Brian's Brief Encounters

This is an Unofficial Kaffe Fassett fanzine. Brought to you from a Leafy Suburb of the Throbbing Metropolis.

Sunday, January 29, 2006

A Little Bit Of Knolledge

I need to get this one right.

No room for any errors; I’ll need to make sure I have all of the required permissions. We may have moved on from the permissive society but, I don’t think I should have too many problems. It can’t be that difficult; can it?

What I need is an expert.

“Hello, Leafy Suburb planning department. Zoe speaking; how can I help you?”

Less than four rings to answer, they’ll be doing well on their charter times this month.

“Good morning Zoe. I’m trying to find out if I need planning permission to construct a knoll?”

“A what?”

“A knoll.”

“A know-all?”

“No, a knoll.”

“A nole?”

Zoe must be new to the job.

“No, a knoll. Kay-en-oh-el-el.”

“Oh, a kinoll. What’s a kinoll?”

“It’s a hillock.”

“Oh, I see……Where do you want to build your kinoll?”

“I thought that the garden would be the best place for it.”

“Ah, yes. What will you be building it out of?”

Good question, I’ll have to wing this part; Google doesn’t have the answer to everything.

“I’m planning on using soil mixed with manure and some turf to cover it in.”

“Will it be a permanent structure?”

“I was kind of hoping so; yes.”

“Will anyone be living or working in it?”

Oh Heavens. I hadn’t thought about this. I missed the knoll dissecting, geography field trip at school; my mum lost the permission slip and I had to do an afternoon of ‘quiet reading’ instead. I’ll have to wing this one too.

“Erm… I’ll probably have some earthworms and moles doing their thing in it eventually. I won’t be charging them rent or anything like that though.”

“No, of course not. Can I put you on hold for a minute?”

Poor girl, she sounds like she’s about to have a coughing fit; she didn’t even wait for me to answer. It must be this cold snap we’re having.

Three minutes later.

“Hello, my name is Marcus Planning Department Supervisor. I understand you want to build a knoll in your garden?”

A very strange name; maybe his parents had a sense of humour or his career path had been premeditated from birth? Still, he sounded like a jolly chap.

“Yes, that’s right.”

“Can I ask why?”

“Because the angle from my depository window is not good enough and I keep knocking my shins on the edge of the bath.”

Marcus sounded like the chilly weather was getting to him too. I hoped they had the air conditioning cranked up in their office.

“Because the angle from your depository window isn’t right and you keep hitting your shins on the bath?”


I think someone must have been telling a good joke in the background. I hoped Marcus didn’t get distracted; this was important.

“How will having a knoll help?”

“I can hide behind it and ambush my neighbour, with my water pistol, in the summer.”

“You want to hide behind it and ambush your neighbour with a water pistol?”

I couldn’t hear the joke teller; so I guessed they were probably looking at a very funny website in the background. It’s always nice to hear people enjoying their work, especially in the hurly-burly world of a Council Planning Department. There’s bound to be a lot of de-stressing needed. I must ask Marcus for the url when we’ve done with the more pressing matter.

“Yes, I’ve got a bid in on ebay for one of the big super-soakers. He won’t know what’s hit him.”

“Why do you want to use a super-soaker on your neighbour?”

The cough was back.

“Because he’s got a hose with a trigger grip on it and he won the snowball challenge last month too.”

“Snowball challenge?”

Marcus was being very thorough despite the distractions in the background.

“Yes, it was a lucky shot. Can I have permission to build my knoll then?”

“Err… I’ll have to consult my colleagues and get back to you.”

Pleased he wasn’t going to be making any rash decisions I left my details and wished him a good day.

Damn! I forgot to ask for the website address. I didn’t think I should ring him back to enquire about something so trifling.

He probably had better things to do.

Thursday, January 26, 2006


It seems that not everyone is a fan.

I’ve been rumbled and stand accused of a number of curious ‘offences’. You’ll be pleased to hear that I’ve gone ‘No Comment’.

For the foreseeable future I’m on gardening leave.

