Friday, November 23, 2007

A precious moment

Overheard today in a Leeds bookshop ...

A woman was queuing at the till to pay. Meanwhile her teenage daughter and a male chum were perusing some bookmarks based on astrological profiles.

"Sagittarius. That's me" says daughter, "Now, what does it say ... outgoing. Yes. Artistic. Yes, I can be. Warm and friendly. I am aren't I? (kisses boy chum on cheek) Spiritual. Hmmm ... not sure about that one. Though I do that Feng Shui (pronounced Feng Chewy) don't I? Animal lover. Yes. Home maker. Well I like me comforts. Favourite colour ... purple. Purple? No it ain't! It's pink. This stuff is a load of old rubbish in't it?"


I'm up here in Yorkshire at the Queens Hotel for a conference about evaluation which, as a subject, is about as exciting as watching snails fuck. But I have learned some interesting things - chief among them being that evaluators have an infinite capacity for self-promotion and seem to be incapable of asking a simple open question. When, after a speaker had spoken, questions were invited from the floor, everyone who requested the mic proceeded to ask a convoluted question (or more often a statement) that provided several possible answers. They went something like 'I was interested to hear you say XXXXX. Is that because AAAAA? Or BBBBB? Or perhaps CCCCC? I think it's DDDDD. We at YYYYY Associates believe that EEEEE. Although I do accept that FFFFF is a viable alternative.' I also learned some choice new phrases like 'victim of policy' for someone or something that has had change thrust upon them, and 'won't-reachables' for those hard to reach groups that some people can't be arsed to approach.

Off for a nice evening meal (hopefully) in a minute and then back home on the train tomorrow. And not a day too soon. It's got very chilly up here. I got brain freeze (like you get from eating ice cream sometimes) just walking back from the restaurant last night. We went to an Argentinian Steak House - I can't remember the name of the place (how many can there be?) but I wouldn't go there again. The food was mediocre at best and the service appalling. We had to ask for the waiting staff's attention on no less than five occasions. The much vaunted steaks around which the restaurant's menu are constructed were average and, in our case, not cooked to order. The medium was rare, and the medium rare was rare. At least the guy who ordered his rare actually got what he wanted. Maybe it was Rare Night? Veggies were nice though. Dessert might have been nice but we'll never know. We ordered the tiramisu and were told that it was all gone. And we were then told how nice it is as it's home made and made with excellent ingredients. Yum yum yum. Oh really? Thanks. We'll have to take their word for that as we never even got to see it, let alone taste.

I felt like one of those losers on Bullseye who, having scored nowt on the board, then had a luxury yacht wheeled out in front of them while Jim Bowen tauntingly crowed 'Here's what you could have won ...'


Tracklister said...

loved the Leeds Bookshop Quote, it's nearly as good as my all time favourite overheard outide a Ladies Hairdresser
As the guy held the door open for what i asume was his wife, looking like a blue rinse Amy Winehouse at 60, he shouted back inside the shop "well thanks for trying anyway"

Me said...

Tracklisters comment is a seriously funny quote. Bet the woman was furious!
Great blog post Steve.