That’s probably coffee company speak for Ilkley Moor. Tha’ knows.
What links Gordon the Moron (no not the one who lost 8 Ministers, got annihilated in the local and European elections and messed up his own Cabinet re-shuffle all inside 3 days), cups of tea, washing lines and simple Yorkshire folk? Intrigued? Well the answer’s Graham Fellows, the guy behind one of the best one-hit wonders Jilted John and who went on some 30 years later to create the comic character John Shuttleworth, the aspiring singer-songwriter from Sheffield, South Yorkshire.
Have you read today about a new musical which is opening down under this week? Incredibly it’s about the life of Australian spin bowler Shane Warne, or ‘Warnie’ as he is affectionately known by Bruce and Sheila. You’d think that a musical celebrating anything to do with cricket, even one about the greatest spin bowler ever (well, from Melbourne), might be a little humdrum but this is supposed to be a hoot. It’s less to do with his cricketing skills and everything to do with his love of food, bleached hair (and subsequent hair transplants), shagging women other than his wife, cheesey flirty texting, pill popping, sledging, illegal Indian bookies, smoking and boozing. Yep an everyday tale about yer average Ozzie bloke. Except this one’s famous and, as the Carling ad might put it, probably the best (ie only) liked Australian cricketer outside Kangaland. Warnie himself thinks it’s an outrage but it sounds outrageously good fun to me and I’d love to see it. Continue reading
Spending all that time picking olives allowed me to think about all kinds of things and for some reason I couldn’t get Robin Hood out of my mind. Don’t ask me why. It must have been all those hours stuck up a tree.