Jim Taylor RIP

It hasn’t been a great few weeks for losing people I know. Three in fact.


But Jim Taylor deserves a special mention. He sadly passed away a week ago. There has been plenty written about him both locally and nationally. You can read the obituaries in the Nottingham Post here and in The Guardian here.

But a group of Nottingham folk managed to collect over a period of time some of the comments he handed out. I really mean ‘insults’. They are lovingly known as Jimisms. It would be a fitting tribute to Jim if you were able to weave them into your everyday dealings. They need to be delivered with precision and love. Some are true gems.

‘He is coming back to Nottm in November – assume the brace position’

‘you could give everyone a seminar on all you know about housing policy while I nip to the loo’

‘That doesn’t change the price of fish’

‘I wouldn’t send him to post a letter’

‘They’ve put their lids on top of their pens’

‘He couldn’t sell you something you wanted’

‘He is banging on the window with a sponge’

‘One of us looks very seductive but I fear it is not me’

‘I think I am a bit confused and I may have had a diary malfunction’

‘You can slap my legs when you see me next time’

‘You could see the hot air rising out of his trousers’

‘She was brutally ugly’

‘Its amateur night there at the moment …’

‘The cogs were spinning but the lights had gone out’

‘My response rhymes with Duck and Cough’

I wasn’t spared – in his last tweet at our Market Insite event he commented, “At the Innes England Insite event and can I say how radiant and plumtuous Tim Garratt is looking“.

Just wait until I see him… We’ll all miss you Jim.

Nottingham – a sense of humour

I don’t often (read NEVER) take pictures in toilets. Especially on trains.

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But this week on my trip to London I couldn’t help but smile at this picture in the toilet of East Midlands Trains.

Apparently there is a serious message behind this – in that there have been instances where dreams and goldfish have blocked the toilet. It brings a whole new meaning to ‘please don’t flush the toilet in the station‘…

Very funny.

And my picture got published in the The Daily Mirror, Nottingham Post and Leicter Mercury courtesy of twitter!

Broadmarsh – any minute now….

So the news is out there – Nottingham City Council are to invest £50m of ‘my’ money into the Broadmarsh Centre. Intu are going to have to find the other two-thirds in this £150m project.

Leader of the Council, Jon Collins said in a statement, “It is in our interests and it is in Intu’s interests for them to get on with it. If Intu wasn’t serious about this, they would not have spent the time and effort they have done working on every last dot and comma of a deal. It has involved many hours of negotiations and I am absolutely convinced of their intent.”

Great news?

Well, sort of. Intu ‘refused to comment’ on the story. Cynically I cannot begin to imagine why? Surely the story is a great one for the City and for them? Why issue a no comment?

In fairness at the time of the announcement they were tweeting…

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Says it all really. Penguins.

A Twitter war!

Last night you might recall we held the first PSL match of the 2013/14 season. Air-IT Nottingham beat Coolhurst London 3-2. It was a great night for the club and the team.


But the events running up to the match were quite interesting too – especially as one of the Coolhurst players had been courting notoriety on Twitter. Ben Coleman () was rather scathing of the women’s game.

This all came about because last week in the US Open – the prize money for the girls was the same as the boys. Ben was unimpressed and didn’t see that the girls should have equality. For a 22 year old these seems rather an old fashioned view?

James Willstrop summed it all up rather nicely in his weekly Yorkshire Post column – you can read it here. He said, “Last week the US Open Squash Championships made a bold statement by dividing the prize money equally between the men and the women, something that has rarely been done in squash over the years. This attracted widespread commentary from players and fans alike and regrettably a number of people, some fellow male players even, seem to be unflinching on the matter, citing unfathomable, archaic and plain sexist views as explanations.”

I’m with Willstrop on this one. Having watched Nicol David last week – this was every bit as entertaining as any mens squash match I have ever watched. Although it is not yet up on YouTube some of her great matches are – here.

Ben might need some help onto an “Equality Course”. I think they ran them in the 1990′s? Oh and if you were wondering – he lost to Eddie Charlton in Fortress Nottingham. The girls might have been on Eddies side, a little bit!

By Tim Garratt Posted in Business, Grumpy Old Man!, Nottingham Tagged Air-It Nottingham, Alan Clyne, Ben Coleman, Chris Fuller, Coolhurst London, Dave Wardle, Eddie Charlton, Emma Beddoes, James Willstrop, Mark Fuller, PSL,

A quarter of a million hits!

I never really imagined that I would ever get to 250,000 hits on this little blog.


But it just happened!

The real story behind the number is different though – as I know from the subscribers lists that each time a blog is posted it reaches another 1,600 or so people. On top of that there are those who read the blogs on LinkedIn – possibly another 1,200 or so. Over the last few months my average daily hits have reduced, but I have lots more subscribers.

I digress, thanks for dropping by – and thanks for helping me to 250,000 hits.

I have been wondering whether to stop the blog at this point. I have some other things I am working on – but for the moment I’ll keep going.

Thanks again!

Our dispassionate view of the world?

When Hurricane Sandy hit the Eastern seaboard of the USA last October I’m sure we all watched on our TV screens with horror and sadness. Hurricanes and their ilk can wreak havoc and devastation. In the UK, we get bad storms and the occasional fatality – all very sad.

