August 2012 – Volpe Newsletter

Firstly, Jake is back from holiday – oh joy. And just as I was able to catch up on some work.

Congratulations to all our medal winners, a magnificent haul. It seems a shame that they won’t all be honoured in the time honoured way, a large contract with the BBC. They should be rewarded for their efforts, but somehow like exam results it is fashionable to move the goalposts just as the ball crosses the line. Perhaps to do a U turn, just to show we care. Of course by “we” I mean Dave and Nick, who I’m sure I will be snuggled up under the duvet of coalition as soon as it gets cold and the electricity prices go up.

Most of you seemed to scarper as soon as the Olympics started and were not to be seen again until we dropped the baton. But it did mean that you could get a table in any restaurant in London, and cross Piccadilly without looking.

Jake is now offering me his iphone 4S 64GB, so he can upgrade to the new iphone 5 when it comes out. At what he says will be at a preferential rate, he is even going to throw in a very attractive gold Wolves case! Aaaaaaarggghhhhh. Many of you missed the start of the football season. Oh, poor Jake; the first game a loss and now the board are selling off the crown jewels, left right and centre. Their season is over.

It is a similar dilemma for me, when asked, why there are never any plain blue or white shirts in the sale. It’s a simple answer, next season I will have to go out and buy the same thing again for more money. Have football clubs not grasped this simple concept? The key is in the word simple, or Joey Barton!

Talking of the crown jewels, I would have expected nothing less from Harry.

Well it’s not the first time, but once again I am writing this sat on an aeroplane. I have avoided jokes about the mile high club for the sake of the prurient amongst you. Is it really up, up and away?

Back to Florence again, life is full of hardship, but as Sam has been very quiet on the travel front, I thought I should take up his mantle. This weekend I should be meeting up with Sunil in a Castello near Viterbo. He is taking a holiday, wonders will never cease.

Things are going well there. But those of you who know, know, and those of you who don’t, I’m sorry for the moment my lips are sealed. Isn’t that so unlike me, but then I’m nothing but capricious.

And please, I am not helping “Dear Silvio” with his return. This is well underway, and they have found a stash of lire in a warehouse in Palermo which should boost the economy. ON everyone someone has written, please pass this on for luck……..

Obviously this was last weekend, but I was writing this beforehand, trying to show that there is input throughout the month.

Also I could recount every tube and bus journey, and the ins and outs of my Oyster Card, but I’d soon have you all asleep, and we’ve only just begun.

A few updates are in order. Jason is back from hols, and knowing his reputation, woe be tide any young ladies that might have been in his vicinity upon his Athenian travails, you know what happens. Shirley is not far from releasing her first born upon the world. By the time this is published she will have stopped working, and Marie tells me that the time is nigh. She could always spend her days reliving her pregnancy via my newsletters on the website, hoping the odd snigger may induce labour and get it all over with.

Some of you may remember Eugenia who used to come into the shop from time to time. Yes, she’s the one who we taught to see a second meaning in everything, a degree in double entendre. By we, I mean me, because poor Jake was too young and innocent. I did say he was! Eugenia is getting married later this year, to Ricardo from Ecuador. Eugenia is multi lingual. Good, avoided the obvious joke, but you know where I was going. She even speaks Swahili, which surprised the heck out of a friend of mine. I’m pretty sure she told him that his spear wasn’t as big as he thought. I think Ricardo knows what he is letting himself in for, and I did try to warn him, but perhaps he is blinded by her looks. She is very pretty. Sorry Gen, but you have grown into your ears. Oh, how I remember the days when we used to be able to pick you up by them!

Michael is in Mikonos, and has been on a diet for what seems like forever, and all he talks about is food, I think this has severely affected his mental state, and it’s made his legs turn yellow. Oh no, that’s the fake tan, and his feet are still cadaverous. B*$£h I can hear him say. I just wish I could be there to see him exit the water, a la Daniel Craig. I just hope he remembers to tie the cord on his trunks, up. But it would be so like him not to. However Michael is looking very svelte, he just tries to thwart me by buying macaroons from Pierre Herme (eat your heart out Laduree) this is the real deal.

Neil doesn’t appear to have noticed that I’m not in Ibiza, but I think his head has been turned by an Italian beauty supplied by Pink, who is down there helping Neil out.

Sorry another update, Neil has noticed that I’m not in Ibiza. By all accounts August has left him a nervous wreck. All of those acres of unadorned flesh have left his needles blunt, and only faithful Scratch for company.

