Herring, Trellis

Mr Key is currently a-moanin’ and a-groanin’ and generally feeling sorry for himself, laid low by a seemingly endless series of colds. Perhaps it is the same one, punctuated by brief periods of what passes for being hale and hearty in these parts. Anyway, to the accompaniment of much snuffling, here are a couple of items from the papers that deserve preservation in the Hooting Yard Crate O’ Press Cuttings.

First, this report was issued by the Associated Press in Amsterdam: A Dutch newspaper said yesterday it had received anonymous threats to kill several of its journalists if the paper published its annual herring review. There is more, but I think that first sentence is sufficiently arresting. Perhaps the journalists would be better engaged doing something uncontroversial, such as publishing cartoons of “the prophet” Mohammed… so long as they don’t include one of him munching on a herring, of course.

Next, the new Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, James Purnell, has this to say, in today’s Guardian: “What’s the trellis on which the plant can grow? We create the trellis… but we need to make sure the trellis is not getting in the way of people being excellent.” Trellis metaphors are always to be applauded, in all contexts, at all times, and this one is especially welcome, for I feared the worst. Youthful Mr Purnell, in his past life at the BBC, was a bright-eyed acolyte of the preposterous John Birt, a man who sees an arrow and calls it a “directional pointing device”.

I am now going to go and be excellent, unless my trellis is in the way.

5 thoughts on “Herring, Trellis

  1. I’m delighted that Mr Purnell seems to be ‘exceeding expectations’ so early in his tenure. Intriguingly, he does not ask, ‘Where is the trellis?’ but ‘What is the trellis?’ Do you think he knows what a trellis is?

  2. The trellis in our little patch of heaven is constructed from bits of a fridge packing case…
    Do you think that’s the sort of thing Master Purnell had in his fuming adolescent cranium?

  3. Get well soon Mr Key (I had an endless succession of colds until I stopped drinking coffee, but that may not work for everyone).

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