Time’s winded chariot

September 5, 2010

I have this thing about time. Not simply because, with every day that passes, I have less and less of it, but because I hate being late.

I think it’s probably because I have mental images of my mother sitting on her suitcase, waiting and waiting and waiting for a cab that would take us away from my dad, who was, as usual, nowhere to be seen.

Anyway, whatever the cause, I don’t like to keep people waiting, because (narcissistically, my therapist told me years ago, although she was struck off not long afterwards) I don’t like to be kept waiting myself. Excessive self-esteem,  apparently, not uncommon in our game.

So, any road up, there I am in this lobby area at a certain well-known bank, waiting for the head man to come out.  Time passed, as it does. The only thing to read was a book of etchings (no, not that sort…this was a bank, remember) and the only person to talk to was a big scary dykey PA, and this was 20 years ago, in the days before mobiles, so I couldn’t amuse myself playing snake or  sending texts.

So, well, I just sat there, Luckily I had a notebook – I’ve got it now, here on my desk.  I wrote down some random thoughts:

Bankers as artists

Bankers as artistes

Bonkers as artists

Blinkers as asparagus

Blinders as blinkers

(I have no idea where I was going with this. I seem to remember that I had been called at short notice, so I was probably struggling for an idea, or maybe desperately scouting around my subconscious for a tag-line.)

Soya milk.



(I was still with the peacock lady. Can you tell from my short shopping list?)

Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

Morecambe and Wise.

Little and Large.

(A new riff. Pairs of contrasting characters. Maybe I was trying to create some sort of contrast in an ad. Unless, of course, I was shamelesslycribbing the old Bradford & Bingley ad.)

Why are we waiting? Oh why are we waiting? Tony Hancock?

An interesting slip back to my childhood there, the old Tony Hancock radio shows, or maybe TV sliding back into my consciousness after years and years lying dormant in some little synaptic gap.

But then, or shortly afterwards, the prospect must have finally appeared, because I took copious notes about what he thought he wanted, then I asked him some standard advertising questions – well, standard at the time, and rather cringy now – about what sort of animal they thought they were I’d written down (‘we think we’re a leopard but the rest of the world sees us as a hippo’), or what kind of car (‘Jaguar, with Ferrari moments’) and then…well, I think we sent in a proposal for something cool, but they didn’t bite. And years later, they went bust.

Funny old world, banking.


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