And although he hasn’t been mentioned for a while my ‘D’ list celebrity “friend”, has been spotted promoting clubs on the beaches in Ibiza. This generally involves you walking around shirtless, tanned and surrounded by a bevvy of girls dressed the same way. However in his case it means dressed as a Pacha Cherry. A strange way of getting your five-a-day.

And finally Richard has been gone a year, but not forgotten. His chair remains, and perhaps I shall have a brass plaque made to honour him in his absence. Only recently have the emails been returned, perhaps he keeps tabs on my grammar via the website. He will always be able to return to somewhere, where he is known.

Sent from my ipad

 

Copyright © 2012 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.

May 2012 – Volpe Newsletter

The drought is back on. Put away your hosepipes, the paddling pool in the window remains empty. Do you know how long it will take to fill, one espresso cup at a time?

Scorchiooooo.

Of course no sooner will I have said this, than the clouds will gather, the rain will fall, and I’ll go off in search of some sunshine: Jake has always accused me of jinxing everything.

Sam did rise to last month’s challenge. I was bombarded with page after page of boarding passes, like Leveson enquiry emails, I was starting to feel quite travel sick. However, if I was flying Ryanair, and you know I won’t be, there will be no sick bag. Michael O’Leary tells us that his flights are so smooth and on time, that this renders the sick bag redundant. Perhaps the majority of his passengers have been on “Stag” weekends in near flung places? Last night’s goulash, borscht, etc. are in a gutter somewhere, and they have nothing left for the flight.

Apologies to those of you enjoying breakfast, but I’m sure this saved Mikey a few euros. Excuse me for a moment, nature calls, and I have to give Jake a drachma to use the bathroom. Well, Wolves do need a new striker, midfielder, defender, or team? Please delete as appropriate.

Amidst all the turmoil, one or two of you are still managing to get out there and “splash the cash”. More than one of you has bought a new car, and one of you, a Ferrari California. This particular chap was mentioning to me that he had thought it would be a sedate and peaceful drive, and he was a little surprised at the noise it made, and the fact perhaps he was drawing a little bit too much attention to himself. A little like a Cheryl Cole tattoo. Did you not test drive it? Oh, come on, the car…. And really, I thought that was the point? I bet he’s a hit at the kind of party where you put your keys in a bowl!

I assure you, if you hand the keys in this direction, I’ll have no such problems, my right arm needs a little bit of tan. That goes for any of you who have tired of your wheels. Perhaps not you Izzy, a G-whizz is not quite what I had in mind. I have a friend of longstanding who we will call Bob, his idea of a romantic weekend away with his girlfriend at the time, was to hire a Ford Transit van, in white, of course, pop a mattress in the back and head for Brighton. No Mr and Mrs Smith needed there, then. However his idea of real fun was to be driven around Baghdad, by someone cackling manically at the wheel, live shells rolling around in the foot well, dodging bullets, the driver also turned out to be a customer.

My personal experience with someone with similar honed skills courtesy of our government meant we got lost in the Peak District. A gentle Sunday morning stroll turned into a route march in the most appalling weather conditions without the correct clothing. When I tried to explain to him that we were walking faster than he had calculated and had missed the path we were supposed to take, he held my head underwater for a very long time. OK, OK I made the last bit up, or did I?

Today I have been round to see Michael, he’s on gardening leave, and has decided to head for Naples for a month to learn Italian. I was helping him sort out his wardrobe for the trip. If I didn’t do this, he’d have need of a coterie of porters, a butler, and someone to mop his fevered brow. I did this because I like him, and he needs to keep his children properly covered from the harsh rays of the sun, clearly he needs all the support he can get. But I have keys to his place and if he runs short of shorts I am under instructions to courier him his every need. Knowing Michael as I do, he will return with more clothes than when he left.

Talking of clothes, many have been staring at my wonderful white cotton suit and wondering when I shall be wearing it.  Well in answer to this, when you’re in the queue for an ice cream over the Bank holiday weekend and someone asks if you’d like a flake with that, look up and see if you recognise the face… But I jest: the stretch denim suit that has been delivered will see me in good stead for the rest of the summer.

As my trainer OT has moved onto bigger and better things; we do continue to see each other and the project continues, but I have moved my training headquarters to the gym in Dolphin Square. This is in order to prepare myself for the beach volleyball at the Olympics, just in case they need a ball boy, a lucky mascot, anything, really anything, I can mop a fevered brow with the best of them.