This is so that I can “seriously reflect on the impact and outcomes of some of my statements”.

The first thing I need to do is to build a grassy knoll.

Anyone know where I can get some cheap manure?

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Free Prize Draw!!

What you missed: Information about a very worthy competition to make our jobs easier, with a slightly disappointing prize.

Unreserved apologies to: The creator of the competition, the chooser of the prize, Kwik-Save and anyone who took my 'entry' seriously.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Political Mammals

What you missed: A report about a politician making some very disparaging remarks about policing.

Unreserved apologies to: Any member of the political party concerned.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Another Option

You’ve got to ask yourself one question:

“Do I feel lucky?” Well, do ya punk?

You see, you really should know what you’re up against. It may not be quite as deadly as a .44 magnum but, it’s just as scary.

There’s bound to be a ‘passing motorist’ who will glimpse part of your transgression and give us a ring to tell us all about it. No point in them hanging around to tell us more; not when there’s an important journey to complete. Of course, we could get the call from the actual victim. The chances of this are greatly increased if they’ve called everyone else in their phonebook first and someone has mentioned the words ‘insurance’ or ‘compensation’.

So, now we get to the first contact with the crime fighting machine; the control room operator. Hopefully, all we’ll get is the facts. If we’re really lucky we may get the correct road name, post code and borough. A good description and direction of travel would be just a bit too much to wish for. At least we have plenty of people on duty to investigate what we do get; and generate the all-important crime number.

One of those ‘lazy’ wooden-topped patrol officers will be first on scene while the trail is still fresh. Well, they will be if it’s an important enough call and they aren’t sitting in front of a computer wading through important messages and demands for action from an office officer. They’ll have to weigh up the importance of the call versus the missing sentence from a crime report first though.

They’ll get to make the decisions on what help will be needed to ‘solve’ the crime. Or indeed, work out if there is a crime in the first place. With any luck they’ll hear phrases like “I don’t know why I bothered calling you”, “What took you so long?” or “I just need a crime number” as soon as they arrive in their high powered diesel vehicle that smells of torched brake pads.

If they see fit they could call on:-

A supervisor; to pass the buck to in the case of something that looks like it has a buck that needs passing.

A scene examiner; to cover every stationary object in silver dust and shake their heads.

A helicopter; to get their Air Miles up and to tell them to call out a dog unit when they can’t find anything.

A Land Shark; to bark, drool, pee against anything stationary that isn’t yet covered in silver dust and then to lead the handler on a four mile hike before losing the scent on a housing estate.

A detective; to take charge of really important stuff. They usually come in threes or fours depending on how many trainees still have workbook gaps to fill in.

A firearms unit; in case there are any potential photo opportunities and to talk in code on their secret radios.

The Spice Girls; to grunt a lot and to help with any large scale problems or searches. Providing there is a strong possibility of overtime that is.

A probationer; to do all the writing, generate the crime number and to stand on the crime scene when everyone else has left.

Now, the more observant may have noticed that I haven’t mentioned those cruelly confined to the nine to five office treadmill. There’s a very good reason for that: We don’t need them to help out at calls. They can stick to what they’re best at; which is sending out messages over the next few days to the reporting officer to tell them that they’ve missed something off the report. Or, to draw up a policy over the course of a couple of months making the original offence disappear from the crime statistics.

Ms Blears will be pleased to hear that everyone else on the list works during the busy times making up the ‘less than ten percent’. Maybe she won’t try and meddle with policing decisions then? After all, ministers don’t have the best recent track record when it comes to this activity.

No need for Chas and Dave to make a comeback either.

Sorry guys.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Busy Boy

What you missed: A response to enquiries about my lack of posts during a hectic work period.

Unreserved apologies to: Taxpayers.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Option Three

With the ‘quick-fixes’ doomed to under-perform.

We need to think outside the box and tackle this problem at the root.

Now that I have the attention of all the buzz-word junkies I’ll explain.

Clearly the problem doesn’t lie in there being insufficient numbers of officers on the streets at the times the offences are being committed. It’s the other way around; the naughty little scallywags are committing offences at the wrong time. Well they must be. Otherwise it would be our fault and nothing is ever entirely our fault.

