February 2012 – Volpe Newsletter

Some of you appear a little bemused by the newsletters. In conversations recently, one or two of you have expressed concern over my well-being, and the fact that you don’t have a clue what the heck I am going on about. Has it crossed your mind, that I may not have a clue either?

But let me explain. In the universe where I live, the sky is always blue, the sea is always warm, the grass is never greener, snow doesn’t go slushy, Boris Johnson is London Mayor, Nick Sarkozy is 6’2” and baby sweet corn is banned. Why? Well for some people it is clowns, for me it is baby sweet corn, cracks in the pavement, and hairs on the palms of my hand. The list doesn’t stop there, but I can see that one or two of you at the back are starting to drop off.

Why do I think like this? Well, on a Friday evening when the temperature was -5C and the wind chill made it feel like -15C, I met Duran (underwear model). He was wearing shorts and rollerblades! OK he had a t-shirt on, for a change. No wonder I am, what I am.

As for poor M. Sarkozy, he has been getting some stick for spending 10K a day on food. Somehow I don’t think he’ll be eating baby sweet corn. Anyway back to the 10K per day. When I sit down to supper with Nick and Carla, they generally stump a week’s worth of cash on the wine alone. She and I may play footsie under the table, whilst she feeds me oysters. Sorry, did I just think that? Or did I really put pen to paper? It couldn’t be Nick’s feet, but I don’t think his legs are long enough, and the invite always say “no heels”, so what am I to wear? I’d taken up pole dancing to keep fit and I thought the stripper heels would be just perfect.

Sam is still living the life. This visit was sans famille, just between Mumbai, Dubai and goodbye. Apparently he’s off to Mars next year, lucky fellow, there and back in a weekend on Airmiles by all accounts. Let’s just hope he takes the family, if they will let the kids out of school.

Neil is in Norway staring at the Aurora Borealis. If I didn’t know better I’d think he was lying on his back in his flat in Ibiza surrounded by mushroom stalks. But photos of him exist outside Noma in Copenhagen, and he did go inside and eat with Eugene.

Greg, the cougar magnate, has been disciplined for sleeping overnight in the office after a particularly heavy session. I should hope so too. If the gutter is good enough for me, then it should be for him. No good falling asleep with your head on the keyboard. You’ll probably find when you wake up you’ve cost your employers several billion dollars. Anyway, he wanted me to get a table at The Wolseley for Valentines, then he didn’t, then he did, then he didn’t. Oh come on, I’ve got a newsletter to write.

On the quiet, The Wolseley has become my dead letter drop. I have a great friend in Marie, who I often see at breakfast. She doesn’t have an email or do the internet, so I supply her regularly with envelopes stuffed with the newsletter, usually via Jason or Shirley. They can then discreetly pass on the mighty tome. I am awaiting her feedback, but as she clearly thinks I’m mad already, I don’t think anything I have written will change her mind.

Jason may be moving on to greater things. He has intimated that I may have to learn an entirely new set of social skills to communicate with his replacement. Suddenly I am racked with self-doubt I think I may be too old to change. Surgery can only alter so much it may take years of therapy to cope with this.

But, I suppose this is what you’ve really been waiting for. The back pages, and Don Fabio and the saga of the invisible man ‘aka’ ‘Arry. Now I don’t care what you might think, but I feel sorry for Don Fabio.  At least he has been less colourful than some of his predecessors. Who can forget Mr Burns with Nancy, Ulrika et al, and Dutch my akshent ish schlipping. Perhaps Mourinho will throw his hat in the ring, buying a house in London. He’s never been known to play to the media, ever.

Don Fabio had a thankless task trying to marshal 11 hopeless narcissists into a team, with their ridiculous rivalries, quiffy hair and diamond jewellery. Suddenly I reminded of, me, me and me. I guess trying to manage eleven of me would prove too much for anyone. Fortunately no more than three of my personalities manifest themselves at any one time.

Stop Press: Big Mick has gone. I had told Jake to take the case off and leave it off, but no. Between games he’d put it back. It’s like England having a part time manager. In the end, I think it jinxed Mick. He’ll never forgive me for that one! But he has been on Twitter berating journalists about getting God the sack. However he is starting to accept the interim replacement. Thank goodness he keeps muttering, not Steve Bruce.

 

Copyright © 2012 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.

June 2010 – Volpe Newsletter

We wuz robbed, I tell you. And I’m not talking about the Budget, of which more later.

Like Don Fabio, I’ll brook no dissent. Mi casa, my rules. We were much the better side. Just look at the statistics and you know my thoughts on that.

Apparently Capello sent the team on to the pitch with the rousing cry: ‘Let’s make English football history.’ I feel that got lost in translation.

It seems even Paul the psychic octopus from the Sea Life Aquarium predicted a German win. Yeah, well let’s see how he fares against Spain where they like fried squid rings.