We have started to play Christmas music in the shop. Early I know, but it appears to be the only playlist that Jake and I can agree on or aren’t bored of at the moment. We could of course play the entire Eurovision 2012 contest from start to finish on the BBC iplayer, including the Russian grannies on a loop. Aaaargghh, I hear Jake cry no more music with accordions in it, but then he did say Jedward were OK: perhaps it’s the heat.

Finally, it is official; I am too tall to be the president of France. Some good news then?

 

Copyright © 2012 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.

March 2011 – Volpe Newsletter

As you know I like to draw out the suspense with this newsletter vis a vis the end of the month.

However, I’ve been even busier than normal, what with it being my wife Gillian’s birthday on the last day of the month. So it’s only natural that I’ve been distracted by planning a lavish celebration with lots of gorgeous presents. (Gillian – I put this bit in anticipation of lots of gorgeous presents. There will be an update you on the state of our marriage next newsletter.)

Today I’ve cast aside the iPad. I’m rather hung over, and I was unable to focus on the keys. We spent an evening with the man “who is a suit short of a week” and his husband. At least with these two we’re never a glass short of a drink. However he is 6ft 6ins and the expression “hollow legs” was created with him in mind.

I am back travelling again. I had a couple of days in Rome and a bit of spring weather and a meeting with dear Silvio. Just to pick up a few tips mind you. Well you know old dogs, new tricks, and all that.

I spent the time with one of my best friends and his family, the ever youthful Pietroluccis. I’ve known Max 20 years and before you all say it, yes, I really am that old.

He, his brother Mau and father Sergio have not aged one bit. Max ‘Five Vests’ Pietrolucci is a bit of a Godfather name but he needed to keep warm while lodging in Wembley, studying English in London and working with me in Piccadilly in January.

Better than doing national service somewhere crappy in Italy. These days he keeps his temperature up with his voracious appetite for cheese. Vash at the Cork and Bottle has never known anyone eat so much cheese at one sitting!

Max reminded me about the egg box of a kit car I used to drive in those days. Small boys would point and stare in awe at it until dragged away by their mothers. Their dads would stand slack-jawed until dragged away too. Don’t say it; I know you were thinking it!

You could drive it under an articulated lorry to do a short cut on the Hogarth roundabout. I had the hood off in all weathers; well it would be after being driven under a lorry, but it did have a heater.

It was probably the fastest car to 50 mph I have ever driven, but then it would either breakdown or hit a metaphorical brick wall of acceleration, at which point everything I’d overtaken would get me back. But I’ve learnt to cope with the humiliation. I mean it wasn’t the first time and it won’t be the last.

There have been a large number of new subscribers to the newsletter, and hopefully some of you might do something worthy of writing about. I mean it’s not as if you all have gone into hibernation. Pulses seem to have slowed to a rate where it is hard to tell whether you are alive or not, but in some cases this seems the norm anyway.

The first rays of spring sun, and thoughts turn to, well you can keep those thoughts to yourself.

Anyway David is back in the shorts and driving shoes – green suede, very nice. Andre is sporting his Birkenstocks and not much else it seems, or so he likes to tell me. He’s just arrived back from Miami, no doubt after abusing some poor soul in first class. Perhaps they didn’t want a French wine.

Richard with his sylph-like physique stretches to a jean with a 26 inch waist. He can apparently buy these in Selfridges, either from Dior (so Richard), and Dsquared (so not Richard).

Their assistant was apparently just hangin’ in the department. I am unable to recount Richard’s story of trying on the Dsquared jeans as well as him. These were probably designed by MC Hammer, which once on, he was unable to get off over his feet, trying to stand up and holding on to a rotating rail, which apparently kept throwing him to the floor.

After an hour of struggle he removed the jeans he finally wandered off to Dior to purchase his bling.

Anyway back to the rays of sun. I bet you’ve all been keeping up with Wonders of the Universe on the BBC iPlayer, and Prof Brian Cox, a man who considers himself even more gorgeous than me.  (As if that were possible).

No, I hear you say, but yes; bestriding the universe with his floppy hair and moist lips. Traversing mountain tops, deserts and glaciers. Gazing at sunrises and sunsets. Experiencing weightlessness, flying at the speed of sound, and feeling the force of g (yes, I did have to think carefully how I worded that).

Vanity, thy name is Brian. You’re not the Messiah. Just a very naughty boy with a spectacularly good publishing deal, and great hair.

Sent from my iPad 4

 

Copyright © 2011 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.