I’ve been giving careful consideration to the optimum point of the day for anyone considering committing an offence to do so. To be honest, I’d prefer that they didn’t commit a crime at all but, there is no telling some people; no matter how many new laws Ms Blears votes for. Besides, I think it’s actually written into the Human Rights Act somewhere that they’re allowed to do whatever they want.

We have to get this message out to our target audience. So what we need is an effective advertising campaign with lots of adverts on daytime TV, messages printed on strong lager cans, leaflet holders at sportswear shops and fast food outlets and maybe a cheery little ditty from Chas and Dave to appeal to the youth market.

I’ve decided to call this campaign “Crime-Time”; if only to make it easier for Chas and Dave to come up with some deep and meaningful lyrics.

In an effort to help my colleagues in getting a good run up at solving the crime, it’s going to have to be as early as possible in the day. Not first thing though, there are a few important tasks to be completed first. Like breakfast and a chat with colleagues about the previous night’s goings-on in the soaps and whatever reality TV show is currently airing. Then there is the Sudoku puzzle in the free paper to complete having not been able to find a seat on the train.

Warming up the computer is next with a quick scan of favourite sites and to see how their bid is doing on ebay to start the working day. Then it’s on to email to see who has had the audacity to send a clarification request about their latest policy. Barely legible messages sent at four in the morning are passed around the office for everyone to chuckle at the stupid wooden-top. They are soon put to the bottom of the pile when a statistics request from a senior officer is spotted. Flow chart programmes are opened and after some careful crafting, showing their department in the best light, the reply is sent.

Then it’s time for the department/work-group/partnership/inter-agency/management/office meeting. Hopefully, this should run its course without anyone making a meaningful decision. Any break from this tradition could mean it overruns and that would make everyone late for elevenses. No chance of any Jammie Dodgers being left when that happens.

With everyone suitably refreshed by eleven fifteen or so we have a small window of opportunity. Now is the time for the ne’er do wells to strike. It’s “Crime-Time”. Barring weekends, duvet days, half term, holiday season, golf days, bank holidays, team building days and office lunches we’re at full strength; with every seat and computer terminal staffed by a crime fighter.

So go ahead, make their day.

Hurry up though, it’ll be lunchtime soon.

(… to be completed…)

Thursday, January 12, 2006

The Numbers Game

Ms Blears has had her abacus out.

Using a series of complex calculations she has worked out that although there are record numbers of officers in the country we’re not all on the street during the busy periods. If only she’d asked me, I could have saved her the trouble.

According to her, slightly less than ten percent of officers are on duty when the naughty people are at their worst. I can only assume that this is a national figure as I believe this to be dreadfully inaccurate as far as the Throbbing Metropolis is concerned. It’s more like five percent.

There’s a very good reason for this: The busy time isn’t between nine in the morning and five in the evening. It’s a bit later than that; at a time when most warrant card holders are tucked up in their leafy suburb homes. Having a well deserved rest after toiling all day in front of their computer screens.

Now, for those of us left this isn’t a great problem. As pleased as I normally am with the never-ending production of e-mails and policies dreamed up by my hard working colleagues cruelly confined to an office somewhere; they’re not much use in a pub fight. Although, having said that, at least I know to consider my safety before my health now. I’ve got a bit of a sniffle at the moment but, rest assured, I’ll be pushing this to the back of my mind the next time someone tries to take my head off with a bar stool. Thanks guys.

Ms Blears didn’t offer a solution to this ‘problem’. That’s okay; I’ve been considering the options on her behalf. Not that she asked me to you understand, I’m not even on the working party let alone the focus group or think-tank panel addressing the issue.

Option one would involve the nation’s saviours. They could be deployed in the hot-spots to provide that all important visible presence. Unfortunately, the whole point is that they get seen. With the busy period being when most of the people who wanted to see a ‘police officer’ are indoors watching reality TV; how would they know there’s a visible presence outside? We’d be accused of fibbing. Besides, the hours in question are generally dark; and they’re not allowed out after sunset.