But as I said we were so much the better side; even my wife agrees and as I know by now, she is never wrong.

There was a moment during England’s nail-biting journey to oblivion on Sunday night when she shouted: ‘Lamps’ at the TV.

I share Don Fabio’s dislike of infantile footballing nicknames, and unless she was describing what she wanted Fat Frank to do to the assistant referee, then divorce beckons if she ever uses such a word again. And I’ll sue for alimony if she says Wazza.

Still, there are upsides to Sunday’s match.

The WAGs were waiting until this week to go out so no pictures of them shopping and falling off bar stools.

And the James Corden’s World Cup Party may be in for an early bath which means an end to the canvassing of opinions of such football geniuses a Pixie Lott by a smug fat bloke in a suit two sizes too small for him. I’m with Patrick Stewart there.

As you know at the end of May I visited Rome again. This time it was just for the day to visit a shoe wholesaler who refused to deal with me over the phone or via email. What strange world we live in. It’s right up there with: ‘The donkey’s sick, so I can’t get the parcel to the UPS office.’ Yes, a supplier has used that excuse. However it wasn’t an entirely wasted trip, I ate a decent lunch and spent some of the day with one of my best friends Max Pietrolucci, and even did a little sightseeing.

However a journey I will be making this month will be back to Ibiza. Those of you who think I have a home there, sorry to disappoint, and if I did, no you couldn’t use it. Also for those of you who have attempted to photograph me under the influence of something that isn’t wheatgrass, waving glo sticks like a five year old would sparklers, again you’ll be disappointed. Neil “the tattooist” has informed me that he will go back to doing stars, geckos, dolphins etc, because as yet I have not agreed to have the roof of the Sistine Chapel in miniature on my back. He has also offered both Eugenia and Carla summer jobs as his receptionist, and I don’t believe it, they are contemplating accepting. Now Eugenia has “previous” for this kind of arrangement. All I can say to her is remember what happened last time.

Not that I’m not going to dwell on it but yesterday’s referee Jorge Larrionda also has “previous” for “over the line” incidents. In 2004 he deprived Brazil of a winner so they drew 0-0 with Colombia in a World Cup qualifier. He once told an interviewer “I hope I never see the day when technology arrives that can help or replace the job I do”. Also in 2002 he was suspended by Uruguay’s FA for unspecified alleged irregularities that meant he was unable to officiate at the 2002 World Cup. Not that I’m bitter.

A thank you is due to Matthew who bought me some chocolates back from Bologna, a kind and unnecessary gesture, but he is a kind and thoughtful chap. I thought he’d go far, but then flattery and presents always bring out the best in me. The latest 3D gadgets wouldn’t go amiss.

This month we also lost Sam to Hong Kong once more. The family soon to follow and I must admit I will miss Xavier’s Saturday morning attempts to total the Ferrari. Sam and Claire be warned, let him loose with a Playstation before he gets his hands on the real thing. The new Test Drive game will be based in Ibiza, so next year it will be full of kids, driving dad’s Nissan Micra lit from underneath with blue neon, ear splitting music blaring from open windows. So nothing will really change. Oh dear, I do sound old.

Now, my friend who has admitted in the past that he was a suit short of a week still is according to him. He feels that a racy little linen number to complete his collection of linens would fit the bill. Not that I want to turn away business or condemn excess in any way, because that would be commercial suicide. I just don’t think that he’s likely to have five consecutive days of sunshine in this country. Apologies, this week has proved me wrong, but mark my words it won’t last.

The customer is king has always been my motto; or one of them. Maybe I’ll make a list of my mottos and add them to next month’s newsletter.

So were you a winner or loser in the Budget – or more accurately, a loser or a really big loser?

I’m still mulling it over so I’ll hand over to Sheherazade Goldsmith, the gorgeous ex-wife of billionaire Zac, newly-minted MP for Richmond.

It would be vulgar to speculate on the sheer tonnage of Mrs Goldsmith’s divorce settlement but it’s clear that even she feels some belt-tightening is in order.

‘If you grow your own raspberries, pick them and make them into jam, it’s a very satisfying feeling,’ she said recently.

‘Much more satisfying than buying it from Fortnum & Mason.’

A sentiment with which we can all agree, and as English as a World Cup defeat.

For those of you who have asked about my mystery “celebrity”. Well, he is currently staying on at the World Cup owing to a promotional role. I felt it would be too cruel to ask which particular animal he would be dressed as, but it would certainly need to be one of the veldt’s larger inhabitants, if only to accommodate his ego. He has been muttering about how poor Brien Blessed’s contribution has been, well at least his voice will be heard above the vuvuzelas.

 

Copyright © 2010 Adrian Holdsworth. All Rights Reserved.