COLUMN: The Ely Grumpster’s weekly ramblings

The Ely Grumpster

The Ely Grumpster - Credit: Archant

• August is a funny time.

Little happens, other than in the world of caravan holidays, where every road west of Guildford is blocked by convoys of wobbling mobile homes (normally preceded by an SUV, with a florid-faced sixty something male at the wheel).

My old Dad has a name for such people - pipe, glasses and national trust badge merchants. His party trick was to pull alongside, hoot his horn, point at the tow bar and draw a line across his throat.

He got more pleasure watching these poor saps pull over than anything else in life (other than when his neighbour’s yappy dog chewed through an electric lawnmower cable).

• A somewhat disturbed mate of mine also nurtured a hatred of caravans, but had a more alarming way of venting his fury - he’d torch them (thankfully without their occupants in-situ). Last I heard of him, he was serving 18 months for arson.

• The Silly Season has also impacted my work in the Square Mile. With so many people on holiday, there is a strange lull before the storm. A bit like the Titanic, just before the look-out spotted a ruddy great block of ice thirty metres ahead. However, when you are a £1200 a day management consultant, doing nothing isn’t an option. An MC would rather roast their backside over an open fire than look as if he or she lacked gainful employment.

• Consequently, they will fill their diaries with pointless meetings. With the boss off for two weeks and his deputy recently sacked, the Grumpster was drooling at the prospect of passing many an hour in the Jampot, Cock and Woolpack, or the King’s Arms. No such luck.

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By the time you read this, I will have suffered lunchtime meetings on a variety of pointless subjects such as reducing printing costs, best practice around weekly report writing, dress codes and best of all, how to run a meeting.

Irony is lost on them. Declining such a feast of intellectual stimulation is not an option.

• I do, however, have a solution. I am generally ignored in these meetings, so I will produce a life-size cutout of yours truly, stick it in the corner and hope nobody asks me a question. Worth the risk if it means four pints of Fullers with my mate Crusher.