Option two seems the obvious answer. We change the hours of work for the bulk of our workforce. Clearly this would look good on paper and get us a lot of brownie points. I don’t expect we’ll be getting to your disturbance in a private premises call any quicker though. Unfortunately, there are a few downsides to this option:-

1. With the lack of twenty four hour public transport, more private vehicles would need to be used to get to work. This will make the hole in the o-zone layer bigger and would give Prince Charles the right hump. It would cause a massive downturn in the leafy suburban economy too. Having to actually pay to get to work would mean less money to spend on those everyday essentials from Ikea, Blockbuster and the local takeaway. There’d be job losses everywhere.

2. Prime time TV viewing figures would drop sharply. This could result in a loss of advertising revenue and therefore less money to make quality programmes. The whole nation would suffer with having to be fed a stream of cheap reality shows, cut-price US imports and Celebrity specials.

3. Eastern European au-pairs would be exploited and forced to work unsociable hours. Hours they would normally put to good use studying English or looking for potential suitors in an internet chat room.

4. All computer maintenance is carried out during these busy periods. How could our policy makers be expected to work without a spreadsheet for company? They would have to take the drastic step of resorting to the old fashioned pen and paper. I’m sure you can see the tremendous strain this would put on the world’s resources and rain forests. Sting would be penning a protest song with Prince Charles on backing vocals.

5. We would start getting new policies that make no sense at all. Writing anything at four in the morning is not to be recommended; as any street officer would be able to confirm. Standing in the witness box trying to decipher your own handwriting, grammar and random words six months later is always a real hoot. I still have cold shivers about the time I had to explain how the word ‘pedalo’ got into my notes of an arrest in land-locked Small Corner.

As you can see, option two is fraught with danger. There has to be another alternative.

If only to stop Sting from releasing another depressing song.

(… to be continued…)

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

A Worthy Cause

Now that we have moved into the New Year.

I feel that it is my duty to bring to the attention of the world the unrecognised hard work of some talented but oft-maligned individuals. I did consider organising a pop concert on the Small Corner Lawn Bowls Association green, but on reflection this would only highlight their thankless toil for one brief day. There needs to be a concerted effort to keep them in the forefront of our minds for the whole year. Besides, the S.C.L.B.A. committee turned down my request when I couldn’t promise them that Eminem and Madonna would be making the line up.

There wasn’t any need for me to do anything on this scale last year. 2005 was obviously the year of the PCSO and the Throbbing spin team had all of the angles covered. Then, towards the latter months I noticed that there was much talk of ‘Modernisation’, ‘Implementation Teams’, ‘Service Reviews’ and ‘evolution’. Clearly, gifted as they are, these would not be roles for our PCSO’s. Anyway, they’ll be far too preoccupied filling in their police officer application forms again.

So, we’ll be turning to a crack unit of our most able employees to step into the breech.

Take a minute to say a prayer of thanks for the humble Throbbing Policy Maker.

Not for them the trivial task of working earlies, lates and nights fighting crime on the mean streets of the Metropolis. They’re far too important for that. To these elite men and women a ‘domestic’ is when a gentle reminder has to be sent out regarding the late payment of tea club subs. Give them a conference room and a computer and they can change the world without breaking a sweat.

You’ll be glad to know that I won’t be asking anyone to dig deep to support these superstars in their efforts. I’m just attempting to raise awareness for them. You never know when you could be in desperate need of a new policy and sometimes the conditions they have to work in are, frankly, unbearable. Until the air conditioning engineer arrives that is.

To keep them firmly in our hearts and minds, I have come up with a novel plan. I’m calling it “Make Policy-free Days History”. I will be taking on the arduous task of counting all of the new policies issued nationally, Throbbing-wide and locally over the next twelve months. I’ll be keeping a running total with the aim of showing you that we can have more than 365 new policies this year. To keep your interest piqued I’ll be letting you know about some of the more important ones.

