Gore-don is a moron
PC Squealer reads with interest that Al Gore is following the proud tradition of US vice presidents to put their feet firmly into their mouths at the most inopportune times.
Remember Mickey Mouse watch-wearing Dan Quayle and his 'you say potato, I say potatoe' gaffe when giving a class of primary school-aged children a spelling lesson?
Not wanting to buck tradition, Gore, who is currently well behind the Republicans in opinion polls, attempted to redress his much-criticised difficulty in 'connecting' with the electorate by claiming that he was the impetus behind the internet. A quite ludicrous suggestion even by vice president standards, and one which provoked a predictable backlash from Republicans. It was even more interesting to hear that of the dozen or so presidential aspirants gunning for election in 2000, Gore will be the last to have his own Website. Following the part the internet had to play in the Clinton/Lewinsky affair, it makes us wonder if it's a case of 'once bitten, twice shy'.
Compared to the average publicity shot, this pic of Allen Jones, UK managing director of Simware, really does stand out. Forget the usual shirt and tie, smug grin, lots of hair gel and bizarre camera angles, our Al obviously wants to put across an altogether different message. The trouble is, we're not sure if we know what it is. Leaving the obvious leather fetish aside (we don't want to go down that road), we suspect Allen is something of a maverick. He's not wearing a helmet for a start. And as he's just been promoted to the board, it leads us to speculate what the rest of the board likes to dress as. Perhaps a sailor, a construction worker, a Red Indian and a traffic cop?
Dog eat dog - if the venue's right
In the dog-eat-dog world of IT, it warms the cockles of our hearts to know some vendors really are good sorts - at least according to their PR reps. A recent lunch invitation extended to PC Squealer on behalf of a key player in the local training industry included a gentle reassurance that the 'people are very nice' and they 'are very much looking forward' to the meeting. Bless the dear PR bod who penned the note, but we journos are above meeting with vendors solely on the basis of whether they are likeable people or not. No, we can honestly say that personal feelings have absolutely no role to play in our weekly gathering of channel news. (Some may rudely and unfairly question whether they ever play a role in a reporter's life but that's an altogether different story ...) Instead, we prefer to use a much more tried-and-tested method for determining which lunchtime appointments we should attend - asking ourselves how nice the restaurant is and how far do we have to travel to get there?
You may think our choice of criteria is a sad indictment on our profession, but in our defence, can we reassure you that we really are very nice people too ...
Oh my God, they killed Kenny!
Raising a family, as many of you will know, is a full-time job - unless, of course, you can afford to employ a full-time live-in nanny (in which case it becomes a sort of part-time inconvenience).
But educating your offspring in the ways of the world and preparing them for the harsh realities of adulthood is a difficult task and shouldn't be the sole responsibility of an 18-year-old called Helga. However, finding a suitable role model for the kids of the millennium - as the government well knows - is far from easy. If Geri Spice deems herself unworthy of the job, then who will? The answer, it seems, is simple. If you want your daughter to turn out more like the Wicked Stepmother than Little Red Riding Hood, then run down to your local software dealership and purchase Comedy Central's latest release, South Park (available for the Nintendo 64 and PC). Far from being a mindless catalogue of chainsaw-induced blood-letting, South Park - the game - is also a non-stop marathon of swearing, blasphemy, maiming, violence, gluttony, sexual innuendo, police corruptionand and general nastiness - just like real life. Happy killing, cyberkids!
We all know the range of courses that can be studied at university has increased exponentially in recent years, with everything from Rock 'n' Roll and Elvis to wine tasting and PlayStation development considered valid subjects to spend three years of your life dissecting and analysing. But PC Squealer thinks the Institute of Marine Studies at Plymouth University topped them all when it announced that it had 25 vacancies for a three-year BSc course on the theory and practice of surfing.
Yep, you read it correctly the first time - and it's not surfing of the internet variety, in case you wondered. At a glance it seems a doddle: put on the wet suit, slap on the factor 15, strap on the board and away you go. You don't even have to know how to surf to enroll on the course. But the university assures us that the course involves lots of academic study and students will be expected to do modules in maths, biology and business management. There's obviously a bit more to this surfing lark than we originally thought.
MOD for it
PC Squealer was reminded of the cliche regarding glass houses and stones shortly after we ran our 'end of the world is nigh' piece on Russia's (lack of) preparation for the millennium bug and possible cock-ups with its nuclear defence system (PC Squealer, 3 March). It was then brought to our attention that those fossils at the Ministry of Defence have only cleared two-thirds of their business-critical IT systems of the dastardly bug. A further worry is that the Royal Navy and Royal Air Force are less than 50 per cent ready for Year 2000, and up to 20 police forces are also struggling to meet the deadline. What's more, a completion date of December has been pencilled in - which doesn't leave an awful lot of margin for error. Maybe the MoD felt a bit daft admitting that it wouldn't be millennium compliant until the next millennium - a bit like the Jubilee Line to the Dome.
PC Squealer was delighted to receive the pictures of Kingston Technology's 'Wintersafari' jolly to Lapland with 30 of its most cherished resellers.
We have it on good authority that the figure ensconced in several layers of hi-tech fabric in the picture (right) is none other than Alison Heath UK sales director at Kingston. And we're sure you'll agree that she looks an absolute treat.
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