Being Beta

Exercises in the higher banter with One of 26. Elsewhere called 'poet of adland'. By a whipple-squeezer. Find out why being beta is the new alpha: betarish at googlemail dot com

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

On advertising: How to stand out

Taken from Matthew Sweet's rather excellent The West End Front:

He [Jerrard Tickell] had been recruited to the Censorship from his desk at Colman Prentis and Varley, a smart London advertising agency at which he had gained a flashy reputation by turning up for work with a pair of lion cubs under his arm.


Monday, June 25, 2012

Poetry: Long Poem Magazine

I've written a review of the latest edition of the magazine, for the fine people of Sabotage Reviews.


Friday, June 08, 2012

Reportage: At the Concrete bar

She is made of fringes: brown pampas grasses on her bag, flopping to the floor; studded ballbearings on her ankle boots; the one on her head has been swept back to make her look awake. The Liberty print scarf says she has enough werewithal for the occasional treat.

The second bottle of Birra Moretti is caressed, lavished over with the same intensity that the first was dismissed. 'She has to hold in his hand in conversation,' she says. 'I'm terrible at doing that for him. At posh parties, Tom always introduces her first, before me.'

Her more conventionally attractive friend laughs at this, in a way I assume she assumes is supportive.


Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Fiction: The beetroot plot

'They have changed the production targets. Again.'

'Again? This we are used to.'

'The objects under production.'

'What has the wisdom of the soviet decreed we make?'


'Ah, the humble beet. Pride of our land.'

'But not our collective. We are producers of the humble onion. So what are we to do?'

'Demonstrate the ingenuity we are famed for.'

'You have a plan?'

'I am merely channelling what a superior power has told me.'

'The Dear Leader always speaks to you wisely, does he not?'

'This time he has surpassed himself. He has asked that we ask the matryoshkas to make a sacrifice.'

What do they need to do?

Provide some blood.



And what shall we do with the precious results of this gesture?

You have the syringes from the medicine chest, yes Boris?

‘Under my bed. For when anyone needs them, you understand.’

‘We need them now, Boris. How else are we going into inject the blood into all our onions?’

‘I do not follow.’

‘It is simple. Our masters want beets. We give them beets. They do not say what quality the beets should be. Or that they need actually be beets. Just that there are beets. So that is what they shall have.’

‘And who shall do the injecting?’

‘Our beloved matryoshkas, of course. It is their blood. They must use it well. And where better, than in the harvest of their toil, from their soil?

I shall fetch the chest.