For example; while you were overcoming your hypothermia and swollen feet from the celebrations, they were already hard at it. No time for an extended break for them, they were straight in to a busy week of eleven new policies. Culminating in the following announcement:-

Corporate Risk Management and Health and Safety naming 06.01.06

The decision has been made to re-brand the Corporate Risk Management Team (part of the DCC) and the Health and Safety Branch (part of HR Directorate) to clarify their respective roles for both team's customers.

To clarify the role of the two teams for MPS staff the following re-branding will apply from Monday 9 January 2006:

• The Corporate Risk Management Team will now be known as the Business Risk Management Team.
• The Health & Safety Branch will be known as the Safety and Health Risk Management Team.
• The Corporate Risk Assessments owned by the Safety and Health Risk Management Team will be known as the Corporate Safety and Health Risk Assessments.
• The Corporate Risk Register owned by the Business Risk Management Team will be known as the Management Board Business Risk Register.

This re-branding clarifies the nature of the risks handled by each team and puts safety first.

Safety and health risks are elements of business risk, the latter encompassing all risks to the achievement of the business objectives of the Service and its (B)OCUs and Departments.

The Corporate Risk Management Team has an oversight role in relation to all business risks. In the area of health and safety this role is discharged through close liaison with the Health and Safety Branch and membership of the Strategic Health and Safety Committee.

Risk management terminology can be confusing, particularly when it is used in differing contexts and because it can mean different things to different people.

There is some confusion amongst MPS colleagues between the terms "risk assessment" and "risk management". Furthermore, it can be confusing when we use the word "corporate" both to mean something mandated by the corporate centre or the top layer of a process that is also deployed at Business Group and OCU levels.

Risk Assessments, including dynamic risk assessments, refer to operational or safety matters, whereas Risk Registers are generally part of the business planning and change management processes, when identifying risks to achievement of business objectives.

By re-branding the two risk management teams and their key products we aim to clarify the nature of the risks with which each is concerned.

We hope that the changes achieve their purpose. If you have any thoughts as to how we might clarify risk management matters for you further please do let us know.

I think you’ll agree this is a fine example of a great year to come.

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Public Information Broadcast 2(d)

My night wasn’t too bad.

It could have been better though.

For starters, there were just too many of you revellers; which caused me a big problem. You see, a senior officer had to make a decision without the benefits of a month long consultation period and a focus group or two. This is never a good idea.

So the next time you have to make a decision sir, please try and bear the following in mind:

1. Make sure you have enough officers.

2. Bottlenecks are never a good place for cordons.

3. Consider what will happen ten minutes after you put a cordon in the wrong place.

4. Keep all newly promoted sergeants away from me.

Still, I’m guessing you wrote it up well in your decision log and you’ll be able to use it for a promotion board in the not too distant future.

To the well meaning inspector who got the job of managing your decision, I’d just like to say that you did really well while you were standing around scratching your head. That’s what you’re supposed to be doing. You lost brownie points when you jumped into action offering your words of wisdom. Please remember that cordons are only straight lines in training diagrams and when we’re not outnumbered by about a hundred to one. I tried asking the mass of people in front of me to hold a straight line as you requested, but they didn’t want to listen. Sorry about that.

To the newly promoted sergeant with zero public order experience who got excited: We need to have words.

Firstly; it was obvious that you got that loudhailer for Christmas. If you ever come up behind me, put it next to my ear and shout through it I’ll ram it down your throat. I’ve got my fingers crossed hoping that Santa will put some common sense in your stocking next year.

Secondly; if I decide to pull someone out of the crush in front of me there’s a very good reason for it. Just because you have shiny stripes on your shoulder doesn’t mean you know everything. I gather I made this very clear to you? I would have used more delicate and respectful language if you had deserved it.

Thirdly; I was glad to see from your shoulder number that the chances of us ‘working together’ ever again are remote. Did you manage to catch my number? No? I thought not; I’m sure I would have had a stern e-mail by now at the very least.

To the other officers who did their best: Well done, even if you didn’t manage to hold a straight line.

