Friday, 30 November 2007

Guest Appearance IV

I take my hat off to my sister for this one. It's really quite something. Taken in Devon. Well, it would be, wouldn't it.

Thursday, 29 November 2007

Thank god

I'm sure everyone's extremely relieved to hear that this platform poster won't be empty forever. Advertising is always dearly missed, isn't it. But how long must we wait? Surely we deserve some sort of time scale.

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Monday, 19 November 2007


Some people are gifted at choosing good presents. Others seems to completely lack the required empathy to pick out something suitable. It was the latter that I witnessed the other week at my local. A man and a woman (relationship unknown, in their mid-thirties) were at the table next to me. Soon after she'd arrived, she pulled out a large bag and, with a flourish, handed over a brightly wrapped parcel. Inside was a box clearly containing medication of some kind. It's reveal was followed by a confused silence from the man.

"It's for your bones!"

Seizing the packet, she waved it about.

"It's really good for them, makes them stronger and all that."

Clearly from his reaction, he has no issues with his bones, has no family history of it, and has no idea why he should be being given them. My attention now irretrievably caught, I watched the next present opening. Cigars. Relatively sensible. Chocolate. Even more sensible. Then the last one. It was a small piece of cloth, made of fleece. He turned it over in his hands a little, trying to establish was it was. Then the giver snatched it from him and pulled it over her head.

"It's a snood! You wear it when you're sailing."

After a short pause, he replied

"Great. Well, if I ever go sailing, then I'll be nice and warm, won't I."

I'm afraid I missed what was on the card, so you'll have to imagine that for yourselves.

Friday, 16 November 2007

Leave me alone

People never cease to amaze me. And these two suits were particularly adept at it. Most people don't like sharing seats with strangers, as empty spaces on buses and the tube daily prove. And I suppose a park bench is an even more intimate location. But surely, just sitting at opposite ends and separately enjoying your lunch creates an adequate amount of distance. You don't need to have your back turned as well. And put yourself in a such an uncomfortable position that your knees are pressed against the end of the bench. I wouldn't be surprised if his bad posture gave rise to indigestion not too long afterwards..

Wednesday, 1 August 2007

Why would someone even consider wrapping a hammer in bubble wrap? Surely it's anything but breakable. Or fragile.
Perhaps they just like bubble wrap. I certainly do.

Monday, 30 July 2007

Sausage smarty

Instead on selling this on ebay, I stupidly ate it.
But on the upside, I was the one to discover that it even had chocolate inside it.

Thursday, 26 July 2007

Drum roll announcement

Scrolling across the tube carriage message board:
The next station is!! Caledonian road
I never knew Caledonian road was such an overwhelming place to be.

Wednesday, 4 July 2007

Time out

I'm sure most of us have hiding places when work becomes so unappealing that we just have to be somewhere else. When you've just got yourself to hide, there's endless options. Sitting it out in the bog, going for a fag out the back, popping out for some 'stationary', or even, booking a meeting room. A definite plus to this is you could order in tea and biscuits. But spare a moment to think of our street sweepers. They're noisily driving round our city, are only capable of going a few miles an hour (which is not fast enough to escape from your boss, I imagine), and are pretty hard to miss. Being covered in orange flashing lights really doesn't help matters either.

So, what happens when that newspaper on the dashboard becomes too hard to resist? You hide down the ramp of a pedestrian underpass for half an hour. The noise and lights perfectly concealed. Until now, having walked through that tunnel several times, I'd never appreciated what a special spot this was.

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

From a distance the headline of this sign was really intriguing. As I got closer I was initially disappointed that instead of some marketing ploy, it was just a sign from the police. My disappointment, however, was short lived, as I began to think, why Stolen Moments? Language that conjures up a couple, huddled in a doorway, making the most of the time that's left to them - for a petty theft warning? Well, it's different. And it certainly caught my attention. But then I became disappointed again that they hadn't continued the theme into the rest of the copy.

Friday, 1 June 2007

Nothing's simple anymore is it? Instead of just telling us not to climb the fence, they have to go into detail as to why. Do we really need an explanation for everything? Should Private signs elaborate why we're not allowed in? Should No Parking. Gates in constant use (which, from my experience, never seem to be) go into detail as to what this use actually is?

This, come to think of it, is not wise. Because the 'use' is probably so depressingly mundane that it would undermine the first part of the message.

My view is, if we need an explanation, then we really don't deserve one, do we.

Friday, 25 May 2007


This ad makes regular appearances on the back of the Guardian's Guide. And each time it does I check to see whether Mr Eagle's film Red has been raking it in at the box office. But I've yet to find a trace of it. Or of student Jon Eagle's blossoming career as a writer. Perhaps he's changed his name. He wouldn't be the first author to do so. Yes, that must be it. Otherwise it's not much of a success story for the Writer's Bureau, is it.

Thursday, 17 May 2007

Protective punctuation

I find something rather uncomfortable about Cavendish sandwich bar putting the word 'local' in inverted commas. Like they're making a real point out of it, as though they've had issues in the past. Did someone call up for the free delivery, and when asked for the address, said Croydon? We can only imagine the cost to Mr Cavendish for those free deliveries to such distant lands. It makes me question what constitutes 'local'? A short walk? Within 5 miles? Mr Cavendish, I'm guessing, has set down the parameters of local, so they won't get taken for a ride.