As you may guess from my blog I have been to New York a lot. It is my favourite city and there are some places which form an essential part of a trip.


One of those places is Seaport and Pier 17. These sit at the lower end of Manhattan island, close to Wall Street and house quirky shops – some independents, some multinationals.

At the moment there are none. Seven months after Sandy the shops are pretty much locked up – a handful have re-opened. They are rebuilding the streets (literally) and the shops are all being refurbished. Seaport was under 11 feet of sea water. The wind reached 80mph – making 600,000 households lose power. 375,000 people were evacuated.

The estimated clean up cost is between $10-20bn.


The concept of pop-up shop has arrived though. In the shape of shipping container, ply-lined, small shops. A Street cafe and theatre has been formed. In the sunshine the place has life again. Of course, it need to do this to keep people coming to the place. Otherwise it will fall off peoples radar.

When you see this sort of destruction at first hand (and they have cleaned much of it up) you do realise the power of our weather systems. But you also realise that in this age of 24 hour news and ‘twitter’ how detached we can become.This must have been soul-destroying to watch.

If you have time, have a look at their website and the participatory documentary. It’s sobering. It’s here.

Art – from space?

I have an issue with Twitter, with the number of people I follow (and who follow me) the twitter-stream is long – and changes every few seconds. It’s hard separating the good and bad! I really need a spring clean.


Of course the beauty of twitter is that you can go to an individuals feed and work through their tweets. One of my favourites is – it’s a great take on life from the (not) real Queen.

But there is another which is just brilliant – – Chris is a Canadian Astronaut, currently living in space aboard ISS as Flight Engineer on Expedition 34 and is to be Commander of Expedition 35. He takes photographs – lots of them!

The photograph taken on the blog today is one of Chris’ – and is the outback in Australia. I think it is a stunning image – it looks more like art than a straight aerial shot?

There are other shots on Chris’ twitter feed – including San Francisco and New York. there is something fascinating about looking down at the place we call home?

By Tim Garratt Posted in Business Tagged aerial photograph, Commander Hadfield, CSA, ISS, NASA, photograph, Space,

Trial by the internet?

There was a time when you were innocent until proven guilty in this Country. But that was before the internet and the likes of twitter, Facebook and, God forbid, blogs. These means of communicating are now capable of spreading ‘news’ or rumour like wildfire.

Sadly for Lord McAlpine this was not a good week. An innocent man his name somehow found it’s way onto a piece of paper in Phillip Schofield’s hand – and somehow it was spotted – on national TV. The story Schofield was peddling was of a heinous paedophile ring. And the connection was made. It’s like the age old ‘story’ of the tabloid, “Billy denies he is a goat”. Except that this serious.

it was of course a journalist from the Guardian who issued some helpful tweets:

“I looked up Lord #McAlpine on t’internet. It says the strangest things.”
“I can confirm that Lord #McAlpine was Conservative Party Treasurer when Mrs Thatcher was prime minister”
“Historical fact of the week: Lord #McAlpine was a well-known treasurer of the Conservative Party during the Thatcher era.”

Then the rather clumsy BBC’s Newsnight programme had reported that a “leading Thatcher-era Conservative politician” was linked to allegations of sexual abuse in North Wales without naming him.

Hey presto – you add all three together and get a story. A wholly wrong story, but one that flies around the internet at frightening speed.

But we shouldn’t forget in all of this is a real person. Lord McAlpine – a man who has had two heart operations. A man who has now had to issue a set of rebuttals. A man caught up in a storm which was none of his doing.

It goes to show how it is possible to start a malicious rumour in 2012.

By Tim Garratt Posted in Grumpy Old Man! Tagged chold abuse, Lord McAlpine, Phillip Schofield, rumour,

Logos – how much?

I have had it drilled into me that a logo is not a brand. Lots of times. I get it.

But how much do brands spend on Logos?

I love this infogram about the amounts involved!

There are some surprises – Google spent nothing – and Twitter picked the bird from istockphoto for $15! Back when God was a boy the Coca Cola company got their bookmaker to draw the logo by hand! The Nike swoosh was the result of a $35 donation to a design student!

You do have to wonder why the BBC had to spend £1.8m on their logo and the Olympics $625,000?

At the side of the brands of Coca-Cola, Nike, Google and twitter this doesn’t look great value?

A sense of deja vu!

It happened at the weekend. I plunged headlong into buying a turntable – after threatening to a few weeks ago. I am the proud owner of a Pro-Ject Genie3 – which is about to be discontinued, but has won all manner of awards… It is connected to my new Cambridge Audio amp system.

It sounds fantastic.

I had to crawl into the back of my garage to rescue my collection of albums – ‘vinyl’ as it is now called! And I found some real gems from a (nearly) forgotten era. In no particular order…

Blondie – Parallel Lines – in beautiful white blonde vinyl
Bowies Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars – still an all time favourite
Bowies – Young Americans album – which must be nearly worn out!
The Boomtown RatsA Tonic for the Troops – which I bought just after I saw them play live in 1979 at Stoke
U2 – The Joshua Tree – the last album I bought – and the best album they ever made!
Sade – Diamond Life – smooth, smooth, smooth
China Crisis – Working with Fire and Steel
Olivia Newton-John‘s Xanadu – on glorious pink vinyl!

Are what I have played so far…

I am loving discovering stuff from this era in my life. And it sounds so very good!