Then there were the ‘revellers’ who turned up with their mates to commit a few robberies. That was a very nice festive thought of you. Unfortunately, as you no doubt now realise, my posse is way bigger than yours. It’s called “robust” policing in case you missed that lesson at the Young Offenders Institution. Hopefully it convinced you to try out your local discotheque next year.

To the rest of you who I didn’t get a chance to chat to on the night:

Happy New Year.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Public Information Broadcast 2(c)

Now the hard part is over.

All you have to concentrate on is enjoying yourself.

It’s possible you may wish to partake in a drink or two to get into the party spirit. In fact you could be one of the many who want to drink to excess. Despite the warnings of medical professionals who tut and frown at more than a couple of units a day. Killjoys.

Fortunately, Westminster Council has taken medical advice on board and has a terrific public drinking law. I like to think it’s called the Pissed Tw@t Law; although I think they call it something a bit less direct. You see, if I see fit, I can take any alcohol from you and pour it down a drain right before your eyes. The best bit is that I have to do very little writing about it. The chances of you being able to purchase any more tonight are virtually nil. You might as well go home. Night.

So if you were one of those who didn’t heed my warning; tough. Especially if you were the pleasant young man who was waving a nearly full bottle of spirits under my nose while trying to push me out of the way. Congratulations for not crying, although I did see your lip tremble. You forgot to thank me for leaving you with your bottle of cola. I hope it wasn’t flat.

If your over-indulgence led to an unfortunate flesh/pavement collision then the chances are you were in need of some medical attention. You may have noticed that the professional drunk-kidnappers had better things to do than to tend to you. That left you with the choice of bleeding all the way home or throwing yourself on the mercies of the accountants, factory workers and retired butchers among the volunteers. Good luck.

Then there are the problems associated with being in a large, mainly drunk crowd all trying to enjoy themselves. People’s definition of ‘enjoy’ varies greatly. You may have been expecting a bit of cheering and to watch a firework display at the witching hour. Others may see fit to use the crowd as cover to relieve you of your belongings, or to take part in a bit of groping of you or your partner. Clearly these are something you should tell us about. Unfortunately, we’re back to the lottery odds when it comes to being able to arrest anyone for doing it. Still, the fireworks were very pretty weren’t they?

Hopefully you’ve managed to avoid anyone vomiting or urinating on you and you’re just tipsy, shivering, possibly bleeding, possibly crippled, poor, phone-less, alone and lost.

Had a good night?

(… to be completed…)

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Public Information Broadcast 2(b)

Well done.

For managing to dress yourself appropriately and for finding your way into the centre of the Throbbing Metropolis.

Unfortunately your problems may have only just begun. Did you remember to bring a map? No, I thought not. Yes, an A3 size A to Z showing the whole city and a selection of surrounding counties probably isn’t practical. There was always the option of photocopying the relevant page though; and sticking it in one of your cavernous coat pockets. You could have done this at the office Christmas party when the rules for unauthorised use of the photocopier are less well enforced. Just make sure you wipe all of the skid marks off the glass first.

You could try the popular choice of asking me which way you need to go. There’s a small problem with this: I don’t work anywhere near the centre of town. The only reasons I’m there are because I ran out of annual leave and you haven’t gone to your local discotheque. I know where Nelson’s Column is because there are several thousand people walking towards it. However, I don’t know the location every bar, restaurant, car park and club. Try asking a tourist; you’ll stand a better chance of getting a sensible reply. Otherwise, it’s my stock answer of “down the end of the road and turn left”. Bon voyage.

If you’ve unearthed some friends foolish enough to join you on your pilgrimage. Please find a convenient landmark which isn’t in the middle of the busy bits and agree to meet there if you get separated. I know that you all have the latest mobile phone with you (at least when you left home you did) and my advice is a tad old fashioned. If you don’t want to listen that’s okay with me. The chances of you managing to get a signal anytime before two in the morning are about the same as winning the lottery. Still, it could be you. If you’ve wasted all of your money on alco-pops and haven’t put any credit on your phone then the chances of you being able to use mine are about the same as you winning a double rollover….twice. Try a phone box instead. If you can’t find one then ask a tourist; for a sensible reply.