October 2010 – Volpe Newsletter

Ahh, November beckons – the month of bonfires and poppies and fireworks through pensioners’ letterboxes. But it’s not here yet and squeaking under the wire with moments to spare is the Volpe October newsletter. It’s like an episode of 24 here but with harsher curses than: ‘Dammit.’

I’ve been holding out because, erm, because it has taken until the end of the month for the one bit of good news to appear. After a month when sterling performed consistently against the Euro in a downwards motion, you might think that the bright star in the firmament was the growth figures.

Well, I must stop you there. Once again you have all jumped the gun. But logging into the BBC website to see those hillocks and Mariana Trenches is what makes business so very exciting.

Still, things are going well for the lad Rooney which is excellent news for someone or other – off the top of my head, Age Concern (Ladies’ Division).

Sticking with football: it was tragic to hear of the passing of World Cup guru, Paul the Psychic Octopus, who was found floating at the top of his tank in Germany this week. A moment’s respect and then pass the lemon juice.

Pop quiz: How many legs does an octopus have? Think carefully. Answer at the end.

In showbiz news: the Take That tour dates have been released if any of you were thinking of popping along for a bit of swooning. No, not me either. Truly, the gods of rock are back.  Those of you who know the windows will know that Robbie Williams has loomed large, scary. (No, not Robin Williams, but thanks Jake, for reminding everybody of the likeness). He hogged the limelight as usual, but at least he doesn’t owe me any money.

As for other Rock Gods I have known – Lee Ryan, he does owe me money, he owes me the pound I lent him for the parking meter outside the shop; George Michael, it’s okay mate, I don’t want anything for fixing your Walkman on the steps of Uomo Regine in 1983, not even one your funny cigarettes; and Nick Heyward from ‘80s chunky knits Haircut 100, you owe me more than mortal man can ever repay.

Back when a certain much-loved actress was just a fledgling rock chick I was Nick’s wing man and selflessly drew her fire on to me for friendship’s sake. What can I say except, that I’m a great mate?

At this point I have mention Jason at the Wolseley. He was a little miffed that he featured after other people in the last newsletter. Granted, he still features after several other people but this time I’m singling him out for special attention. We’ll make you famous, if you consider this news letter fame. Perhaps it’s infamy you’re after?

Jason, you are one of my top Jasons of all time, possibly joint top with Jason of the Argonauts. Anyway, infinitely better than Jason Orange from Take That and you even  pip Jason King from Department S which was one of my favourite TV programmes. Wikipedia it, you young ‘uns.

Anyway, just one of Jason’s legion strong points is that he continues to seat me at better tables than He Who Shall Not Be Named. Meanwhile my other celebrity is in rehearsal for Panto season, and I’m sure it’s him who keeps phoning me, blowing on his vuvuzuela and hanging up. And please, stop asking me who they are or I’ll have to hit you with a super injunction like my friend the TV presenter who’s entertaining his ex-wife. My lips are sealed.

By the way, is that anything like the omnipresent Superdry? Damn, they even made it into my newsletter with their trendy anoraks and t-shirts. How do they do it? I don’t even stock the damn stuff. Leave the envelope by the door guys. Job done.

Now, I was hoping that my friend Mark may have done something spectacular to brighten the month. You know, the guy who drinks the mini bar dry and then does a decent impression of a corpse found at the scene of a particularly debauched party.

Even Neil has been quiet. All he requires is to renew his visa for India, where I’m sure, in the most spiritual way possible he will climb a mountain in total silence, attempt to tattoo his eyeballs whilst hallucinating, intoxicated from smoking lichen collected from the north face of said mountain and blinded by staring at the sun, trying to work out how many hours of daylight he has left. If any of you have met Neil and stared deep into his eyes, you’ll know what I mean. As Pink said to us he has a fantastic bedside manner. “He stares at possible punters from his office (a table outside Cafe Tomate), and then only tattoos the ones who are too frightened to move, or those who are too stoned to run away.” Really, he is a very nice and talented guy.

Pop quiz answer: According to marine biologists, two. The other six limbs are arms used for feeding. Where else can you get top quality clothing and fascinating facts? All part of the service.

 

Copyright © 2010 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.

May 2010 – Volpe Newsletter

It’s been an exciting month, jam-packed with, well, work, actually, so that’s the reason the newsletter is late  – before you ask, Sam.

God knows, my wife has tried enough times to get the News of the World to part with £500,000 for a meeting with me, but they weren’t interested so we have to fall back on conventional ways of paying the mortgage.