Wednesday, 2 May 2007

Out of context

I myself have been forced to wear a uniform to work - thankfully those times have passed - but this girl's not as fortunate. I'm guessing from 'Can I help you find the perfect present?', she spends her days in Clintons, or some similar establishment of delights. Having this emblazoned on your back in said shop makes sense, but at the bus stop? Tempting as it was to take her off, drag her round all the shops in London til we'd found something perfect for my Dad's birthday this year, I decided that perhaps she'd choose the gift of a smack in the face.

Tuesday, 1 May 2007

Everything covered?

This publican forgetfully missed out incomprehensible mutterings, spouting shit and vocal vomiting. And I'm sure there's more they overlooked.

Friday, 27 April 2007

Type in the word knit in Google Image search.

Thursday, 26 April 2007

Another piece of brilliant design

Pockets are good. They're great things for keeping other things in - keys, money, amalgamated fluff and such like. The general rule is that the more pockets the better. A pocket on your back, however, is surely not the best idea. Unless you have something you want to be rid of, of course.

Monday, 26 March 2007

And certainly not at any other time.

Saturday, 24 March 2007

Just about managed to snap this as I was being flung about on the tube. The author had scribed the words BURN THE HOUSES above Westminster station, in nice, big, fat marker pen. After standing back and viewing their work, obviously the decision was made that this was too serious. Far too full on political activist. So, they scribbled out Temple and added on a lighter note - TAMPON. Then stepped back and looked again. Now, it says political activist with a puerile sense of humour. And they left it at that.

Wednesday, 14 March 2007

Milk? Ewrgh!

Aspreto's product development team must have spent an even later night on this design classic. And the result is one that would look more at home in a science lab than on a tea tray. It's USP - a curved bottom that means if you put it down it falls over and milk dribbles out everywhere. So, when delivered to our meeting rooms, it comes balanced inside one of the cups. Genius. And then there's the feeling you get when you look at it. It's like some sort of hideously deformed, bulbous udder.

What was so wrong with the good old fashioned jug? Bring it back. Please.

Sweeping statement

I never knew people could be so keen on a format. Stuck on the box of a film I purchased at the weekend.

Thursday, 1 March 2007

Nearly free speech

This comments box was in Barclays today. Happily enough I don't bank with them, but from what I've heard, the comments are highly unlikely to be polite. This lone comment could be open to interpretation. There's a chance that some partially sighted old biddy mistook this for a charity box. But surely she would have donated more than a mere tuppence. No, I believe someone very deliberately left this comment. That enduring several years of banking with Barlcays lead to the cynical, and undoubtably correct, belief that this was how much a comment would be worth.

Thursday, 22 February 2007

Mixed messages

The first guest appearance

This was spotted by fellow lensman One Hour Photo inside a pub in Camden.

Seeing as I wasn’t there, I can only imagine what an exciting place this was. Parched, sober people awkwardly standing round, incapable of making conversation with anyone of the opposite sex. Bored, dejected barmen and a load of unhappy, empty glasses. Stuck indoors. They’re not allowed outside. Poor things.

Friday, 16 February 2007

Going up, up and away

Like most lifts, the one at my work has an emergency telephone. Last week, as I was going up to the 5th floor, the speaker started ringing. After two rings, there was a click and I was then party to the following:

"Hello! This is Sandra and I've got some fantastic news for you!!"

This was said in a thick American accent, and the sound quality led me to realise that it was a recorded message Thankfully I didn't have to interact with this Sandra. She continued:

"Because today is your lucky day - you've won this month's holiday!"

The lift had just won a holiday. Today was certainly my lucky day. She proceeded to reel off the details, then saying in order to collect just press 7, then 5, then 3... you get the gist. By this time, my mind was imagining the lift smugly relaxing on some idyllic beach, sipping a cocktail. Or painfully recounting to its elevator friend "I was taken in, that Sandra took me for ride. After staying on the line for a hour, they'd fleeced me for hundreds"

Sunday, 11 February 2007

A polite request

This sign graces the walls of a ladies loo in an upmarket chippy in Brighton. At the time they were admittedly spotless, but if they were disastrously strewn with scrunched up toilet paper and dirty towels would the Duty Manager really thank you for dragging it all out across the restaurant floor in front of paying punters? Would he be delighted if you presented your findings to him at the bar? Apparently so. Maybe he'd even comp you a sticky toffee pudding, or a banana split.

Thursday, 1 February 2007

Books? Shhhhh!

Stuck on the window of a south London library is a large sign with the words: DVDS/CDS/BOOKS ON TAPE emblazoned on it. (Sadly I didn't have time to snap it as I sailed past on a double decker). Do libraries now feel they should keep it quiet that they still have books? You know, the ones with writing in them. That you can read. Books? No, none here. Don't be afraid, come back to our library. We've got rid of all those nasty repellent books now.

Saturday, 20 January 2007

Fancy a cuppa?

Aspreto's product development team must have been working a particularly late night on this one. And thank god they did as I've found it so confusing up until now. Perhaps as their next bold move they'll introduce a new range called "Black Tea to have with milk and sugar". I'd have a cup of tea to celebrate.

Friday, 12 January 2007

This appeared at my bus stop today. At the time I was cowering away from blustering winds and pouring rain. And watching the occasional cyclist struggling to make any headway into the wind that was tunnelling down the road. Now I know global warming is a bit of a problem, but no-one can convince me that it's summer by any stretch of the imagination. Nor were the cyclists I saw, 'better off by bike'. I was definitely the one who was 'better off'. Who decided it was a wise move to run this poster in January? Did they not wonder, for a moment to themselves, that maybe, just maybe, this wasn't quite the best idea they'd have this year?