At some point during this exciting chat with me, you may feel the desire to wish me greetings of the occasion. This is fine. Don’t make a meal of it though. There’s a fair to middling chance that you have consumed considerably more alcohol than me and, as a consequence, aren’t as interesting as the conversation I was just having with my partner. A conversation that was probably about important police business; like a particularly fine example of a shivering, limping lady one of us had just spotted. Or, a young beau who had obviously got dressed in the dark, using a lucky dip method from a bag full of Chris Eubanks’ cast-offs.

You may also be fortunate enough to still be in possession of your camera phone and/or camera and wish to use it to capture my happy smiling face as a keepsake. Again, this is fine. If there are eight of you who want to get in on the action can I suggest a group shot? Just so that I can get back to my conversation and don’t have to hold my stomach in for too long. Thanks. For those of you who had to use a flash, I trust you weren’t too disappointed the next day when you realised that the stripes all over my jacket are reflective? Apparently, I look like a discotheque glitter-ball with a hat on. I hope you got my best side.

The bolder among you may want to take this first date a bit further. Unfortunately, the policy makers have been busy. I’m guessing this one was set by a female tired of going home with stubble rash every year. That’s right, a lifetime of tradition ended with one pre-menstrual mouse click. So, no matter how attractive and under-dressed you might be please don’t ask me for a kiss.

It’s official: We’ve all been banned.

Yeah right.

(… to be continued …)

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Public Information Broadcast 2(a)

I love a bit of public revelry.

Mainly because I’m getting handsomely paid to join in the ‘fun’.

Some of you may not have had as good a night as I had. To try and assist you in making a better fist of it for next year you may wish to heed the following advice:-

Brian’s Handy Guide to Public Revelry©

Pre-Planning is the key; please don’t think this is a normal night out at your local discotheque with friends. If you know someone with a military background that would be useful; failing that you could try asking someone who has an ounce of common sense. Or, just go to your local discotheque with friends.

Transport is the first thing I’d work on. Driving is an option. You’ll have to get there really early; about ten in the morning would be good. Just so you can get yourself a parking space in a car park which will charge you a week’s wages for the privilege. Be prepared to be there until about three the following morning and then spending several hours negotiating the road closures to get out. We like closing roads.

You could throw yourself on the mercies of the public transport system. There’s about an eighty percent chance that the comrades on the Underground network will be in the throes of a strike. They like a strike. Buses are a good idea. Just make sure you know which one you’ll be needing and where it’s running from. We tend not to allow them to drive through the massed ranks of revellers. We’re a bit funny like that. If you don’t know which one you want, don’t bother asking someone who has the word ‘Police’ emblazoned on their bright yellow jacket. Not many of us moonlight as bus spotters.

Please don’t ask me where you can get a cab either. All of the black cab drivers are at their local golf clubs showing off their Christmas jumpers. Or, they’re in their villas in Benidorm. They are not roaming the streets of the Throbbing Metropolis looking to pick up someone who’s likely to vomit in the back of their taxis.

Expect a fair amount of walking, which brings me neatly onto the subject of dress code. Especially for you young ladies. Now, as happy as I am that skimpy tops, short skirts and high heels are back in fashion, you may want to think seriously about the walking bit and the weather forecast. I don’t know why, but, it seems that every year this celebration falls in the middle of winter. This is when you need the help of someone with common sense. I never get bored of laughing at shivering, limping ladies.

What you need is to take a male friend with you. One who isn’t planning on wearing a skimpy top, short skirt and high heels would be preferable. Make him wear a very warm coat with big pockets. In those pockets you need to place a pair of comfortable shoes and a pair of leg warmers. If I need to draw you a picture at this point, I’d suggest you should venture no further than your local discotheque. I appreciate it’s not the most attractive look. It beats being crippled and frostbitten though.

As much as I’d like to say “here endeth the lesson”.

You clearly need a bit more input.

As do some Police officers.

(... to be continued…)

All ramblings Copyright(c) 2005/2006 by Brian. Ask First.