Archive for the 'money' Category

Cheques will bounce

envelopeA minor credit-crunch prediction based on personal anecdote: cheques will make a comeback.
Reasoning: the increasing number of birthday / anniversary etc. envelopes arriving at Thunk Towers opened. This isn’t to say that people are sending cash, but we are faced with the dilemma of asking senders what was enclosed with the cards. The usual answer is gift vouchers. Still very stealable.


Fox News = car crash TV

Just like Charles Frith, I too have discovered an almost morbid fascination for US TV news. The laughably biased Fox News with its cerebrally challenged superstar Bill O’Reilly are essential viewing, as is O’Reilly’s nemesis Stephen Colbert (on the FX channel).
Here’s a wonderful example of Fox getting it sooo wrong when, sometime in 2006/2007, its pundits try their damndest to discredit the views of a financier who predicted the current economic crisis.

Oldies just wanna have fun

It’s one of those delicious coincidences. Both stories appeared in most of yesterday’s papers, but nobody made the obvious connection. At last: a genuine news story almost supports the findings of a survey.
Story 1: Over 70’s are having more sex.
Story 2: Max Mosley’s S&M orgy amuses the High Court.
OK, minor flaws in the argument are that Mosley is a sprightly 68, and the sex survey says the women are enjoying it more than the men.
But it is interesting how our newspapers treat our seniors as media freaks if they don’t conform to the carpet slippers stereotype. At the very least, one should respect them for their spending power.

Half-baked thought: Time is the new luxury

With the biggest chav wedding of the year kicking off last Friday, one can imagine the tremor of discomfort amongst the premier division rich. That’s the problem when you let the hoi polloi have money: the unwashed oiks only go spending it, don’t they? Those carefully chosen status symbols you bought seem tarnished by association.

It has been a well-reported trend amongst the affluent: go for well-considered experiences rather than luxury goods. Bespoke holidays. Bespoke anything. Just make sure it’s the sort of thing the Rooneys won’t do. Better still, make it meaningful to someone with an education. That’ll teach ‘em.

The trickle-down effect we see in high fashion, where the high streets copy and slightly tweak the latest designs, happens in lifestyles too. It’s a bit like yoof stuff going mainstream (except when youngsters start something off, like Facebook, it takes the grown ups to use them properly, but that’s another argument).

So, the experiential things enjoyed by the affluent will start to be taken up by the rest of us. Yes, even though there’s a credit crunch on.

Consider this: we have to be tighter with the cash because there’s less of it. Instead, we adapt those old green ethics to grow more veg and bake our own bread. It costs less money, has a miniscule carbon footprint, but it takes more time. The chic-ness comes from the proud presentation of the fruits of our efforts. That warm glow of self-satisfaction.

I bet Colleen doesn’t know how to bake, either.

Self-important bit

I’m Victor Houghton, a, er... something or other in one of the UK’s largest advertising agencies. My job title has a comma in it, which is embarrassing. I’m the chief finder-things-outer with a splash of trends who is lucky to work with all the major functions of the agency, even though I am most closely associated with strategic planning. Everything in this blog has most probably been stolen from other, infinitely more talented people, although the opinions are most definitely my own and not those of the agency.



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