So, that’s why I’m off to Rome on a whirlwind visit next week and for the first time I’m flying Easyjet so I’ve sharpened my elbows and paid excess baggage in advance. At least I’m landing in Rome, not a different city or a different country.

It’s not that I don’t trust BA to get me there though they have just banned a friend for life. The way he tells it, it was over innocent joshing with a humourless stewardess over a request for a glass of water.

I believe him. Millions wouldn’t.

As he was being assisted down the aircraft steps at Abu Dhabi he queried whether the ban would be for his lifetime or that of the airline. But BA is tied up with other important matters and may never get back to him or the rest of us.

The stewardess should worry. This is a man often found by Housekeeping naked on the bed surrounded by empty bottles after drinking the mini-bar dry. They’ve never complained and have even commented on the thoughtful way he always passes out face down to spare any embarrassment.

What else. Oh yes, there was that election business which was interesting.

Who could begrudge the licence fee that was spent on the BBC’s election night broadcast from the Ship of Fools moored near the London Eye?  Andrew Neil mined nuggets of political gold from such top opinion formers as Joan Collins and Bruce Forsyth while the Pinot Grigio flowed.

But hats off to Sky for the most memorable coverage of the election for all the wrong reasons.

I’d have paid money for a ringside seat at ahem, heavyweight Adam Boulton slugging it out with Alastair Campbell. (Look it up on You Tube if you missed it).

Boulton nearly invited Campbell outside but then remembered they were. Outside the Mother of Parliaments. Made me feel proud to be British.

Boulton was transported to finger-jabbing, spitting fury as Alastair did his ‘I’m just a reasonable, stand-up kind of guy who never tells fibs’ routine.

‘Don’t you tell me what I think,’ shouted Boulton, stifling a belch, as Campbell told him what he thought.  Boulton looked close to creating an ash cloud that would have closed Westminster airspace when Campbell told him to calm down while smirking.

Later on in round two, poor Boulton was needled by the deceptively charming Ben Bradshaw, the Hugh Grant-lookalike and former Secretary for Culture, Media and Sport, who has a nicer tan than me at the moment.

Has Our Dark Lord been giving Ben tips and sharing yacht space?

Unconfirmed reports have it that Boulton was later wheeled off to a padded room where he could start an argument with the voices in his head. I’d love to see him interview Russell Crowe. Funny how you never see those two in the same room together.

So, Nick and Dave will be like good boys at a birthday party and play pass the parcel without any grabbing. How long will it be before Dave doesn’t agree with Nick and Nick cries over the meagre contents of his party bag?

Meanwhile Little George is still finding unopened final demands stuffed down the back of the sofa at Number 11.

I’ve noticed that in the words of that cheesy song, that it’s goodbye Sam, hello Samantha. The delightful Mrs Cameron has reverted to her proper name now the election is over and she doesn’t have to pretend she’s not posher than the Queen any more. Good for her. The poor woman’s facing the next five years having to pretend she actually likes wearing £19.99 shoes from New Look; she ought to be allowed some dignity.

Speaking of bargain basement shopping, as you can imagine, Primark is not my normal haunt, but I was told of an incident that shows the level of desperation to which our economic climate has driven people.

A young lady explained to me, how she had seen a man ejected by security staff for shoplifting….. I mean, why shoplift from Primark? They’re not far short of paying you to take the stock away. I know David (yes, he of the shorts) calls it as Primarni, so I can only assume that this poor fellow didn’t understand the irony.

I’ve just returned from a pleasant lunch in the West End, where I enjoyed a salad with tofu and a glass of freshly pressed wheatgrass, or also known as: ‘My usual, Landlord’. I’m always grateful for whatever is supplied, especially when Vash is the Landlord and the usual has a certain vintage.

On the bus back, yes, I know that you all expect me to travel everywhere by stretch Hummer, I was confronted by a man with a dog, who had obviously enjoyed an inferior class of wheatgrass.

He  was bothering an American lady who I doubt will ever travel on public transport in London again. The upshot being I assisted in ejecting him from the bus, with his long suffering chihuahua, Jackie, who the whole bus felt really sorry for and wanted to adopt. But she loyally followed her master. Dogs really are stupid. Bet he’s the sort to shoplift from Primarni.

Film reviews

This month Hardcore Mother In Law saw:

Lebanon: Das Boot in an Israeli tank

Hot Tub Time Machine: Cruder than the Gulf of Mexico but a lot of fun.

Cop Out: The worst film Bruce Willis has ever made and that includes The Last Boy Scout.

 

Copyright © 2010 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.